Every country on earth, at moment, is reforming public education. There are two reasons for it, the first is economics, people trying to workout –
How do we educate our children to take the economies of the 21st century? Given that we can’t anticipate what the economy will look like at the end of next week. How do we do that? The second is cultural, every country on earth is trying to how do we educate so that they have sense of cultural identity. So that we can pass on our genes of community as the part of globalization. How do square that circle? The problem is that they are trying to do what they did in the past. On the way they are alienating millions of kids, who don’t see a purpose of going to school. When we went to school, we were told a story – we worked hard – did well – college to go and job to do. Present kids don’t believe that. We can’t deny that either. By having doesn’t guarantee a good job. Particularly not if the route to it marginalizes what you think important about yourself. Some people says, we need to raise the standards. Yes, we should! Raising will bring extra cost to them. The problem is (19th century onwards) the current education system is designed, conceived and structured for a different age. It was conceived in the intellectual culture of the enlightenment and in the economic circumstance of industrial revolution. Before the mid of 19th century there were no public education system. You might educated from Jesuits if you have the money. But public education paid the money for by taxation, compulsory to everyone and free at the point of delivery; this was a revolutionary idea. Many people objected to this, they said its not possible for working or street kids to benefit from public education. They are incapable of learning to read and write. They felt, its not necessary to spend time on this. This indicated the assumptions of social cultural capacity. It was driven by economic imperative of that time. This was the intellectual model of mind and this is said to be academic ability. There are two kinds of people ‘academic’ also known as ‘smart people’ and ‘non-academic’ also known as ‘non-smart people’. As the consequence of that, many brilliant people (non-academic) think that they are not. This is because they are injected with this particular view of the mind. So we have economic and intellectual and this model has caused ‘Chaos’. This has worked wonders to few and for not most people. The present children are in the intensely stimulating period in the history of the earth.They receive information from every platforms like computers, iphones, advertise hoardings, 100’s of television channels. They are penalized from getting distracted – from what? ‘Today’s lesson are boring stuff’ at school. In order to focus and calm, there are various drugs made available in market. The drugs could be dangerous and can pose threat. It’s likely that we are getting our children through education by anesthetizing them. We should do exactly opposite, we should be waking them to what is inside themselves.
The model we have is education is modeled on the interest of industrialization and in the image of it. For example, the schools are pretty much organized in the factory lines like ringing bells, separate facilities, separate specialized subjects. We still educate children by batches. We put them in system by age group and why do we do that? Why is it important assumptions? Is this most important thing? the date of manufacturing? We have seen many kids are much better than other kids of different age group in other disciplines or different times of the day or better in small groups rather than in large ones or even on their own.
If you are interested in model of education, you don’t start from production line mentality. It is essential about confirmatory and standard testing, curriculum and its about standardization. Perhaps we need to go to exact opposite directions and its the change in the paradigm. There was a great study on divergent thinking, it is an essential capacity of creativity. It’s the ability to see lot of possible answers to a question and lots of ways to interpret a question. Not to think linear or convergent ways, to see multiple answers not one. For example- how many uses can you think of for a paper clip? Most people will think of 10-15 ways (fish hook, barbie hanger), people who are good at divergent thinking will think of 200 ways. 1500 kindergarden children were administered with divergent thinking test, if a child scores on a certain; the child was considered to be genius in divergent thinking. It was found 98% of children were genius. This test was longitudinal study, the test was administered to the same children five and ten years later. The percentage dropped considerably. This shows that we all have capacity and it mostly deteriorates.This is because the kids have grown up a lot. One of the most important thing is that, by now they have become educated. They are in school and they have been told one answer, that is in back and don’t look, copy – because its cheating. Outside the school its called collaborations. It’s not that teachers want this way, it happens in this way.
In the gene pool of education, we have to think differently about human capacity. We need to get over the old concept of academics, non-academics, abstract, theoretical, vocational or a myth. Second thing is the most learning happens in group – collaboration is the stuff of growth. If we atomize and separate people; judged them separately – we will form a disjunction between them and a natural environment. Thirdly its crucial about culture of our institutions. The habits of institutions and the habits they occupy such as academic (GDP) and non-academic (scum).
This content is taken from Sir Ken Robinson talk. The article is provided to educated people and provide information.