I guess I will start off my first journal entry by sharing a video that I first saw about 2 years ago in Education 100W. I specifically remember this video as I was inspired by what the speaker, Sir Ken Robinson, had to say about education, talent, and how the current state of education is in need of a revolution. Robinson claims that educational reform is not enough anymore because “it is simply improving a broken model” and that in order to create meaningful changes the educational system needs a revolution to be transformed.
In regards to how this video relates to “educational experience” Robinson mentions that all too often the educational experience of many progresses in a linear fashion. In my own educational experience I can relate to my educational experience being a linear one. From kindergarten through to grade twelve I can recall my educational experience as starting at “Point A” and moving onward to progress to “Point Z”. Looking back it seems as if each year I spent in school was meant to prepare me for the upcoming year, and so on. While this linear model makes sense in terms of “expected learning outcomes” it creates a rather rigid structure where students are expected to learn A, B and C within a certain amount of time in a certain fashion. This linear progression of education limits the way in which students learn and the types of things that students learn.
One of the potential downfalls of such a linear structure is that students are limited in the ways that they can learn. A linear structure is a rigid one that does not allow for a lot of flexibility. Each student has their own individual style of learning that suits them best and unfortunately linear structure does not allow the freedom of flexibility for each student to learn in the style that best suits them. While i don’t have the answer to this problem, I think that we need to reconsider the linear education experience and try to make room for a more organic and flexible learning structure. I don’t mean disregard all structure, but rather allow for moments of organic learning to take place and open your mind that not all educational experiences need to take place within the confines of the classroom. Learning can take place anywhere! Mix things up, change the scenery, ask students to share what they want to learn, the possibilities are endless.
Anyways, that more or less sums up my thoughts for my first journal entry. I hope some of you will watch this video and enjoy it like i still do on my fourth viewing. I think Sir Ken Robinson’s closing statement will resonate with many of you like it did me. As future educators we must “tread softly”.