Work on the belief that by acknowledging how things can get better you are contributing to the process of happiness. Write an un-sent letter to a topic or group of people that need to work on certain things in order for you to be happy in their company.
Dear passionate practitioners of learning,
I’m not bitter about education. I don’t entirely feel that as an educator I was, “damned by the man” or “suffocated by the system.” I have met many students and educators that I was honored to know. I’ve experienced constructive observations and innovative blended-learning lessons. I’ve have developed content for learners on all levels at perilous districts and in achievement schools. I consider myself an avid learner of the newest technologies and well versed in a variety of design formats. I can both complain about education and commend educator’s effort(s) for reform.
Here’s what I think: I believe that education (the state-mandated curriculum) has been saturated with too many need-to-know particulars and concepts that leave very little room for the expansion of a learner’s creativity and opinion. I have written so many acceptable objectives that I was told must be measurable. I was often concerned about my lesson’s projected assessment-driven results.
I get frustrated sometimes because the answer to what students need in order to be successful is complicated. Given the advancements in technology and the increase of population and demands- I know this: moral and intellectual exploration need addressing most in this highly competitive world.
Can education have a sophisticated infrastructure and adhere to a worldly vision statement? To be honest, I believe it can- but the process is going to be one hell of a bumpy-ride. I think that what is deemed as relevant content needs to be criticized and examined as well as foster lively, meaningful, dialogue that aids the envision process. For example, when The Crucible is taught, half the lesson should address characterization and plot and the other half should encourage the students to learn about themselves (or what they can create), while applying the content’s theme of divination. For this to happen, districts need to spend more time on allowing the student’s to absorb what they can individually learn through literature rather than how many titles can be added to existing cannons.
In life, we are in search of meaning and entrepreneurs on a daily basis. I do not know the direct-answer to education’s reform; but I think we need to collectively lean a little more towards what our students are capable of learning and what it means to them as individuals and a little less towards what our students are capable of memorizing and regurgitating. For this reason, formal education has taken a backseat- I am now, more than ever, curious about what innovative companies can bring to the education reform table.
I acknowledge that the topic of education reform is broad and encompasses many approaches/understandings. What I suggest is approaching education through resources that specialize in digital tools and computational models to pursue humanist research.
To all the educators and entrepreneurs (like myself) who are passionate practitioners of the quest for learning- Good luck in the delicate balance of what is to be expected and the unforeseen potential. Sometimes I get exhausted with mission of education’s reform; but I would rather struggle through a process of something I believe in, then never to have tried at all.
I might not be able to find a solution to what concerns me today, but today I can acknowledge my concerns and in return feel happy for my progress.