TEL2-1 Learning Environments – Isaac Asimov

I started with the first session of the TELIC course. Interesting stuff in our Adobe Connect room. After the introductions, we started out talking about the way we learn things. How, sometimes you can only remember things when in an actual situation, despite of the learning process that happened before. For instance, you learned how to drive, you know where your friend lives, but you can only get there if you just start driving and figure out the correct route on the go. You figure out what turn to take, what choices to make. Others suggested that exercise is key! Just studying the theory isn’t enough for them, implementing it in real life situations makes them remember stuff and enables them to use this information in new circumstances.

The story by Isaac Asimov “The Fun They Had” was discussed as well. A futuristic view on schools in the future, and on how people learn. Very different, indeed! It almost gave me a “1984” – totalitarian – feeling. Computers telling students what to do, someone controlling the computers… hmm… We talked a lot about the “human” aspect of learning. How do you learn without human contact? Without talking to others, engaging with others? Maybe the vision of Asimov, who came out of a society where schools existed to pour information in our heads (a bit like that scene from “The Wall” by Pink Floyd!?) caused him to invent this image of schools, where now we know that the social aspect of learning is crucial. I’d love to see how Asimov would create a futuristic school, knowing all the technologies and possibilities that are available now…

Next time we will be talking about gamification. What can we learn about games? How can we use them in education? What principles do they use to let players figure out what to do on their own!

To be continued!

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