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Posts Tagged ‘teaching’

Education in the age of information surplus

June 14, 2011 1 comment

I am not sponsored by TED, I promise. However, I really enjoy embedding videos in posts and TED makes it easy to do so. Today I typed in “education” into the TED search box and after a little browsing I found this talk about teaching.  My favorite theme of knowledge transmission versus transformation appears as Laufenberg gives us her brief family history of educational experiences and while many have responded to this shift with efforts to improve 21st century skills and put more technology in the classroom, I think the question proposed by Laufenberg hits the nail on the head.

“What do you do when the information is all around you? Why do you have kids come to school if they no longer have to come there to get the information?”

Of course, this would presuppose two things. The first being that the kids are already literate and the second is that they have consistent access to the “surplus of information.” Provided these two conditions exist, what is the reason for having kids come to school?

Is it to…

  • pass on cultural heritage?
  • babysit?
  • socialize?
  • educate?
  • stratify?
  • prepare?
  • cultivate lifelong learners?
  • promote progress?
  • maintain the status quo?

I don’t know, but I do think the new landscape of information and technology demands that we reconsider our old answers.

Passion-Based Learning for the 21st Century

April 21, 2011 Leave a comment

Passion-Based Learning for the 21st Century.

My friend just sent me this interview with Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach and “passion based” learning. I like her approach for several reasons. The first because it echoes my own ideas about what changes must occur, and secondly because she is not advocating for something so radical that it cannot be practiced in today’s educational system. I have read a lot of teacher bashing reports lately, and I am not wanting to add to them. But maybe teachers act as their own worst enemy by not willing to change their own beliefs about teaching and learning. I myself have been guilty of blaming students, administrators, parents, and the standards for my own inability to try something new. And sometimes, this could be the reality, but I do believe it is less about trying one new thing then it is about changing your philosophy. What will it take to cause such a shift?