In my studies this week, we have been focusing ’empowering students’ by encouraging students to ‘reflect upon their learning’ as they go through an online course (or any course for that matter).
I truly believe in the power of ‘reflective practice’ but it seems that in might not be truly possible in the U.S. right now. How do teachers encourage students do this when teachers are under extreme pressure to get a certain amount of content taught in a short amount of time? This is especially hard for K-12 teachers due to the pressure of accountability and high stakes testing. Has NCLB and ‘Race to the Top’ taken the reflective nature out of our teaching? The success of our nation has been based on our ability to create individuals who can think critically and analyze their own thinking and learning. I would question whether our current system is creating these individuals right now.
So … could online learning actually swing us back in the right direction? Could the ability to learn at your own pace, on your own schedule, wherever you want, allow us to get back to the ‘reflective practice’ of learning? I sure hope so or we might be seriously crippling our nation in the years to come. What do you think?