Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Reflection on the Book / Video

If one thing is perfectly clear, it is this; the technological world is evolving at a greater rate than our society, and it is the duty of our educators to bridge the gap, preparing the youth of the age for a better future. To this we will discuss the beginnings of the book, Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology and the brief talk given by Scot McLeod to the teachers union.

McLeod's argument hinged on a socio-economic pitch, arguing that the reasoning behind our educational system in the U.S. has in large part, been rendered obsolete. The trade jobs that fueled our industry are being outsourced to countries where employees will work for lower wadges and the remaining jobs are becoming ultra competitive. The qualifications that once made one a desirable candidate for employment are no longer. The Bachelor's degree is now largely a stepping stone to a Masters, and even then the job outlook is only moderate.

But why is this..?

Never in the past have we had access to information at the speeds that we do and we are not teaching our students to handle this. We can video chat with other countries instantly, blog entire novels as serials, watch films online, and download an novel, music file, and image in seconds. Is this so bad? Our lives are no longer private for some because of what can be posted on any or all social media sites.  There numerous distractions around us and the sense of emediate gratification is everywhere -- can u wonder why our educational system is floundering?

The solution is rethinking the system to guide the development of the skills we now need. For the previous generation is was industry and now its a matter of refining technological skills. Incorporating practical knowledge and global awareness into the classroom. Customizing the learning process in such as way as to foster a growing society of critical thinkers. We can only do this by exposing students to varying media and applications of virtual society in a responsible context.       

I would argue that we should use the media and distractions of today to our advantage and connect to the students. Using games based on building higher order thinking skills, incorporating innovative presentation formats, and playing to the social strengths of today's youth we can, perhaps, gain some ground in the ange of technology and reclaim the minds of students everywhere.

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