Light Offerings

Archive for January, 2017

Overcoming Misconception through Education

Posted by jturner56 on January 16, 2017

Reading This Is Why You Hate Me – Dave Pell – Medium  highlighted the importance of considering cultural difference and context when trying to educate students about the wider world.

Reminded me of a Conference I participated in in 2009 (FlatClassroom), when a group of  students from Georgia in the United States worked with Middle Eastern students (and from Australia and other countries) in Doha, Qatar for a week on film making as groups. All were is awe with how much they had in common with each other. And from this grew cross-cultural understanding and respect.

As educators we must be mindful of the importance of understanding culture and context when engaging in educating for critical thinking. We can but open eyes to critical understanding and to help forge meaningful connections. Long may educators support this and be constantly reminded of what is possible and needed. This is our contribution to  abetter connected world.

PS…also interesting to note the range of comments, reflective of how humans can commit to supporting or attacking any idea. As always, the human condition. Technology just provides a window, if not a vehicle, for such thoughts. Perhaps in the end better to be public than hidden…but likely we’re going to find out if so in the not too distant future.


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What I learned this week: humanity + digital = futures unknown

Posted by jturner56 on January 9, 2017

In the light of Larry Cuban’s highlighting of school education as being complex rather than complicated (the latter inviting purely structural responses), this year I am sharing what I learned from some readings that took my notice this part week. Perhaps they left me wiser, although I feel they might leave more questions to pursue

This week I’m considering:

On the surface eclectic I know. But as educators we need to look for connections, to seek to understand, and then to see whether we can add value.

So if we accept that people have fundamentally differing views, then teaching will be at odds with at least some of the community. We need to look deeper to human needs and boundaries if we wish to influence beyond the surface. In an increasingly digitally accessible world it is easier to seek confirmation bias, either way. Educators must work against this by developing capacities to challenge assumptions, as well as countering willingness to jump to conclusions and bias.

As digital continues to rearrange and redefine what is work and what organisations need to take on board to add value to such reordering, how long can schools as a system continue as is? And in the meantime will we just continue to be content to blame the technology or teacher intransigence, while leaving infrastructure and pedagogical considerations in the too hard basket (or worse still, handing over to future sellers divorced from the human requirements of a good education?)


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