Space exploration | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from University of NorthamptonA death was announced today in the Times. The newspaper covered the ‘demise’ of the university lecture theatre. The news created a small stir on social media, with several educators opining about what they thought of lecture theatres, their place in universities, technology, and teaching and learning in general.

It seems that the subject of the article, the University of Northampton (one of the newest universities in the UK) has decided to do away with their traditional raked lecture theatres, and replace them with more open, flat, flexible spaces where…

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Like to be connected? | (Steve Wheeler)

LiketoBe working in partnership with Plymouth School of the Creative ArtsWhat would happen if someone created a digital platform which schools could use to connect with businesses, experts and industry. Imagine what it would be like if children could talk directly via a video link or webinar to a famous author, musician, astronaut, or polar explorer? How might this inspire them to pursue a similar career when they left school? The same might apply to a train driver, a doctor, a chef or an engineer, I’m guessing.

Think what might happen if the children in your class could speak to these…

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What I miss and what I don’t | (Steve Wheeler)

Photo by Kevin Harber on FlickrWatching my colleagues from around the UK posting images of them with their new cohorts of students gives me mixed feelings.

On the one hand, now I’m no longer teaching in higher education, I feel as though I’m missing out on something that has been a part of my life for the past two decades.

On the other, I feel a huge sense of relief that I’m no longer involved with all the behind the scenes admin and trivia that all teachers have to endure. I wrote about this recently in a post called Walking Away.

Lecturing at a university can appear glamorous. Standing…

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Curiosity, cognition and content | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from Wikimedia CommonsWhere does knowledge come from? As teachers we trade in knowledge on a daily basis, but how often do we think about its provenance? We could argue that the majority of what we ‘know’ derives from our ability to be able to think, to reason, to reflect, to ask questions – our higher cognitive processes. Curiosity provides the impetus for us to be able to investigate the universe we are in. Exploration and discovery have formed the basis of all scientific endeavour. Asking questions is the fundamental expression and genesis of all research. We can ask how, where,…

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Comfortably numb | (Steve Wheeler)

Image from Flickr by Ilmicrofono OggionoHow do teachers get to the place where they are comfortable admitting they don’t know everything about their subject? Some might argue that teachers should be expert at the highest level. But is this feasible for everyone and surely there is always scope to learn more? I want to ask the question: how can teachers and their students construct their knowledge together?

The process of co-learning between teachers and students can only effectively occur if and when teachers realise that learners can offer something new.  I know that over the years I have…

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Smoke and mirrors | (Steve Wheeler)

Photo by Sarah Joy on FlickrHidden away in the heart of the ancient Barbican area of Plymouth, England are the authentic Mayflower Steps. You probably know the story. In 1620, a little ship set sail from the South Devon port and launched out across the great Atlantic Ocean, carrying a contingent of around one hundred Pilgrims – mainly Puritan folk – and abut thirty crew. When they eventually arrived in the New World they established one of the first colonies on the East coast of what is now the United States of America. The Mayflower was a relatively small ship, and the stone steps from which…

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Like to be involved? | (Steve Wheeler)

Want your school to be involved in some leading edge research? Read on!

I’ve just been appointed Head of Research and Innovation at one of the UK’s brightest new edtech startups and I’m excited. My challenge now is to find out what teachers and schools would like the platform to do for them. I’m looking for primary and secondary schools who would be willing to try out the service for free and tell me what they think.

LiketoBe has been designed to disrupt the analogue world of Careers Advice. We’re developing a unique platform and content to connect teachers and students with professionals…

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