Engage Mobile and Education Leaders Work Together to Rethink Education

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Mobile Technology in Education Initiative Launched in Kansas City.

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The key is to have a strategy in place and goals established before undertaking any technology initiative.

A dozen education leaders representing private, public, traditional and online learning institutions met in Kansas City, Missouri, this month to discuss how technology can transform education. The goal of the group, which included both educators and administrators, was not just to rethink the education process, but to reimagine the world of teaching and learning.

The American education system relies on a teaching model that has not changed much in the last century. The basic concept of a teacher standing in front of a class of students, lecturing, putting notes on the board, handing out and grading tests has remained relatively unchanged.

Engage Mobile Solutions, the mobile software and app strategy, mobile development, app development, mobile marketing and app marketing company, was recently selected by Google Inc. to beta test its new Google Glass product. Google Glass is a type of computer that can be worn on the head, like eyeglasses. Engage Mobile has seized this opportunity to challenge educators to rethink the learning process in an effort to maximize the benefits of the technology.

Educators who were part of this brainstorming session were thrilled to discover how technology can allow them to reinvent the entire concept of teaching and learning. Instead of teaching the exact same content in the exact same format to students, technology can remove traditional teaching limitations. According to Professor J. Gregg Whittaker, Ph.D., of William Jewell College, "With Google Glass, we can begin to break down classroom walls and develop a whole new student-centered, learning-focused educational paradigm that is limited only by our imagination and not our physical space and location.”

Another advantage of using technology like Google Glass in the classroom is that it allows administrators and teaching coaches to provide support and training for educators. Airick Leonard West, Board Chair of Kansas City Public Schools, noted, “Supporting the improvement of teachers’ instructional practice is a vital part of turning around struggling performance. New technology such as Google Glass allows for innovation in how job-embedded coaching and teacher support can occur.”

Of course, Google Glass is only the beginning. There will be more wearable computing devices coming to market over the next several years – from watches to clothing – all with the intent of integrating technology seamlessly into our day-to-day lives. Rather than looking to a specific technology such as Google Glass, educators need to take a broader approach to integrating technology into the teaching and learning process. According to Matthew Barksdale, president of Engage Mobile Solutions, “The key is to have a strategy in place and goals established before undertaking any technology initiative. It does not matter if it is a school district or a Fortune 500 company, it all comes down to leveraging technology solve a problem or meet specific needs in the market.”

To find out more about Engage Mobile Solutions and the Mobile Technology in Education Initiative, please go to http://www.engagemobile.com/mobile-technology-in-education-initiative/.

The following educational institutions and professionals were involved in the process:

Aspen University – aspen.edu

  •     Gerald B. Williams, Ph.D. – president

Kansas City Public Schools – kcpublicschools.org

  •     Airick Leonard West – Tech Entrepreneur; Board Chair
  •     Thomas Brenneman – Executive Director of Technology

Liberty School District – liberty.k12.mo.us

  •     Robert Vogelaar, Ed.D., SPHR – Assistant Superintendent
  •     Eric Langhorst – 8th grade American History teacher, Google Certified Teacher and 2007 Missouri Teacher of the Year
  •     Ken Kramme, Ph.D. – 42 years teaching science on the secondary and college level - 1990 Presidential Awardee – Teacher of Science

Northland Christian School – northlandchristianed.com

  •     Richard Rice – Principal, 40-year career in public and private education

Oakhill Day School – oakhilldayschool.org

  •     Suzanne McCanles – Head of School
  •     Bernadette Roche, Ed.S. – Administration Director of Technology

William Jewell College – jewell.edu

  •     Professor J. Gregg Whittaker, Ph.D. – Business and finance professor
  •     Kelli Schutte, Ph.D. – Associate Professor of Business and Department Chair

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Engage Mobile Solutions builds apps and software for smartphones, tablets and other mobile and desktop devices. Their apps and software are custom designed for companies and focus on solving business problems that move the needle for clients. The company also works with clients to develop an overall mobile strategy and develop and execute mobile marketing plans. For more information about Engage Mobile Solutions visit http://www.engagemobile.com or contact Matthew Barksdale at mbarksdale(at)engagemobile(dot)com.

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