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The Modern Expert

 

 Information at our fingertips has impacted our way of life immensely over the past decade. Even someone as ‘mechanically challenged’ as yours truly has been able to install a dishwasher, fix a lawnmower and perform minor vehicle repair through the miracle of YouTube and a little trial and error.

Our students have grown up with the benefits of this technology and are able to utilize it in the same way they consume oxygen to breath. Accessing information is second nature and becoming an “expert” is only a few clicks away. They no longer rely on parents, educators or other adults to provide or grant access to information. The downside to this era is the false sense of accomplishment that can often accompany virtual learning. Watching an instructional video only becomes useful when the instruction turns to action. In our emerging generation there is often a real dichotomy between expertise in knowing and expertise in doing.

Author James Clear offers this brilliant reminder:

“The person who learns the most in any classroom is the teacher. If you really want to learn a topic, then “teach” it. Write a book. Teach a class. Build a product. Start a company. The act of making something will force you to learn more deeply than reading ever will.”

 As parents and educators our role has morphed from information gatekeeper to processing coach. We must be willing to come along side and encourage meaningful and experiential work that allows students to apply concepts in real time and immediately put into practice what they are learning both in and out of the classroom.

 

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