Somewhere around 2005, in the middle of experiments designed to change our education, I found an article dating back to 1996 from the OECD. It didn’t kick in immediately but these sentences kept popping up in my mind.
As access to information becomes easier and less expensive, the skills and competencies relating to the selection and efficient use of information become more crucial….
Capabilities for selecting relevant and disregarding irrelevant information, recognising patterns in information, interpreting and decoding information as well as learning new and forgetting old skills are in increasing demand. (see the actual article here)
Gradually I started realising that this was the bomb under my teaching. Up until that time I was selecting relevant information, I was recognising patterns, I was interpreting and decoding information for my students. I gave them portions. I gave them material in the right dose and of the right level. One word for teaching in the Netherlands is actually “doceren” and means teaching but also “giving portions, doses”. I realised that what I was doing was quickly becoming an essential skill for everyone. Educational researcher Sugata Mitra believes that information literacy is the most important skill for the future. In educational environments and simultaneously in the digital landscape it is essential for learners to develop these skills in order to participate in the society.