Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Additional Assignment #2

How Kids Teach Themselves- A presentation by Dr. Sugata Mitra about the results of his experiments in countries around the world. Dr. Mitra gives children computers and the internet and charges them with learning seemingly impossible subjects in languages foreign to their own. I was impressed by the resilience of the children and their ability to learn without structured curriculum or even guidance. I believe that, in most cases, people do have the ability to learn anything if they are motivated, especially the young. I'm amazed, however, that they can teach themselves. Apparently the only items necessary to learn are access to information and desire. In a lot of cases that information comes from the teacher, in this case it's Google. Google, and the internet in general, replace the teacher in these experiments, and are very effective.

I personally learn what I'm interested in, and what is necessary. Learning to become an instructor requires that I go to class and therefore have an instructor. In general my instructors set goals for what I'll learn, provide instruction (in various forms), and then test me to determine my proficiency.  As a supplement to this instruction I also do a good deal of web searching, to further enhance my understanding.

The most important idea that I took from watching this video is that my work as a teacher does not have to be limited to my classroom. There are kids all around the world that I may have access to and I can dedicate some of my time to making a difference in some of the poorest areas of the world.

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