Here is a list of my tweets on “Habits of Mind” as part of Twitter group #edsg’s thematic tweets project. Hopefully this serves as a convenient reference for the series.
In response to Article
Tablets out, imagination in: the schools that shun technology
1. Albert Einstein was right in saying
“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.”
2. Technology is not the cure-all. Technology can be beneficial, and yet it can be harmful. It depends on how it is used in the context and the community in which it is used. There are many attendant issues that need to be addressed when using technology (e.g. reliability, cyber-safety, distraction, … etc). These seem to add on extra stress to educators. However, a technological world is what the learners live in and will continue to live in. We cannot turn back the clock. So we should also teach learners how to nagivate this world and mitigate the risks.
3. OECD is an ivory tower whose PISA is leaning to good education … for the 1960s. It does not measure skills or dispositions like collaborative learning, independent learning that are critical in the 21st century.
4. I do use technology, when it makes sense. I think it is a matter of how we use technology, with the right pedagogy, striking a balance, knowing the issues, making the right choices and being flexible and robust (e.g. if plan A does not work, you have alternatives ready).
This is the 13th and last article of my series on 21st Century Education, as part of Twitter #edsg’s thematic tweets project. Today we listen to Grant Lichtman’s TEDx talk about how 60 schools are able to really embrace 21st Century education despite challenges. No excuses.
Let us ask ourselves some hard but important questions as we watch this video clip:-
Q01) Why should students be finding problems instead of just solving problems?
Q02) What is the bad news about schools? And what is the good news?
Q03) Is enacting change in schools really that hard? What is your excuse? What are the impediments?
Q04) What is riskier than not taking risks?
Q05) What is wrong with teaching individual subjects?
Q06) Why is it important to take time reflect?
Q07) How should empathy be taught?
Q08) What is the difference between the “21st Century” ecosystem and the industrial age learning?
Q09) What is the fifth sphere that Grant was talking about? Do you agree with his analysis?
Q10) Can you explain what “anchors”, “dams” and “silos” are, and how they impede adoption of 21st Century education?
Q11) How do we prepare kids (and ourselves) for the future when we do not even know what the future is like? What is our strategy?
Q12) What is the speaker’s final exhortation? Is it just a Nike slogan?
Aren’t you tired of talking about “we must do this and this”, “don’t do this and that”, “we should have more of this” among educational circles? I am! I am bored easily, and I think I have ADHD, going by symptoms of this modern disease.
In this 12th article of my series on 21st Century Education, as part of Twitter #edsg’s thematic tweets project, I am going to treat you to a video about how a school actually put 21st Century Learning and identity development into practice. I love this refreshing concrete example, rather than hot air about theory, and am quite sure you would too.
Today’s questions are hard-hitting, but certainly worth our while thinking about as we watch this video clip:-
Q01) What does the “wholistic approach” to education taken by the school entail?
Q02) Is project-based learning just a passing fad? What kind of school culture is needed to make this work?
Q03) How is project based learning more interesting? Is making lessons fun the goal or the by-product?
Q04) Is the need for “standards” and giving students the choice on their own learning diametrically opposed? How did the school weld these together?
Q05) Did the school blindly adopt technology? How did the school integrate technology into their curriculum?
Q06) How was learning assessment done in school? How does it gel with students taking more responsibility for their own learning?
Q07) Why is it good that learners develop the habit or disposition to always check their own work first?
Q08) What sort of identities does the school help the students to develop?
are they focus on grade levels? what do they focus on instead?
Q09) How does the school prepare students for life?
Q10) Will your school follow their example? Why / why not?
Yabba Dabba Doo!
You are reading my 11th article of my series on 21st Century Education, as part of Twitter #edsg’s thematic tweets project. You may have noticed that my choice of videos now put the spotlight on teachers as they prepare for teaching 21st Century students.
As usual, think as you watch the video. You may want to use the following questions as you put on your thinking cap:-
Q1) What are the 4 Cs of 21st Century Learning mentioned in this video? Are there any other “Cs” that you can think of?
Q2) How does technology fit into the 4 Cs?
Q3) How would you change your instructional design?
Q4) How would you change your teaching practice?
Q5) How would you (re)organise your student interactions in class?
Q6) Why is it important that teachers set good examples themselves in what they are trying to teach?
Q7) How should professional development should be (re)organised for 21st Century Education?
Q8) How do you address the apparent (seeming) dilemma between curriculum standards and 21st c skills?
Q9) How would you address the issue of assessment of 21st C skills?
This is the 10th article of my series on 21st Century Education, as part of Twitter #edsg’s thematic tweets project. In today’s video, teachers are seen participating in a workshop that purports to prepare them for 21st Century students.
As you watch the video, think critically about the following:-
Q01) What is your opinion about “Digital Natives”?
Q02) Does the fact that children are good at operating technology automatically mean that they are able to learn with understanding, sense making or critical thinking?
Q03) Is 21st Century education just about the technology?
Q04) Do you agree that there is a “digital divide” pitting those who have against those who don’t? have what? skills? the “cool tool” to show off?
Q05) Is the act of being able to save things on the computer the issue? What about organising, and making the information more easily searchable for retrieval later?
Q06) The seminar presenter used technology to gather multiple choice feedback from the participants. Do you think there is a better way to involve participants into a deeper discussion (with or without using modern technology)?
Q07) Why do you need to be critical about using technology? How can you do so?
Q08) Do you think having “observable results” is the same as “meeting the standards”? What kind of learning outcomes are more pertinent to the 21st Century?
You are reading the 9th article of my series on 21st Century Education, as part of Twitter #edsg’s thematic tweets project. Today’s video is a light-hearted one, focusing on teaching and how teachers connect with students.
Watch the video and ponder upon the following:-
Q01) Do you agree with Plato’s statement?
Q02) Do you agree that “If you can’t reach them, you can’t teach them”?
Q03) What is the difference between making things fun for the learner and helping learners learn the fun in what they learn?
Q04) How do you think you will connect learners with the real world?
Q05) What are the benefits of learning from more than one teacher?
Q06) Is flipped learning just a fad? Are there any real advantages?
Q07) Are today’s kids easily bored? Why?
Q08) Would you automatically reach a large audience by putting things up on YouTube? [I am not saying you shouldn’t do it]
Happy viewing and pondering!
Hello! And welcome!
Here are some questions to ponder upon about as you mindfully watch the video:-
Q01) What is really so special about “21st Century Education”?
Q02) How is the nature of knowledge different in the 21st Century?
Q03) As a consequence, what is the role of the teacher?
Q04) Why is there a need for students to use technology in class? What are the precautions for students using technology in class?
Q05) Did you learn anything new in this video? Did you notice any educational platitudes or fallacies in the video?
Q06) Did the video offer any framework or specific tips on 21st Century learning design? What do you think would some of the elements in a 21st Century learning design be?
Q07) What did the video forget to mention, compared to the previous videos? Are there any vested interests on the part of the video producers?
Q08) Do you think the video producers were able to attract the speakers with better credentials that could offer deeper insights? Why / why not?
Q09) Even without those deeper insights, would you be able to implement the ideas discussed in this video in your current class? Why / why not?
Hi once again!
This is my 7th article on 21st Century Education, as part of Twitter #edsg’s thematic tweets project. In today’s video, which is a talk by Tony Wagner, we revisit some of the motivations and important features of “21st Century” learning. We also get to study the case of High Tech High as a school that embodies and brings to life 21st Century learning principles.
Questions to ponder as you critically watch the video:-
Q01) If college degree no longer guarantees one a decent job, is the answer more education? what do you think?
Q02) Notice that the word “disposition” is used again? What disposition is being talked about here
Q03) How is the culture of innovation different from the culture of schooling?
Q04) What are the new skills needed for? Are they for just getting good jobs?
Q05) Are white-collar jobs immune from the effects of globalisation?
Q06) What are the gaps in the skills needed?
Q07) What are the 7 survival skills?
Q08) How are leadership and collaboration styles changing?
Q09) What is creativity and innovation for?
Q10) What is wrong with out current “accountablity” regime? How can this be improved?
Q11) What are some of your takeaways from the example of High Tech High?
Response to Article
Deficit model in education: a dangerous conceit?
This is a thought-provoking article indeed. Here are some of my reflections:-
* we do not need more schooling, but we need to overhaul education. After all, education is about educing (drawing out) from learners, not filling up empty containers.
* Technology operation skills are not the big issue. Critical thinking, judicious use of digital media to create and share (rather than just consume) are the big issues. The kids, the teachers and the school leaders need to address these together. Re: “digital natives” fallacy.
* The fact that learners already communicate, collaborate and create using technology does not automatically make them effective users. Discipline, grit, determination, not getting distracted when using technology are also part of the deal. Again the issue needs to be tackled from both the students’ and from the schools’ ends.
* Qualifications are for the idiotic human resource managers. Period. Nowadays, the more savvy employers also look at portfolios, do interviews in group-situation settings, perform psychometric tests, check out candidates’ digital footprints among other things.
* It is a fact that modern high-stress living tends to pose challenges to our ability to be mindful and conscientious, to our emotional well-being and happiness. If one does not like the “solutions” brandied about, then one should seek alternative ways to deal them.
* The issue of marketable vocational skills (I would say habits / dispositions, not just skills) is one every country faces. To try to address the issue, Singapore has recently announced SkillsFuture plan for life-long learning of useful skills. I wish this was announced 10 years ago, but it is better late than never. It would be interesting to see how this pans out. I am not sure about other countries, but I think as responsible citizens everybody in their own small ways needs to keep raising social awareness of issues and initiating change.