Training teachers to use mobile technologies within mainstream school education
We are a team of experts in education, mobile technology and project management from 5 European countries. Our strong belief, that made us work together, is that teachers can be agents of change in education, assisting all learners in discovering the untapped potential of mobile devices in the classroom.
The MLEARN project, a European Union (EU)-funded project, will explore and promote teacher development of mobile learning practices in four member states – the Netherlands, the UK (England), Greece, Romania and Italy. The project will consider how teachers can develop and use pedagogies to support activities with learners using handheld or mobile devices in and outside classrooms. Handheld devices cost less than traditional ICT and can be used anywhere and everywhere, 24/7. We must consider the impact on learning of a personal device that accompanies a learner throughout the school day and goes home with him/her so learning can continue. Using smaller and more mobile technologies gives the potential to equip each learner with a device, which can accompany them anywhere. This creates the potential for learning that is more personalised, that is inclusive, and that extends beyond the classroom and provides scope for more independent learning.
In an age when more people on our planet have mobile phones than don't and where mobile phones and handheld entertainment devices outsell laptop and desktop computers by 4:1 we believe there are huge opportunities to make transformational improvements in learning that will affect everyone, this is better achieved by working across national boundaries harnessing the potential each country has to offer. With the support of project partners targeting teachers and head teachers from more than 7 EU member states we can change current mind sets and attitudes to the application of hand held technologies in mainstream education so reducing disparities. To achieve this all products must be transferable between countries. Developing modules with a focus on achieving learning outcomes through practice in the classroom will lead to the modules to being inserted onto ECVET offering greater transferability. The promotion of mutual recognition of qualifications between EU Member States and the implementation of the ECVET framework on a European scale is high on the list of priorities in Europe as laid down in the Bologna Process, Copenhagen Process and Lisbon Treaty at the heart of this project. MLEARN enables learning to be shared between schools at primary and secondary levels (including special schools) across differing levels of expertise to ensure learning outcomes, learning content and assessment criteria cover needs at all levels.