Sunday, January 9, 2011

21st C. education

Pete recently shared this video  (also watch it below) with our class -- it raises interesting, open ended questions... Sir Ken Robinson argues that we need more opportunities to practice and share divergent thinking -- coming up with many answers to a question or problem, rather than fixating on a single one.  This seems in line with my understanding of Quaker process --- create space for many ideas or truths to emerge and be shared and then move toward discerning a truth or set of truths that the community can work with/toward.  Robinson argues that kids begin with high levels of creativity and that it is largely beaten out of them through formal education and the pressures for conformity and convergent thinking in modern childhood.  He offers less around how we build skills for quality discernment - what, besides wisdom, helps us choose from the thousands of good ideas we can produce?  What skills do we need to be able to share our ideas and work with other people's ideas?

This would be a great parent & kid conversation!

1 comment:

Maya said...

Kim, I love this! Lots of the kids who are having problems 'focusing' in school, who are being medicated to sit through it all, who are labelled 'disruptive' and 'immature' are, I suspect, those who remain divergent thinkers despite all efforts to make them conform. In short, they are our strongest divergent thinkers and should be encouraged. They know how they're "supposed" to behave and think. If they can be taught to draw links from what they are thinking to what the mainstream, convergent thinkers are thinking, so that the convergent thinkers can see their point, they will be a lot less frustrated and allowed to be more productive. Hmmmmmm...