Does the World Affect Education or Does Education Affect the World?
The History . . . .
WOW I can hardly believe that 2020 is just 4 years away for us now, and I can remember being a student in elementary school and thinking that the year 2000 was so far way that we would never get there and now here I am in 2016 getting my 2nd Master’s degree in Online Teaching.
So where are we headed and what will education look like in 4 more years? Well that is a good question, and I have to say that I thought of this about 7 or 8 years ago before I started this 2nd Master’s degree, all because I saw the way learning was moving more toward the online classroom with lot of cool technologies, and I am surly counting on more students wanting to go to class online in four more years.
Although my current work place Florida Atlantic University (FAU) is working on a 5 year work plan to help students stay in school at the university and complete their graduation within a timely matter of 4 years. Almost every semester FAU’s academic department is increasing the number of classes offered online and although FAU only has a few degrees that are totally online and a certificate or two, FAU does offer the choice of going to classes online or on campus for a students learning experiences.
With all of that said I see the use of online technology for learning growing every year, as students and teacher both start using the online blogs as part of the class work. Where the classroom teachers are now teaching students online and giving their students assignments in the online classroom like Canvas or Blackboard and the students complete their assignments on their blogs, much like we are doing in this class.
Text books are gone, as student might never need to buy another book ever again but instead just download their books from Amazon.com or other web sites that sell books to be downloaded onto their I-phone or Smart phones and students can read them on the go or purchase the audio book and listen to them as they drive or run or do a workout.
The Video’s . . . .
I was very impressed with two video’s I found online at www.youtube.com the first one I found was by Amy Collier at TED who talks about the education system being broken and how to fix things. Could the answer be “Open Online Learning” where teachers are sharing their lesson plans online with other educators and could this create an live and growing document that can change education. Students can learn to connect with others and become networking learners, by working together with other students to grow new companies or learn from other students in a different country half way around the world.
Open online learning courses can change life around the world by helping students see the world differently by connecting with one community in South American with water issues, or building repair issues that need solved, with open online learning, a community leader in South American could connect with someone else on the other side of the world in Japan or China who might have already solved one of the same issues and is willing to share what they learned in the open online learning course.
What if open online learning could teacher a mother in India to start her own business to help feed her six children, just because she took an open online course in business management design by a professor at Hale and used by a college in India to help the local community learn new things. Changing the world with open online learning could be a good this if it could only catch on here in the USA this would be a good thing, but many teachers from the old days might not be so willing to share.
The second video had me crying by the time I got to the end of the video because who knew that learning from your students could move your heart so much as this video did for me. In this video Shelley Wright talks about being a boring classroom teacher for 13 years, who has always taught school like all the teachers who taught her over the years. By just standing in front of her students in the classroom and lecturing to them about a topic and the students just looked boring and not learning much.
Shelley shares that she took a class during her Master degree in EdTech taught by Professor Alec Couros, which changed her life, because in this class she learning about “pedagogy” Wikipedia defines this as “the discipline that deals with the theory and practice of education.” (2010, 2016) Shelley was learning about student center learning and constructivism that she started to think that students could be their own teachers and start to construct things for themselves. So she asks the students what they wanted to do to and they wanted to sit on the floor and make a different in the world by helping others.
One student in her class asked Shelley if the class could help raise money for a program called Schools for Schools. The students were so hype up to do something that they wanted to do, that they all got together and set their goals so high that to Shelley, they seemed almost impossible for the class to reach them. The class wanted to raise $20,000.00 for the Schools for Schools project. Well needless to say the class reached their goal with a few thousand more. To think that students can put their minds together to make things happen is a wonderful thing and a great way to learn how to change the world.
The Future . . . .
What if the educational world could change to incorporate these ideas into both online learning and classroom learning? The Open online learning concept could be used not just online but within the brick and mortar schools too, if teachers could share lesson plans and help each other develop the lesson plans over time by improve the learning experiences for all the students.
Putting the open online learning idea with the idea of student-driven learning and giving the students the choice of what they want to learn combined with the Internet and other web technologies in the classroom could help to increase student’s grades and help them become engaged with their own learning. If the students become excited about what is going on in the classroom and online it could change everything for these students.
I know I have blogged before in this class that the US has to change the educational system and the way we teach our students and maybe with all of the new technologies learned in this class like blogging, social media, podcasting, screen casting, video casting and webex along with new teaching ideas that I have reviewed here, maybe just maybe in the year 2020 and beyond, maybe all of these technologies will bring great change to the classrooms both in the brick & mortar and in the online classroom.
I am so grateful to be here and learning all of this new technologies and I want to be a part of this new changing world and I hope and pray I will be an online teacher sharing with my students what life was like before all this great technology and how far we all have come since the beginning of learning. I want to teach students that the world can affect us as educators and we as educators can affect the world.
Other related links
The Brave New World of Online Learning: Amy Collier at TEDxStanford; Published on Jun 20, 2013; Amy Collier works with faculty, instructional designers and doctoral students to explore and design online learning experiences at Stanford.
The power of student-driven learning: Shelley Wright at TEDxWestVancouverED; Published on Jun 9, 2013 ; Shelley Wright is a teacher/education blogger living in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. Currently, she serves as the high school learning consultant for Prairie South Schools.
Pedagogy Educ.utas.edu.au. Retrieved 2010-09-20 This page was last modified on 23 March 2016, at 17:41.
Note: the photo in this blog was taken by me in 2014 at the Flagler Museum In Palm Beach, FL and I own the copyrights to this photo. Please do not use this photo without my permission and or knowledge that you are doing so.