New pedagogies for new technologies

The last couple of weeks have been really busy. Not least because of Macquarie University putting on ‘celebrating learning and teaching’ next week. I’ve put together a day for Sydney to share experiences of what is happening now in all sectors.

There is no cost and its happening on the 22nd September 2010. You can register for any session here.

In addition to the on-campus activities – there is a lot going on in Second Life from all sectors, with presentations about what people are doing in K12 and Higher Education. Just drop into our campus on Jokaydia. Again, please register – as registrations help us to put the event on. There are two presentations by year 9 students on some amazing digital story telling – as well as a raft of hands on workshops.

Also in the last couple of weeks, I think I’ve managed to make a tiny dent in bringing project based learning a step closer to the public high school classroom, running a day workshop with a local high school and a presentation to DERNSW.

I absolutely believe that if schools adopt the PBL process – and align it with the archetypes we find in games (yes games); we can create learning environments that re-engage students. This might sound simple; but both PBL and games are ‘strange’ to teachers fed a diet of outcomes based learning and Blooms taxonomy.

So a word of enthusiastic caution, PBL requires more than an understanding of the cyclic process to make it change classrooms – it requires a rethink and rebith of pedagogy – and perhaps a vastly different approach to using technology. This might make it difficult, as not only do teachers need to rethink teaching strategy, they need to rethink the nature and use of technology (even if they have already gone ‘beyond the basics’. But since when has this been easy? I am hoping that more schools get interested in PBL and welcome any inquiries from schools who want to find out more.