Why school? Post 1

This will be the first in a series of posts based on the book Why school? by Will Richardson. If your interested it can be downloaded from Amazon to your Kindle or iPad Kindle app for $2.04 (at the moment). The reason for bringing this book to your attention and discussing it in further posts is to generate discussion on a topic that is current.

I came across the book Why school? on Twitter, it is an easy read and raises many questions about our students learning in 2012 and beyond. Its main premise is that teachers, knowledge, learning and getting an education are no longer scarce commodities that can only really be accessed through institutions but are now abundantly available thanks to the Internet.

“Today if we have an Internet connection , we have at our finger tip, on-demand access to an amazing library that holds close to the sum of human knowledge and, equally important, to more than two billion people with whom we can potentially learn.” Will Richardson, Why school?

The author does acknowledge that the Internet is not without its issues, both in equity and as a place that is difficult to navigate, “It can be overwhelming, distracting, nonsensical, and at times frightening.” He also sees schools as important places, “I believe there remains a great deal of value in the idea of a school as a place our kids go to learn with others, to be inspired by caring adults………..Communities built around schools are better for it.”

This video is a good introduction to Will Richardson’s views on education. It is a TEDxNYED talk made before the publication of the book Why schools?


4 thoughts on “Why school? Post 1

  1. Hooray Nick. Absolutely 100% agree with the basis of what Will Richardson discusses here. We must become increasingly relevant and not stand still for a second. Not saying I am progressing my teaching every second of the day, but what a massive challenge we have. The ‘phenomenon’ that is an educational institution is so archaic if we allow it to become that way, if we rest on our laurels and allow schooling even of the 80’s and 90’s to be replicated in todays schools.
    I note with interest, that whilst absent on camp with many of my year 9 maths kids, two of those that did not attend camp have demonstrated their learning whilst remaining in Broughton by adding posts to our class Blog. One would/could be considered extremely disengaged (for Broughton) and yet he has added a post. Challenging for me and him to continue that evolvement, however if I stayed with the whole ‘pencil/paper/text book process I could have near guaranteed nothing would have happened with his learning in my absence. Another high achieving student who attended camp has posted learning on our Blog since our return… all really exciting stuff.
    The article looks great, when I get that Kringle…….. ooops Kindle

  2. This was a great video Nick. Very inspiting speaker. I really like the bit where he said we need to teach differently not better.

  3. Pingback: Why school? Post 2
  4. He had my attention from the moment he played a fragment of Don’t Stop Believing by Journey.

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