Sunday 15th October saw the publication of Growing the Artificial Intelligence Industry in the UK, the report of the independent review announced as part of the UK Digital Strategy in March. It also builds on the recognition in the Industrial Strategy Green Paper published in January that Artificial Intelligence (AI) is a major, high-potential opportunity for the UK to build a word-leading future sector of our economy. The two chairs of the review Dame Wendy Hall, Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southampton, and Jérôme Pesenti, Chief Executive of BenevolentTech, have done a great job in raising the profile of UK AI and highlighting the tremendous opportunities and the significant challenges we face. They urge the government to help the UK become the clear world leader in the development of AI – “to boost productivity, advance health care, improve services for customers and unlock £630bn for the UK economy.” Read more ›
A central aim of Education Secretary Justine Greening is ‘enabling children to reach their full potential’ . The idea comes into many of her speeches. It appeared in the DfE’s response to the head of OFSTED Amanda Spielman’s complaint on October 11 that the focus on SATs and GCSEs is at the expense of ‘rich and full knowledge’. The response states that ‘Our reforms are ensuring children are taught the knowledge and skills they need to fulfil their potential’.
It’s the kind of phrase that tends to wash over you. It seems no more than a way of saying ‘we want them to do well’ – a politician’s empty comment. But there’s more to it. Ironically for the present government, it was part of the lexicon of the child-centred theorists dominant in teacher training until the 1960s. The London Day Training College, later the Institute of Education, under Percy Nunn and his associates was their main base.
The watchword was ‘development’ and the model was biological. Just as plants grow to Read more ›
Natalia Kucirkova & Teresa Cremin.
Children need to be able to read well to function in society and their engagement as readers needs nurturing from birth. Digital library systems offer enormous opportunities to tap into children’s interests and enhance teachers’ skills as literacy mentors.
They can help teachers and children find relevant content, archive readers’ responses to individual books and share them with others on a large scale. These systems can support reading for pleasure, acting as free book depositories (e.g., International Children’s Digital Library), providing tailored recommendations for new titles on a regular basis (e.g., Epic!) and offering children multimedia story experiences as in a virtual library (e.g., StoryPlace). Teachers’ resistance or openness to the sustained use of such technologies dictates their potential to make a difference to children’s learning.
In our new paper in the Cambridge Journal of Education we explore Read more ›