What I thought would be easy interviews turned out to be quite challenging ones. The vision of the future of learning is projected from their own experienced references. These parents went to school in the rigid educational system where they were grouped by their year of birth and taught from the conformity viewpoint.
When they were triggered during our talks they proved to be optimistic and realistic about the future of learning.
Yannick, mother of Yul (5) en Finn (3), is an editor. Both her children are still in kindergarten. In september 2015 Yul (on the right) will go to the primary school. Yannick is wondering how Yul will cope in the first grade as he is a boy who likes to have space to move, to explore and to walk around sticking his nose in things. “He’s immensely curious.” Yannick expresses her liking with a catching big smile. “I hope that the teachers will be able to capture this and stimulate and challenge him rather than having him sitting on the bench all day just absorbing knowledge.” She also thinks that the four walls of the classroom are too restrictive for Yul. “Any kid should get the chance to also learn outdoors. In other words, the teacher should literally open the door to the real world,” she states fermly. “All kids differ and being able to learn at their own pace is a need to have. Children get frustrated when they cannot meet the ‘class average’. They should compete with themselves and get stimulated so that learning becomes a fun challenge. Thus one must question the benchmark ‘class average’. Technology will play an important role in the future of learning but it cannot replace ‘the real thing’. The feeling of sand slipping through your fingers, the development of the fine motor skills while writing, describing the smell of a forest after a rain shower etc. This kind of experiencing is necessary for the development of all children, now and in the future”, she concludes.
Denis, father of Hannah (12), Elmer (10) and Elise (8), is a marketer (see the top banner photo). Hannah will go to the secundary education in september 2015 because she’s a bright student and her date of birth is the right one. She will join her peers. “The future of learning will encounter a change using technology but it will go very slow,” Denis states. “One reason is the lack of sufficient funding. Another one is that good content and management are missing at this moment. Education will have to experiment and will evolve out of lessons learned. In the ideal world I would like my children to get challenged and motivated on their level. This is not an easy task in a classroom of 25 pupils. There should be more teachers or smaller groups. In that scenario the teacher has more chances to perceive the differences between pupils and thus providing them the needed materials and content at the right moment. Anyway good, capable teachers will remain crucial even when technology will take over some parts of the didactical process.”