Once upon a time a small girl sat on a city bus staring out the window. It was a regular day, cars and trucks drove alongside the bus, mothers with babies were out shopping for their families, and the sun shone down on it all. The little girl looked out the bus window and felt sad. She thought to herself, “Everything in the world that we need to know has been discovered. There is nothing left to learn.” Such a sad thought for a young girl! Well that little girl was me and I vividly remember the day and the feeling.
My thoughts may have been realistic about school and learning at that time in my young life. Then, we believed that education consisted of pouring knowledge into student’s heads to prepare them for the real world. A set amount of knowledge was all that was needed. No wonder my little girl self felt discouraged!
Preparing students for the real world was discussed during YouTube Live 1 as part of immooc . It is safe to say that we are beginning to understand that preparing students for the real world means bringing the real world right into our classrooms.
The little girl I was, would be excited about the potential for change and innovation that we have in education today. We understand so much more about how people learn; we have tools to create and to collaborate; and we are rethinking what ‘schooling’, means.
I’d deeply hopeful and enthusiastic about the new horizons that are opening up before us. I love the opportunities I have as a teacher to be a continual learner, explorer and risk taker. Last year my exploration led to teaching Scratch Coding to a group of grade 4, 5 and 6 students. This naturally evolved into developing a Maker Space in our school this year. This spring I was inspired by Sylvia Martinez and Gary Stager’s book and two day session in Edmonton called Invent to Learn and this fall I am anticipating great things from blendED2016 as well as the community of learners who are part of immooc.
Thankfully the girl on the bus grew up to discover that there are always new things to learn. I can’t think of a more exciting time to be a teacher.