It’s imperative to prepare students for an increasingly technologically advanced world– especially considering the fact that many current students are likely to be working in professions that don’t even exist yet!
In this episode, Metaverse and AI in Education (Episode 103), we sat down with Dr. Wednaud J. Ronelus who has been trailblazing the use of AI and innovative teaching techniques in his classroom for decades. From NFTs to handmade telegraphs and beyond, he highlights the importance of making technological education accessible to every student.
Here are the key ideas we took away from this episode:
- Ronelus is the founder of Alchemist Club School and Studios and has supported students in technology since the 90s. It’s a community that allows students to decide what they would like to learn and receive support from Ronelus as well as program alumni. He hopes that such a program will be templatized and replicated in the not-so-distant future as it’s essential that students have the opportunity to explore the metaverse, Web3, Crypto, and Blockchain.
- There are a few obstacles when it comes to getting more technology based education in the classroom. Many teachers are resistant to incorporating technology into their curriculum. Ronelus believes that this is partially because teachers aren’t trained on how to effectively use tech in the classroom. As a result, they’re simply not comfortable with it. Red tape and bureaucracy also play a role when it comes to administration, as school boards prefer to follow the status quo instead of incorporating VR, AR, and other useful hardware.
- Due to the evolution of the virtual world, Ronelus believes that a “cognitive elite” will arise. He expects that there will be individuals that keep up with tech trends and are raised to be savvy. On the other hand, there will be individuals with replaceable labor skills. The skill gap between the groups will increase making it impossible for the second group to catch up. We already see this happening in automated services such as self checkout at grocery stores, or ordering kiosks in fast food restaurants which have replaced people in these roles.
- Ronelus believes in a democratized, freer kind of learning than what’s currently available for many. He sees the merit in students selecting what resonates with them as learners. As opposed to being the “master of the classroom,” a teacher’s role should be to guide students and learn with them.
Fear may also be a reason that the necessary changes to tech and learning are slow going. However, Ronelus asserts that there’s nothing to be afraid of. In fact, he hopes to see other programs emerge wherein technology is seamlessly integrated into the curriculum instead of being considered an afterthought. He urges that it must be viewed as a necessity, not an option. The future of our students demands it.