In searching for an educationally themed video or presentation, I came across an interesting video that was created around a talk from Sir Ken Robinson on changing paradigms in education. It is an animate created by RSA. I am a very visual learner and this video took an engaging lecture and added an appealing and interesting visual representation.
Robinson begins by highlighting how every country’s education is in the process of change. This change is based on the different society we live in today as compared to the society when education was developed. Although there is change happening, he talks about how it will not occur successfully because we are still attempting to educate in ways that began in the 19th century. The effect that education has on different types of people is addressed and some of the effects are not positive, Robinson believes that it has created chaos for more people than not.
This video made me think about a lot of issues in education. What is talked about is not surprising to me but it was definitely a realization. I think I agree with most of what is discussed I am just not sure how I will be able to carry it all out in my classroom. I do not want to, as it says in the video, alienate students based on who fits into the ‘good student’ category. I also agree with the idea of divergent thinking and its importance in creativity and how schools normally shut this down.
When the values of education are discussed and how they have changed over time I cannot help but think about my 17 years in some sort of schooling. The importance of some subjects over other subjects is well known to all students. The people who excel in these few areas are considered the smart ones and little acknowledgment is given to students who might excel in other areas not considered as important. When I went to school they were considered core and non-core subjects, in order to get a recommend you had to have an 80% in the core subjects (Math, ELA, Science, and Social) and in order to get a recommend in the non-core subjects (Art, Shop, Home Ec) you needed an 85%. The only thing this showed us was that it was expected that we do better in the non-core subjects because they were considered ‘easier’ and the core subjects were the ones that took more ‘effort’ and ‘knowledge’.
I personally know the effect this had on some people who did not do as well in these ‘important subjects’ but did exceed in the less valued subjects. Despite being extremely athletic and knowledgeable in many different areas outside of school the person was portrayed as ‘dumb’ and not going to go anywhere unless they tried harder in their classes and got into university. This has greatly affected the way they view themselves as a part of society. I don’t believe that as an educator I have the right to decide who is a value to society and who will not be based on their performance in school.