Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Time and Space for learning design

A mantra you often here with regard to technology in education is designing the learning first and then using the best medium to deliver this learning be it technological or not. Clarence Fisher puts this better:

"We cannot choose tools and then find ways to use them. We must consider the skills and abilities that we want our students to have and then choose the paths to help them get there."

Of course, I agree with this and I think I've said so on this blog many times. The gap comes with the fact that many educators simply don't know what tools are available and what they can be used for. I am often surprised by how seemingly established online tools have not penetrated into the real world of education.

One relevant issue here is the problem of allowing our educators the time and the space to think about their teaching. The profile of this activity isn't high enough. If it was, showcase events of new tools would occur as a matter of course; pedagogical discussion and debate in relation to such tools would be standard. Instead, such activity is anecdotal and the domain of the enthusiastic few.

My observation, therefore, concerning the above quote is that it applies only to a utopian educational system. I'm not saying learning design doesn't happen, but it's our system is not designed to accomodate assimilating new tools into our teaching and learning. Such tools therefore go unnoticed and become subject to misinformation and misinterpretation.

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