17 november 2014

Conversations with the youth

The other week I was back home in Sweden, met my family and of course talked with my nephews about school. Well, not exactly what happens in school, but how they perceive school

Have the Swedish school managed to use the new technology in a, for the young, attractive manner?

That was an interesting talk, I must say. It was the counterpart to their schools tech ambition with advanced technology that usually only can be found at a University.

By the way, both two nephews had an ongoing punishment of the modern parents attitude to games: computer games banned!!! 
Hey parent! I got news!
They are playing anyways, they've smarphones as they play on instead. Same games by the way... ROFL

If they anyway play videogames, why don't use that interest to something useful? Education for example...

Okay, I was curious, so I kept asking until the nephews whispered: "don't tell mum, I play a lot, even during class when it's too boring..."

They behave in the same way as my students...
I think not.

So why not using that interest and use it in education?

And you don't have to use as much video games as I do in education, you don't have to start with gamification, but what you could test is to go out of your comfort zone and test something new.

For example, use a plattform as Didactor and see what happens.

I felt so sorry for my niece (16 yo) that I made a special course, for a test, using the tool Didactor and three funny things occured.
  1. She loved this way of learning (games) and said she was only sitting for "like 5 min" (actually 45 min).
  2. Her classmates got deadly jealous
  3. Her mother, the teacher and member of tech working group, thought it was interesting but a bit too advanced. To log in.
And by the way, a colleague of mine has started using Didactor today in the practical nurse education, and as a result using games in education she has halved todays lessons... and they already on their way to do the first test, three lessons before the scheduled time. She was surprised, excited and overwhelmed! My colleague reported two things
  1. The students loved it!
  2. Learning is fun!
The other one, my nephew 13 yo, told me his school has such an advanced robot the other one is at a University. They trying to make code to it. It feels a bit to start in the wrong end... 
13 yo and start with a University technology? 
When he loves Minecraft? 
Sounds like computer craft would be a better choice for the target audience...

Yeah and how could I forgot?
What do I know? "You're not even qualified teacher!!!"
No. Not yet. I'm working on that part...
And in addition, that was a pretty lame excuse for not listening to the young people...

About Didactor
Yes, I know there's a couple of other platforms which do exactly the same things but as I tend to go for the KISS-way I rather pay to get a working solution with a clean nice interface and a low learning curve. Look at paragraph 3 above, starts with "her mother, the teacher..."

Keep It Simple Stupid.

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