It’s been a year since I started blogging here at Nominet Trust, exploring the research around new technologies particularly in education. There probably hasn’t been a more exciting time in the Nominet Trust year for me as they’ve just announced a new fund with the Education Endowment Foundation – it’ll be great to see what’s funded and what outcomes they achieve. I’m going to use this final blog of the year I’ll sum up what I’ve covered so far and how it’s all related.
Whether it be global tech businesses being grilled by the Public Accounts Committee; the launch of 4G networks or the adverts vying for pre-Christmas attention, digital technologies: computers, mobile phones, the internet, have been in the public eye quite a lot recently.
Bran Ferren (somewhat) famously said that technology is ‘stuff that doesn’t work yet’ – we don’t think of biros or belts as ‘technologies’ (that is purposefully designed and made tools), because they’re woven into everyday life and work as we’d expect. But how about ‘digital technologies’ – when will they stop being ‘technologies’ and start, simply, being the internet, apps or micro-processors? The answer, is when they become more trivial, when we recognise the implicit value in them and understand how they are constructed and work.
The Open University’s Institute of Educational Technology recently released a fantastic report – “Innovating Pedagogy 2012” (pdf) (Creative Commons licenced too). The report offers 10 innovations with the potential to change education in the short to medium term. It starts with a two page executive summary – so if you don’t read anything else, take a look at that!
Recently I’ve been thinking about the increasing push for children to learn to code. One thing I’ve been particularly interested in is the reason we’ve suddenly become so interested in coding. The benefits outlined in CAS’ ‘Computer Science: A curriculum for schools’ (.pdf) relate to: