“Technology doesn’t teach. We do! The tools we choose to use in our classrooms engage learners won’t work without a strong understanding of best instructional practices and classroom management.” Lori Elliott
When I ask educators, parents or students, ‘what is 21st century learning?’ many respond with using technology in the classroom. This is partially true but we need to get beyond that 21st century learning is using technology in the classroom.
Technology is an important piece but like the quote I started off with it is a tool, not the curriculum. We need to infuse technology into our lessons. Educators can’t be afraid of technology but embrace it. We need to learn with the kids and often times let them teach us. Some of the best sites for education, I learned were thought my students.
To teach the 21st century learner we need to give the students the skills to be able to adapt to different situations. The 21st century skills are communicate, collaborate, critically think/problem solve and create/innovate. In order to do this we as educators need to rethink the way we teach. We need to let the students build upon their curiosities. It is very important to teach the students these skills as the jobs we are preparing them for today might not exist in the future. A student that is a good problem solver, innovator, can communicate and collaborate can do any job, as they will have the skills to adapt.
Another element of 21st century learning is that students need to be more globally aware. They are not confined into the four walls of the classroom anymore but can globally connect to almost anyone, anywhere through Blogs, Skype, Edmodo, and other social network sites. With technology letting us interact with all different types of people around the world; it is a great way to bring in teaching social etiquette and cultural diversity.
Below is a link to a PowerPoint turned into a ‘movie’ I created using the site authorstream.com about 21st century learning, enjoy!
Great sites to help you learn more about 21st century learning/skills