Hybrid Learning

I did some work with Thesys International, a hybrid learning program for high school students designed to effectively connect traditional learning with online resources.  The program takes some nodes from Sal Khan’s video tutorials via Khan Academy, but rather than just inverting the classroom (instead of lecture at school and worksheets at home, worksheets at school and lectures at home), Thesys wants to make both the in-class and the at-home aspects of the program invigorating and substantial.  It will be interesting to determine how the courses turn out — I believe they are in their first year of testing at the present time.

Anyway, here is some press about hybrid learning that I was interviewed about.

More and more, we need to look at human computer interaction when determining educational policy and initiatives.I had the opportunity this summer to study under Dr. Gary Stager, one of the pioneers of one-to-one computing in K-12 education.  Twenty years ago Dr. Stager was clamoring for laptop computers for children.  Today, that ability is much closer to reality, but Dr. Stager worries about the current direction of computing in schools being an extension of worst practices (drill and kill), those practices forgetting HCI completely.  His blog references some of his current writings along with a collection of past videos and lectures, all of which are worth checking out.

Slapping some software together that allows for “interaction” because a user can manipulate objects does not in and of itself recognize HCI.  Paying good $$$ to put existing practices onto a computer is a waste of resources because it ignores the potential of what the computer can add to the equation.  We need to consider what is possible and from there build an equation to get us from existing to potential, with computing as our variable.



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