Sunday, September 25, 2011

Education for today and tomorrow

There’s no question that the world is a very different place than it was when public schooling became a common practice in North America. In fact, the rate of change itself has accelerated dramatically during this time frame.

It took us about 3000 years to get from creating our first bits of pottery to starting to record our ideas in writing (with a handful of major advances in between). It has taken us less than 300 years to go from the first steam engine to building space stations on the moon (with far too many world-changing events in the interim to list). It’s estimated that the world (at the time of writing this) produces about 5 exabytes of new information per year1 (An exabyte is a billion gigabytes, in case you missed that particular piece of new information). That’s about 37,000 times the amount of information held in the Library of Congress collection. Ten years ago, who had ever “googled” an ex-boyfriend (or girlfriend). And five years ago, would you have even known what a “wiki” was?

Within the last few generations the time-scale for massive change has become very short compared to the human life span. The world will be a very different place when we die than it was when we were born. Education not only has to keep pace with today, but create structures flexible enough to adapt for an unknown tomorrow.

Changing Economy
The move from the industrial era into a knowledge/concept-based economy has shifted dependence on physical labour into a need for innovation, problem-solving and adaptability. Radically different approaches to work, productivity and prosperity require new approaches to learning, schools and education.

The Rise of Technology
Today’s students are the first generation to grow up with digital technology and this technology has changed the way we view knowledge, access information and relate to our world. Education needs to both capture the incredible possibilities for deep learning opportunities that new technologies can offer and prepare students to cope with the amount and speed of information at their fingertips.

Shifts in Society
Canada’s population has shifted from rural to urban, immigration has increased and we have moved away from interconnectedness with community and extended family into nuclear or single-parent family units. More women are in the workforce, and media, advertising and consumerism have exploded as major societal influences.

Changing World
Before the year 1824, when the first railway engine took to the tracks, no human being (or piece of information) had ever gone faster than the speed to be had on the back of a horse. Compare that with today’s realities for the nearly 6.5 billion people who travel and share information around the world. We have not only become globally connected – on a minute by minute basis – but globally interdependent in solving world issues that threaten our well-being.


Saturday, September 17, 2011

5 reasons: Why girls shoud play sports

Why play sports? You might say "to get exercise" and you'd be right. To have fun? That's true, too. But there's more. In fact, there are at least 5 more reasons. According to the Women's Sports Foundation, girls who play sports get a lot more than just fit.

1. Girls who play sports do better in school. You might think that athletics will take up all your study time. But research shows that girls who play sports do better in school than those who don't. Exercise improves learning, memory, and concentration, which can give active girls an advantage in the classroom.

2. Girls who play sports learn teamwork and goal-setting skills. Sports teaches valuable life skills. When you working with coaches, trainers, and teammates to win games and achieve goals, you're learning how to be successful. Those skills will serve you well at work and in family life.

3. Sports are good for a girl's health. In addition to being fit and maintaining a healthy weight, girls who play sports are also less likely to smoke. And later in life, girls who exercise are less likely to get breast cancer or osteoporosis.

4. Playing sports boosts self-confidence. Girls who play sports feel better about themselves. Why? It builds confidence when you know you can practice, improve, and achieve your goals. Sports are also a feel-good activity because they help girls get in shape, maintain a healthy weight, and make new friends.

5. Exercise cuts the pressure. Playing sports can lessen stress and help you feel a little happier. How? The brain chemicals released during exercise improve a person's mood. Friends are another mood-lifter. And being on a team creates tight bonds between friends. It's good to know your teammates will support you — both on and off the field!


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Primary Virtual Schools - New Emerging Trend

Regardless of the controversies going on against online education, colleges and universities have been translating parts of their curriculum into distance learning courses and students continue to take them without entering the campus. A new trend is emerging these days, online education for primary schools. These virtual schools are operated by state governments or local school districts and promise to give students more flexibility while also lowering education costs for the state. Most of these virtual state-operated schools will accept enrollment from students anywhere in the state.
A law creating virtual schools legal is currently under consideration in the state Tennessee. Even if virtual education is a panacea for an ailing public education system, it’s clear that it is not going to disappear anytime soon.


Friday, September 2, 2011

Who Needs Online Education?

Online education is not for everyone, it’s an option for working adults, students and professionals who want to further their careers without troubling their busy schedules and ruining their family life. Online education takes away all sorts of time restraints by offering a completely virtual learning experience.
Now working adults can continue their education, earn higher degrees, and earn more money through classes which are taken via the Internet.