Asked to cite an example of a situation where IT had made a radical contribution to learning and teaching, the temptation might be to conjure up visions of extreme hi-tech at the expense of the basics – specifically email.

Consider the logistical ingredients of this dilema:

  • the final guitar lesson of the term on Monday 17th March
  • some pupils unable to attend due to other fixtures
  • the next lesson not due until Monday 14th April
  • this to be followed by a concert 3 days later
  • the 22 pupils in the ensemble form six 30-minute lesson groups, drawn from nine P5-P7 classes
  • the pupils had not yet played as a large group
  • the likelihood was that familiarity with the music, and how the various parts fit together, was going to diminish as the concert approached – particularly for those playing an accompanying part as opposed to the melody

An insoluble problem? Without the necessity of an unscheduled visit to the school between the quoted dates I was delighted to see all 22 pupils breeze into the hall first thing this morning, well prepared for a final rehearsal/recording session. Thanks to the endless cooperation of the admin, management and teaching staff of the school in question, the privileges afforded me through this eduBuzz blog and the school email system, things fell into place in a way which would have been inconceivable a few short years ago. All it took was:

  • to create play-along midi files for pupil practice and post them on the blog
  • to send an email with details of where to find and how to use the files, asking that it be distributed to the pupils concerned
  • to ask, in a second email, for today’s normal lesson routine to be suspended in favour of a rehearsal of the full ensemble

Thanks to everyone concerned!

3 thoughts on “Communication”

  1. I love hearing about the way people are finding new possibilities like this. Thanks for sharing. I’ve sent a link to this post to Karen Robertson, who’s collecting evidence of the sometimes unexpected benefits that are emerging.

  2. Thanks for the comment, David. I didn’t realise that Karen was collecting such tales – that’s serendipity for you – which is fast becoming my favourite word. I only wish now that I’d not mistyped the title. Mistyping the word “communication” must surely qualify as irony of the highest order. I hope my correcting it won’t endanger the link.

  3. Not unless you fix “Page Slug” too, which is what it uses for the page URL. That’s created when you first publish the page, and defaults to the title unless you manually enter something a bit snappier. Probably best to leave it now, or the link I sent Karen will break. 😉

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