My contribution to Purpos/ed - Futur/ed

Click play to listen to my audio contribution to Futur/ed, or click this link to visit the original audio on AudioBoo.

A) How should we educate people in the future?

I'm not sure how teaching and education manages to move the goalposts so often and be subject to such excessive reforms, while still being very outdated and still constantly making use of ideas that don't work. In order to 'fix' what many see as a broken education system, there needs to be more reform, and more radical reform. There needs to be a wiping of the slate completely, and starting again.

The subject specialisms need to change, as students very often see right through the pointlessness of a lot of classroom based tasks. Everything that they do needs to be obviously because they will need it after they finish school for some reason. There needs to be no doubt. 

The structure within some subjects needs to change, for example in my own subject, music, students can only access level 2 and 3 qualifications if they have had specific instrumental teaching, which happens outside of normal lesson time. 

E-learning is going to be more and more important, as well as emphasising information literacy in an age where you can google the answer to anything. I love the idea of students taking in the lesson at home, via podcasts, blogging and video delivery, and then completing the 'homework' in class with teacher support. I think there should be a complete flip in this sense, and this should be the practice most of the time. 

Libraries and computer labs, both in school and in public libraries, are going to be more important, allowing students on the other side of the digital divide to access this.

There will also be more standardisation of the curriculum, and this emphasis on e-delivery of lessons will help. Teachers should not be spending hours planning their own way of teaching the same curriculum any more: they should use national e-learning lessons as a resource to build student's work around, which is then completed with support in class.  Teachers will be free to actually support the learning of the students, while at the moment they are bogged down in paperwork, and this will significantly raise achievement.

B) What do we need to be doing now to enable that?

There needs to be an acknolwegdment at the very top level of the exact problems that are happening on the front line of education. 

Reforms need to concentrate on well thought out complete shake ups of the system, and not ways in which to make particular ministers look good with clever doctoring of the statistics to provide them with a positive legacy. 

More collaboration of teaching resources to reduce teacher's workload, moving to nationalised banks of e-learning resources that are used to deliver lessons in their entirety.

Purpos/ed Futur/ed


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