The future is unpredictable


Carla over at The English Teacher’s Blog posted an entry about some dude’s presentation that I thought might be pretty interesting to the people who are interested in how Greek myths stay relevant to public education. The three main points of his presentation, she reports, are:

  1. The future is unpredictable.
  2. Students are networked.
  3. The new information landscape is flat, less authority (teacher)-driven.

She goes on to discuss how some students are more networked than others, but in the sub/urban schools I’ve worked in, they managed to stay networked even without a computer at home.

I’m perverse, so let’s cover these points backwards, after the jump.

Point 3: Highlights why sites like Perseus Project and Theoi.com are so crucial. They highlight the values of good academic citation and let people access the information that Classicists have been compiling for a couple thousand years. It’s the reason that when I was a young student I started to compile the information in a different way, in my own way, not guided or even suggested by any teacher.

Point 2: Students network via MySpace, Facebook, etc. They IM and text and meme the heck out of the connection of tubes. I exploited this particular fact by creating a couple of quizzes with results you can post in your LJ or preferred social site. Connecting what kids voluntarily network with solid information – and links to more – seems like a crucial strategy.

Point 1: The past may be just as uncertain as the future and is tied up in our presentations of it. And, as Carla said so eloquently, “Now our job is to prepare our children for a future we can’t describe.” I maintain that keeping contact with the old stories is one the best ways we can prepare for what is to come.


One response to “The future is unpredictable”

  1. Ailia,

    I agree with you: keeping contact with the old stories is a great way to prepare for what is to come, because the old stories are made new again with each generation. (Joseph Campbell probably said it better.)

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