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Reading, Watching, Listening – The future of education

This year I dedicated a category in my goals to learning. I want to find new sources of information to grow my knowledge. It is often very easy to seek out the same sources of information and stick with what you know.

So instead of just sharing some links to read this year, I am also sharing podcasts I have been listening to and videos I have been watching. You can read past editions here.


Reading – Finnish Education Chief: ‘We Created a School System Based on Equality’

Finnish education often seems paradoxical to outside observers because it appears to break a lot of the rules we take for granted. Finnish children don’t begin school until age 7. They have more recess, shorter school hours than many U.S. children do (nearly 300 fewer hours per year in elementary school), and the lightest homework load of any industrialized nation. There are no gifted programs, almost no private schools, and no high-stakes national standardized tests.

Yet over the past decade Finland has consistently performed among the top nations on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), a standardized test given to 15-year olds in 65 nations and territories around the world.

This article is from The Atlantic and features an interview with Krista Kiuru, Finland’s minister of education and science, when she visited the Eliot K-8 Innovation School in Boston. The journalist Christine Gross-Loh asks her what Finland is doing that the rest of the world could learn from. Click here to read the full article

Watching – RSA Animate – Changing Education Paradigms

{Click here to see the video if you are reading via email.}

This is a short animated excerpt from a presentation on education by Sir Ken Robinson. In this section of his speech he shares where he thinks we should be moving in education and that is in the direction of divergent thinking:

Divergent thinking isn’t the same thing as creativity. Creativity is the process of having original ideas that have value.

Divergent thinking is an essential capacity for creativity – lots of ways to interpret a question, lots of possible answers to a question.

Listening – Learning with Videos and Video Games 22 Apr 2014

This podcast Learning with Videos and Video Games is part of the Documentaries By BBC World Service. It runs for 27 minutes and I found it fascinating. Our two eldest had to have iPads for school this year and while I want to embrace technology as part of education, I haven’t really seen it be that beneficial as yet. I think that is because the way they are being used is just as a replacement for books and pen and paper.

This podcast though highlights some of the possibilities of how technology can transform education when used in a more holistic way.

What have you been Reading, Watching, Listening?