The main discussion point for this morning is preparing our students for their future. What does that look like and sound like currently, and what does it hope for and assume?
Thoughts about knowledge valued by the school system:
- Is knowledge still power? We think so, but the nature of knowledge is constantly changing.
- What is the power of having knowledge in your head v knowledge in your device, knowing something v knowing how to find out, knowing what you know v knowing when to Google.
- The role of the teacher has changed from transmitting to facilitating knowledge building.
Thoughts about curriculum, choice and learning:
- Students learn best when they're learning about something they see as interesting or relevant.
- Following student interest and passions in learning v forcing students to experience new content (and form neural connections) that the education system has determined to be important.
- What age is appropriate for students to exclusively follow their existing curiosity and passion, so they are not limited learners later in life?
- Following on from that, is there a basic level of learning and knowledge that students NEED and would be lost without; for example, are times tables necessary any more?
Thoughts about other things valued by the school system?
- Skills required in the workplace such as cooperation.
- Skills required to succeed in the current economy such as creativity.
- Dispositions such as curiosity, love of learning and resilience in the face of difficulty.
- Expanding students' options for their future (whatever that may look like).
Thoughts about teaching:
- We are in a new age of access; teaching is one of the only careers where professionals consistently work outside of working hours and teachers need to consider when they are available and when they aren't.
- In schools there seems to be a discord between innovation and mastery; moving always to the next next next idea/tool/programme before teachers can master the last, reducing consistency in their teaching.
- Collaboration and sharing between teachers/departments/schools could reduce workload.
- Universities do not model this and instead focus on competition to the detriment of all.