Sunday, February 15, 2009

ITSC Sunday Evening (Sir Ken Robinson)

What are we taking for granted? ...our sense of creativity
We don't know what we take for granted ... because we take it for granted!


Creativity: The process of having original ideas that have value
  1. It's not special people that have it.
  2. It's not about special things (artsy vs. all the other things in life where talent exists)
  3. You can help increase creativity.
They have high standards, but they're not standardized. Excellence comes not through standardizing but through customizing. The enemy of raising standards is conformity.

Tonsectomies--A false epidemic of the 50s and 60s.
Our current false epidemic is ADHD. Too many people are being casually given this label.

Linear vs. Divergent Thinking
Redefining Genius: 98% of kindergartners vs 32% of 5th graders scored genius on a divergent thinking test.

Blue Man Group

Why wear a watch..It's like a single-function device! How lame.

blue man school finding their element video
Freight cars and school is a silo. No, we are a launch pad.

A better metaphor for education is not industrialism but agriculture. What is holding education back is the depersonizing, conformity, and standardizing.

Michaelangelo--I didn't make the David--the David was in the stone all the time... all I did was reveal him. It was actually easy. All you have to do is see which parts of the stone are not David and remove them.

Bertrand Russell
"Is the world divided into mind and matter, and, if so, what is mind and what is matter? Is mind subject to matter, or is it possessed of independent powers? Has the universe any unity or purpose? Is it evolving towards some goal? Are there really laws of nature, or do we believe in them only because of our innate love of order? Is man what he seems to the astronomer, a tiny lump of impure carbon and water impotently crawling on a small and unimportant planet? Or is he what he appears to Hamlet? Is he perhaps both at once? Is there a way of living that is noble and another that is base, or are all ways of living merely futile? If there is a way of living that is noble, in what does it consist, and how shall we achieve it? Must the good be eternal in order to deserve to be valued, or is it worth seeking even if the universe is inexorably moving towards death? . . .

"The studying of these questions, if not the answering of them, is the business of philosophy."


A better metaphor for education is not industrialism but agriculture. What is holding education back is the depersonizing, conformity, and standardizing.

Michaelangelo--I didn't make the David--the David was in the stone all the time... all I did was reveal him. It was actually easy. All you have to do is see which parts of the stone are not David and remove them.

Question and Answer Session

Last summer someone keynoting another conference talked about educators re-arranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Is the ship worth saving or shall we find a lifeboat.

We can't stop education and put it into dry dock. We have to rebuild while were at sea. History is with us in that the current system is breaking down. Reference here the declining value of the degree.

It's not going to be a revolution as much as an increased evolution. One of the great bridgeheads here is going to be information technology.

Schools won't go away, but they need to focus on practical arts, collaborative work. Teachers must become curators of knowledge rather than sources of knowledge.

We think if we can't count it, it doesn't count.

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