Having just rebooted my blog I have to pose the question, “Why do I have this blog?” Over the seasons my blog mixed my personal and professional thinking with what’s interested and concerned me together with my hobbies and interests. This left the blog without coherence, which may have been ok except that it’s never sat right with me.
On urbanmystic.blog I’ll be posting related to my professional life, focusing on the God after God conversations. I’m likely to keep any concepts related to spirituality off this blog though I believe our values and experiences can be neatly quarantined. As such, the choice to blog with specificity between these two blogs is editorial and intended to to help with focus in writing and engagement in discussions.
On this blog I’m keen to focus on my secondary interest and life – technology. As an avid reader of science fiction the future visions of humanity have always spoken deeply to me and presented trajectories we could land in as disparate peoples or as an integrated society. I’m interested in the potential of humanity and believe our future is inextricably linked with technological progression and how it’s integrated into our culture and economy. In recent years this has transitioned from leisure reading to an active concern about the role of education and place of technology in shaping my children’s future and preparing them for their future careers.
As a parent, I’m really interested in my children and their future and see technologies such as Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Electronics, Artificial Intelligence (AI), 3-D Printing, and E-Sports in that future. My children, however, go to a public school where everything is offline and analogue, except for a Lego Robotics program which my son attends twice weekly. At home they have iPad’s and share an Xbox One, but these end up being more for media consumption and entertainment. As parents, both my wife and I work and have limited time for helping them catch up with homework. I believe our schools are completely out of touch with technology and that public schools have been far to slow transitioning to digital education. I want to educate my children digitally and find a way to do so with limited time and budget.
I’ve long mused that education systems pedagogically frame how children come to think, learn and explore. For instance, publicly educated children land up thinking and believing that “I can’t do this because I’ve haven’t been taught how to.” This differs to Waldorf educated children who ended up with, “I don’t know how to this, let me go educate myself.” And that’s reflecting on myself and my peers from an analogue era who were educated in an analogue system. My concern is that publicly educated children continue being educated in an analogue system for an analogue world and will be grossly and irresponsibly prepared for an era where the digital mainstream is the norm. If left to the public education stream alone my children are going to be grossly unprepared for their future while be prepared for a particular stratification within society.
For some the answer is easy, simply take your children out of public schooling and place them in a relevant private school. This is a solution for the few and is both one I can’t afford along and, even if I could, I don’t see any private schooling system within reasonable distance that meets my requirements.
And this brings me to why I have this blog. This blog is going to focus on my journey as a parent who is discovering technologies and schooling systems that integrate technology and education. It’s one I’m both excited to embark on while being hesitant to share. Nevertheless, it’s one I’d love others to join in with.