Monday, April 30, 2007

Engaging Students is Critical in the Age of Creativity

I recently read an article in T.H.E. Journal (March 2007) entitled Speak Up Survey: Is Technology Missing the Mark? by Dave Nagel. The nationwide survey polled approximately 270,000 students, teachers, and parents on "subjects ranging from technology, math, and science instruction to communications, collaboration, and self expression". The findings were very interesting.

The article quotes Julie Evans, CEO of the non-profit group Project Tomorrow-NetDay as saying that "[m]ost importantly, this survey shows that technology presents a unique opportunity to engage students in their core-curricular subjects, such as math and science, by providing them the high tech tools that raise their levels of interest in this coursework." Students also expressed interest in the integration of real-world problem solving, talking to professionals, and using multimedia and interactive simulations.

We, as educators, must prepare the youth of this country to creatively address problems and challenges -- some that may have happened before and others undoubtedly that will be unprecedented. We have gone through many ages as a nation and world: agricultural, industrial, technological, information, and now we must enter the age of creativity. Creativity involves imagination, innovation, and entrepreneurship along with reasoning, problem solving, and critical thinking. Listening, memorizing and regurgitating learned information is no longer sufficient. We need to do more in our schools through personalised education. And, in fact, it is time even for us to consider how to integrate the home environment into the fabric of the learning process.

T.H.E. Journal - Speak Up Survey: Is Technology Missing the Mark?

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