Sunday 18 September 2011

Ken Robinson's Outro from #TEDxLondon

Sir Ken opened by reminding us that we're living in revolutionary times. Behind these revolutions are two drivers.
  1. Population growth (We are nearing 7bn worldwide and set to reach 9bn in the future)
  2. Technology (It transforms everything we do)
And the key to our future according to the revolutionary Malcolm X, is education:
Education is our passport to the future,
for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today

HG Wells was also referenced by Sir Ken, "Civilisation is a race between education and catastrophe," he quoted and we need to ensure education catches up in this race and think about the basic purpose of education.

We also need to remember that this conversation is not happening in a vacuum, in fact there are many people working on the same problems, Twitter is a goldmine for #edchat discussions and sharing of best practice. The HeArt project in LA is another example which is leading the way in the future of alternative education. They have five principles designed to specifically address school dropout:
  1. Learning should be based on a personalised curriculum
  2. Teacher to student ratio is vital
  3. Group activity and collaboration should be encouraged
  4. We should seek to find the interests of the individual learners
  5. The need to shape the learning environment to suit the learners
Ken would go on to state that these principles are surely principles of all good education, not just alternative education. It is a shame that these ideas now belong at the fringe of educational thinking and they should be brought more into the centre.

Moving onto Technology, which was a common theme in all the talks. Technology needs to be integrated into learning. Technology on its own does not do much, but what you do with it can make all the difference. We need to prepare students for the future and mirroring what Guy Claxton said at a Keynote address earlier in the year , it is difficult for us to predict the future, so we will have to be resilient. Education after all is an art form, not just a delivery system. We will learn and master it through trial and error.

Ken's pledge was to "help shape the future in which we all want to live in".

There was not much more to say in this succinct outro, other than

"Let's start this revolution!" 

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