photo © 2005 David Jakes | more info (via: Wylio)
For the first week’s comments, the blogger, Mr. Will Richardson, wrote about a new book "The New Culture of Learning"by John Seely Brown. This book sounds intriguing. Richardson quotes several paragraphs about changing the way we view the educational system. Brown states we should think of schools as “learning environments” because “environment” evokes a sense of a living, changing, cooperative situation between the teacher, the students and the reality of an exponentially transforming global society. The author mentioned the metaphor “…teach a man to fish…” to illustrate the problem faced by modern students. He writes, “[T]he pool of unchanging resources is shrinking, and that the pond is providing us with fewer and fewer things that we can even identify as fish anymore.” What this means for teachers is we must do more than teach reading and writing. We must teach students to survive by being able to adapt to changes and know how to “learn” not simply pass a test. Richardson states “It’s more than about the language and the lens we bring, but that’s an important starting point in the work.” I agreed that we need to teach our students the skills they will need to compete in a global market where things are changing faster than we can sometimes adapt.
Mr. Richard’s second blog I read was written the week of Educon and the uprising in Cairo. Richardson poses the question, “When's Our Egypt Movement?” He ponders when will American parents/educators finally stand and say, “Enough already! We demand a better system.” Although he doubts the passion will equal that of the Egyptians, he hopes that it will be enough to perpetuate the change needed. Of course, a valid problem, he points out, is how can parents pull their children out of the current schools without adequately different schools to which to send them. I shared the experiences of my frustrated former students when I taught for an alternative school. It was dreadful how badly our school system had failed so many students. Mr. Richardson also pointed out the school system seems to be falling apart on its own and perhaps we need to concentrate on implementing a new system as the current one fades.