In-spi-ra-tion

I asked students what inspired them from a recent trip and as I mull the over question in my mind wonder about cultivating inspired thoughts in children.  Of course an obligatory quick search was next because who can think without that any more? 🙂 That search directed me to Steven Johnson’s TED video in which he says, “chance favors the connected mind”.  Along with the connected mind, it’s important to note he also says it can take a long time for ideas to evolve.  

In a recent conversation, I was asked what I think is the “NEXT STEP” to improve education.  We have an awful lot to offer in schools through the use of technology and resources.  If the aforementioned t & r are not available, we can break down barriers in order to reach outside the classroom.  The “next step” however doesn’t come in a package.  We need to better use what we have.  Students need to have some freedom to explore and be inspired. People often want to “fix” education.  If you don’t already know, LEARNING IS MESSY and it should be.  Lack of messiness is the reason we have students who can pass a test but still don’t really understand a concept.  This is the reason mandates, NCLB, and more testing don’t necessarily improve student learning.  Learning happens when we’re happy.  Happiness comes from intrinsic reward. We are rewarded in different ways once we’re given confidence in our own abilities to succeed and allowed some autonomy to explore including exploration with all sorts of people from varying backgrounds (heterogeneous groups). Finally, there needs to be validation in what we accomplish.  

Get inspired and start inspiring.

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