“So little work has been done on computing in schools that we were virtually on our own, pioneering the field” Mr Len Victor, 1982. Kingswood’s first Computer Centre began operating a year later, in 1983.
Technology! Hate it? Love it? Or merely tolerate it?
One thing is for certain, without technology, teaching throughout a pandemic like this, would not have been possible for us as a school. Finicky connections. Internet speed. Lag & delay are all new swear words in our vocabulary.
The power of technology in being able to bring together people who have been forced apart by a virus, has been immeasurable.
Being able to connect with friends, with family and, in our case, being able to teach our pupils, have more than compensated for all the technology hiccups that come along with it.
We have had to acquire new skills to circumnavigate this new and exciting sphere of online learning and our teachers and pupils have done us proud.
Who would ever have thought, 30, 20 or even 10 years ago that it would be possible to take our school online?
People would have said: “You must be joking? That is just absurd. Madness! It can’t be done.”
But here we are: doing it, and doing it well.
For this week’s #ThrowbackThursday we look back at some of images that have defined technological advancement at Kingswood College and we fast forward and share some images of our pupils who are utilizing technology during this time.
In 1965, Kingswood was the first school in South Africa to install a high-tech computer language laboratory and our pupils were the first to make use of this technology in the country.
In 1982, Mr Len Victor, then Vice-Principal in charge of Curriculum Development at Kingswood College, said the following: “Computer literacy will be relevant to the future facing us all.”
What a powerful statement, and how true these words are. A world without being able to quickly check something on Google, send an email or organise a virtual meeting, is one which we cannot imagine. However, it was not so long ago that these activities did not exist.
In the book Still Upon a Frontier which records the history of our school, Rev Kirkby goes on to say: “Len Victor wrote: ‘So little work has been done on computing in schools that we were virtually on our own, pioneering the field’. The school was once again at a new frontier.” Kingswood’s first Computer Centre began operating a year later, in 1983.
37 years later, and technology has evolved and grown so exponentially that it is hard to keep up with all the developments in the tech sphere. Cell phones, laptops, tablets and various online applications form part of our daily lives and we are grateful that these technologies have helped us continue to teach our pupils throughout this difficult time.
However, face-to-face interactions cannot and should never be replaced by technological communication methods.
If this lockdown period and pandemic has taught us anything, it is the power and importance of human relationships and interactions. Physical and real time interactions far outweigh the power of technology and human connection should always be at the very core.
But, what a far way we have come…