Thursday, January 10, 2008

Doing IT Differently - H: What's Missing?

What will be different at HC in 2008?

H: What's Missing?

In this series I've focused on changes in the Computing learning area. Of course there are also new initiatives in other learning areas and I hope to write about some of those over the next few weeks.

In the last post of this series I'd like to touch on a couple of things I think are still missing if we are to engage all learners in education that leads to purposeful futures.

The first is Social Foresight or Futures Studies. We need to empower students with the knowledge and tools to be able to predict likely futures and create preferred futures - both personal and societal. However we have done little in this area and it has not been a priority in current course development work. This must change.

In the Computing area there are several avenues for exploring possible and preferred futures:

  • Robotics
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Technological solutions for current local and global challenges
The emerging field of Integral Futures might provide a way for students to use 4 Quadrant Integral Theory as a framework (see F: Conceptual Frameworks) to map possibilities.

The second is Spirituality. Spirituality is recognised in state and national educational policy but progress in this area has been slow until recently. We need to look for opportunities to address:

  • students' sense of deeper meaning, connectedness, purpose and place
  • spiritual literacy and spiritual expression
  • inspiration and wisdom
  • mindfulness and stillness

Above Maslow's need for self-actualization is the need for self-transcendence - a need to be of service to humanity and the planet. Today's global challenges provide many opportunities for expression at this level.

Previous: G: Blended Learning

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At 2:24 PM, Blogger MadMiller said...

bravo! bravo!

This is truly refreshing in a learning world focussed on outcomes and benchmarking.

At 3:47 PM, Blogger Seth said...

I really liked your idea of futures studies. Little has been done in this study and the idea of robotics and AI are very interesting. When I was in school we did not even have computers in the classroom, we had to go to a computer lab. Now some schools are able to give students laptops to use in class. With the speed that technology is moving at maybe we should look into the idea of students someday using robots or AI. You also mentioned spirituality and I noticed you did not say religion. Religion is seen as wrong in public schools but most people have some kind of spirituality and it can either be a deeper meaning to life or wisdom and inspiration. This is something students should express and be aware of. Spirituality involves inspiration, wisdom and purpose, and these are all things that students need to get through school and into the world.

At 12:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I really feel you hit the nail on top of the head here. Technology is taking over everyone’s lives. The sky is the limit with technology and I hope we don’t try to reach it too fast. Robots and artificial intelligence are going impact people’s lives at some point and time will only tell. I just hope we keep our goals realistic, but flying cars are probably just around the corner. Teachers need to find ways to get technology in the classrooms as well. More times then not, it is easier to learn with and could be more fun for the students. With touching on spirituality, that is a tough area and teachers need to be careful. With the wide range of diversity between children nowadays, everyone needs to be accepting of others’ beliefs. I am not sure how much spirituality needs to be incorporated in the classroom but the teachers need to be aware of it. I think that the students need to be able to think with a deeper meaning and by this they could use some of their feelings and emotions in their work in the classroom. Children nowadays are our nation’s future; we need to guide them in the classroom by incorporating technology and having an open mind about spirituality with the students.

At 4:17 PM, Anonymous BrukettaR said...

Engaging learners in Social Foresight/Future Studies is something that I consider extremely important. I am a Social Science Education major and consider societal patterns and changes to be extremely important (and interesting) to be aware of, especially since they so heavily impact the world in which we live. I think that teachers are an excellent resource for students to be able to develop their personal and societal future, by means of helping the student gain a more substantial understanding of the world around them. Once students have a grasp of their surroundings and personal capabilities, I feel that the quest for exploration of future desires will operate more smoothly. Also, I’m eagerly anticipating the differing levels of spirituality in students in my future classroom setting. As pointed out, we need to look for opportunities to address a deeper meaning and connectedness. As a Social Science teacher who values a strong spirituality through religion, I hope to guide students as they are able to develop a fulfilling sense of meaning for themselves. I want to help inspire them and make them aware of the challenges and opportunities that lie in front of them and how they can overcome obstacles. I hope to be successful at doing so, so that my students can gain an aspiration to be of service to others in need and learn about themselves while providing such a service. I feel like once my students are able to recognize who they are and in what direction they want to grow, that they will be able to apply this new skill the their surroundings to make a more positively impacting footprint on our society.


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