As one of the most recognised researchers on lurking and e-learning, and a co-editor of the book Didactic Strategies and Technologies for Education: Incorporating Advancements, I must question Plaid Cymru’s logic on the use of the Hwb e-learning platform by school-based learners (Western Mail, January 3).
On the internet lurkers, who don’t use a service, make up 90% of people signed up. Usually 9% will be occasional users, with 1% contributing towards most of the activity. So the fact that only 529,481 young people use the platform is not surprising.
I do, however, agree that there is a problem with teacher take up of new technologies. Many teacher training courses in Wales still think of teaching as involving a teacher standing up in front of a board and blabbing off a series of facts to people they think should listen.
As I found when I was a governor at Parc Lewis Primary School in Pontypridd, there are forces of conservativism at work who are all too happy to hold back children by not adopting methods more suited to their way of learning, which are outside teachers’ capabilities.
It is time to realise that times have changed, and for today’s digital teens, learning is something they are always doing, and more often than not the things relevant to them are not learned at school.