The book “Schools that Learn” is engaging and keeps you thinking about the pros and cons of our current educational approach. It touches on a lot of issues faced by educators and attempts to take a realistic stance. To a large extent it is successful, while it does neglect some problems faced by educators. I think many of these realities, testing, time crunches etc. can be overcome with a little creativity and vigor. I guess I can’t help but feel the book is a bit idealistic. For instance fostering creativity by pushing our students’ inner passions is a great idea. I have many students that are saturated with ideas and have found things that they are passionate about, even at a young age. This is often missed by educators and this treasure trove is overlooked. On the other hand I also have many students who either have not developed such passions yet or are unwilling to relate them to school. It begs the question; will this work on the most difficult of students? Is the most unmotivated student going to assess their own strengths and weaknesses? Will they strive for personal mastery? I hope so!
Sage can’t help but get you thinking about changing the structure of education: by using strategies such as team learning. I think this is a challenge but do find that even the students who are the least interested can find ideas or topics to relate to on some level. This will ignite passion for the topic and foster creativity.
The power of group learning is very important and is what we at team use as our foundation. Doing away with the production line method of education and developing a learning community can be successful in the future. To a great extent our educational system places a great importance on standardized exams. This seems to be the wrong path. Students need to have the freedom to explore questions and develop a passion for learning.