Moving at the Speed of Creativity by Wesley Fryer

Online learning at Crescent, Oklahoma

Last week’s NewsOK article, “Online study is way of life at Crescent High School,” provides a little insight into the impact of our Oklahoma State School Board holding their February meeting in Crescent Public Schools on February 4th. I discussed the importance of this visit in my Feb 3rd post, “Crescent Public Schools: The Eyes of Oklahoma Are Upon You!” It is an interesting article, and I’m glad to see the positive news coverage for Crescent, but I think a new clarifications are needed.

In the article, the phrase “A total high school without textbooks…” was used. This may be a misquote, but in any event it is misleading. While high school teachers in Crescent ARE creating course content in Moodle and students DO utilize online math curriculum, it is not accurate to say there are not textbooks in the high school. There are. This 2002 copyrighted social studies textbook is an example. I was in Crescent in November, and saw students working on assignments with this actual textbook.

2002 Social Studies textbook in Cresent, Oklahoma: The Americans

This 2002 social studies textbook is being used by students in Nov 2009

This statement in the article is also misleading, because it gives the idea that there is not a provided curriculum for students in Crescent. While instructional materials certainly are taking more digital forms, it’s not true to say “there is no textbook.” The textbook now takes multiple forms, both online in Moodle, on commercial websites provided by textbook publishers, in commercial curriculum sites, and in traditional, paper-based curriculum materials utilized by teachers and students alike.

I am very enthused by the 1:1 learning project in Crescent, and am hopeful we will see transformational teaching and learning examples shared by students as well as teachers there. It is WONDERFUL members of our state board of education took time to visit Crescent and learn more about their digital learning initiative. I’d love to hear more DIRECTLY from students at Crescent, as well as students at our other Oklahoma 1:1 schools about how their learning is different as a result of their enhanced digital access. This might be a good Storychasers initiative in the months to come.

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