Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?

Are human beings an impossible species to educate? Can we ever achieve a perfect paradigm of education? James Gee would argue that we can never achieve perfection, because human beings can act extremely stupidly. Our minds, thoughts and hearts are in a perpetual state of what you see below:

3626226624_4b3fba8d3a_zConflict. 

All of the inner turmoil swirling both inside & around us lead to limitations on how smart we can be and even more importantly how smartly we can actually solve problems. However, there is hope on the horizon and in my white paper linked HERE, I argue that although these conflicts swirl around and inside of us, the knowledge communities we have formed at the grassroots level provided hope & commitment towards using our smarts.

What do you think? Do you think Twitter chats and other grassroots, educator-led communities are leading us to become smarter problem solvers?

References

Full reference of James Gee’s (2013) book The Anti-Education Era: Creating Smarter Students Through Digital Learning contained in attachment

Sid. (2009). Businessmen fighting 2001. [Image file]. Retrieved from https://goo.gl/k42Xb4

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One thought on “Why Can’t We All Just Get Along?

  1. dacmsu says:

    Hi,

    Although I did not include the following quote from Chapter 7 of Gee’s text, I thought it was indicative of the personal learning environments we’re able to create because of digital media:

    “Such self-organizing knowledge communities also freeze thought. They have their own standard and conventional ways of proceeding, often built bottom up and democratically to some extent. But they seem to be able to unfreeze decisions and solutions faster than formal institutions can. And they very often meet people’s personal and professional social goals and needs in very deep ways while simultaneously allowing them to contribute to a larger group in a meaningful way.”

    Recently, there was a book published entitled The University of Everywhere by Kevin Carey. Essential Gee summarized Carey’s thesis in this statement. Thanks to digital media, we (humanity with internet access) have the ability to organize ourselves around our special interests, which would include professional development. Unfortunately, if our self selected groups can function as “old school” institutions. That said, the fact the these groups typically have a constant dialogue and are organized around micro topics, the likelihood of becoming another entrenched “institution” is not as likely.

    In short, in our small, self selected groups, we can get along. Unfortunately for most of us, we are stuck functioning in institutions that are so entrenched in (for lack of a better descriptor) tradition, that it is impossible to get along. Since I tend to be an aggressive divergent thinker, recently I have been functioning under the “it’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission” method of attempting to do what’s right in my classroom. :-)!

    Denise

    Like

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