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Reinventing the classroom for the internet generation

How do you teach a generation of children who have never known life without the internet? Traditional models and traditional ways of thinking may not be the right way, says Sugata Mitra.

The school Mitra wants to make, the school in the clouds, will not have teachers in the classroom. Teachers will be beamed in through Skype, the advantage being that a good quality teacher can be sent to any school on the planet, whether it is deep in the jungle or high on a mountain.

According to Mitra, children could be taught in a classroom or a facility or gathered together at home. If you get, say eight children together, the counterintuitive measure is to only give then two computers not one each, as this will facilitate discussion.

Physical teachers are good, but in most remote places the quality of teacher will be lower than what you can recruit in the cloud. Mitra says that children aged 8-12 years don’t seem to mind. This young generation thinks differently about the need for a traditional teacher. In terms of visions for future education it’s the older generation that thinks like dinosaurs.

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