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Guest Thinkers

What if?

Let’s dream for a minute. What if we lived in a world in which students and educators…

  • had access to all of the information in their textbooks – and an incredible wealth of primary documents – for free?
  • had access to free, robust, and often multimedia and interactive learning resources (texts, images, audio, video, games, simulations) to supplement and deepen what was being learned in school?
  • A Wild Questionphoto © 2010 [F]oxymoron | more info (via: Wylio)could easily learn from and with students and teachers in other states or countries?
  • could easily and quickly connect with authors, artists, scientists, business professionals, entrepreneurs, craftsmen, professors, and other experts?
  • could more authentically replicate and/or actually do real-world work through the use of the same tools and resources used by scientists, engineers, designers, accountants, and a multitude of other professionals and artisans?
  • could easily share their own knowledge, skills, and expertise with people all over the world?
  • could easily and quickly find or form communities of interest around topics for which they were passionate?
  • could be active (and valued) contributors to the world’s information commons, both individually and collaboratively with others?
  • essentially had the ability to learn about whatever they wanted, whenever and wherever they wanted, and to contribute to this learning environment for the benefit of others?
  • Wouldn’t the possibilities for learning and teaching in this kind of world be both amazing and nearly limitless? If this world existed, wouldn’t we as educators and parents and policymakers do everything we could to help students and schools take full advantage of these learning affordances? If we actually had access to this world, wouldn’t we be chomping at the bit to get these resources into the hands of kids and teachers?

    Oh, wait a minute… Apparently not.

    What if a learning revolution occurred and many of us didn’t care?


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