Digital Education: One Giant Leap for Students — and Teachers Too?

Sep 25, 2014 by

The recent introduction of coding across classrooms in the UK is a mini Apollo moon-landing as far as children’s education in the 21st century goes. Picture scenes of 5-year-olds coming home from school and telling their parents about algorithms, debugging and Boolean logic! Parents, are you feeling slightly spooked by reading this? Then brace yourselves to answer the odd coding related question as confidently as the sum of five plus 10!

About a year ago, the Department for Education (DfE) outlined its vision for today’s students and tomorrow’s workers to be “digitally literate” citizens. It talked about turning students into “active participants in a digital world” — getting involved in creating and developing, and not just being passive consumers of tech.

Adding coding to the classroom is a logical equation, given wide-spread concerns around a digital skills talent shortage stifling R&D and threatening the UK’s lead as a digital powerhouse in Europe. Yet apparently, a little more homework is needed to be done. We’ve, for instance, learnt from a survey we’ve done as part of our state-of-the-nation review “Generation Tech” that some 4,500 teachers in the UK currently don’t have computers to teach kids tech.

As part of the survey, we’ve also asked teachers across Britain about their level of preparedness when it comes to teaching tech in schools. The responses were short of satisfactory. We’ve had dozens of replies about the tech trolley that no-one uses because the gadgets don’t work. There were also complaints about the lack of IT staff in schools and a lack of budget to make new IT investments.

via Digital Education: One Giant Leap for Students — and Teachers Too? | WIRED.

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