It’s been a long and rich week. For many, it was synonym of change in all its dimensions and also new experiences. I’ll try modestly reflect on the things that I’ve learnt so far using some old techniques in explaining the why of the why not and being as brief as possible because there is a wealth of knowledge that I think should be shared here.
We generally have a saturated vision. A vision that has so many information and details but that doesn’t go beyond the upfront. Our vision, right now: at the #EDU8213 course looks like the below painting. We see the face of education, we know the characteristics of a good vs. a bad education, we give names to the multiple faceted methods but the background is still blurred. We can team up then to help find clear ideas in order to draw a common masterpiece.
I’ll use the SOLO Taxonomy (ST) to try to understand most of the questions that I thought about during this course. The ST is basically a model that describes how we connect different elements, like ideas, together in order to get the full picture. Thus, I will use this strategy to connect what Christos Korolis and Maha Bali spoke about with those of Dr.Robert Epistein’s article ‘ The Empty Brain’
Sketching our speakers’ concerns on the future of education, most of them agreed on an almost common explanation. Education should be the channel to make learners’ engage and pored in a thinking process rather than pouring their school life with a flow of information. As such, new pedagogical approaches tend to sound like a business plan or a blue print. So you will find all the business jargon such as sustainable, manageable, leadership…ect. The list is a bit log but you can learn more about recent learning methods on Resources for Rethinking.
There is a strong state of fear around the future of education. Many of my classmates blogged and talked about it. We are afraid of technology and how it may change the way we learn, neo-liberal influences and why it wants to turn the world into a village, offline and online identity and to what extend we will be free. So many pending questions that we hardly can answer. This again is helping us understand how the education system works and what might challenge us as educators.
Cristos Korolis and other speakers on the weekly EDU8213 sessions talked about ‘ The Future Citizens’. It does sound very futuristic, where we want the new generation to be like Übermensch (Friedrich Nietzsche, 1883). Recent researches on employment for instance talk about employers as individuals who can speak many languages, have interpersonal skills , can code, network and build higher links with both customers and suppliers. Obviously, technology would help to do that and I imagine some of the future tools that we will have would intelligently be nano-nteractive. However, I think we are expecting too much from the next generation. They are not Durga, with respect to Hindu religion, and cannot perform and learn all these skills at once. We need to give room to experience and failure in our communities.
‘The Empty Brain’, was an eye opening article. Dr. Robert Epistein , an American psychologist, journalist and author, asserted that our brain does not reproduce the same thing in the same way. He illustrated saying that when we tell a story to someone and ask him/ her to retell it a second time after one week, they will not be able to reproduce exactly the same story. He also provided an other example when he asked one of his students, Jinny, to reproduce a one note dollar in a paper. Although we are familiar with objects or concepts but we hardly will reproduce them in the same way. Further to that Dr. Epistein mentioned the history behind our ‘ brain processing like a computer’ utopia which he thinks it is an old weak funded idea that has no legitimacy. I agree with some of the ideas he introduced but would advise you to not read this article in late evening as it will make your brain run like a processor.
I’m still thinking about all of the above ideas. Either we glorify some of them or want to ignore others, all I know is we need to be sure on the type of education we want for our next generation. One of the most profound and life lasting knowledge you can get, is the one you learn it with your dad, mom, grand parents or relatives. In Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T.Kiyosaki, we get to know how rich parents teach their children to sustain their businesses, where money would generate benefit. Whereas for less fortunate parents the tendency is on how to generate money. Thus, the cultural difference in teaching things is for sure a way to show that we learn based on the way we see things. In other words, we need our culture, community combined with new techniques and technology and empowered by strong political decisions to get a responsible generation and not a dreamed like group of people.