The Way We Learn vs. What We Learn

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In reflecting on this weeks readings and my own learning journey as well as the approach I take in the classroom I have been thinking a lot about relevancy.  How will schools ensure that they are employing relevant educators? How do we stay relevant? How do help our kids to be relevant in todays rapidly changing information sphere?

I recently attended the KL Gafe Summit and was inspired with how Google can transform the way kids work and also the way we work and learn and teach as educators.  Just through the conference I was able to make a face to face connection with a former Coetailer (Emily Roth), add her on Twitter, make future classroom connections and use and apply some of her resources for a future presentation at my own school. This idea of connected learning has enabled me to make many connections with many other educators.  I know that my PLN is available and there for me to learn from and contribute to.  It is on-going, fluid, flexible, and has changed my learning landscape.

The idea of education changing in the next 5, 10, 15 years is a given.  It has already changed already and is constantly changing.  I think about even in the last 5 years how I have taught.  I encourage my kids to seek knowledge, share their thinking in transformative ways and learn how to find information.  Whether it is through searching the web, blogging and commenting on others, posting their own findings on our blog at home.  At the level I teach, Grade 3, it is often my own connections that spark inquiries within the classroom and my own connections have transformed how we learn as a class and what we learn.  Just last week I connected with the Connected Classrooms Community on Google Plus.  I found a virtual field trip that was recorded last week, showed it to my students which in turn sparked an inquiry that enabled them to post and comment what they learned from home.  I blogged about this from here.

It is this change in learning and a focus on the way we learn that provoked this conversation on twitter for my students and their potential learning in a more global construct:

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How do we alter how we are teaching in order to teach our students to adapt to the rapidly changing learning sphere?

The article written by George Siemens quotes how

The pipe is more important than the content within the pipe. Our ability to learn what we need for tomorrow is more important than what we know today.

When knowledge, however, is needed, but not known, the ability to plug into sources to meet the requirements becomes a vital skill. As knowledge continues to grow and evolve, access to what is needed is more important than what the learner currently possesses.

If this is true, then we really need to rethink how we teach.  I was inspired by a talk at GAFE summit KL by Patrick Green in which he talked about the relevant teacher and how our teaching needs to be relevant.  Are we teaching our kids how to be connected learners? Are we relevant in the profession?

I have been following Ben Wilkoff for some time and enjoy his reflections on blended and personal learning. His blog is a great place to check out these thoughts and constantly sends me down rabbit holes.

To return to the question about what education will look like in 5, 10, 15 years. I think that the classroom will still exist.  I think that there will be a teacher and students will still come to school.  Although I think that it will look very different as it is already beginning to.  I think students will make learning personal and will be doing far more online learning and individualized learning. At least this is what I hope. I think that the teacher will need to be connected and we will begin to see a change in what is expected in schools for teaching and learning.  It will be exciting to watch it all unfold.

2 thoughts on “The Way We Learn vs. What We Learn

  • I do think personalizing and tailoring learning is going to be the norm. Teachers acting as guides and mentors. Thanks for the links. The Facilitation Toolbox on Ben Wilkoff’s site looks really cool. I always like reading for looking into the future of ed.

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