A 1:1 environment should be the goal of every learning institution; however, this is not about devices, it's about access. I would imagine we all (Administration, Teachers, Staff and Parents) would agree that it is in our best interest to provide their students with the best access to the most current, scholarly information available.
Create clear objectives and goals for both Administrators, teachers, and students.
Define the Role of the Device
Making it the focal point is not how we want to deliver it. It is not to take over the classroom or replace the teacher. The teacher must welcome the device like the chalkboard, calculator, and VCR. It should give their students a better opportunity to share, connect, and seek out information. This device will not be a distraction, but another arm of the classroom.
Put It Away When Appropriate
A 1:1 environment will not always have a device on display. There will be times when your best lesson is done in the absence of technology. Similarly, your students shouldn't become attached to the device, but understand when it should be accessed. Administrators should not demand that device always be used as well. Allow your teachers some learning and growing time as they begin to integrate the device. Continually follow up with them and ask them how they have incorporated technology and if they need any further professional development. The goal should never be to rush technology integration, but segue but creating clear objectives and goals for each teacher.
Students should understand that a device is an avenue for learning and discovery, but it cannot replace their own ability to think critically and question.
Filtering information and knowing the most efficient route to a solution is an invaluable skill. While students have access to more information than any generation, their ability to filter is much more challenging. Once your students understand that it is time to access the device, they must begin to filter through a vast field of weeds. Students must realize that Google is a great start, but not always going to provide them the best direction. The ability to call upon key search terms and look beyond Google are two skills every student must learn.
Also, as teachers, we must never assume that our students know the best way around technology. While some of our students could proudly display the badge of "Digital Native," many will need coaching. Simply accessing Google or finding the hilarious video of the singing Cat does not make you a digital native.
A 1:1 environment should not be intimidating. It should be our ally in the daily task to provide our students with the best access to information and promote learning. There is no denying the rapid pace of our world and its ever-changing economy. It is our responsibility as educators - at every level - to prepare our students for this environment. The environment will not adapt to them, they must adapt to the demand of the market. A 1:1 environment is simply a start.