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A global network of cross-generational teacher-learners

Leverage remote learning capabilities to enable students to teach and learn from students and seniors across the globe.

Photo of Klara Pelcl
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Written by

I am a.....

  • Design Researcher with background in Pedagogy & Translation

Tell us about your idea

What better way to learn about different places, languages, history and culture than from the people who live there and have been through it all?
This idea is to establish a global and cross-generational community/network for learners and teacher-learners, guided and moderated by teachers. 

It introduces a different way of learning which leverages the internet and modern technology in a way that lets students look beyond borders and learn by connecting with others, as well as opens up new opportunities to build global communities, activate and enrich the lives of seniors. Here are 2 main benefits:
The first benefit is to enable students to choose to learn directly from their peers or seniors who live in other countries and share knowledge about different cultures and languages both ways. They would teach each other and walk out with a richer experience having learned directly from someone their age (maybe even connecting over mutual interests, hobbies...) or someone who has "been through it all".

The second benefit is about activating seniors as teachers (and learners). The elderly have been especially isolated during covid-19, but senior isolation is not a new problem. Learning and teaching can occur in all walks of life, and along with this remote way of socializing, teaching and learning across generations, I believe we can enrich the lives of seniors as well.

I imagine this would require schools and senior establishments to collaborate with each other, the parents  and students to develop an international network like this with a variety of programs where teachers would be able to support students as they choose these new learning paths.

What part(s) of the pre-COVID school system do you wish to leave in the past? Why?

Standardized testing, students spending hours in classrooms, limiting access to the internet and schools continuously lagging behind even thought they need to evolve to meet the increasing need for creativity, flexibility and resourcefulness required in the times where new vocations are created faster than formal training for them.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what inspired you to share this idea.

I'm a UX Researcher with a background in Pedagogy and Translation and a big fan of Sir Ken Robinson. When people ask me what I'd do if I could do anything, I find myself saying I'd start my own school. This is a simple way of saying I think schools need to change drastically to accommodate today's ways of life and work and I'd love to contribute to these changes.

This challenge sparked some ideas based on a book I read a while ago that got me thinking about educational transformation and personalizing rather than standardizing it (The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything). 

I finally decided to submit my idea that I think, allows for students to make decisions how and who they would like to connect with and learn directly from as including the topic they want to learn about. In addition, it puts responsibility into students' hands as well, since they would be actively teaching their partners as well.

What region are you located in?

  • North America

Where are you located?

I live in San Leandro, a nice town in East Bay, California, that is very welcoming to people from everywhere and has a number of businesses that focus on building a community.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Maike Strudthoff

I like the peer learning idea. People that are passionate about a topics are more likely to inspire others to learn about it. I feel Learning Together (social interaction) in learning is powerful. Learning-by-Doing TOGETHER 

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