How about; ‘Somebody learning something better/faster/cheaper/deeper with the help of somebody/something else’? And the alternative? Well…that would still be learning, sense we always learn…but no help, and not the same result. However; does such way of playing with words really matter? Yes, it does. It even matters a lot. And here is how it does.
Take a look at these pictures… give it some short minutes:
1: Students with laptops at a university, a teacher without. Note perhaps: some educators still don´t use PowerPoint, maybe for a good reason. From 2020.
2: One individual, out of 500 million, using Duolingo to learn a language. Note perhaps: his age and his ‘classroom’. Idea by a Carnegie Mellon Professor and a post-grad. From 2010.
3: How it looked, no hardware/software, when I was this age, year 1970. Note perhaps: different age/room = a seminar at a conference center with industry people, year 2020.
This question could get different answers if we firstly thought about the learners, or the educators/technology/age/years, while answering it – mirroring how we see the core?
The thing is…‘Development of education’ tend to look different depending on how we perceive the core activity. That was the reason I initially gave a suggestion. Let´s try it again…
‘Somebody learning something better/faster/cheaper/deeper with the help of somebody/something else’?
It is actually not about technology, not even about teachers, or classrooms. It is about learning.
And from that point of view: everything from teachers to digital tech, to classrooms, even schools, are only tools.
It´s really about them. And ‘them’ are actually able to learn in many different ways, for instance without teachers/schools…even without EdTech, being involved. And a really good, also very strong, example of that is…how come we managed to learn how to walk – which, by the way, is a pretty advanced thing to learn? And we did it, but no teachers, no schools, not even ed-tech, even was close to be involved.
Well, the ‘tool’ we actually used for it was…trial-and-error, and a desperate need we seem to have had to actually learn it.
One might then start to wonder: what could today be developed into the best tool that can help another person to really learn something faster/cheaper/better/deeper than if learning did happen with another kind of ‘tool’, even done without any help from the “outside world” at all?
Why use an old car for travelling, if a better one could be made available?
In the end of the day it is the best tools that will win this battle.
And that is a fair fight to have.