Saturday, 17 October 2015

Do you hate the term 21st Century Pedagogy?

I have recently heard quite a few comments about the detesting of the term 21st Century pedagogy.  I heard it said twice in the last week.

I have a different viewpoint.  I quite like the term, because it gives a clear line in the sand.  The 20th Century finished at the beginning of the year 2000, and yet we still have numerous examples of 20th century pedagogy in New Zealand schools.  The change to a very different paradigm of education has been painful and slow for many teachers and leaders caught up in the day to day demands of "teaching."  

I believe the situation is quite complex, requiring firstly a change in vision for schools.  Which means a principal willing to promote the changes needed, a shift of thought in the communities that they live in (many parents wanting their children to be educated in the same excellent way that they were and applying pressure to the principals and educators to continue in the old ways.)  As well as new tools to use, the teachers also need to come to grips with different ways of teaching (assuming that teaching means the enabling of learning).

So back to the "21st Century Pedagogy" term.  There is no doubt that pedagogy will evolve over the next 100 years but the term indicates very clearly to educators that there should have been an uncomfortable and major shift in their practice.  If you haven't felt that disruption in the way you think, act and practise in the classroom, then you are behind the eight ball and should do some serious professional development immediately.

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