The idea of BYOD – Bring Your Own Device (or BYOT – Bring Your Own Technology) is something that is bubbling away in the back of my mind. But recently I’ve turned my thoughts to something more important to transforming education for our kids at Crusoe, and that is BYOP – students bringing their own passions to school, and how we tap into them.
When a colleague showed an interest in our Global Writers’ Club, I was only to happy to help her give the opportunities of a global audience to her students. The idea that this wasn’t something for all students – I sincerely believe that online communities benefit from having as large a concentration of students who really want to be there as possible – connected with her, as she listed the students in her class who were passionate and able writers. I made some time to talk to this group of students, and explained how writing is about communicating, and it can be hard to communicate without an audience. I explained that this is all of what the Writers’ Club is about – providing an audience. And the accompanying motivation to improve your writing knowing that student writers from around the world can and will read and comment on your writing. So the students hesitantly logged into the Writers’ Club, wrote up their profiles, and started finding authors they liked reading.
I keep banging on about personalised learning, but it isn’t obvious how the Writers’ Club contributes to that. The intention has always been to offer students an experience that taps into the passions they bring. Writing is just one of those passions, and there are many more out there that our students walk in the door with. Some can be catered to easily, some not so. But with writing being such an enormous part of education, and the internet allowing us to give students the global audience for nothing, it seems silly not to give it to them.