After reading this article on 5 alternative teaching methods: http://www.mentalfloss.com/blogs/archives/25926
I began considering the use of technology in classrooms. This is hardly a new field of consideration. The “Harkness method” in paricular, though, made me think of the value of having every student interconnected.
Imagine sitting around a circular table where everyone has a built in tabletop computer. Problems are assigned and worked out in real time. This means that errors can be corrected as soon as they occur! Also, socratic method could be used to guide struggling problem-solvers at the precise point of confusion.
In addition, this could allow for asynchronous pacing since each screen could progress through a lesson at the appropriate speed. Students who finished lessons quickly could either progress ahead and/or help the slower students. Or they could proceed laterally into tangential fields to deepen their understanding while still not getting too far ahead.
Another advantage to this system is that it would allow the collection of a huge amount of real time data. This learning data could be used to improve a student’s individual learning environment. In addition, every student is (more or less) constantly involved and interacting, rather than passively listening (or not listening, as the case may be).