There has been an interesting debate on the VLN (Virtual Learning Network) in the last few months, about what Modern Learning Pedagogy (MLP) really means. The conversation was started by Neill Reilly who questioned why is is called modern pedagogy and not just effective pedagogy.
The New Zealand Curriculum specifies 7 effective pedagogies (pages 34 to 36) but then goes on to say that teachers should be investigating how digital technologies can transform teaching and learning. The most succinct answer to Neill's question, I think, came from Bernice Swain fairly early in the piece - that modern pedagogy was more than just 21st Century best practice. She suggested "self-regulated learning, student centred programmes and individualised programmes, collaborative teaching, ubiquitous use of technology and 'anytime, anyplace, anywhere' learning" were the essential elements of a modern pedagogy.
The debate has raged on, but going back to Bernice's words has echoed for me that she captured the essence of modern learning pedagogies. Derek Wenmoth stepped into the discussion fairly early on to remind us that the NZC gives us the permissions to pursue modern learning pedagogies. Yes, we have the permission but now more than ever, some teachers and leaders are actually looking at using the permissions to move forward. The trouble is, time short educators want quick answers and I am not sure that there are any quick answers.
Linda Barran added valid points - that our best practice needs to develop learners who are equipped with the 21st century skills of creativity and critical thinking, learners making use of collaboration and connectivity. Very reminiscent of the 6 Cs infographic that I blogged about earlier but are these perhaps more outcomes of the pedagogy rather than the "type of pedagogy" that develops these skills.
The themes of future oriented teaching and learning are extremely well discussed by Gilbert and Bolstad et al and it seems to me that the ideas about MLP's that are discussed in the debate on the VLN could easily be placed under the 6 headings of the themes.
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