“We are students of words: we are shut up in schools, and colleges, and recitation-rooms, for ten or fifteen years, and come out at last with a bag of wind, a memory of words, and do not know a thing.” ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Education as learning stemmed from our natural curiosity and desire to know the world around us.
Acquiring knowledge will never be out-of-fashion because it is the very essence of education, and “a good unto itself.”
However, sadly enough, today’s schools are driven by curriculum serving other purposes, mistaking rigour for vigour, killing curiosity and creativity, and robbing kids off the enjoyment that learning can provide.
In fact, what has gotten in the way of education in India or at most places around the world is a theory of social engineering that says there is just ONE RIGHT WAY to proceed with growing up.
How I wish our educators were to read and understand Friedrich Nietzsche when he said…
You have your way. I have my way. As for the right way, the correct way, and the only way, it does not exist.
Anyways, find below a brilliant video created from a talk given by Sir Ken Robinson, an English author, speaker, and international advisor on education in the arts to government, non-profits, education, and arts bodies.
Robinson suggests that to engage and succeed, education has to develop on three fronts –
- It should foster diversity by offering a broad curriculum and encourage individualization of the learning process;
- It should foster curiosity through creative teaching, which depends on high quality teacher training and development;
- It should focus on awakening creativity through alternative instructive processes that puts less emphasis on standardized testing thereby giving the responsibility for defining the course of education to individual schools and teachers.
He believes that much of the present education system around the world fosters conformity, compliance, and standardization rather than creative approaches to learning.
As he has often emphasized, we can only succeed if we recognize that education is an organic system, not a mechanical one. Successful school administration is a matter of fostering a helpful climate rather than “command and control”.
This is exactly what Robinson talks about in this video…
If you can’t see the video above, click here.
At The Life School, how we wish the educators in India – especially schools and teachers – were to take lessons from Robinson’s ideas and help our children find their own elements – their own paths to future success – instead of forcing them to conform to ONE RIGHT WAY to proceed with growing up.
After all, while parents only give life to their children, teachers given them the art of living well.