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Substantive Educational Change is in the Palm of Our Children’s Hands

Cathleen A. Norris and Elliot M. Soloway

We have known for more years than we might care to admit (Bransford, Brown, & Cocking, 2000) what a classroom should look like in order for substantive learning to take place. However, instead of a learn-by-doing pedagogy (aka project-based learning, inquiry-based learning, active learning, etc.), didactic pedagogy/direct instruction still rules the land. Whether it is a teacher at the front of the room expounding, or a Khan video expounding, or an electronic whiteboard instead of a blackboard at the place of the expounding, or even if the students can immediately respond to the expounding with a clicker—that is still direct-instruction ...

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