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June 14, 2013 at 9:29 AM
Will a human win Teacher of the Year in 2030?
Cheeky headline because the answer is of course yes. Humans, largely female, will make up the teaching workforce in the year 2030 and beyond. But the future of teaching, and how much of it will be driven by technology is the topic of my column this week. How will teachers be trained and exactly what they’ll be doing in the classroom is changing, in part at the behest of teachers who see their roles expanding in the realm of learning.
I mention the popularity of Khan Academy as one driver of online education, but I want to be clear that it is the offsprings of Khan Academy that we ought to look toward. There are also online tools for all kinds of learners, here’s one a parent just recommended, Sophia learning. Please send in more examples. Online tutorials do not replace teachers. I’m convinced their vital role is to supplement them in ways that free up teachers to truly be professional masters of content and learning. I’ve been thinking about what public education, including teaching, will look like 20,30,40 years out for some time. Someone recommended Barnett Berry’s “Teaching 2030: What We Must Do For Our Students and Our Public Schools — Now and in the Future.” The first chapter is illuminating, Berry says:
“We must convince parents, businesspeople, and community leaders to think beyond tradition - beyond their own childhood experiences in school – and consider what it will mean for our students and for the nation when we fully embrace teaching as professional work…” ”In the flattening world of the 21st century, American students will need to master knowledge and skills as never before.”