The way we learn is undergoing major changes as we move into the 21st century, which is partly due to emerging technology and also because we have finally discovered how to get the best learning outcome by using experiential learning. For too many years, we focused on teaching, which isn’t where we should place our attention; rather we need to measure learning outcomes, looking for the most effective system.
This is the single biggest change in how we learn; Google is a game-changer as it can answer any question and the whole thing takes less than a second! What does the perfect 21st century classroom look like? Check out https://grocorp.net.au/ ,suppliers of school furniture and other education resources. Once a student learns how to self-learn, the rest is history and with every classroom having wireless Broadband Internet, students can access digital resources at will.
Active Learning Rules
Famous educators such as Rudolph Steiner, who pioneered Waldorf Schools, realised that children learn best when actively engaged in the learning process, which has several names; active learning, learning by doing and experiential learning all have the same meaning, putting the learner at the centre of the learning process.
Important aspects of active learning are as follows:
- The learner chooses the subject matter
- The learner takes an active role
- Learning environment is suitable
- Learner takes responsibility for the learning outcome
Teacher Becomes Learning Assistant
The teacher becomes a facilitator, rather than the traditional role of disseminating knowledge from a whiteboard, while students copy what is on the board. This means the teacher must learn a new set of skills and guide the learner, prompting when necessary. In order for this system to work, teachers have to undergo intense training in order to fully grasp the concept of active learning; over the past 20 years, the Australian education system was completely revised and teacher training colleges have been churning out active learning facilitators who pass on their knowledge to other teachers they work with. Here are a few tips to beat exam fear.
This technology empowers the learner to interact in a way previously impossible; in the next 3 years, smartboards will be in every school and eventually, in every classroom. What can a smartboard do? It’s more a question of what the learner can do, using this digital workspace, they can import text, graphics, add URL links and even create animations. Australian education is not getting left behind, indeed, they are Pacific Region leaders when it comes to educational innovation.
Handing Responsibility to the Learner
Shifting the responsibility from teacher to student is essential with active learning; children respond positively to being given responsibility, of that there is no doubt. The students work on projects in small groups, with the teacher advising and guiding the groups through the various processes of a project with the final outcome being a presentation by each group, to show the other students what they have learned. This is reinforced learning; when you teach someone, you will never forget the subject matter and what’s more, active learning is fun!