Dr. Julie M. Wood and Nicole Ponsford

Dr. Julie M. Wood and Nicole Ponsford

Nicole Ponsford and Julie M Wood are the authors of TechnoTeaching: Taking Practice to the Next Level in a Digital World (2014, Harvard Education Press).

Nicole is the digital leader of @WomenEd, leader of @WomenEd_Tech and founder of @gendercharter. Previously, she was an award-winning AST in Media and New Technologies. Nicole is passionate about gender equality being the ‘new normal’.


Julie’s roles include: International digital literacy consultant. Advisor for US Department of Education. Senior Advisor at EtonKids’ Parents Academy, Beijing. Presenter / panelist. Literacy and technology advocate. Researcher. Children’s book author.

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“Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you find some way to break the rules, and make a little trouble out there. And I also hope that you choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women.”

– Nora Ephron, 1996, commencement speech at Wellesley College.

“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out of your door,” he used to say. “You step into the road and if you don't keep your feet there's no telling where you'll be swept off to. Do you realize that this is the very path that goes through Mirkwood, and if you let it, it might take you to the Lonely Mountains or even further or to worse places?” – J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring (Frodo Baggins about Bilbo)

Smart phones. Web browsers. Social media. Instagram. Keeping children safe has become increasingly difficult in today’s hyper-wired world. While each of these digital tools has earned its place in society, each one poses a particular challenge for young people, especially teens and tweens who spend more time online than their younger peers.

Imagine this scenario. You wear a wristwatch-like device to track the number of miles you walk; you monitor each day’s progress and sync the data to your smart phone and computer. You watch your favourite TV shows on your tablet, whenever you can catch a few minutes. You keep up with your friends near and far using Facebook, Google+, and Twitter.

Imagine Mr Jones, an urban schoolteacher who has been teaching eight-and nine-year-olds for the past five years. The few times he has introduced his students to a learning app or digital game, they have nearly levitated off their chairs with excitement. But he couldn’t get past the gee-whiz factor. The feeling that edtech was entertaining, but not germane to his teaching.

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