It’s all around us. There is little escape. Technology is embedded into our everyday lives, and even technologically uninitiated members of our society cannot escape the advance of new and streamlined hi-tech innovations now surrounding us.
This article was originally published in the April 2015 edition of UKEdMagazine. You can order a printed version of the magazine by clicking here, or freely read the article in our online version by clicking here.
In the main, industry has embraced new and innovative ways of working with technologies, but lagging painfully behind are certain educational theories and practices that fail to move with the times. This may be good. This may be necessary, in their worlds. But the future worlds which current students will be working in are probably unrecognisable as innovations continue. In fact – just look around – young people have already embraced the social benefits of modern technologies. Many see these as a distraction but, if used smartly, educators have the opportunity to boldly appropriate these as powerful tools that can inspire and engage.
This is the crux of Steve Wheeler’s “Learning with ‘e’s” book which deftly examines educational theory and practice in the digital age. The issue that education is currently faced with, claims the book, is the struggle between the old and the new, the closed and the open, the traditional and the radical. Steve explores some of the main issues throughout the book as he explores the changing nature of education; theories for the digital age; old theories, new contexts; rebooting learning; a 21st century curriculum – all challenging the traditional roles in education, and how adaptation can continue to support learning in the modern world.
The moulds will need breaking. There is a lot of change required, and technology advances cannot be ignored – despite the best efforts of many colleagues who find such change overwhelming, but Steve Wheeler dissects the issues which education is facing, with encouragement and words of wisdom that can help all of us look at the future opportunities with excitement and with a sense of awe.
Learning with ‘e’s – Educational theory and practice in the digital age by Steve Wheeler is published by Crown House Publishing, and is available from Amazon in paperback (£20*) and Kindle (£12*).
*Prices correct at time of publication.
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