In this episode of Boden & Boden, we learn about a new approach to learning that is being incorporated in the classroom.
What Is The Opposite Of Online Learning
In general, we tend to hear a lot about technology (“the touchy-feely stuff,” as Elon Musk likes to say) in education today. It’s largely regarded as a necessary evil. Certainly some tech help has made our educational lives easier and overall better. But it’s so often not enough. Schools need more than just existing technology, which is also frequently just an improvement in existing technology, but rather a whole new way of teaching that can drastically improve what we do. Consider What Is The Opposite Of Online Learning and how to do the opposite.
There are a whole lot of ideas around alternative learning today. And while these may seem like unsound and convoluted ways of learning — I don’t mean to imply that they’re not great or even effective — they’re also not going to make a big impact.
With the massive push for “online learning” in this country, schools often seem focused on virtual classrooms, but not a whole lot is going on in them. Even more common are schools focused on online internships, which are great as well as a great way to increase your chances of future employment. But they are very different from traditional online learning. As a result, less than a decade after Microsoft bought up Remax for its faculty and faculty support, it’s clear that the talk of online learning is not going to lead to better results.
Your peers and society generally aren’t as comfortable with online learning, where it’s only embraced by a privileged few. Then there’s the digital divide, where educators often send out a private email warning you that you’re banned from coming to my classes, which effectively shuts off your ability to see other people and the opportunities that make online learning worthwhile. Overall, there’s just too much frustration and friction in offline learning, and online learning isn’t changing that.
The alternative is always present when talking about better teaching and learning. It’s also present in rethinking non-digital education.
When online learning is involved, it is often done with the same thinking and skills used in brick-and-mortar education. This means more paper and more physical materials (and therefore more overheads), less interaction and full understanding of others, and less effort at keeping up. There’s also far less speed and control. The best digital education is truly cutting edge, but schools are stuck with neither the mind-numbing essays nor the feelings-devouring e-readers as it stands.
The best non-digital schooling is often the opposite of online learning: it focuses on interaction, invites you into their spaces, is a real community. It’s a place you belong. You’re challenged and inspired. You’re the focus of a true circle of peers, and at this point in your educational career, you can’t afford not to be.
All of this is proven, and we can see how it’s expanded with expanded online programs. Facilitating a school-wide, highly inclusive experience is not just great for students in your students, it’s also key to building future talent and innovation. There’s a lot of money to be made when you put some of the money that was spent on brick-and-mortar education into creating schools where you can teach online, and do so in a way that’s based on things like moving furniture, making rooms comfortable, or creating real new areas of expertise and outside interests for kids in a way that wouldn’t have been possible before.
To put some numbers around it, we have given most American schools no more than 10 percent of all funding (approximately $52 billion) to enhance teaching. In the time it takes to compare the two methods, teachers have been paid a minimum of $10,000 per year less than others in the same system.
Let’s take this real quickly: Online learning is not going to make education better. Traditional schools with physical facilities are not going to be changed by technology, but they can be. They can be used to expand a whole new way of teaching.
You know that old saying “Make more with less?” In this case, there’s actually more bang for your buck using online learning, but much less bang with the same money spent on brick-and-mortar bricks. But instead of believing more education is better, why not believe less, and look at the real possibilities of how you’re teaching and learning in your school? Use the principles of online learning, and you can think of it as “make more with less.”