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Make this the golden rule, the equivalent of the Hippocratic oath: Everything we ask a child to do should be worth doing.

-Pilip Pullman

Re-Inventing Our Classrooms? PDF Print E-mail

I want to apologize in advance for the length of this post, but it’s something I feel strongly about, and it’s something we need to really think about.

I was looking back to Time Magazine’s “Best Inventions of 2005.” It’s a great article, filled with amazing inventions in a wide range of fields, from the $3 Lifestraw to the iUnit to the Hybrid Assistive Limb. To see the other inventions, follow these links

These inventions really blew my mind - where do people come up with these things?

  • Then I had a disheartening thought: many of those inventions were not created by Americans.
  • Then I had another disheartening thought: how did these people become so creative and proficient in their fields at the same time?
  • Then I had an even more sobering thought: Where is creativity and mastery of subject taught? Where did they learn to do this?

Read more...
 
Web 2.0 PDF Print E-mail

We've been hearing a lot about Web 2.0, but it hasn't made its way into the school systems much.  Web 2.0 is the concept that the web is becoming a read/write platform.  Before the year 2000, the web was very much a place for more technically minded people to produce content on, and for regular users to consume material.  It was "read-only" for many people.  You had to have some sort of skill or training to be an author.

Now, anyone can produce content on the web.  Blogs, wikis, MySpace, Facebook, message boards, chats - all of these new technologies are allowing the average user to produce content and post it online.  Even digital immigrants and technophobes are able to quickly snap a picture on their cell phone and have it posted online.  Services like Jott allow you to call a number and have your message transcribed into text and sent to your email or even posted as a blog entry online.

The web is not a fad.  It is ubiquitous.  It is quickly becoming as indispensable as the automobile and it's only 15 years old or thereabouts.  When are our schools going to start seriously embracing its read/write nature?  When are our kids going to start using the powerful tool that they will be expected to master when they enter the workforce?

 
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