The importance of technology for the 21st century learner
Teaching children of the 21st century has come to look very different from teaching in the past. Student centered learning is synonymous with the term 21st century learning and with this comes the incorporation of technology.
21st century learners have grown up with an unprecedented amount of information at their fingertips. They can teach themselves about any new topic they are interested in without having to leave their homes. This has altered the responsibility of educators. Educators have become facilitators of a child’s learning rather than imparts knowledge. Children are required to explore, investigate and generate their own answers and understanding.
A 21st century education is about giving students the skills they need to succeed in this new world, and assisting them to grow the confidence needed to practice these skills. With so much information readily available, 21st century skills focus on making sense of that information, as well as sharing and using it in smart ways.
At Knights, we are on a constant technology journey. It is our mission to implement technology strategically to assist in children’s knowledge and content creation. The use of technology goes far beyond how to use the device but rather enables learners to explore, gather answers and solve problems. As educators, we are now required to teach children the difference between real and fake information, as well as how to interpret and gather information in order to draw conclusions and gain an understanding. We continually strive to develop children into creative problem solvers rather than information consumers. It’s about equipping our children with the necessary skills to go into a world of work that is ever changing.
Our technology journey continues to evolve and we are proud to say that we have introduced both a Robotics and STEM Clubs this year. These clubs enable children to be placed outside of their comfort zones, to problem solve and seek solutions. Within these clubs, children are made aware that their first idea may not work; however, with refinement, constant testing and investigation, they will find a suitable solution. In a world that seeks instant gratification, the Robotics and STEM clubs have encouraged children to persevere, be creative in their thinking and collaborate with their peers.
As our way of teaching evolves so will our technology journey and we are proud to say that our children seek to solve problems and ask questions. We will be adding new and innovative ideas to our technology, such as a MakerSpace for children and teachers. This will be a “curiosity” space where teachers and learners can come together to create, invent, discover, code, build and design using both high and low technology tools and materials. The space is intended to enable children to actively develop their 21st century skills such as collaboration, communication, creativity and problem solving. We are so excited to see where this new endeavour will takes us in 2023!
Computer Science Department
Ashley Smith has been teaching since January 2021. She holds a bachelor’s degree in foundation phase teaching as well as her honors in educational psychology. She has completed her advanced course in remedial education.