Interpersonal learning , personalized learning, second life learning , 3d learning, collaborative learning and virtual learning , these are just some of the few buzz words you would be be reading so often in today’s educational literature. Things have changed , old methods and pedagogies are no longer relevant. The teacher-controlled learning where pre-constructed information is presented in a formal and standardized classroom settings becomes very obsolete. The urgent questions we should , as educators , ask ourselves are : what are the driving factors behind this huge transformation in learning ? and Do we need a new pedagogy to better enhance learning ?
Advancements in technology and particularly social networking technologies are changing the whole educational framework . Users now can have access to information whenever and wherever they want . Blogs , wikis, socializing sites, podcasts, networks are more and more democratizing knowledge and radically changing the overall notion of schooling.
It is evident now that we are in front of two different versions of learner one is labeleed the the 20th century learning and the second is called the 21st century learning. These two learning paradigms are totally different in terms of skills, objectives, and methodologies of instruction employed in each one of them. Thus, the need for a new educational model , a serious rethinking of the nature of schooling , its goals, pedagogies, curriculum , structures, and assumptions is pressingly urgent, and as I have already mentioned in the popular " 21st century Teaching and Learning Skills Ebook " students today are digitally focused and require new skills that would meet up the needs of this new era. But the thing is teaching new skills is not the only solution and there is more to it than just that, in fact we need a new pedagogy with specific features that would cover every learning aspect .
To help you better understand the pillars of this pedagogy you need to watch this short video to see how different the 20th century teacher from the 21st century one.
In their ALCE international conference that was held in Sydney , participants insisted that ”in the 21st century pedagogy , the schooling experience must be relevant to the life each student chooses to pursue and the skills required to live in today’s world.”In other words, students must be taught how to become managers of their own lives, members of both local and global society, influential participants in the workforce and active contributors to a changing environment.
Here is another video to bring you even closer to this pedagogy. Watch it to learn more about the difference between the 20th century education and the 21st century education.
What are some of the 21st century pedagogy features and skills ?The skills that are pivotal to achieve the 21st century pedagogy goals are :
- Critical thinking
- Active learning
- Problem solving skills
- Communicating, making connections,creating and expressing oneself in a variety of ways
- Contextualized knowledge. As you can see in the learning pyramid , uncontextualized and non-activity based learning could result in a low retention rate.
- Collaborative team work. This is mainly achieved through web2.0 technologies and social networking tools . If you have read the UNESCO’S publication “ The four pillars of education “ you would realize that collaboration is the core element of the four pillars which are :
- Learning to know
- Learning to do
- Learning to live together
- Learning to be
21st century pedagogy develops some particular kinds of fluencies in students :
- Technology fluency : know how to use technological tools
- Information fluency : know how to gather, process and validate information
- Media fluency : know how to view , select , and use media.
The picture about the 21st century pedagogy is not yet clear ? Here is a great video to help you understand it better.