Last evening I happened onto #ISEDchat on Twitter because Josie Holford a and a few others who are on my most closely watched comments list were participating. The discussion was about use of time in schools, particularly class schedules. Josie asked “Is there any school out there still stuck in the 45 or 55 minute block schedule?”
After a number of comments, I posted the following, which got a lot of Favorites and re-Tweets, so for those few of you not on Twitter these days:
Yes, there are still school organizations that set school apart from the lessons of the world, that parse student and teacher time into these finite chunks. Yes, it is uncomfortable to break this tradition, but come on, can educational leaders stand up and say “we are going to continue a practice that we KNOW is wrong, that impairs student learning, because change is uncomfortable?”
So what is the right use of time? In the short term, schools will adjust the daily schedule to include longer and more flexible units of time, but they will still be built around the teacher/classroom paradigm. In the longer term, which started yesterday, “school” is going to look a lot more like this “thought” video from Knowledgeworks: teachers and students crossing physical and virtual paths in the knowledge cognitosphere.
Time is a precious BUT FLEXIBLE variable in the learning equation. Let’s get that right.