It is well known that children who develop arithmetic skills at a young age are more likely to be successful in science, technology, engineering, and math subjects when they are older. It is also known that parents have a strong influence on their child’s ability to develop these skills.
For instance, children whose parents frequently ask things such as, “You have four pennies… how many would you have if I gave you two more?” are more likely to be successful in math classes and math-related careers later on. But, what is less well known is the fact that spatial reasoning has an impact on these mathematical abilities as well.
For more than 100 years, we’ve relied on the factory model for providing education. Born of the industrial age, when efficient systems mattered most in producing a product, the factory model mimicked assembly-line work.
Schools built large classrooms and filled them with multiple rows of students. Teachers delivered one-size-fits-all instruction, and process was replicated in room after room, hall after hall, and school after school.
Naming the education system after industrialism was more of a metaphor than anything else, but one thing became apparent. Industrialism had served its purpose. Continuing to model an education system after an era that had passed was hurting instruction, not helping it. In education, we deal with people, not parts.
The birth of computers and the Internet renewed interest in education, and many thought that technology would be the panacea schools needed to reinvent themselves. As it turns out, change was not going to come from having computers or other trendy digital devices. Authentic change in education could only come about from how we used the new tools, not which ones we purchased for school.
The learning theory of constructionism asserts that people construct mental models to understand the world around them, and that this can be achieved through activities like building, tinkering, playing with components of machines and other systems, and watching how they interact.
many companies now provide robotic building kits that educators can use to build systems thinking, learn engineering, and practice STEM concepts, following the theories of constructionism. There are options out there for the smallest of budgets, as well as large-scale, worldwide, non-profit organizations that have inspired the formation of robotics clubs, as well as international robotics competitions.
It’s estimated that in the next decade the number of computer science jobs in the U.S. will outnumber qualified people by 1 million. That’s 1 million jobs for the taking that Americans will miss out on because of inadequate skill sets. Despite this, only 10 percent of K-12 schools have computer science programs.
So what gives?
Bruce Lee has once famously quoted “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times”. In year 2020, do you need to learn a new programming language or do you need to work on the languages you already know like Bruce Lee has said? Like many other questions, the answer is: it depends.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is the future. It is already altering the way our world operates, and it’s a force of change that education has no choice but to engage with it. According to a recent Gartner report, one in five workers will have some form of artificial intelligence as a co-worker.
That means most of today’s K–12 students will be part of a workforce that will include AI co-workers. In order to flourish in this new work environment, students must study AI, and K–12 schools will need to have artificial intelligence curricula.
The Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence and the Computer Science Teachers Association have formed the AI for K-12 Working Group. This working group has come up with five big ideas regarding AI that every student should know about.
The need for people in STEM-related careers is at an all-time high. Science, tech, engineering and math fields are looking for people who can think critically, solve problems and work with science and math concepts with ease. For years, much of this type of work has been outsourced to other countries, but with the growing dependence on tech, domestic businesses are also increasing hires in these fields.
While teachers are preparing students for their potential careers, they are also imparting the many other benefits of bringing STEM concepts into the classroom. One way to do this is through robotics. While building robotic figures and getting them to work, students learn skills like mechanics, engineering, coding and more.
Education is the building block of society. While in the early days, education setup was all about a tree, chalk and slate with the change in time, it has revamped into a luxury space that includes everything that reduces human effort in terms of learning.
Today, more than anything else, the entire focus is shifting towards innovation, creativity, technical advancement. Education is not just limited to educate someone rather it has become a practice to innovate and the formal education system is reaching a new level.
The Internet is firmly here to stay. Computers and the World Wide Web have come a long way since the net first launched in the late sixties. Computers and all their silicon associates have cemented themselves into the modern world. Cell phones, laptops, iPods, iPads, tablets – the list goes on and on. Screen-literacy has become a mandatory part of success in today’s world.
Artificial intelligence can be defined as the ability of computer systems to perform tasks and activities that usually can only be accomplished using human intelligence. In the world of education, this technology is revolutionalizing schools and classrooms, making educators jobs a lot easier.