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Education Used to Happen Outside of School | Intellectual Takeout
"Prior to passage of America's first compulsory schooling statute, in Massachusetts in 1852, it was generally accepted that education was a broad societal good and that there could be many ways to be educated: at home, through one's church, with a tutor, in a class, on your own as an autodidact, as an apprentice in the community--and often all of the above.

Even that first compulsory schooling statute only mandated school attendance for 12 weeks of the year for 8-14 year olds--hardly the childhood behemoth it has become.

Acknowledging that schooling is only a singular model of education opens up enormous possibilities for learning. Looking to successful education models of the past and present, we can imagine what the varied and vibrant future of education could be.

In earlier generations, individuals and groups often created dynamic learning communities all on their own, without coercion. The esteemed thinker, Noam Chomsky, references the rich and varied ways in which people learned prior to the onslaught of mass schooling. He states:

"I grew up in the Depression. My family was a little, I'll say employed working class, but a lot of them never went to school in the first grade, but [were familiar with] very high culture. The plays of Shakespeare in the park, the WPA performances, concerts, and it's just part of life. The union had worker education programs and cultural programs. And high culture was just part of life. Actually, if you're interested, there's a detailed scholarly study of working class people in England in the 19th century and what they were reading, and it's pretty fabulous. It turns out that they didn't go to school, mostly. But they had quite a high level of culture. They were reading contemporary literature and classics. In fact, the author concludes finally that they were probably more educated than aristocrats."

The scholarly study that Chomsky alludes to is Jonathan Rose's book, The Intellectual Life of the British Working Class. In the preface, Rose writes that "the roots of that autodidact culture go back as far as the late middle ages. It surged again in the nineteenth century... Thereafter, the working-class movement for self-education swiftly declined, for a number of converging reasons."

A main reason was the rise of compulsory schooling mandates in Europe and in the U.S., and the corresponding shift in education provided by individuals, families, and local community groups to the obligation of the state. Since then, schooling and education have become inextricably linked, with mixed results.

For example, the literacy rate in Massachusetts in 1850, just prior to passage of that first compulsory schooling statue, was 97 percent.[i] According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the Massachusetts adult literacy rate in 2003 was only 90%. Nationwide, the literacy rate today stands at 86 percent.

Like cars are to transportation, schooling is a ubiquitous and popular mode of education. But it is not the only one. There are many ways to learn, to be educated, particularly as technology and information become increasingly accessible.

The power of technology and the Internet to propel learning without schooling is documented in extensive research by Dr. Sugata Mitra and his colleagues. In one study of their "hole in the wall" experiments, Mitra presents compelling findings on how children from disadvantaged backgrounds in 17 urban slum and rural areas across India used publicly available computers to gain literacy and computing skills on their own, without any adult interference or instruction.

The children, ranging in age from six to 14 years, acquired these skills at rates comparable to children in control groups who were taught in formal, teacher-directed classroom settings. Mitra and his colleagues define this self-education as “minimally-invasive education,” or MIE.

In further studies, Mitra and his colleagues revealed that these same poor, formerly illiterate children also taught themselves English and learned to read simply by having access to computers and the Internet in safe, public spaces within their villages. Mitra's powerful, award-winning 2013 Ted Talk about his "hole in the wall" experiments and findings is definitely worth a watch.

By disentangling schooling from education—to truly de-school our mindset about learning--we can create enormous potential for education innovation. Schooling is one mode of education; but there are so many others to explore and invent."
informallearning  learning  education  unschooling  deschooling  schools  kerrymcdonald  homeschool  sugatamitra  literacy  jonathanrose  autodidacts  self-directed  self-directedlearning  schooling  history 
may 2017 by robertogreco
The "Unstructured Classroom" and other misconceptions about Constructivist Learning | FabLearn Fellows
"Ask any average kid what his or her favorite part of the school day is and you will probably get the answer lunch or recess. Kids love unstructured time because they have the privacy to fail while taking risks or learning how to be a social primate. At recess, kids have nearly 100% choice over what to do with their bodies, with the safe assumption that in case an injury does occur, an adult on duty will be on the scene in due time. Provide kids with a rich, not necessarily antiseptic space to explore and they teach us a lot about ingenuity, inclusivity and learning through play. Whether passionate about the physics of soccer or the game theory involved in the antics the day of a middle school dance, learning is experiential and self-directed at recess. Regardless of what passion takes over their choice time, we as adults trust them to make safe choices for the most part and we respect their individuality. So why does that trust shift when those same children come into our classrooms?


In the three years that I have been teaching science through the lens of making or inventing and problem solving, I have often heard the iLab, referred to as “unstructured,” by some well meaning adults. This harkens back to the discord between what we know progressive education can be versus what we envision when we think of a “progressive classroom.” When I worked at Calhoun in New York City, we were considered a progressive school and we often had the debate about what we mean by the term “unstructured.” The debate would invariably follow a conversation with a nervous parent that would go something like this, “Its good for some kids maybe, but my son doesn’t do well in an “unstructured” classroom.”

Student-Centered means having access to the tools and knowledge needed to set and reach learning goals. In this simple example, having tools out for a help-your-self community workshop feeling does the trick.

If that child struggles in his or her academic classes they may have an Individualized Learning Plan, which often involves the suggestion to write every instruction down for the child and to be explicit regarding the modes for success in your class. In other words, the best thing for the student to be and feel successful is to tell the child what and how to learn, as much as possible. While at first glance, this kind of teacher-led structure, which we want to spare high achieving kids from normally, seems like good teaching. We even have the perfect safe sounding term for it, its called scaffolding. My concern is that some scaffolding is tantamount to helmet laws which may be teaching us to be less safe in the end. Having had the gift of watching students learning in a student-centered classroom, however this translates to me, as nothing more than a lack of trust for children’s innate desire to learn what matters to them and an equal instinct to find importance through autonomy and risk taking and helping others. Thankfully, I am not alone in my uncensored trust of children as progressive playgrounds in Europe and Berkeley Ca, are beginning to prove.

By its own existence, a pre-set school curriculum assumes that children can not be held responsible for their own learning. On the one hand we as adults who work with kids, know kids do not always know what they do not know. Learning how to learn means seeing the stepping stones between just an idea and an idea that works. The skills of research and the use of tools for learning in general, are sometimes better taught step by step in the same fashion for most. On the less optimistic hand, cookie cutter curriculum also allows for some ridiculous falsehoods that many adults live in fear of. For instance, most adults worry children would not learn to read, or write, or to do math, left to their own devices and need the structure of school to make those skills materialize. Thank god dire circumstances still allow for disruptive questions to be asked, such as those asked by Dr. Sugata Mitra, allowing for a more diverse picture of who we are as a species, one that engages in learning for the sake of learning.

Here is my response to the claim that a maker classroom is unstructured. There are skills to be gained in any maker style curriculum on a spectrum from totally student driven to totally teacher directed. In my classroom I lean more towards student-directed with a game-like structure. For any given unit, either patterns, structures or systems, I give a simple prompt which allows for the most diverse range of solutions for students to discover. In game like fashion, there are rules about deadlines, teams and rules about when and how long play takes place (thats built into the school day schedule). There are “levels” of achievement and complexity of learning embedded into the system to be mindful of safety, and to allow for a mentoring system so knowledge is democratic and passion-based. Allowing students to chose the complexity with which they want to solve a problem is a side of autonomy that we cross our fingers over, but in the end, even when kids pick hard problems, they are experiencing something of value in that path full of potentially frustrating dead-ends. A list of such values we have all seen in our own ways teaching this kind of learning style. This past weekend at FabLearn, Sylvia Martinez, of Invent To Learn and Constructing Modern Knowledge, put it succinctly when she compared the kind of work kids can do in a fabrication lab environment to little league baseball. The authenticity of the work that kids do in an environment of constructing, allows kids see themselves as real inventors and engineers in the fashion that a little league player can imagine being a professional baseball player. It feels real and its age appropriate."
christaflores  2014  education  teaching  learning  schools  constructivism  unstructured  student-centered  fablearn  pauloblikstein  making  progressive  sugatamitra  responsibility  unschooling  deschooling  howwelearn  ilab  pedagogy  formativeassessment  paulahooper 
january 2016 by robertogreco
Tom Bennett: 'Sugata Mitra and the Hole in the Research' | tesconnect
"But for brevity’s sake, I’ll mention my highlights. For a start, it’s based on – wait for it – 23 students. You heard me: 23 students. Roll that about for a while, really rub your tongue around it. That’s tiny, statistically meaningless. Secondly, are we somehow saying that students who collaboratively learn from the internet will improve as time passes with no intervening intervention? Holy smoke, we just invented educational cold fusion.

You’ll forgive me for not being particularly impressed by hand-picked students taking part in a test where they’re made to feel special, given a thin slice of a syllabus to work on, and then tested for that exact piece of syllabus…and then scaling up that work into a magic GCSE grade. Give me a page of quantum physics to memorise, then ask me about it. Can I have a PhD?"
sugatamitra  2015  holeinthewall  tombennett  kenrobinson  education  edtech  technology 
august 2015 by robertogreco
The Sound of TED: A Case for Distaste | The American Reader
"There seems to be an important lesson for educators in Mitra’s experiment. It stirs real emotions in people. Like a lot of what makes it onto the TED stage, it seems to inspire something in the viewer. Mitra’s talk is played and replayed in education courses across the world as an inspiration for… well, it’s not clear for exactly what. Mitra implies that the time for traditional education is over (something that was declared by many people as early as a hundred-and-fifty years ago, when the first “traditional” public school systems were being set up) and that technology can now allow for different, more autonomous and distributed structures of learning. Nevermind that his experiment was conducted in slums where children had no cellphones, no movies, no parties, no alcohol, no swim-lessons in the afternoon, no books, barely a real school, and, yes, no computers; we are to assume that the results there somehow have something to do with European or American public schools as well. Mitra ends the talk with a shameless plug for his project of putting a computer before every child. The lesson of his experiment, the role of play and autonomy in effective education, is in one stroke turned into icing for a project that has very little to do with what got his audience excited about the first few minutes of his talk.

This is obfuscation. A nice little experiment is used to give the impression that a large, systemic problem like schooling can be solved easily. That, however, cannot be the real issue with TED—because what I have just described applies to most of what is funded and performed as social research across the world. It is positivist thought with a twist of sleek camera-work. The debate over what this type of thinking means for practice and research stretches back into the 19th century. Whatever TED’s critics have suggested, there is nothing that TED does to ideas or science that has not been done before. The particular problem with TED is elsewhere."



"I will be crass: the most interesting thing about Bratton’s talk is that in the early minutes of the lecture, just as he has delivered his main thesis, he suddenly forgets what he is supposed to say. There is a pause. It would be perfectly natural in another format to wait and gather one’s thoughts, but the pause is strangely disturbing in this context. He loses his place, then his nerve, and for the rest of the talk he struggles under an invisible weight. He has to heave a breath into each sentence, trying to propel himself into a rhythm that he doesn’t regain until the very end. What he is struggling under is the pressure of the TED style."



"But even Adichie’s presentation caters to the format by not acknowledging the shameful absurdity of the situation. The only exception is Sarah Silverman’s talk—which TED refuses to publish on its website. In the unofficial video that somehow made it to YouTube, Silverman is called on to deliver a comedy routine. She is a practiced stand-up and knows her craft—but here she abandons it completely. She pauses inordinately. She drags out her jokes until they are excruciating, then repeats them for good measure. She points her clicker, needlessly and awkwardly, toward the PowerPoint screen behind her which displays nothing but single-sentence TEDisms: ‘Communication is important’ (she talks about discussing a hand-shaped bruise on her ass with her mother); ‘What the world needs now’ (“I am 39 years old,” she says “and I still wake up every morning so thankful that I don’t have to go to school,”); and ‘TED is fancy’ (she discusses how the number 3000 can be seen as a pair of breasts defecating). Finally she picks up her guitar and informs the audience that her next song is dedicated to the porn-stars in the audience, “and you are all stars” she informs them. The moment her song—about how all the cocks in the universe cannot fill the hole in the aforementioned star’s heart—comes to an end, she bails, taking the microphone with her and depriving the audience of the chance to applaud her. On walks one of the largest shit-eating grins in the history of recorded entertainment—a presenter— who repeatedly begs Silverman to come back, until Silverman, who unlike the others in the room does have a sense of shame, obliges. The audience now push to their feet for a standing ovation that is nothing but an attempt to deny their own humiliation. “This can’t be right,” mutters Silverman, bewildered.

For various reasons, I find myself forced to sit through a TED-talk now and then. I squirm in my seat—feeling humiliated for myself and the speaker. This is a distinctly un-adult feeling. Adults have lost their capacity for disgust—which is partly why Silverman often jokes about her own unending adolescence. Unwavering critical open-mindedness has, for a very long time, become the correct intellectual posture, and it’s never clear if at any point one can allow oneself to have a visceral reaction against a genre, an industry, or a situation without feeling either childish or curmudgeonly. Teenagers are half-better than adults in this respect: in high doses, tackiness puts them off. They collectively begin to step back from a thing, and they are generally aware that what’s bothering them is not content, but style. So they turn away from Facebook in droves, without having read a single line of cultural criticism on social media. They look back at their own participation in whatever style they dropped with mild horror. That they are then lured in by the next shiny thing is a different story. The point is that the average adult avoids the horror of disgust, which means consciously sticking to what’s most bland and middle-of-the-road: HBO, pants, college, Obama, and, for a few years now, TED.

A decent strategy with TED might be to reclaim our teenage capacities and treat these videos as hopelessly passé—ignore them to death. Critiquing them, even as I have done, will do what criticism has done for television: creating an added enjoyment as you go on consuming the crap you despise. I know what I am watching is disgraceful, but aren’t I great at seeing why it’s disgraceful? I only watch it to keep up-to-date with the unwashed masses."
ted  houmanharouni  2014  tedtalks  benjaminbratton  nathanheller  sugatamitra  sarahsilverman  holeinthewall  chimamandaadichie  presentations 
april 2015 by robertogreco
Are Tablets the Way Out of Child Illiteracy? | Innovation | Smithsonian
"The Roanoke project was born out of a project launched in Africa two years ago by Tufts and Georgia State in conjunction with the One Laptop per Child organization, founded in 2007 by Nicholas Negroponte of the MIT Media Lab. One Laptop per Child, or OLPC, sought to empower students in resource-poor environments by distributing 2.4 million Internet-connected laptops in 42 developing countries. The results of the project, which ceased operations last year, are still being assessed and debated—for example, a study by the Inter-American Development Bank found no effect on test scores but some increase in cognitive skills. But in some places, it became clear that children couldn’t use some of the software because they couldn’t read, and they had no access to schools or teachers.

The research team wanted to investigate whether such children could learn to read on their own, aided only by digital devices. They delivered 40 tablets to children in two villages in Ethiopia, without instructions—a scene that must have conjured the 1980 South African comedy The Gods Must Be Crazy, in which a Kalahari bushman has his first encounter with technology, in the form of a Coke bottle fallen from the sky."



"What students do when they’re left on their own with a tablet is a bit of a mystery—for now. MIT’s software records how the children in Roanoke use their tablets: which apps they open, for how long, and in what order. (Or at least it did until some students learned how to bypass the start screen midway through the year.) So far, the data show that the students use them for an average of two hours a night. Initially, they blaze through the whole tablet, exploring dozens of apps. Eventually, they settle on a handful of favorites. The Roanoke students seem to gravitate toward academic content—sounds, letters, puzzles—especially when it is framed as a game. (The piano and coloring apps are also popular.)"
tablets  education  literacy  2015  olpc  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  tinkrbook  teaching  learning  children  schools  reading 
march 2015 by robertogreco
The Future of Big-Box Schooling
"The fundamental flaw which is structurally embedded in our education system is the fallacy of social engineering – the false belief that it is possible to institute a top-down, mechanical structure, impose it on a complex living system, and expect predictable results. The entire superstructure of goals, objectives, state standards, curricula, and tests is fundamentally built on the assumption that learning is a mechanical process, in which the proper ingredients can be fed into the pipeline and the proper product will emerge at the other end. (Of course, the fact that this persistently does not happen, John Taylor Gatto argues, is no accident, but reflects the fact that it is not actually in the interests of the existing power structure to have a large population capable of exercising independent critical intelligence.)"



"Every culture is different, and as anthropologist Meredith Small points out, every culture makes trade-offs: it would be romantic to assume that there is some perfect balance to be found. But because a traditional culture embodies learning which takes place over many generations, in which thousands of years of observation and trial-and-error allow for a multi-generational wisdom about human nature to evolve, it is possible that nuanced and workable ways of relating to children may exist in traditional cultures from which modern societies can learn and benefit.

Aspects of learning in many (not all) traditional cultures include:

• Immersing young people in adult activity rather than segregating them by age.
• Immersing children in multi-age groups where they can learn from older children.
• Immersing young people in nature rather than confining them indoors for most of the day.
• A blurring of the boundaries between work and play.
• Allowing for physical movement and engagement with new tasks or knowledge rather than requiring a sedentary existence as the condition for learning.
• Allowing the time for freedom, experimentation, choice, fluidity, play.
• Learning through deeper personal relationships, mentorships, apprenticeships, rather than from teachers who are not known on a personal level.
• Control over the timing, form and content of learning which resides in the child and/or in adults who know the child as an individual, rather than control being located in distant “experts” and one-size-fits-all “standards.”
• Allowing for extended transformative experiences in which young people make independent choices to discover their unique gifts, rather than step-by-step controlled sequences which attempt to dictate the process as well as the outcome of learning.

These strategies can work for learning to identify medicinal plants in a rainforest, for learning to anticipate and respond to the moods and movements of wild caribou, for learning to build a sustainable house out of mud brick, and they can work for learning how to design software applications or conduct a biological field study or write an elegant and compelling essay.

So if modernized societies are beginning to discuss moving from 20th century “big-box” schooling to a more 21st century networked model of learning, one possibility is that we may see a convergence of learning styles between ancient and modern cultures. As Sugata Mitra has discovered, unlettered street children can teach themselves how to use computers when given free access to the technology. So does it make sense to remove indigenous children from their traditional cultures and put them into outdated factory-style schools? Or should traditional people consider skipping that step, and deciding for themselves how they may want to use, ignore, adapt, blend, or hybridize new technologies and information in an open-network self-regulating manner?

When a new form of knowledge is truly vital and desired by a population, and access to the necessary resources is available, there is no question of needing to make education compulsory — you couldn’t stop the spread of knowledge if you tried. Look at how computer technology and expertise spread through the developed world. Personal computers were not invented by people in schools, and the vast majority of the population did not learn how to use them in schools. It was an open-access / open-source process – an organically expanding, networking, self-correcting, self-regulating and incredibly effective process – just like the early spread of literacy in many parts of Europe before the institution of widespread schooling.

Whether this is always good, of course, is another question. New technologies always change our lives, and not always for the better. Television has burned a wide swath through many cultures, including our own, leaving obesity, isolation, and advertising-driven insecurity and depression in its wake. I’m uneasy about the aggressive marketing of cell phones and technology to remote areas like Ladakh: once people from a sustainable culture suddenly require cash to feed a technology habit, many negative consequences ensue. But ultimately, it’s still better to be in control of what you adopt and what you choose not to adopt –– to be able to take what you need and leave the rest, absorb new things at a rate of your own choosing, than to be forced into an obsolete model of schooling just as the developed world begins to seriously discuss moving beyond it."
carolblack  ellwoodcubberly  johntaylorgatto  kenrobinson  meredithsmall  culture  knowledge  diversity  local  education  learning  children  parenting  sugatamitra  society  indigeneity  indigenous  howweteach  howwelearn  pedagogy  unschooling  deschooling  colonization  standardization  standardizedtesting  standards  relationships  mentoring  apprenticeships  internships  agesegregation  work  play  control  authority  hierarchy  colonialism 
january 2015 by robertogreco
Unstoppable Learning : TED Radio Hour : NPR
"Why do we put so much effort in making kids think and act like us? In this hour, TED speakers explore the different ways babies and children learn — from the womb, to the playground, to the web."
children  learning  education  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  anniemurphypaul  howwelearn  howweteach  unschooling  deschooling  alisongopnik  ritapierson  relationships  2013  ted 
september 2014 by robertogreco
A Thousand Rivers: What the modern world has forgotten about children and learning.
[also here: http://carolblack.org/a-thousand-rivers/ ]

"The following statement somehow showed up on my Twitter feed the other day:
“Spontaneous reading happens for a few kids. The vast majority need (and all can benefit from) explicit instruction in phonics.”

This 127-character edict issued, as it turned out, from a young woman who is the “author of the forthcoming book Brilliant: The Science of How We Get Smarter” and a “journalist, consultant and speaker who helps people understand how we learn and how we can do it better.”

It got under my skin, and not just because I personally had proven in the first grade that it is possible to be bad at phonics even if you already know how to read. It was her tone; that tone of sublime assurance on the point, which, further tweets revealed, is derived from “research” and “data” which demonstrate it to be true.

Many such “scientific” pronouncements have emanated from the educational establishment over the last hundred years or so.  The fact that the proven truths of each generation are discovered by the next to be harmful folly never discourages the current crop of experts who are keen to impose their freshly-minted certainties on children. Their tone of cool authority carries a clear message to the rest of us: “We know how children learn.  You don’t.

So they explain it to us.

The “scientific consensus” about phonics, generated by a panel convened by the Bush administration and used to justify billions of dollars in government contracts awarded to Bush supporters in the textbook and testing industries, has been widely accepted as fact through the years of “No Child Left Behind” and “Race to the Top,” so if history is any guide, its days are numbered. Any day now there will be new research which proves that direct phonics instruction to very young children is harmful, that it bewilders and dismays them and makes them hate reading (we all know that’s often true, so science may well discover it) — and millions of new textbooks, tests, and teacher guides will have to be purchased at taxpayer expense from the Bushes’ old friends at McGraw-Hill.

The problems with this process are many, but the one that I’d like to highlight is this: the available “data” that drives it is not, as a matter of fact, the “science of how people learn.” It is the “science of what happens to people in schools.”

This is when it occurred to me: people today do not even know what children are actually like. They only know what children are like in schools.

Schools as we know them have existed for a very short time historically: they are in themselves a vast social experiment. A lot of data are in at this point. One in four Americans does not know the earth revolves around the sun. Half of Americans don’t know that antibiotics can’t cure a virus. 45% of American high school graduates don’t know that the First Amendment of the Constitution guarantees freedom of the press. These aren’t things that are difficult to know. If the hypothesis is that universal compulsory schooling is the best way to to create an informed and critically literate citizenry, then anyone looking at the data with a clear eye would have to concede that the results are, at best, mixed. At worst, they are catastrophic: a few strains of superbacteria may be about to prove that point for us.

On the other hand, virtually all white American settlers in the northeastern colonies at the time of the American Revolution could read, not because they had all been to school, and certainly not because they had all been tutored in phonics, which didn’t exist at the time. Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, not exactly light reading, sold over 500,000 copies in its first year of publication, the equivalent of a book selling sixty million copies today. People learned to read in a variety of ways, some from small one-room schools, but many from their mothers, from tutors, traveling ministers, apprentice’s masters, relatives, neighbors, friends. They could read because, in a literate population, it is really not that difficult to transmit literacy from one person to the next. When people really want a skill, it goes viral. You couldn’t stop it if you tried.

In other words, they could read for all the same reasons that we can now use computers. We don’t know how to use computers because we learned it in school, but because we wanted to learn it and we were free to learn it in whatever way worked best for us. It is the saddest of ironies that many people now see the fluidity and effectiveness of this process as a characteristic of computers, rather than what it is, which is a characteristic of human beings.

In the modern world, unless you learn to read by age 4, you are no longer free to learn in this way. Now your learning process will be scientifically planned, controlled, monitored and measured by highly trained “experts” operating according to the best available “data.” If your learning style doesn’t fit this year’s theory, you will be humiliated, remediated, scrutinized, stigmatized, tested, and ultimately diagnosed and labelled as having a mild defect in your brain.

How did you learn to use a computer? Did a friend help you? Did you read the manual? Did you just sit down and start playing around with it? Did you do a little bit of all of those things? Do you even remember? You just learned it, right?”



"City kids who grow up among cartoon mice who talk and fish who sing show tunes are so delayed in their grasp of real living systems that Henrich et al. suggest that studying the cognitive development of biological reasoning in urban children may be “the equivalent of studying “normal” physical growth in malnourished children.” But in schools, rural Native children are tested and all too often found to be less intelligent and more learning “disabled” than urban white children, a deeply disturbing phenomenon which turns up among traditional rural people all over the world."



"Human cognitive diversity exists for a reason; our differences are the genius – and the conscience – of our species. It’s no accident that indigenous holistic thinkers are the ones who have been consistently reminding us of our appropriate place in the ecological systems of life as our narrowly-focused technocratic society veers wildly between conservation and wholesale devastation of the planet. It’s no accident that dyslexic holistic thinkers are often our artists, our inventors, our dreamers, our rebels. "



"Right now American phonics advocates are claiming that they “know” how children learn to read and how best to teach them. They know nothing of the kind. A key value in serious scientific inquiry is also a key value in every indigenous culture around the world: humility. We are learning."



"“It is in our idleness, in our dreams, that the submerged truth sometimes comes to the top,” a great artist once said. Science is a tool of breathtaking power and beauty, but it is not a good parent; it must be balanced by something broader, deeper, older. Like wind and weather, like ecosystems and microorganisms, like snow crystals and evolution, human learning remains untamed, unpredictable, a blossoming fractal movement so complex and so mysterious that none of us can measure or control it. But we are part of that fractal movement, and the ability to help our offspring learn and grow is in our DNA. We can begin rediscovering it now. Experiment. Observe. Listen. Explore the thousand other ways of learning that still exist all over the planet. Read the data and then set it aside. Watch your child’s eyes, what makes them go dull and dead, what makes them brighten, quicken, glow with light. That is where learning lies."
carolblack  2014  education  learning  certainty  experts  science  research  data  unschooling  deschooling  schooliness  schooling  compulsoryschooling  history  literacy  canon  parenting  experimentation  listening  observation  noticing  indigeneity  howwelearn  howweteach  wisdom  intuition  difference  diversity  iainmcgilchrist  truth  idleness  dyslexia  learningdifferences  rosscooper  neurodiveristy  finland  policy  standards  standardization  adhd  resistance  reading  howweread  sugatamitra  philiplieberman  maori  aboriginal  society  cv  creativity  independence  institutionalization  us  josephhenrich  stevenjheine  aranorenzayan  weird  compulsory  māori  colonization  colonialism 
august 2014 by robertogreco
Squishy Not Slick - squishy not slick, the edtech futurist version / #thoughtvectors not call centers
"lots of rumblings lately, lots of connections

[most of this will just serve as placeholders until I have more time to fill in the missing pieces]

Is the future of educational technology going to look like a call center? (https://twitter.com/tressiemcphd/status/467867731254333441 )

Rob led me to Gardner Campbell’s talk (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kIzA4ItynYw ) [who I just realized is a colleague of some of my favorite people on the internet, @jonbecker and @twoodwar who are working on the #thoughtvectors thing at VCU], in which he explains the point of all this as ”networked transcontextualism,” which is the way to escape “the double bind,” a term from Gregory Bateson. (https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&q=gregory+bateson&btnG=&as_sdt=1%2C38&as_sdtp= )

In the same vein, Audrey Watters says all the right things (https://storify.com/rogre/more-audrey-watters-in-your-stream-please ) [and thanks to Rob for storifying it]

Seymour Papert (https://scholar.google.com/scholar?as_vis=1&q=seymour+papert&hl=en&as_sdt=1,38 ) keeps coming up [Campbell and Watters mention him]

Campbell’s “networked transcontextualism” especially reminded me of what Richard Elmore had to say about all this (http://www.c-span.org/video/?c4088865/richard-elmore-futures-school-reform ), that we’re moving from “nested hierarchy” to “networked relationships.”

Then Dan Meyer joined in, saying it with a Neil Diamond analogy. (http://blog.mrmeyer.com/2014/adaptive-learning-is-an-infinite-ipod-that-only-plays-neil-diamond/ )

This is all happens while I’m trying to make Sugata Mitra’s SOLE idea (http://www.ted.com/participate/ted-prize/prize-winning-wishes/school-in-the-cloud ), or something similar, happen in more traditional classrooms, an attempt at finding an alternate path, an escape from the call center version of our edtech future."
lukeneff  audreywatters  2014  gardnercampbell  jonbecker  tomwoodward  gregorybateson  danmeyer  seymourpapert  sugatamitra  sole  transcontextualism  edtech  education  learning  teaching  connections  networks  doublebind  richardelmore  transcontextualization 
may 2014 by robertogreco
Yeah, I'm free-thinking
"It's tempting to conclude that the computer is the magical ingredient here: just add computers and children can learn anything. But if the story of Sergio Juárez Correa's fifth-grade class is any indication, the secret is the kids organizing themselves to learn."
kottke  self-organizedlearning  holeinthewall  sugatamitra  learning  unschooling  deschooling  2013  computers  edtech 
november 2013 by robertogreco
RADical Design for LEARNING -- Survey Seminar and Practical Action Laboratory
"Wtf is going on? Why are people limping out of 20 years of schooling without directed motivation, a solid internal compass, or a commitment to passionately pursuing their interests? Let's examine why in a cozy, edgy, authentic seminar where we balance theory with real-world action (praxis). We'll study the radical learning greats such as Illich, Papert, and Llewelyn, with focused readings and videos followed by discussion. Whenever possible we'll try to have the authors or their direct students available for Q&A&Q. And through hands-on labs and projects we'll design and enact experience-based transformations, like improvised music, consciousness altering strategies, electronics workshops etc. We can't wait to see you realize your wonderful ideas!"
unschooling  deschooling  education  syllabus  jaysilver  ericrosenbaum  mit  learning  mitmedialab  medialab  lifelongkindergarten  amosblanton  lego  seymourpapert  ivanillich  gracellewelyn  bilalghalib  jefflieberman  making  hackerspaces  lcproject  makerspaces  openstudioproject  grading  rubrics  assessment  diy  notbacktoschoolcamp  johnholt  piaget  mitchresnick  leahbuechley  eleanorduckworth  nuvu  nuvustudio  holeinthewall  sugatamitra  sprout  elsistema  theblueschool  computerclubhouse  drishya  bakhtiarmikhak  sudburyschools  sudburyvalleyschool  samcassat  seanstevens  frostburn  quaker  criticalmass  burningman  paulofreire  quakers  sprout&co  jeanpiaget  syllabi 
june 2013 by robertogreco
Donald Clark Plan B: Sugata Mitra: Slum chic? 7 reasons for doubt
"Conclusion - a little learning is indeed a dangerous thing

Based on scanty evidence, funded by parties who have a lot to gain then shifted away from hole-in-the-wall to computers-in-schools. Like Slumdog Millionaire, the movie inspired by Mitra’s work, it beggars belief. There’s no silver bullet here and we shouldn’t be lulled into thinking this is the answer. The real danger is that we get carried away by under-researched ‘feelgood’ initiatives. Slumdog Millionaire is typical of the utopian nonsense that can emerge. An overly romanticised, rags to riches, Bollywood Cinderella story that is an assault on probability. Is Mitra’s story also one of ‘Slum chic’? Perhaps the most disgustingly contrived moment of the film is when Jamal says 'You wanted to see the real India' and the US tourist, hands him a $100 note saying ‘Now we'll show you the real America'. This, for me, was reminiscent of the TED Prize."
sugatamitra  holeinthewall  education  criticism  research  2013  funding  learning  ted  tedtalks  donaldclark 
march 2013 by robertogreco
Hacking at Education: TED, Technology Entrepreneurship, Uncollege, and the Hole in the Wall
"I have questions about community support. I have questions about what happens when we dismantle public institutions like schools — questions about social justice, questions about community, questions about care. I have questions about the promise of a liberation via a “child-driven education,” questions about this particular brand of neo-liberalism, techno-humanitarianism, and techno-individualism."

"Now don’t get me wrong. There’s plenty that education institutions do — from K–12 onward — that doesn’t help learners at all. Cost. Curriculum. Control. Assessments. Standardization. Debt. Unemployment. Existential Malaise."

"So despite their claims to be liberatory — with the focus on “the learner” and “the child” — this hacking of education by Mitra and Stephens is politically regressive. It is however likely to be good business for the legions of tech entrepreneurs in the audience."
education  schools  schooling  ted  tedtalks  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  community  publicgood  dalastephens  uncollege  unschooling  deschooling  criticism  audreywatters  techno-humanitarianism  neoliberalism  liberation  criticalthinking  groupthinking  dalestephens  evgenymorozov  highereducation  highered  funding  sole  capitalism  coursera  salmankhan  khanacademy  daphnekoller  privilege  techno-individualism  individualism  libertarians  libertarianism  californianideology  niit  salkhan 
march 2013 by robertogreco
The Future of Learning, Networked Society - Ericsson - YouTube
"Learn more at http://www.ericsson.com/networkedsociety

Can ICT redefine the way we learn in the Networked Society? Technology has enabled us to interact, innovate and share in whole new ways. This dynamic shift in mindset is creating profound change throughout our society. The Future of Learning looks at one part of that change, the potential to redefine how we learn and educate. Watch as we talk with world renowned experts and educators about its potential to shift away from traditional methods of learning based on memorization and repetition to more holistic approaches that focus on individual students' needs and self expression."

[So much good stuff within, especially from Stephen Heppel and Sugata Mitra, but then they point to Knewton and Coursera and they've lost me.]

[via http://www.dontwasteyourtime.co.uk/elearning/the-future-of-learning-in-a-networked-society/ via @litherland]
adaptivelearningsystems  video  student-centered  self-directedlearning  intrinsicmotivation  motivation  socraticmethod  schooliness  systemschange  medication  conformity  teaching  adhd  add  schools  ict  networkededucation  sethgodin  ericsson  future  gamechanging  change  collaboration  holeinthewall  sugatamitra  stephenheppell  factoryschools  deschooling  unschooling  learning  education 
november 2012 by robertogreco
Richard Elmore: Futures of School Reform - C-SPAN Video Library
"general drift here is from left to more radical... I do not believe that the institutional structure of public schooling anymore. I view the work that I continue to do with schools, and I take it seriously, as palliative care for a dying institution.""

"The central organizing principle for society and for learning...is going to be network relationships."

"It will not accommodate well, in fact the longer we stay with the hierarchy model, the worse the disassociation between learning and schooling will be."

"The mobile classroom in the mobile public schools in this country is designed point for point to be exactly the opposite of what we are learning about humans, how human beings develop cognitively."

"how do we handle issues of access when learning starts to migrate away from schooling?… what is the mechanism by which neuroscience becomes part of the way we think about learning and what consequences does that have for the way we design learning environments? I refuse to call them schools."

[Alt link: http://www.c-span.org/video/?308871-1/EducationReform28 ]
networkrelationships  relationships  adhoc  informal  informallearning  schooling  thisishuge  edreform  reform  neuroscience  change  networks  networkedlearning  institutionalization  institutions  self-servinginstitutions  flattening  policy  scale  sugatamitra  hierarchies  nestedhierarchies  bureaucracy  hierarchy  cv  lcproject  learning  teaching  2012  radicalism  radicals  deschooling  unschooling  richardelmore  via:lukeneff  education  radicalization  canon  horizontality 
november 2012 by robertogreco
Given Tablets but No Teachers, Ethiopian Children Teach Themselves | Generation YES Blog
"But mostly what it uncovers is our own bias and inability to escape our own cultural context. We in developed countries can’t imagine what it’s like anywhere else. We can’t imagine what NO schools and no hope of every having a school looks like. We can’t imagine what the tiny seed of learning could blossom into under those conditions. We can’t imagine that even if one and only one child learned to read and was able to find information that saved her mother’s life, it would change an entire village and entire generations."

"There will never be a one-size-fits-all approach to solving global problems. By the way, I do not believe that OLPC in Peru is a “failure” just because a few people are critical of parts of the operation."

"two important lessons to learn here:

1) Context matters

2) Young people are better able to see things without the blinders of “we’ve always done it that way” than adults."
minimallyinvasiveeducation  nicholasnegroponte  sugatamitra  constructivism  deschooling  unschooling  education  learning  illiteracy  literacy  bias  holeinthewall  ethiopia  olpc  silviamartinez  perú 
november 2012 by robertogreco
The Failure of One Laptop Per Child
"The mission of the non-profit organization always stressed something broader, bigger -- One Laptop per Child meant empowerment, engagement, and education:

We aim to provide each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power, connected laptop. To this end, we have designed hardware, content and software for collaborative, joyful, and self-empowered learning. With access to this type of tool, children are engaged in their own education, and learn, share, and create together. They become connected to each other, to the world and to a brighter future.
No mention of improving standardized test scores in there, you'll notice. No talk of "student achievement." "The best preparation for children," according to the OLPC website isn't test prep. It is "to develop the passion for learning and the ability to learn how to learn."

Standardized test scores in math and in language do not reflect "the ability to learn how to learn" -- they don't even purport to. But we fixate on test scores nevertheless.
laptops  computers  standardizedtesting  testing  learning  education  minimallyinvasiveeducation  holeinthewall  sugatamitra  nicholasnegroponte  2012  audreywatters  olpc 
april 2012 by robertogreco
Nicholas Negroponte Talks About Learning by Yourselves - OLPC News
"Having heard plenty of talk of the first three points in the past I was most interested in hearing what Negroponte had in mind with regard to the "New Constructionism". Unfortunately most of what was said doesn't really strike me as new at all.

The one thing which was quite interesting is the aspect of "Learning to Read by Yourself" which very much ties in with Negroponte's much discussed helicopter deployments which saw its first pre-pilots being launched earlier this year.

He shared that the first 30 tablets with several thousand books on them had been distributed. Not too many other details were revealed and while Negroponte mentioned that "they read themselves" it's not quite clear for example what language these books are in. What is really exciting however is that he mentions a rigorous evaluation of these efforts and working with critics which I believe should make for some interesting results and discussions down the road."
education  learning  deschooling  unschooling  learningbyyourselves  readbyyourself  tablets  newconstructionism  constructionism  connectivity  nocostconnectivity  newconstructivism  2012  autodidacts  autodidactism  reading  literacy  holeinthewall  sugatamitra  nicholasnegroponte  olpc  autodidacticism 
march 2012 by robertogreco
The Future Of College: Forget Lectures And Let The Students Lead | Co.Design
"The technological power of the "cloud" as an aggregator of global knowledge & social network capital combines w/ natural tendency to learn through sharing & playing to create a multidimensional, interconnected network that solves complex problems. Simply put: Purpose & play drive learning.

These students help us discern what is valuable about higher-ed learning & what needs to be shed to save it from complete ossification. The insular nature of academia could lead to its demise, but these students also see tremendous value in its ability to incubate. Unis become testing grounds where students can find mentors, receive funding, & iterate initiatives with real-world consequences. The design community can debate where innovation comes from, but we can no longer look to authoritarian, top-down dictation to drive societal change. If the blossoming of this pattern doesn’t point to a new trend in education, then it at least represents what these higher-ed institutions must become."
unschooling  deschooling  hierarchy  trungle  highereducation  highered  colleges  universities  organizations  education  learning  mentoring  mentorship  apprenticeships  problemsolving  criticalthinking  realworld  entrepreneurship  lcproject  johndewey  life  sugatamitra  peterthiel  via:lukeneff  play  purpose  academia  networkedlearning  networks  cloud  socialnetworks  authority  authoritarianism 
june 2011 by robertogreco
Children learning by themselves and progressive inquiry | FLOSSE Posse
"…children learn even better if they have a “granny figure” supporting them…

…good teachers is a bit like a granny: supports students, is interesting in their work and praise them. I think, however, even better teachers than a random granny is an expert of a domain acting the granny way. An excellent expert-teachers (can be a granny, too) is able to guide pupils in their inquiry by challenging their thinking and by providing new perspectives to the students inquiry. The point is to guide, not to instruct.

The progressive inquiry learning, a pedagogical model that has been widely studied, experimented and partly took in use in Finland, is close to Mitra’s way of teaching (I call it teaching, although there is very little teaching in a traditional sense). In my talk in Ankra I explained how progressive inquiry learning works and how pupils and students in all levels of education—from kindergartens to universities—can be guided to do research."

[Examples follow]

[via: http://www.downes.ca/post/55666/ ]
teemuleinonen  progressiveinquiry  tcsnmy  learning  education  pedagogy  teaching  student-centered  studentdirected  learner-centered  learner-ledcommunities  sugatamitra  grandmothers  guideontheside  2011  via:steelemaley  inquiry  inquiry-basedlearning  unschooling  deschooling  mentoring  modeling  instruction  guidance  lcproject  cv  howwelearn  howwework  informallearning  autodidacts  outdoctrination  research  toshare  unconferences  openstudio  openworkshops  prototyping 
june 2011 by robertogreco
CCK11: Educurator? « Connexions
"As a teacher/tutor, I will…create the space where learning can happen…create conditions that highlight know-how and “know-where.”…welcome learner interests…curate materials that learners may not know…model and demonstrate particular skills or approaches…enable learners to reflect and practice those skills or approaches…allow learners to teach each other (and me)…am extremely busy being present (an attentiveness to the network itself )."
connectivism  teaching  lcproject  tcsnmy  stephendownes  sugatamitra  via:steelemaley  curation  curating  learning  schools  presence  cv  studentdirected  interestdriven  modeling  accessibility  sharing  community  howwelearn  howwework  educurator  generalists  reflection 
march 2011 by robertogreco
If you want to truly engage students, give up the reins - Ewan McIntosh | Digital Media & Learning
"Harnessing entirely pupil-led, project-based learning in this way isn't easy. But all of this frames learning in more meaningful contexts than the pseudocontexts of your average school textbook or contrived lesson plan, which might cover an area of the curriculum but leave the pupil none the wiser as to how it applies in the real world.

There is a line that haunted me last year: while pupil-led, project-based learning is noble and clearly more engaging than what we do now, there is no time for it in the current system. The implication is that it leads to poorer attainment than the status quo. But attainment at High Tech High, in terms of college admissions, is the same as or better than private schools in the same area."
ewanmcintosh  education  creativity  students  citizenship  ict  prototyping  gevertulley  sugatamitra  ideation  projectbasedlearning  hightechhigh  synthesis  tcsnmy  cv  lcproject  studentdirected  student-led  immersion  designthinking  engagement  schools  change  time  making  doing  problemsolving  criticalthinking  growl  pbl 
march 2011 by robertogreco
A Networked Learning Project: The Connected Day
[Broken link, alternative refs here:
https://steelemaley.io/2014/03/06/a-networked-learning-ecology/
http://www.networkedresearch.net/index.php/Networked_Learning_Ecology_Design
http://steelemaley.io/2015/10/25/the-rise-of-micro-schools/ ]

"Piper is a 15 year old who lives in Midcoast Maine, US. A year ago, Piper heard about a new way to learn, and decided to take part in a new learning experience called the Maine Networked Learning Project. Known as “the Mesh” to participants, this learning ecology offered Piper the chance to apply her passion for learning in highly experiential and collaborative ways with groups of young people of varied ages, adult and youth mentors with knowledge territory specialties and organizations focused on ensuring sustainable and resilient societies, economies, and the environment. This is a snapshot of her day…"
connectivism  cck11  thomassteele-maley  maine  mlearning  mobilelearning  mobile  networks  netoworking  lcproject  bighere  longhere  bignow  elearning  self-organizedlearning  self-organizedlearningenvironment  self-organization  sugatamitra  mesh  meshnetworks  twitter  googlereader  projectbasedlearning  realworld  farming  sustainability  ecology  projects  local  glocalism  experientiallearning  meetups  education  speculativefiction  designfiction  pbl  agriculture 
february 2011 by robertogreco
YouTube - Gateshead Granny Cloud
"The brainchild of Sugata Mitra, professor of educational technology at Newcastle University. Mitra has recruited hundreds of grannies in Newcastle to go online to help children in India with their education, based on the grandmother method -- stand behind, admire, act fascinated and praise."
education  research  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  outdoctrination  teaching  learning  distancelearning  uk  india  grandmothers  digital 
february 2011 by robertogreco
Sugata Mitra: The child-driven education | Video on TED.com
"Education scientist Sugata Mitra tackles one of the greatest problems of education -- the best teachers and schools don't exist where they're needed most. In a series of real-life experiments from New Delhi to South Africa to Italy, he gave kids self-supervised access to the web and saw results that could revolutionize how we think about teaching."
holeinthewall  outdoctrination  sugatamitra  unschooling  deschooling  education  teaching  learning  engagement  ted  technology  computers  india  africa  italy  autodidacts  self-directedlearning  motivation  intrinsicmotivation  interestdriven  interests  collaboration  internet  hyderabad  curiosity  speech  english  accents  speech2text  arthurcclarke  computing  cambodia  southafrica  games  play  gaming 
september 2010 by robertogreco
Learning from the Extremes - Charlie Leadbeater & Annika Wong [.pdf]
"Leadbeater makes further point about increasing relative ignorance that is highly significant for teaching & learning. It is that we can & must put ignorance to work–to make it useful–to provide opportunities for ourselves & others to live innovative & creative lives. “What holds people back from taking risks, is often as not…their knowledge, not their ignorancel.” Useful ignorance becomes a space of pedagogical possibility rather than base that needs to be covered. ‘Not knowing’ needs to be put to work w/out shame or bluster…Our highest educational achievers may well be aligned w/ teachers in knowing what to do if & when they have script. But…this sort of certain & tidy knowing is out of alignment w/ script-less & fluid social world. Out best learners will be those who can make ‘not knowing’ useful, do not need blueprint, template, map, to make new kind of sense. This is one new disposition that academics as teachers need to acquire fast–disposition to be usefully ignorant."

[also referenced: http://www.core77.com/blog/education/_learning_from_the_extremes_-_charlie_leadbeater_annika_wong_15823.asp ]
charlesleadbeater  teaching  ignorance  usefulignorance  learning  lcproject  tcsnmy  schools  risk  risktaking  pedagogy  annikawong  knowledge  education  academics  unschooling  deschooling  gamechanging  disruption  informallearning  informal  olpc  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  outdoctrination  kenya  brasil  india  developingworld  development  technology  filetype:pdf  media:document  brazil 
august 2010 by robertogreco
…My heart’s in Accra » TEDGlobal: Sugata Mitra, beyond Hole in the Wall
"experiment in Hyderabad asked children who spoke English with a strong Telugu accent to use a voice recognition system on a computer. 2 months later, their accents had changed & were closer to the neutral British accent of the speech synthesizer.

Mitra had a conversation w/ Arthur C. Clarke [who] said, “If a teacher can be replaced with a machine, he should be.” & Clarke told him that student interest is the most important thing in education...

Maybe the most amazing experiment comes from Turin, where Mitra went to a primary school and started writing questions on the white board in English for students who speak only Italian. Using Google translate, students were answering questions like “Who was Pythagoras and what did he do?” in a few minutes.

Mitra tells us that he future of education is self-organized learning environments. They let students learn together, use resources and people they can access online & explore on their own, & he plans on testing this going forward."
sugatamitra  holeinthewall  outdoctrination  learning  education  unschooling  deschooling  turin  torino  testing  self-organizedlearning  autodidacts  colaboration  cheating  sharing  motivation  2010  pln  teaching  technology  ted  ict  edtech  biotech  math  google  ethanzuckerman  self-organizedlearningenvironment 
july 2010 by robertogreco
What Happened to “Hole-in-the-Wall”? « Papyrus News
"It turns out that the two Hole-in-the-Wall sites that she visited both stand in ruins, one closed down within a few months of its opening due to vandalism, the other surviving until it became inactive. According to the article, while the broader Hole-in-the-Wall project still exists, it has evolved from its earlier approach of eschewing relationship with community organizations, schools, and adult mentors, and has now “started to focus more on the building of ties with the school, particularly in regard to using the teachers or others in the local communities as mediators in learning.” This is a welcome change and reflects the important realization that mentorship and institutional support are important if children are to learn effectively with technology."

[References: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/123429684/abstract ]

[Also points to this: http://www.gse.uci.edu/person/warschauer_m/docs/ddd.pdf ]
computers  education  india  learning  literacy  olpc  slums  technology  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  digitaldivide  access  unschooling  deschooling  research  self-directedlearning  self-directed  informal  curiosity  tcsnmy  unsupervised  sustainability  almora  hawalbagh  outdoctrination 
july 2010 by robertogreco
Hope-in-the-Wall? A digital promise for free learning. Payal Arora. 2010; British Journal of Educational Technology - Wiley InterScience
"It is posited that this approach, which is being used in India, Cambodia and several countries in Africa, can pave the way for a new education paradigm and be the key to providing literacy and basic education and bridging the digital divide in remote and disadvantaged regions. This paper seeks to establish why two such open access, self-directed and collaborative learning systems failed to take root in the Central Himalaya communities of Almora and Hawalbagh. The purpose of this study is not to deny the achievements and potential of such an approach in other settings, but to examine the tenets and sustainability of such initiatives. It is argued that there is a need to distinguish between Hole-in-the-Wall as an idea and as an institution and to reflect on the key suppositions on how unsupervised access, informal, public, self-guided and collaborative work can help in children's learning."

[via: http://papyrusnews.com/2010/06/22/what-happened-to-hole-in-the-wall/ ]
education  learning  holeinthewall  sugatamitra  self-directedlearning  self-directed  unschooling  digitaldivide  informal  curiosity  tcsnmy  access  olpc  unsupervised  sustainability  almora  hawalbagh  deschooling  outdoctrination 
july 2010 by robertogreco
Charles Leadbeater: Education innovation in the slums | Video on TED.com
"Charles Leadbeater went looking for radical new forms of education -- and found them in the slums of Rio and Kibera, where some of the world's poorest kids are finding transformative new ways to learn. And this informal, disruptive new kind of school, he says, is what all schools need to become."
charlesleadbeater  demos  education  future  innovation  pedagogy  poverty  learning  ted  technology  slums  unschooling  deschooling  tcsnmy  riodejaneiro  brasil  kibera  kenya  informal  informallearning  disruptive  lcproject  futureoflearning  finland  leapfrogging  compulsory  india  development  transformation  newdelhi  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  socialentrepreneurship  literacy  pull  push  engagement  belohorizonte  sãopaulo  mobile  phones  cities  urban  hightechhigh  outdoctrination  brazil 
july 2010 by robertogreco
Teaching: Inspiring British children, Slumdog style: A radical new teaching method that has been pioneered in India, Africa and Latin America is catching on in Britain, says Max Davidson. - Telegraph
"As his academic standing rocketed, Mitra conducted similar experiments in other parts of the world, from Africa to Latin America. He is now working with children at three schools in the north-east of England, including St Aidan's C of E primary in Gateshead, where nine-year-old children are to be found researching school topics on computers, unaided by teachers. The result is what Mitra calls a Self-Organised Learning Environment, or SOLE." ... "If children know there is someone standing over them who knows all the answers, they are less inclined to find the answers for themselves. It would be better, in a way, if any adults present were completely uneducated. There is nothing children like more than passing on information they have just discovered to people who may not already have it – an elderly grandmother, for instance."
sugatamitra  holeinthewall  autodidacts  learning  education  india  africa  unschooling  deschooling  tcsnmy  independence  sole  collaboration  cooperation  lcproject  outdoctrination  self-organizedlearningenvironment 
april 2010 by robertogreco
Minimally Invasive Education: Lessons from India | Psychology Today
"Mitra...describe[s]...minimally invasive education...education w/ minimal amount of intrusion into children's lives...experiments demonstrated that children learned at an amazingly rapid rate with no adult teachers. All that the educators had to do was to provide the tool, the computer. The children's natural curiosity, playfulness, & sociability took over from there...Children in school are not free to pursue their own, self-chosen interests, & this mutes their enthusiasm. Children in school are constantly evaluated. The concern for evaluation & pleasing the teacher...overrides and subverts the possibility of developing genuine interest in the assigned tasks. Children in school are often shown only one way to solve a problem & told that other ways are incorrect, so the excitement of discovering new ways is prevented. Segregation of children by age in schools prevents the age mixing & diversity that seem to be key to children's natural ways of learning."

[via: http://aeroeducation.org/2010/01/17/minimally-invasive-education-lessons-from-india/ ]
tcsnmy  unschooling  deschooling  sugatamitra  holeinthewall  petergray  india  learning  outdoctrination  lcproject  play  curiosity  playfulness  sociability  freedom  agesegregation  evaluation  education  self-directed  self-directedlearning 
january 2010 by robertogreco
How to Profit off the Poor… and Keep Your Soul
"But interestingly when that partnership was over, NIIT didn’t take the project down the non-profit route. It’s not because the company is adverse to such things—it’s also opening a new high-end university that is run as a non-profit. But there’s a unique attitude in India that believes the way to eradicate poverty is to turn India’s scrappiest, free-market entrepreneurs on the problem, not to increase handouts.

NIIT now sells the kiosks at between $6,000 and $20,000—depending on which model and how many screens—to the government, who puts them mostly in schools in India’s poorest areas. There are 500 stations in India and a handful in 10 different African countries."
sugatamitra  holeinthewall  india  philanthropy  poverty  economics  education  learning  outdoctrination 
november 2009 by robertogreco
Laurent Haug’s blog » Reinventing education
"In rich world, the need to adapt to a generation of kids who are more unique, social, connected, autonomous & collaborative, sometimes know more than professors themselves. In developing world, the need to adapt to the social context of millions who are left out of traditional system...Self education is not new...Collaborative learning beats top down processes...Education can be free...Diplomas are increasingly irrelevant...Education is a fascinating topic, one that is hard to deal with because everybody has an opinion on how it should happen. We are about to see a brutal evolution...Who will vehemently resist these ideas? Teachers...Like journalists when they saw millions of web users invade their territory, they will instinctively want to fight back & protect their experts status. It's a lost war, the wrong approach. Educators will eventually settle in their new, improved place in society. After all, isn’t it more rewarding to collaborate than to direct, monitor, grade & punish?"
sugatamitra  unschooling  deschooling  laurenthaug  schooling  education  change  reform  control  autoritarianism  politics  power  society  lcproject  tcsnmy  hackingeducation  dimplomas  credentials  collaboration  assessment  collaborative  grades  grading  gamechanging  autodidacts  colleges  universities  teaching  outdoctrination  holeinthewall 
june 2009 by robertogreco
Laurent Haug’s blog » Hole in the wall
"Philippe was so impressed by Sugata Mitra’s presentation of his hole in the wall project (which received more than 25′000 views on liftconference.com and ended up being published on TED talks) that he flew to India to shoot street kids experimenting with self-education."

[see also: http://www.flickr.com/photos/phitar/sets/72157609414016354/ ]
photography  self-education  autodidactism  autodidacts  sugatamitra  learning  education  india  computers  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  outdoctrination  holeinthewall  autodidacticism 
december 2008 by robertogreco
Hole in the wall, i.e. self-organising systems in primary education. Audio from Dr. Mitra - FLOSSE Posse
"Sugata Mitra’s message for a hall full of about 400 European teachers was “if you let them and if they want to” kids can learn anything. The key is in arranging that kind of an environment."
sugatamitra  autodidacts  learning  computers  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  children  education  holeinthewall  outdoctrination 
march 2008 by robertogreco
Sugata Mitra: Catalyst of Curiosity | Edutopia
"Inventor of the off-the-wall idea for Hole-in-the-Wall Education: Put a free computer workstation in the wall of a poor New Delhi neighborhood, and the local children will quickly learn to use it through their own curiosity and experimentation."
sugatamitra  education  india  learning  autodidacts  children  lcproject  computers  internet  holeinthewall  outdoctrination 
september 2007 by robertogreco
University of Manitoba: Learning Technologies Centre - The Future of Education
"The Future of Education is an online conference exploring trends impacting education - K-12, higher education, and corporation training."
e-learning  learning  schools  education  stephenheppell  sugatamitra  davidweinberger  teemuarina  leighblackall  knowledge  authority  events  online  future  conferences  moodle  art  science  complexity  holeinthewall  outdoctrination 
june 2007 by robertogreco
ballpark.ch / blog || interactive thinking - Sugata Mitra at LIFT07
"Sugata presented his “hole in the wall project”, or what happens when you put a computer in the streets of an Indian town where “nobody had never been taught anything”. Be sure to watch the videos of the kids accidentally browsing and clicking."
sugatamitra  outdoctrination  education  learning  india  homeschool  future  teaching  lcproject  autodidacts  technology  society  socialsoftware  socialnetworks  internet  online  computers  children  language  english  video  development  collaboration  holeinthewall 
april 2007 by robertogreco
Sugata Mitra: Outdoctrination (Hole in the Wall) at Climb to the Stars (Stephanie Booth)
"3 months later: “we need a faster processer and better mouse.” They were using 200 english words they had “learnt” from the computer."
sugatamitra  outdoctrination  education  learning  india  homeschool  future  teaching  lcproject  autodidacts  technology  society  socialsoftware  socialnetworks  internet  online  computers  children  language  english  holeinthewall 
february 2007 by robertogreco
Lunch over IP: LIFT07: Sugata Mitra and outdoctrination
"So the conclusion was that primary education can happen on its own. It does not have to be imposed. It could perhaps be a self-organizing system:"
sugatamitra  outdoctrination  education  learning  india  homeschool  future  teaching  lcproject  autodidacts  technology  society  socialsoftware  socialnetworks  internet  online  computers  children  holeinthewall 
february 2007 by robertogreco

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