An interesting trend has emerged for me as I conduct research on each of the emerging technologies so far. A thread seems to tie each of them together. This thread has many cords. Ingenuity, perseverance, creativity, collaboration, problem solving, dedication. It reminds of this video from the opening scene of Star Trek Enterprise. Many years ago my husband and I watched the entire series via Netflix. It was so long that there was no streaming or blue-ray. In fact AK didn’t even have a distribution center so we had to wait for them to come in the mail from the lower 48 (miles and miles away, you could say a galaxy…..) Anyway I loved the opening song and we made sure we watched it every time. It’s about how we as nation made it space. From simple beginnings to actually landing o the moon. The innovation, the creativity the ingenuity, all of it focussed on one huge monumental goal. Get us to space! Go ahead and watch it, it’s great.
Of course I know the Enterprise is fictional but the implications for understanding the importance of emerging technologies in the classroom is huge. John Dewey was a philosopher and educational reformer. His pedagogy of education was rooted in inquiry learning and the idea that children should be involved in the improvement of their own society and the world around them. With this in mind education began a reform process where students cognitive abilities, reasoning and decision-making took center stage. Also at center stage was the child himself. No longer was he seen to be sitting in a desk while the teacher lectured. No, instead the child was only given the tools he needed and was then allowed to pursue his own interests with the teacher as guide. Many of the emerging technologies we see in our classrooms today stand on the shoulders of John Dewey and many others. The emphasis on role of the environment in education, problem-based learning and social collaboration all are interwoven in to the thread of emerging technologies and education. If John Dewey coud walk into a maker space, or watch kids code and use 3D printers I’m sure he would be proud.