Once Upon a Time
Every so often, I look back at our development history and re-discover some noteworthy customer engagement gems. I've included links to a few of my favorite video vignettes of the work we did with Apple and the Maine team in their groundbreaking 1:1 laptop program.
It's cliche to say Apple Education was ahead of its time but the Maine team walked the talk in terms of teacher training, professional development and technical support. I'm obviously biased towards the wonderful people we worked with on their state-wide program (I still think it sets the highest bar for what is possible when teaching and professional training are tightly integrated).
It was an honor that NoteShare was selected for Maine's MLTI program, which in my opinion, was one of Apple's best education initiatives anywhere in the US if not the world. Maine's technology leadership was inspired by Governor Angus King's vision while the project teams adjusted and adapted to the challenges of creating a sustainable, state-wide program; it really wasn't about the technology but about student outcomes with measurable if not visible changes in classroom experiences.
Some of the best educational thinkers of the day like Seymour Papert and Alan Kay inspired Maine's direction and philosophy of classroom learning. With a network and easy server access, many of Maine teachers were flipping classroom instruction long before the idea was commonplace. Exploration and self-directed learning were everyday experiences in Maine classrooms. They were "making" before there were "makers".
Not everything was perfect either and trust me, networking at scale especially with Wi-Fi provisioning was never easy. But the students, teachers and staff stuck to it and to this day, I've never encountered a more dynamic Apple Education experience than what I witnessed with Maine's 1:1 program. Obviously things change, technologies change (iPads, iPhones) and teaching approaches change too but Maine reminds me that one teacher, one student is still a magical combination for learning. Learning anything.
NOTE: The links below will open to a list of MLTI (Maine Learning Technology Initiative) podcasts which are viewable as iTunes-enabled videos. Enjoy the memories.
Isleford (aka the one room schoolhouse on Little Cranberry Island)
Maranacook (student led reviews for parent conferences)
Skowhagen (MTLI overview)