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Updated by Barbara Bujtás on Aug 02, 2014
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Blog Posts Sugata Mitra IATEFL 2014

Jeremy Harmer

Last Saturday Sugata Mitra gave a plenary at an international teachers' conference. When it was over a proportion of the audience gave him a standing ovation, but an equal number refused to get to their feet and a proportion of the 'reaming seated' crowd expressed outrage and fury at what they had heard and seen....

Sugata Mitra: The Ignorant School Teacher?

There has been a lot of debate about the ideas of Sugata Mitra after his recent plenary at IATEFL. Find a nice summary of these posts / discussions through this post. I'm kind of confused by all the kerfuffle. I've been writing and thinking about Mitra's constructivist premise...


The final day's IATEFL opening plenary speaker, After What was all the fuss about? I responded to many of the comments on Facebook and Twitter based on As Cathy Davidson (author of Sugata Mitra, like many others, However, I digress.


This is part 2 - part 1 can be read here Sugata Mitra's plenary on the last day of the IATEFL conference was entitled The Future of Learning, which "takes us through the origins of schooling as we know it" and explores his work related to self-organising learning environments.

Sugata Mitra at IATEFL 2014 - my reaction

OR 'When an IATEFL plenary pushed people's buttons in a major way' Saturday 4 April 2014 saw the last day of the IATEFL Annual Conference in Harrogate. As is customary with plenary talks at this conference, an annual occasion when 2000-odd English language teachers descend on a city in the UK for just under a week, this one at the end of the IATEFL week promised to provoke thought and divide opinion.

The obsolescence of teachers - the Sugata Mitra controversy

The obsolescence of teachers - the Sugata Mitra controversy Chia Suan ChongThe plenary talk by Sugata Mitra at the IATEFL Harrogate conference on Saturday has sparked many debates on Twitter, Facebook and in the blogosphere, igniting my curiosity, and spurring me on to watch the talk online.

#IATEFL 2014: The Sugata Mitra Debate

Well. This one was controversial. In some respects what Sugata Mitra said in his plenary on Saturday morning doesn't even matter anymore, such was the debate it sparked and which still continues via facebook and twitter. Mitra, it is clear, has his devotees and his detractors.

Why we should be afraid of the big bad wolf: Sugata Mitra and the neoliberal takeover in sheep's clothing

The proliferation of blog posts that have followed in the wake of Sugata Mitra's keynote speech at IATEFL Harrogate last Saturday morning is almost as remarkable as the fact that such a controversial figure was given the opportunity to deliver his barely concealed sales pitch to such a large and captive audience without having to submit to the usual plenary speaker protocol of then facing a more rigorous Q&A session.

The Future of ELT

It was interesting to be at IATEFL this year, the annual land grab for attention larger than ever, and a conference dominated by discussions, presentations and a plenary about the future of ELT, which - it is suggested - will be completely mediated by technologies (more of this fallacy later).


Sugata is NOT making a case for obsolescence of teachers.

Sugata is NOT making a case for obsolescence of teachers.

Sugata is NOT making a case for obsolescence of teachers. This is how people interpret him because of the way teacher-training explains to them the role of the teacher. And yet each textbook in pedagogy says that the ROLE of the teacher is now changing., How so? So maybe the commentators against Mitra could comment on HOW exactly is this role changing when Mitra has shown that it is not. If teachers continue doing what they did 300 years ago, how can they claim that their role is changing? And now these complaints against Mitra and us re-acting as Giroux says, not as intellectuals with reflection, but as parts in a machine worrying that they may throw out the machine