Reinventing education

As a futurist, I get asked a lot about the future. People I meet in almost any context ask me what their industry or role would look like in the far future. Some people seem very anxious and others very optimistic when I give them my views. I like to share imaginatively and philosophically when it comes to the future. That’s because I’m the most optimistic skeptic I know. I expect the worst but hope for the best šŸ™‚

So, what would education look like in the future – many of you ask?

I subscribe very much to Ken Robinson’s view about what the future of education should become. If you read or viewed his TED talk, which incidentally is the no.1 most watched TED talk to date, you’ll quickly understand why. For those of you who are keen to get an idea of what he’s on about, here’s the RSA version. It’s more palatable and digestible (IMHO)…

But, Ken’s view is quite philosophical and idealistic. If you want to picture what a classroom of the future could look like, this video from Corning based on advances in technology and materials can give you a glimpse of what’s possible.

Cool, eh? In fact, most of the technology they are talking about are already in development and prototyping stages. That’s really exciting, isn’t it? For most of us, we are just about done going through what we can and cannot do with our brand new iPads and iPhones! And they’re about to up the ante again!

Have no fear though. Not all of the future involve sophisticated and complex technology. Sometimes, going back to basics is the way to go. Have you ever heard of the Green School? They’ve won the annual Greenest School on Earth award again last year – and they’re located practically in our backyard (in global terms). Watch this video of John Hardy (founder) talking about the school on TED.

Now that I’ve got you thinking, how’s about translating that ‘stimulation’ into ‘engagement’? Here are a few articles with links to loads of ideas and clever, snazzy apps to help you kickstart your journey to transforming education within your social context.

The Next Web : 10 Incredible iPad Apps for Education
IDEO’s Design Thinking for Educators’ Toolkit
5 Ways to Continue Growing as a Teacher
The 5 Best Tools for Creating Videos Without Installing Software
60 Educational Apps in 60 Minutes

If you are still hungry for more, here’s a link to a great article on the guy and platform who’s set his sights on reinventing education from his incubator in California.

I hope this post gives you a bit of encouragement that you’re in the middle of the next education revolution – whether you are aware of it or not. If you retrace the beginnings of the Society of Jesus when St Ignatius had a revelation and went forth to create the foundation for Catholic education more than 400 years ago, you’ll discover that we’ve been down this road before. So, what’s next?

I leave you with this wonderful thought from John Lennon, peace be with you.

PS : If you think this is all too overwhelming, and that you are just one person, here’s a quote I just heard from Cloud Atlas – awesome movie –

“You are but a drop in an ocean, yet what is any ocean, but a multitude of drops?” – David Mitchell.

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