AS A PRACTITIONER OF EDUCATION FOR MORE THAN 20 YEARS, I believe strongly that innovation is a teacher’s everyday duty, and that the 21st century classroom should be:
1/ 15-25 students, not more;
2/ a hotbed of discussion, enquiries, and projects;
3/ taking advantage of new technologies to empower learners.
Over the years I have put into practice such ideas and am still looking for ways in my university to engage students in their own learning. Fortunately, I’m not alone in this :-), and this is a resource base for those who wish to look into the innovative classroom of the 21st century.
- http://www.flatclassroomproject.org/ — The Flat Classroom Project.
- http://www.educationeye.org.uk/ : the Education Eye, a fantastic resource for innovative educational solutions, with a graphic interface you can’t beat.
- http://www.innovationunit.org/ : the folks at the Innovation Unit (UK-based) think-tank work hard on how to put new technologies to good use in public services, including teaching solutions. At flycz we like their effort to support students’ engagement in the classroom, and their definition of the 21st century classroom as “a base camp for enquiry”.
- http://www.ednfoundation.org/: the Education Foundation is another UK-based think-tank that does great work with its Labs, developing innovative educational solutions for teachers across the curriculum.
- Future Lab (at http://www.futurelab.org.uk) is a large and very active not-for-profit organization that promotes a lot of research on innovative education. Their resource page is a treasure trove of best practices and is highly recommended as a first stop.
- first, what is higher education for ? This paper makes the case that it’s about employability.
- CUNY has online, interactive exercises to help students understand the intricacies of essay writing.
- Sebastian Thrun (head of Google X)’s free online university, Udacity: enroll now !
- Strategies for collaborative classrooms, http://www.evergreen.edu/washcenter/resources/acl/index.html
- Mindshift, a KQED-NPR blog, publishes regularly on (US-centered?) news about the future of learning. Lots of good ideas to discuss there: http://blogs.kqed.org/mindshift/