From a school and classroom perspective how often do we consider the outcomes of PISA and NAPLAN testing and the application or implication of these. Do we ever ponder the possible future of education and what it will look like system wide and down to the classroom level in 20 years let alone 100 years from now?
It interested me the other day when a colleague of mine made a comment about the oval and larger grassed areas at my school being the same as they were when she was a student at the school. Considering this would have been in the late 70’s and early 80’s should this be a cause for concern? There have also been a number of areas in the school that have changed since that time however. So will the changes seen in a school from the late 70’s to now be similar and occurring at a similar rate over the next thirty odd years?
We have seen over time a change in the design of classrooms-will this continue to evolve? What will it look like?
Prakash Nair in a recent article called The Classroom is Obsolete stated;
“As the primary place for student learning, the classroom does not withstand the scrutiny of scientific research. Each student “constructs” knowledge based on his or her own past experiences. Because of this, the research demands a personalized education model to maximize individual student achievement. Classrooms, on the other hand, are based on the erroneous assumption that efficient delivery of content is the same as effective learning.”
Please take the time to read his paper, it is not long and an interesting read.
Obviously, it takes considerable funds to build a school or redesign an existing one. As a result this type of change is limited to a point. If we go beyond the physical aspect of a school and start considering the learning that goes on within it we now need to ask where are we heading. What will learning look like in 100 years? One blogger has put forward his thoughts in the following post Learning in 2111.
The next link looks at ideas put out there by Sir Ken Robinson, who is a known TED Talk presenter
From each of the links provided there is an underlying theme of personalising education, or tailoring it to the individual. Are we on this track? What evidence is starting to appear that the prediction made by the blogger mentioned earlier is actually achievable and how comfortable or excited do we feel about this? What is currently happening at the coalface that indicates that teachers see personalising education as important? How do tests like NAPLAN and PISA fit with this? What place does a national based curriculum have when the importance is placed on personalising learning?
Finally here is a student view of where we have come from, where we are now and what they would like now. The full article attached to the YouTube clip can be found at Students Demand Change in Their Own Education.