Steve Jobs held an interesting dream of a unique iPad-based classroom, as revealed in an excerpt from Walter Isaacson’s recent biography, in which Jobs met with U.S. President Barack Obama. In addition to addressing the difficulties of moving iPhone and iPad manufacturing to the U.S., he had the following to say about education:
It was absurd, he added that American classrooms were still based on teachers standing at a board and using textbooks. All books, learning materials, and assessments should be digital and interactive, tailored to each student and providing feedback in real time.
Instead of textbooks and whiteboards, Jobs envisioned the creation of digital textbooks which could be viewed on the iPad, and the use of the iPad as a collaboration and presentation tool, eliminating the need for both paper learning materials and the traditional concept of the white board.
Now it appears that Steve Jobs’ vision of the ultimate iPad classroom may finally be coming true, according to a proposition coined by a panel of four Dutch educators. As MacRumors reports:
A panel of four Dutch educators and politicians is proposing to fulfill Steve Jobs’ vision and create a school where students are taught with iPads. The proposal will be presented on Monday [Google Translate] in Amsterdam. The plan, called Education for a New Era, is designed to help students learn “21st century skills” and push the limits of what can be done in a classroom.
At the moment it is only a proposal – a mere suggestion. But if the proposal is accepted, it would involve extensive use of educational apps, and the first “Steve Jobs schools” would begin opening to the public in August of next year, making Apple’s recent digital textbook initiative the very beginning of a much broader educational revolution.