wtorek, 1 marca 2016

What is modern education and learning, and what is the role of modern educational and learning environments?

by Piotr Kozak

Supported by the research results (Dumont et al. 2010) and taking into account the socio-economic transformations, one could elaborate seven basic and inter-related guidelines for modern education (learning).


First, the educational (learning) environment should focus on the students (the learners) as the core participants of the process, should encourage their active engagement and develop the understanding of one’s action as a learner. Thus, the educational environments should inspire focusing on the students who are the main participants of the learning process. Learning-oriented environments encourage the self-regulation of students, which means that they incite the development of meta-cognitive skills that enable the learners to monitor, to assess and to optimize the acquisition and the use of knowledge (De Corte 2010), developing as well the regulation skills of one’s emotions and motivations in the learning process (Boekaertes 2010; Hinton and Fischer 2010). Additionally, a large number of researchers (William 2010: 327) draws our attention to the fact that the role of the teacher should undergo a certain transformation: a teacher should cease to be a “sage on the stage” and to become “guide on the side”.

piątek, 20 marca 2015

The vision and pedagogical platform

Author: Jannie Jepensen 
- Creative Strategies at Rektorsakademien Utveckling (Academy of Principals) Former Principal of Vittra Telefonplan, Stockholm Sweden and Project manager EDUSPACES21­ Sweden



As the former principal of one of the most progressive school projects in Northern Europe, Vittra Telefonplan, I will write a two articles on the pedagogical models I used when we designed learning situations and were trying to stretch the boundaries of pedagogical practice. I will also give a background on the work and ideas behind the learning environments. Being a part of creating a school, from the design of the learning environments to recruiting the staff would become a learning journey for all of us. I will exclude questions on organizational sustainability and my thoughts on what we achieved are focused on the time I was in charge of the school, the first three years. This is my story about how to lead a school that aspire to educate our children for future demands, and aim to explore new pedagogical opportunities and challenges in a fast changing world.

poniedziałek, 20 października 2014

Our approach

Vittra Telefonplan, Primary School in Stockholm, Sweden; (C) Marcin Polak, Edunews.pl
EDUSPACES21 project is not about modernising a single school classroom, but has a broader idea behind. In the era of globalisation and technological revolution, the classroom is no longer the most important place for learning, but one of many. We need to adopt a broader meaning of the learning space, as learning can happen in the school, but even more often it happens out of it or in various virtual and social environments and contexts, in formal and informal dimensions.

The idea of the project is to focus on a school building and its surroundings as well as on the pedagogical methods, through the concept of learning spaces. As digitilisation made ​​its entry into schools at all levels, it becomes visible, it has a serious impact on the education process by contributing to build new environments and opportunities for learning and challenging general didactics and instruction methods. Digitalization provides completely different challenges to how one can and should work in school effectively. The organisation and the design of learning situations becomes closely interconnected with leadership and physical and social environments.

Thinking about learning and places where learning occurs, we need to ask and seek answer to many questions: Does the didactics of reading and writing demand a different take today when we know that children meets image and text-based online communities even before they start school? What happens if we start from the innate communicative momentum, throw the traditional textbook away and replace it with the moving image and sound, chat, games, blog and community? How the society will look like in 2025 when children going now to school graduate and what do they need to be prepared for?

We need to understand where and how the learning happens nowadays and accordingly plan the learning environment and pedagogical activities around that process. We need to think how the world is changing and seek opportunities for learning in new places and contexts, not being focused only on how has the learning been organised so far.
Many of the schools that are being built are unsuited to the changing future pedagogy, curriculum and learner expectations that we can already anticipate. They also lack the agility to cope with further anticipated changes that we cannot yet know in detail. 
- Stephen Heppell, [in:] Building Learning Futures, Ultralab, 2004
More information on the EDUSPACES21.

czwartek, 11 września 2014

Launching the EDUSPACES21 project


Public School in Bayreuth, Germany; (C) Agnieszka Bilska, Superbelfrzy RP
Today is the official date for launching the "Educational Spaces 21 - Open up!" project, which will be named EDUSPACES21 in short. It is run up by four organisations from Poland, Germany and Sweden: The Center for Citizenship Education Foundation (Warsaw, Poland), Think! Foundation (Warsaw, Poland), Hanseatic Institute for Entrepreneurship and Regional Development at the University of Rostock (Rostock, Germany) & Rektorsakademien Utveckling (Stockholm, Sweden).

Why we need to modernize the learning spaces?

Learning spaces, both physical and virtual, are the planned environments in which learning takes place. These environments are part of the broader socio-cultural context (or environment), where schools are embeded. 21st Century learning requires new spaces that connect school, home and community learning, increasing flexibility and supporting learning outside the boundaries of school buildings and beyond the conventional school day.

We consider transformations for schooling in three dimensions: physical (architectonic), virtual (technological) and socio-cultural spaces. Those spaces shape and change practice. Engaging, adaptable spaces energise students, teachers and the community. Well-designed learning spaces inspire creative, productive and efficient learning.

We are about to help schools in transformation processes into 21st Century learning.