Day 85: The Zeitgeist of Education

Full disclosure, I learned what the world zeitgeist meant in 11th grade photograph class. Since then I find every opportunity to use it at social events that I am not invited to. I will never be caught up with everything that is current and cutting edge. The education zeitgeist is a fast moving entity that is only gaining speed in the 21st century. If I had to define some key aspects of it I would include the following:

Decentralized learning

Communities are creating a stronger identify and voice for themselves with the help of the digital world. Classrooms and specifically classroom teachers have tools that can connect with the outside world like never before. The teacher can be a facilitator of these experiences with simple ease. In the past two years of teaching I have reached out and contacted someone in Vancouver, London, and a northern town of Sweden. School boards are now finding out what their teachers are doing through social media, the bottom-up approach is occurring. Programming has the ability to take on an individual level like never before.

Virtual Everything

Field trips, textbooks, communication, and much more is taking place in a virtual world. The classroom no longer is confined to one physical space. A Google hangout can find you in a café, at home on your couch, or possibly in the middle of catching Pokémon in the park. Check your e-mail is no longer a suggestion, it is a necessity. The benefits are wonderful, but we have to remember that doing something is better than showing something. We must not let the virtual world be an excuse not to interact with the real world that is right in front of us. It does however save on paperwork and bussing costs when you want to take your class to the Giza Pyramids using Nearpod’s virtual reality fieldtrip.

Include Equity into your Inclusion

Equity and inclusion are essential in having a fair, progressive, and strong education system. The only issue is that equity and inclusion can have different definitions depending on whose perspective it is from. I believe that this is something that you must always work towards, and that if you say your are fully equitable and inclusive then you are probably missing something. I imagine a board full of different weighted and sized marbles that you are constantly trying to balance and keep in the middle, while forces on all sides are pushing and pulling the board. What is your definition of equity and inclusion?

I could keep going, however I just downloaded the Pokémon Go App…I created a new e-mail account in hopes that I have diverted some of the many privacy infractions this app has unleashed. I don’t believe I will catch them all, but I did manage to find a reptilian-like creature hiding in my coat closet. Does anyone know what they eat?

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