The 3rd Narrative of School Reform with Will Richardson

will richardson“It’s no longer about what WE want students to do. We need to ask ourselves ‘How do we support kids in what THEY want to do?'”

Will Richardson is a parent of two teen-agers, and has spent the last dozen years developing an international reputation as a leading thinker and writer about the intersection of social online learning networks and education. Will has authored four books, most recently Why School?: How Education Must Change When Learning and Information Are Everywhere (Kindle Single)
– which was published by TED books and based on his most recent TEDx talk in Melbourne, Australia.

“We need to do inquiry based, student centered, technology rich learning in an effort to prepare kids to go out into the real world so they can continually learn, connect and create with other people.”


Noteworthy moments you should pay attention to:

4:05 – A teacher’s role will be more difficult in the short term due to limitations from the idea of “Doing school better”. However, this is a very exciting moment for learning. It’s a time to use technology for both teachers and students to develop new learning patterns.

6:40 – We’re looking at the wrong measures in school!

7:20 – Teachers need to become more connected learners. 2 big questions that should be addressed: “How do you connect to other people?” and “How do you create with computer?”. There’s a lot of emphasis here on learning how to join the right communities, and provide value to these learning communities.

9:45 – Twitter is your launching pad for this movement towards connected learning.

10:05 – Jackie discusses her point of view on teacher agency. There are a lot of choices out there, but also a lot of restrictions. What can teachers do? Stand up for your freedom as an educator, and become a connected learner!

10:50 – According to Will these are some good, hard questions that you should ask of your communities so you can make your own classroom better.

14:03 – The third narrative of school reform: Focus on “How do we support kids in what they want to do? We learn by doing things that we care about, and that we want to learn more about… We need to do inquiry based, student centered, technology rich learning in an effort to prepare kids to go out into the real world so they can continually learn and continually connect and create with other people.”

Mentions of Technology

– Twitter 

– and

You can reach Will Richardson on Twitter @willrich45 and on his website.
Here is Will’s TedX Talk in Australia

Flipped Classroom Week: Integrating Technology Organically into the Modern Classroom

Teachers reign in the classroom. They oversee a unique territory, where students, by virtue of their implicit choice to attend, are subject to the teacher’s rule of law. You show up on time, you sit down, you appear presentable. Pupil participation is also within the teacher’s purview, offering incentives and disincentives that guide behavior, which in most cases look something like a good grade or a bad one.

But this territory is fluid, and its participants, fickle. The class extends well beyond the physical confines of the classroom. After all, that’s why you assign homework. But often, it takes more than the casual prod of a looming grade to inspire students to meaningfully engage with the work. Believe me, a bad grade is hardly a sustainable threat for a college student. Coercion, it turns out, is weak – sincere engagement, on the other hand, affords students a true learning experience.

That’s why we believe teaching is an art that brings together three distinct knowledge centers: the subject matter, pedagogical technique, and technology (communicative tools). The TPACK model (Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge), as explained wonderfully by Educational Technology and Mobile Learning, is a clear framework illustrating the supporting role that technology plays in the modern classroom.


The right technology complements what a teacher has already mastered — lesson content and a unique pedagogical style — by serving as a delivery tool, a logistics system, a channel for information and participation. We hope that technology companies take up the responsibility of designing systems that work effortlessly with the teacher’s territory so their content can reign.