IH Campus country fair, Seville, Spain11-May-2007
Blended learning expert, Pete Sharma, writes:
‘The first MEC country fair, at IH Seville, was a hugely enjoyable event. There was a real sense of warmth and camaraderie amongst the participants, from schools across the south of Spain (Seville, Huelva, Cordoba and Malaga) as well as Madrid.
A number of things struck me during the day. One was how completely different everyone’s individual experience of the Campus is. The participants (teachers, Directors of Studies, School Directors and Campus co-ordinators) have access to the same material, work for the same organisation, teach students with the same cultural and linguistic background, and yet the range of questions, ideas, thoughts and comments during the day was extremely diverse. I see this as positive. We not only discussed what Campus is, but also its potential.
Many barriers were mentioned during the day which could prevent teachers using technology successfully. At times these could seem insurmountable. However, in this group of creative practitioners, there was always a sense of “positivism” with people constantly suggesting constructive ideas.
There was a lot of excitement about the new lesson plans available on the MEC support site. These should prevent re-inventing the wheel. However, I think it is also important for individuals to work through a series of challenges first – how to set up the data-projector, how to exploit the materials, how to unleash the potential of MEC to transform classroom practice, etc. Each teacher in each school will be at a different point on their own, personal learning curve.
Some big questions also emerged: Can “best practice” be proliferated through (say) the support site? Or, are some teachers condemned to always finding technology a frustrating and ultimately negative experience? I came away with a positive glow and a sense of optimism. I believe others were also enthused by the potential of MEC.’
From left: Helen Rouse, Dos IH Malaga; Mike Green, MEC Training Manager; Linda Harper, Director IH Huevla; Christina Anistadiadis, Dos Adult Students IH Madrid; Simon Armour, DoS IH Cordoba; Jenny Dobson, Teacher and IH Campus co-ordinator IH Cordoba; Colin Dobson, DoS IH Seville; Pete Sharma.
Do you have something to say about your experience of Campus? What do you think of the support site and new MEC Basics worksheets? Do you find technology frustrating or empowering? Leave us a comment!