Dean of Education’s 2014 Visiting Scholar Lisa Dieker talks about preparing next generation of learners

Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 10.50.26 AMLisa Dieker, PhD., professor in the Department of Child, Family, and Community Sciences at the University of Central Florida, recently presented at SUNY New Paltz as the Dean of Education’s 2014 Visiting Scholar.

Dieker’s research focuses on collaboration among general and special education at the secondary level with a specific interest in the unique opportunities that exist in math and science in urban schools. As part of her lecture, Dieker demonstrated to the audience TeachLivE™ — “a glimpse of the future through the use of technologies for student learning and innovations in current and emerging technology.”

TeachLivE™ now on 42 college campuses nationwide,  allows each student to experience learning in a classroom environment, collaborating with other students and their teacher, and exchanging and evaluating  comments and ideas through its use of technology. TeachLivE™ also is a tool for student teachers to practice their skills in eliciting participation from their students and engaging their classroom.

Preparation of the Next Generation of Learners: Innovations and Practical Application of Current
and Emerging Technology
According to  Dieker, students learning in 2014 will be in the workforce until the year 2079. It’s because of this that teachers need the best crystal ball imaginable to address the needs of these learners that far into the future. She says, that while the innovation and technology environment is changing rapidly, innovation is risky and expensive, and may fail. However, the leeway to fail is needed so as to innovate. Educational technology does not and will not solve the problems we see in education today, says Dieker; rather it targets specific educational needs and incorporates the available technology to satisfy those needs.

Dieker goes on to say, that today’s jobs require talking with each other, sharing ideas, and collaborating on projects. “Argument is the basis of learning, but some students, because of physical, learning, or developmental disabilities, can’t talk/argue,” says Dieker. As a facilitator rather than a lecturer, the future will require the teacher to be an “eye in the sky” for collaborative learning with today’s standardized curricula. And grit—a new way of thinking about success in life an d relationships with technology—says Dieker, will be the determining factor.

“We need to let kids fail with technology in order to have them succeed,” she says. “It’s through failure that students develop the will and “grit” to try again, perhaps over and over, until success is achieved,” Dieker explains.

It is in this way, says Dieker, that TeachLivE™ brings together the unique abilities and needs of the 21st century student with the challenges and goals of teachers in a new world of learning.