We’re living in a time of incredibly accelerated change. We can communicate freely using video – Youtube and BitTorrent! and more. Wikipedia is the most significant advance of the 21st century for knowledge sharing. The key difference is the way it keeps developing – and its perfectly normal for “wacky kids”!
Mobile phone and gaming technology such as the Wii is ‘co-prescence’ – human beings live to communicate. What we have done is given these ‘wacky kids’ the tools to accelerate communicate – and all of it is perfectly natural to them – the only world they know.
The unintended consequence of this hyper-connectivity is the emergence of totally new and unexpected changes. Kids walk to the school door and get stripped of their hyper-connectivity. They are learning that collaboration and communication are not important – the hidden curriculum is denying the value of the learned experience from their life of ‘co-presence. There is a subtle and invisible argument between school and life. Students are losing respect for the clasroom. School is losing the connection with the way that the rest of life works.
The classroom is becoming an antique, but we don’t necessarily know what to do about it. Getting computers into classrooms is not enough. What do we need to use these fore once they arrive in schools. Watch the kids to see how the kids are hyperconnected. Then work it out! Connect around the globe – kids in one classroom with kids in another. [while this is not new to some of us, seems to be a key message to deliver to those attending the symposium today]
The computer is a window – NOT a destination.
The classroom is the disruption – the outside world is clamoring to get in to make the classroom relevant. The schools need a window that is opening into the real world. That technology, however, offers a profound change, making people afraid – then postpone change because the decisions are difficult.
We cannot afford to be frozen into inaction! We are the mutants. If we can’t change education in the next few years, the tide of change is going to whip right past us. But education won’t fade away – there is too much pressure from too many directions. So the pressure will continue to rise, and unexpected things will continue to happen.
Mark reflected on the amazing transformation of various technologies – Twitter being the most recent revoltuion in news connections and services. The greatest news feed about the earthquakes in China was Twitter.
“The street finds its own use for things” that the makers never intended.
At the end of the day, WE are the change agents. All we need to do is to start to share. We need to connect with each other. We need to use the tools of hyperconnectivity. We need to use the relationships to exchange knowledge. We need to pool our expertise.
Just ONE of those ideas can change the ideas in your school! Follow Mark on Twitter to find out more about the good ideas that happen at this Symposium.
When we learn how to use these tools we can then work out how to transform education!