Unless you're an educator, you probably haven't heard predictions by thought leaders that the traditional school system is on its way out. More surprisingly, these predictions are being borne out by experiments where new learning models are being tried out.
I am not a Luddite and know quite well that technology can provide some important educational experiences. But I worry that slavish, uncritical devotion to technological gimmickry is shortchanging our students.
Teaching at a public high school in Barcelona, I witnessed daily, and sometimes hourly, failure: students struggling through exams despite hours of preparation, missing days of school, threatening teachers and losing their motivation.
Simply put, an organizational mindset is the aggregated mindset of an organization's members. Historically, schools have not placed much importance on defining these, which I think is a mistake. At Beaver, we have taken great care to identify the three key components.
However, in a school of close to 2000 learners I felt that I could do more. Due to the influence of my father and a passion to help as many students as possible succeed, I ventured into the world of educational administration in 2004.
The amazing thing to me about the one-room schoolhouse is that there was only one teacher in the room teaching multiple grade levels and multiple skill levels, all at the same time. Does this sound familiar? Today we call it differentiating instruction.
As with any good teaching/learning experience, you need to ENCOURAGE your teachers to do their best and enjoy the experience. Many veteran teachers may be reluctant to dive into new technology. Give them the necessary reinforcement.
What are the benefits for the vast majority of students who, for various reasons, are not able to benefit significantly from taking a MOOC? Indeed, can the technologies on which MOOCs are built offer any benefits to average students?