How Teachers Will Start the Learning Revolution

Educational Innovation Weekly Review for Academics
Curated by Tecnológico de Monterrey's Observatory of Educational Innovation
September 8, 2015
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How Teachers Will Start the Learning Revolution
  • Developing 21st century learning is a challenge every school must now confront. We have reached the convergence of three critical factors: 1) the world and workforce demands new skills, 2) many of our students have already embraced a digital world already there, and 3) the technology and tools required are now widely available. 
  • When we speak of a reinvention of learning, an amazing vision is painted for students complete with new devices, “personalized” learning, and increased student engagement. However, in order to actualize this vision at scale, one piece is absolutely critical: the development of the teachers as practitioners of next generation teaching and learning.
  • recent study by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation found that only 29% of teachers are highly satisfied with current professional development offerings and a large majority of teachers do not believe that professional development is helping to prepare them for the changing nature of their jobs. If we are going to expect teachers to help students become 21st century learners, they must become 21st century learners themselves. 
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Keywords: learning, teachers, profesional development, 21st century education, opinion
Teachers Colleges Struggle to Blend Technology Into Teacher Training
The Hechinger Report
  • College and university schools of education struggle to keep up with the classroom technologies and studies indicating a growing need for digitally savvy students and educators. They’re trying to teach today’s student-teachers how to use the wide range of technologies.
  • But because of rapid technological change and the need to fit more class requirements into a curriculum already filled with state-mandated courses, many teachers colleges are finding it difficult to integrate technology education into their teacher preparation programs. The result is a “to each its own” approach to teacher education. 
  • Although teacher candidates know how to operate the devices, they need to be taught how to use them to help kids learn. Apps in and of themselves are fine. But it’s becoming increasingly difficult to have them think critically about the ways in which technology can help promote, but also inhibit, learning.
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Keywords: technology, educators, blended learning, profesional development, teacher training
A Sharing Economy Where Teachers Win
The New York Times
  • Teachers often spend hours preparing classroom lesson plans to reinforce the material students are required to learn, and many share their best materials with colleagues. Founded in 2006, TeachersPayTeachers speeds up this lesson-plan prep work by monetizing exchanges between teachers and enabling them to make faster connections with farther-flung colleagues.
  • On TeachersPayTeachers some educators have been able to convert hours of class preparation into thousands of dollars, and 12 have become millionaires. The site is fostering the growth of a hybrid profession: teacher-entrepreneur. The phenomenon has even spawned its own neologism: teacherpreneur.
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Keywords: technology, educators, entrepreneurship 
The Key to Better Lecturing? Trust Your Students
The Guardian
  • You are not obliged to teach the same way you were taught. In every field of academic research, theories and methods have moved on and teaching methods have too. While a monologue lecture may once have sufficed, today’s fee-paying students expect a higher standard of teaching.
  • Too often what is described as teaching in higher education is actually just “covering” topics and has little to do with facilitating learning. Our students need a core of knowledge, facts upon which understanding and the higher order thinking skills can build. 
  • Forget coverage for a moment, step back and consider what you regard as really important about your course, what understanding and skills should endure years after graduation.
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Keywords: higher education, teaching, lecturers, tips
Kick-Start Learning by Giving Students a Lecture ‘Trailer’
Times Higher Education
  • You can picture the scene. It’s a nine o’clock Monday morning lecture – hooray! You’ve got about 200 first-year undergraduates in a lecture theatre, and most of them, just got out of bed. This is not a propitious beginning for an inspiring learning experience. How do you grab their attention and get them fully engaged?
  • Over the past few years, I’ve been trying a few new ideas that have worked remarkably well. My latest idea is to create a series of one-minute “lecture trailers” – these rapidly show the students some of the places to be discussed in class and ask challenging questions. I see it as an element of “flipped learning” without going the whole hog. 
  • I’m not offering the students a replacement for the lecture, or an excuse for not attending (“I watched the video on YouTube, so I’ve already got the key messages”). Rather, I’m attempting to get them excited about what is to come.
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Keywords: teaching, learning, student engagement 
Facebook is Building Education Software that it Plans to Give Away to Any School that Wants It
Business Insider
  • Facebook has built a tool to help schools adopt a system of personalized learning that it wants to give to any public school that wants it for free. The company developed the tool — called the Personalized Learning Plan — in partnership with Summit Public Schools, which have notably high college-acceptance rates thanks to a special approach to learning that emphasizes letting students move at their own pace. 
  • Instead of spending classroom time for lectures, Summit schools deliver all content and assignments online. Class time is then dedicated to teacher-led, real-world projects and student collaboration. The software won't require a Facebook account to join. 
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Keywords: personalized learning, learning tools, facebook
5 Tips for Assessing Students
The Synapse
  • Every time education moves progressively, it takes a few minute steps in regression. With regards to assessment, curriculum leaders and educational theorists have created a dichotomous state of grading these days: formative and summative.
  • So teachers have these fancy new “tools” to better understand students while little in the trenches of our classrooms has changed. Teachers are told to combine their evaluations by blending “formative” skills demonstrated and “summative” knowledges shown. 
  • But educators must be taught keys to determine how to assess students well. Here are 5 keys that can guide teachers when assessing students.
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Keywords: education, teaching, learning, assessment 
Is School For Everyone? Some Say ‘No’
  • Teens across the country are struggling to get through school, unaware that there are other options, believing that school is a shared but hated experience that everyone must get through until their real lives can start. School can work for people, but it’s not a universal fit. 
  • A network of learning centers is helping families make the difficult decision to remove a struggling child from school in favor of a radically different, self-directed type of education.
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Keywords: education, high school, college, learning, self-direct education
In Education, How Do We Create a Culture of Experimentation?
  • Ten years ago, there was little innovation in education . Every other sector was transforming itself with technology, but education largely looked like it did a hundred years ago. 
  • For too long, the education system has been experimenting at the wrong scale, in the wrong ways: we have experimented on instead of with students, families, and teachers. The good news is that we are seeing progress in many fronts. 
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Keywords: education, innovation, education technology, edtech
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Educational Innovation Weekly Review is curated by Tecnológico de Monterrey's  Observatory of Educational Innovation. With the highlights of the week on innovation, technology and education. If you require more information about a specific note, please email us: TECNOLÓGICO DE MONTERREY, 2015.

Observatory of Educational Innovation

Tecnológico de Monterrey's Observatory of Educational Innovation: We identify and analyze the educational innovation trends that are shaping the future of learning and education. 

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