Tell Your Friends....

13 Jul 2013

Courses from ‘coursera’ for teachers

Here are professional development courses from ‘coursera’ for teachers. Please note it is a ‘MOOC’. Free and get the certificate too.

10 Jul 2013

What we want kids to do with technology?

This  is shared on Linked in. Just as i am impressed with it i am re posting  here......

Invest to Invent Education

Today early in the morning (9 Am) i woke up and glance at the Times of India, Mumbai, front page news item ‘769 IIT seats get no takers’. Half of sleepy mood gone, and while taking coffee when looked at linkedIn  article  10,339 engineering seats vacant’,  for some time i had a deep sleep again (I am sure, not in unconsciousness state), and woke up now to share few of my views.
These days i am coming across this type of news items and thinking why this is happening.

The present education system is designed to train the next generation to be fit for the available jobs/services, some of them are becoming outdated in view of the job seekers and they are rejecting to get educated in those fields that will not fetch the job  (money) to live.
The third world countries, sorry... let me replace it, the developing countries designed the education systems to attract ‘investors’ with their natural resources and human resources. When the developed countries have their own problems internally with human resources, they imported human resources also. Good trends and good economical results.
Today the situation is different. The depended natural resources and technology is not going to address the 7.5 billion demands. Almost 70 % of the population do not have required amenities, not only electricity and personal transportation, food and water too. Image that all people on the face of earth have required electricity and personal transport facility today for example, may be tomorrow we have to shut down almost everything due to non-availability of resources (fuel and power).
When the entire development and economics of globe is depending on consumption, why to preach conservation?  And who has to conserve?  70% of population who are regulating everything with limited financial resources or 30 % whose conservation will hamper the economy.
Societies can face economic recessions and bounce back, but not knowledge recession. The glories of India, China, Greeks, and Masapotomia are limited to textbooks, but not the Germany and Japan. They bounce back within short time because of consistent efforts to keep up the knowledge bases.
So in my opinion, let us look for ‘inventors’ to new education systems, but not the investors to use the resources whatever available.
Let the investors come forward for the ‘inventor’ development by modernising the education system. Modernisations not mean equipping the schools with modern gadgets.
Do machines change human psychology and behaviours? No, the purpose of machine is to facilitate but not enable to think.
Only method is bringing back the teachers with self-development of thought and knowledge. 
Invest in education systems to develop new methods of learning and teaching.  As an alternative to produce repeaters and improvers, education process requires to develop persons with insights. The present day ‘fixed syllabus’ and fixed syllabus’ model won’t do it.

It is part of responsibility of great industrial economic powers to invest in education, in addition to their R&D units. This is time to globalise it. Governments spent more budget allotments globally in defence systems than in education, how much civilised are we???

9 Jul 2013

Helping Students with FA and FC Using EdTech

Generally, many of students have few learning gaps and teachers know it well where they are lagging behind. With in school hours it is not possible to fill these gaps or to couch extra hours for slow learners. There are many ‘free’ tech tools available to help students without much difficulty and with little efforts on the part of teachers. Here I would like to suggest using ‘flipped class’ (FC) methods combined with “formative assessment’ (FA).  Before going to elaborate on technology side, let us recap these two methods.
An assessment is knows as formative if and only if it forms subsequent learning. This is also known as ‘assessment as learning’.  The point here to note is how the assessment outcomes are helping students to learn. The present day practices of small tests and class room verbal questions, even though termed as formative assessments, they are not helping learner with further learning process, so they cannot be considers as ‘formative learning’. Without feedback for further learning process, the assessment is only a compliance task, instead of learning activity.
There are few misconceptions on ‘Flipped classes’, like replacing teachers with videos, students learning independently. Actually, it is students taking responsibility of their learning and every student get personalised guidance from teachers.
Complete article in EdTechReview