On February, 16th 2017, MICOOL members Kurt Schlegel (Montenegro) and Frank Hofmaier (Germany) visited the Didacta in Stuttgart/ Germany – supposed to be the worldwide biggest education fair.

There was an impressive, huge choice of products for kindergardens, schools and further education. And a lot of lectures about the “state of the art” in education.

A big hall was full of technology: whiteboards, digital media, tablets …, in which we were particularly interested. In a way I was really impressed by the opportunities offered from the industry. Nevertheless, for me the essence was: Yes, ICT must be taught, and yes, it can help a lot in teaching and learning. But technology in itself is neither good nor bad – it depends, how you utilize it. The teacher (and the concepts of schools) matter!

I have heard a salesman (!) at a stand saying: “Yes, it is very awesome what this monitor can do – but you do not really need it at school…”

So, it is one question what technology offers (and what you pay for it), but it is also a vital question how technology serves teaching and learning. What are our educational aims? What do our pupils and students need in future? How can media support learning?

I am convinced that the MICOOL project contributes a little bit to answer these questions.

Frank Hofmaier

 

Future of learning or old school? This stand reminded me of a last centuries classrooms. The slates are replaced by tablets…