The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

"If you don't know where you are going, any road will get you there." -- Lewis Carroll

There is a tendency when beginning a new journey to simply want to get on with it. Pack up, head on out. I have certainly been guilty of this myself. In the frenetic pace of activity and competing demands, jumping into action is second nature for me. Yet, without a clear vision of where we are heading, we run the risk of following any road and ending up nowhere.

The many ways that the term "21st Century learning" has been applied -- to various technology deployments, to flipped classrooms, to any number of digital tools -- can blur our view of its meaning. At times, the discussions that swirl around these initiatives seem to place more emphasis on the device or tool, rather than on the larger purpose -- what it is we want our kids to learn and be able to do as active, thinking, engaged citizens.

Now, don't get me wrong. I am not opposed to digital learning tools or their use in classrooms. I am firm believer in the potential of technology  to transform learning by providing opportunities for students to explore, create, collaborate and communicate.  And, I also understand that there is a need for caution in not mistaking the tools for the outcomes.

Two thoughtful educators have helped me along my journey in bringing my vision into focus. In his recent blog post, "Varied Visions of 21st Century Learning", Daniel L. Frazier (@DanielLFrazier) points out, it is not just about applying new tools to outmoded instruction, but rather making a real difference in how students interact with others, make meaning and share their learning.

Bill Ferriter (@plugusin) takes this idea a bit further. Drawing upon the work of Robert Marzano, Richard and Rebecca DuFour and Richard Ainsworth, he argues that we need to focus our attention on the knowledge and skills  that meet the "endurance-leverage-readiness test" -- those that will have lasting impact, will have broad application and will prepare kids for the next level of learning. In short, he astutely concludes: "Wiki's and Skype aren't skills. Instead, they are tools that can make working with individual skills easier" ("Making Good Technology Choices", accessed January 3, 2013). I couldn't agree with him more.

If we want to make sure that we are on the road heading toward true transformation of our schools, then clarifying the outcomes our students will need to be fully prepared for their future is an essential first step.

I'd like to hear your thoughts and reactions. Please feel free to comment.

Views: 156

Comment

You need to be a member of The Educator's PLN to add comments!

Join The Educator's PLN

Comment by Robben Wainer on January 5, 2013 at 10:11pm

I am still  in the risk of having to settle for skills that are out dated. As I learn new tools to help enhance my educational merit, I am still a little dismayed by how much, or how little opportunity actually presents itself as a practical plan for Teaching.

About

Thomas Whitby created this Ning Network.

Latest Activity

Shawn Mitchell replied to Tata Nech's discussion Hey People
"i hope you are good in this time. and you can learn new things about tech & e-learning and too many things. And i want to read more blogs about it."
yesterday
Shawn Mitchell replied to George Danke's discussion Integration with The Latest Technology in Education Field
"Condition is worse due to Covid we cannot go anywhere and even universities and research labs are closed. Hope the situation will be normal soon. Then we can think about something else"
Apr 29
Tata Nech posted a blog post

More Than a Sport: A Look at Scootering’s Evolution

Too many people do not have a clear idea about what is a Scooter; and much less than there is a sport based on it. Besides, it is a sport that has evolved a lot from its beginning, but if you do not know too much about the sport is hard to see it as more than a kid game.However, this sport is more than just kids and young people making scooter tricks in a square; scootering is a kind of culture and a lifestyle that has more than 20 years growing to become what it is today.For this reason, we…See More
Apr 24
Shawn Mitchell replied to Rob Schoonveld's discussion Twitter vs Edupln
"My preference is this website is best. Twitter is used for social purpose and EDUPLN is used for professional discussion which you cannot discuss on social platforms."
Apr 14
Shawn Mitchell replied to Shanshan Ma's discussion Personalized learning network and social media
"Hi, There are too many platforms of social media and the member of those platform discuss so many things and participate. So it depends only on you where do you want to discuss."
Apr 14
Shawn Mitchell replied to Nanacy Lin's discussion Future Of Education
"Now a days AI is best technology to learn because it is the future."
Apr 12
Joe Silva updated their profile
Apr 11
Profile IconStuart Jones, Sarah Kiefer, Corina Gamez and 5 more joined The Educator's PLN
Apr 11

Events

© 2021   Created by Thomas Whitby.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service