A plethora of packages, platforms and information sources have flooded the Internet to help locked-down children learn from home and advise parents on how to help them. There is no going back on this trend.
With screens increasingly competing with face to face learning (and currently taking over from it), we can be sure that in the coming years students will be exposed to even larger swaths of information. Is this a good thing? Not necessarily. Without knowing how to swim, jumping into a bigger pool of water may bring more harm than good. Unless we recognise that learning requires much more than the provision of hardware and software, resources and technical know-how, we are in the danger of confusing ‘process and substance’, as was noted by Ivan Illich. In this sense, the phrase ‘online learning’ is alluring but misleading. The site of learning is the mind.
The freer pathway between students and information will mean that the triad of teacher-student-content will become heavily loaded on the axis of student and content. This will significantly transform relationships between teachers and students. The idea of teacher as (more…)