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Walter Radtke

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Can computer games be designed to deliver education in an effective manner?

With high school drop outs becoming a national epidemic and kids terminally bored with education in its present delivery format, could a series of educational games be devised to get kids from pre-school to high school graduation? I'm talking of games so compelling and interesting, yet gradient in skill levels, that ALL schooling will become home schooling and the costs of running brick and mortar school districts would disappear into the dust bin of history. The money saved by municipalities could be used to supply every child of age 3 with his own gamer system. My feeling is that incredible skill sets could be taught in short order, including cognitive skills that could rival autistic savant levels. It is becoming more clearly evident that we either get smarter faster or we welcome back the 12th century.

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    Jan 18 2012: Your educational dilemma is very common and something has to be done about it. The solutions will wobble this way and that and will certainly evolve into a hybrid of some sort. Training teachers, of course, is key as is evaluating teachers. Trouble is so much of the curriculum is dictated that it drives out creativity. I also think that being with students for an hour is not enough. We may want to convert to a classroom system where high school kids havethe same teacher all day as in grade school. With all the teaching aids available, the teacher doesn't need to be a specialist and teach only biology or math, but can be more of a facilitator and create a sense of team involvement and devote more time to the social needs of the student rather than parroting a text book.

    Miss Julie sounds like one of those rare angel teachers. I had only a couple of those, but they were foundational. It's too bad that teachers can't be of uniform quality. Imagine the disappointment your kid feels, the sense of betrayal and stunting of his love for learning. It can only be termed a trauma. I'm not sure a bad connection is any better than no connection or a digital Skype type connection.

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