Friday, April 18, 2014

40 Days & 40 Words: Meaning

I always wondered why there always seems to be DRAMA in I know! Education is probably the most creative of all endeavors, for both the educator and the student. We are constantly reinventing ourselves based on some new goal, mandate, or the whims of society at large. Yet the truth is the more we reinvent ourselves, the more we stay the same.

There are new names for old programs, a new way of packaging something, new terms and lots of discussions but in the end if you look beneath the surface much of education is the same. You can call it outcome based education or essential learning objectives, GLEs or Common Core or any other number of names but the bottom line is we are striving to give students the knowledge base they need to be successful citizens. That's not an easy task in today's world with rapidly evolving technology and information that explodes into new dimensions practically every week.

With a wealth of information at our fingertips we still flounder with human interactions. Perhaps even more so than before. Conversations are a thing of the past. In my life I built meaning through conversations. Meaning came about because I thought about something, talked about it, pondered it, perhaps even looked in up in an actual book. Don't get me wrong I love our technology and how it enriches my life but at the same time it also limits my own personal brain growth, problem solving skills and collaboration. It limits our students in the trials and errors of debate, arguing a point, and being able to clearly articulate their thought processes.
Here's another little tidbit I came across and it speaks volumes. How we determine what is significant is all based on how much is truth and how much is not. Remember that earlier post about putting a spin on things? This is another indicator of the dangers of "spinning things."  When it happens over and over again we diminish the significance. If education is all about "selling" something than we diminish the significance of education. I don't care what it is. It can be the latest program, the interview process, the FFA program or the coaching staff. If it's lowers the significance. In fact the more spin we have to put on something....the more we twist the "truth" and give our version of "why" things are going the way they are the more we lower the significance of it and it becomes meaningless. Sometimes in trying to promote a personal agenda we become our own worst enemies. Soon whatever it is we want to accomplish is scoffed by others.
So those are my thoughts for today...back soon with another word!

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