Rethinking Education Pt.2: It Is Not a School, It Is a Factory

Sir Ken Robinson changed the way many smart people think about education, its purpose and its problems, with his books and famous “Do Schools Kill Creativity” talk on TED.

What we often have today is not schools – it is factories. The demand for factories replacing schools was voiced some time ago in top billionaire speech: “We do not need thinkers, we need managers”.

But do We want our children to be thoughtless managers? I personally do not.

I will surely stand for doing your work well, whatever your work is. But it doesn’t mean making a machine of yourself.

I’ll tell you a story a friend of mine shared with me. She is working in serious games industry.

At her office, there are two kinds of people:

  1. People who understand that game is just a simulation, showing the typical situations and typical actions.
  2. People who try to simulate the game in reality – as is.

“It is scary, – she says – to see how people give up thinking, when they see typical scenarios. The game intented to educate actually is preventing the thoughts.”

From the business viewpoint it can seem quite reasonable to train (not to educate) people to do their work according to the rules.

But today we see an increasing understanding that factories are no more the way we want our life to be fit in. Seth Godin perfectly described it in Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us.

The time of teacher

Establishing schools and education in Sir Ken’s point obviously not a work of instant. But most importantly, this process requires finding remarkable teachers, teachers with big T. Teachers who inspire, who spark the thoughts, who have passion and deep understanding.

How many of such unforgettable teachers can you remember in your life? I guess you would wish to have met more of them.

There are many reasons true teachers do not teach, see e.g. Time article “How to Make Great Teachers”, one of most important is the lack of leadership in education, the lack of leaders like Patrick Awuah.

For the time of teacher to come two kinds decisions are necessary to be made:

  1. The teachers should make a decision to be remarkable.
  2. The parents should make a decision to be the most remarkable teachers for their children.

It is not about money at all, it is all about passion.

Creativity is about passion. Educating passion, you educate creativity. Educating love, you educate creativity. Educating forgiveness, you educate creativity.

Leading photo by Sonya >> ???

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