Time Travelling Teachers

27 Jan

“Imagine a party of time travelers, among them a group of surgeons and a group of school teachers, who came from the last century to see how things are done in our days. Think of the bewilderment of the surgeons when they find themselves in the operating room of a modem hospital! The nineteenth-century surgeons can make no sense at all of what these strangely garbed twentieth-century people are doing. Although they may be able to see that a surgical operation of some sort is being performed, they are unlikely to figure out what it is. The rituals of antisepsis, the practice of anesthesia, the beeping electronics, even the bright lights are utterly unfamiliar. Certainly they would not be able to help.

How different the reaction of the time-traveling teachers to a modern classroom! These teachers from the past are puzzled by a few strange objects, they are shocked by the styles of clothing and haircuts, but they fully see the point of most of what is happening and could in a pinch even take over the class. They disagree among themselves about whether the changes they see are for the better or for the worse.”

Papert, S. (1996) The Connected Family: Bridging the Digital Generation Gap. Atlanta: Longstreet Press. page 158.

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