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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

How Should Classrooms Evolve?



Setting the shotImage by J Patz via Flickr
In my email today:
"Could you imagine sending me a short quote about why you think it is important to teach using technology and/or why there should be global connections?"


Here was my answer.


Our students who participate in Flat Classroom and Digiteen are graduating from high school able to say that they have collaborated on a global basis. Sure, twenty first century skills are important, however, twenty first century connections are just as important. Additionally, there are now three forms of writing: traditional essay writing, first person blogging, and collaborative writing such as done on a wiki.

There are also other forms of expression. We already have: written expression and verbal expression but now we also have audio expression and visual expression (through video and photography.) To be a well rounded, well educated student they should be able to express themselves well in all of these forms of expression. 

There are PhD programs in the United States that now require a video to accompany the doctoral thesis. Additionally, there are high schools requiring complete efolios and some of us (myself included) think colleges should add the ability to submit hyperlinks to the college application.  


In this environment, we must move to specifically incorporate these forms of writing and additional forms of expression into our curriculum from the lower levels all the way through college.  In short, global collaboration and the accompanying multimedia, technical profiencies and collaborative skills required is essential to producing a well educated student.

For those people who just completely did not understand the words in the previous paragraphs, this points out that also, we as educators must become more literate ourselves in understanding the requirements of an increasingly technical and interconnected world.

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