To summarize an amazing year of teaching and learning and to look forward to the year ahead here are my predictions for technology in schools for 2018:
- Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Mixed Reality (MR), will continue to weave its way into the education sector, allowing students to connect and learn in a variety of different ways with material never accessible at a lower cost. Immersive educational environments are already being used to provide learners with a life-like experience in all curriculum areas across the globe. The ability to know, understand and create their own AR/VR/MR experiences will greatly improve their employability in future years.
- Coding as a language. In 2018 we will start to see schools seriously consider introducing Coding as a second language option for students rather than something that is “added on”. The integration of coding into everything is crucial as a greater understanding of how coding can impact the way we do things becomes apparent. This is an area that my school is focussing on as we develop a unique K-12 coding curriculum that is integrated into “the way we do things”.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning are starting to be seen in many industries and in 2018 (probably more likely to be 2019/2020) we will see an uptake of this in the Education sector. AI and machine learning will transform how we learn, and manage learning over the next 5 years. AI will also help personalize learning and change the day to day learning experience for students all around the world.
- The Internet of Things (IoT) will become more mainstream and widely used to support staff professional development and student learning. The IoT is a disruptive technology that is driving digital transformation globally.
- Digital Textbooks and online resources will continue to evolve to be less static and more interactive. The resources we currently see in 2017 are starting to change, but not fast enough for our digital learners. 2018 will see a rapid increase in interactive resources that are more personalized to engage students in learning and suit a variety of learning styles.
- MakerSpaces and the Maker Culture will take off and become ‘the norm’ in both private and public K-12 settings. With the STEM/STEAM movement in full swing, the need for students to make and create to show their learning is more critical. This has already started to get traction by many governments across the world. In China, the government is building more than 5000 maker spaces in schools. Schools will adapt their environments to suit the needs of learners by creating makeshift maker spaces.
- Internet for everyone – as our learners grow up in a digital world, our infrastructures and networks need to continue to develop and improve. Schools will get faster, cheaper and more reliable internet connections which will allow their students to connect and learn on a daily basis, improving collaboration and communication skills in our young learners. I also believe we will see a decrease in the need to ‘lockdown’ internet in schools. Students need to learn as they go and with that comes an element of trust. At my school in Singapore, we leave our network pretty open. I would rather have students make a mistake at the school where I can help them learn from it than locked up in their room at home. Parent education here is critical (click here to see what we did to help educate our parents).
What would you add to my list? Please share, I would love to hear your thoughts.