torsdag 2. september 2010

Alan November - Myths and opportunities

The American educator and educational consultant, Alan November, Is famous for his thoughts about learning, and use of modern technology in the learning process. He has written a book called “Empowering Students with Technology”, was one of five Christa McAuliffe Educators, and co-founded the Institute for education leadership and technology at Stanford.
Alan November feels that it is important to use all the possible methods in the world of teaching and learning. He is especially interested in modern technology. But he also says that it is the way we us technology that is important, not the technology it self. We should use the internet to communicate, not just to collect information. One of the learning methods he mentions in several of his presentations, is global communication through the internet. This is a theory that I find very interesting. Personally, I love to use the internet to communicate with friends and family that live far away from me. For example, I have a friend in the Netherlands, and one in Ireland that I often talk to via e-mail, facebook and skype. This makes me use English in my daily life, witch helps me improve my language skills. If we use these forums in class to connect with other learners from different parts of the world, I believe that will inspire students to help one another to learn internationally.

Alan November also think that we need to globalize the curriculum. Then everyone, regardless of where they live in the world, can go through a required education that covers the same subjects and syllabus. I agree with this. When I was in the Netherlands with a school class, we lived together with Dutch exchange mates. We were all the same age, but our curriculums were very different. It would have been easier to schedule the classes we had there if we all had learned the same things.
Alan November believes that modern technology will make learning easier. Programs like Google docs and OneNote, where the students can write in the same documents, is examples on ways to do that. I think that this is very true. If students work together, they will learn how to solve different types of problems by themselves, and to become more independent. At least that is what I think.
If we slowly change the concept of learning, by using technology in the right way, we can make the curriculum global, and give every student in the world the same opportunities.