1:1 Choices Made Simple

You won’t be able to do it all.  You have limited time and therefore you will have to decide what you value.  Identify what you value most and focus your efforts there.   

Schools are going to have to choose.  It will not be easy and you better not try to rush the process.  1:1 devices are a trendy topic. Ultimately they force schools to make many hard choices.  You can read a lifetime’s worth of articles on every aspect of 1:1 but they will all eventually return you to the idea above.


The first few weeks of my 1:1 pilot were a very stressful time.  I was adding volumes of skills, daily student choice and doing iPad set up regularly.  I felt torn between the tech and the content. Daily I would drive home and feel that I had failed on some level.  My school district did not tell us “you must do this!!” and much was left to the individual teachers. (Which I believe is ultimately a good thing for a pilot to do.)

Finally reality slapped me. I realized that the curriculum can only expand so much if the time available does not expand with it.  I needed a focus.  I needed to decide what was important and make some decisions.  I looked at the critical learning standards for my course, focused on how the technology could add to their development and started to refocus.  This was how I could best focus my efforts, my time, and the technology towards the priorities of my school and my district. It is my divining rod as to what is essential and what can be cut. 

If a whole school is to succeed in going 1:1 these hard decisions will need to be framed for the teachers in advance.  Leaders will need to identify and communicate the values that should be driving teacher choices.

“We believe (X) is important for our students. Use this technology to achieve that aim.”

So find your school’s goal, your purpose, your “True North”. Make it clear to everyone. Then pursue it with all your might.

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