We are not alone; this is encouraging!
Posted by Stephen Dill on September 22, 2008
I had the good fortune to be directed to TED Talks recently and started watching the videos. The TED Talks (Technology, Entertainment and Design) I have heard and seen so far are all fantastic and well worth the time to listen/watch. I find them to be challenging and thought provoking, a direct hit to the brain!
Today I came across one from Sir Ken Robinson entitled “Do Schools Kill Creativity?”
In it, Sir Ken cites many of the same themes we have brought up here: schools are still focused on teaching the same information to all children at the same age in largely the same way with little regard or accommodation of individual learning styles or interests. He laments the hierarchy of subjects taught in every school system around the world. Sir Ken wonders why schools teach the head, but not the body. Why is dance not taught to young children? They dance. They love to dance! He points out that our old model of intelligence puts the most useful subjects to work are at the top of that hierarchy: math and science have precedence. This is not useful in preparing people to capitalize on their strengths and passions. Sir Ken says:
“I believe our only hope for the future is to adopt a new conception of human ecology. One in which we start to reconstitute our conception of the richness of human capacity. Our education system has mined our minds in the way that we strip-mine the earth: for a particular commodity. And for the future it won’t serve us. We have to rethink the fundamental principles upon which we are educating our children.”
In an interview on a podcast I found called Phorecast, Sir Ken echoes the vision that education should continue throughout life, it should be intergenerational, and it should embrace the conduit for exchange called the Internet.
“The only way we will do it [avert disaster] is by seeing our creative capacities for the richness they are, and seeing our children for the hope that they are. And our task is to educate their whole being so they can face this future. By the way, we may not see this future, but they will. And our job is to help them make something of it.”
Isn’t reassuring to find that we are not alone in our vision, nor in our effort? I would welcome and appreciate a referral or introduction to Sir Ken Robinson.