Since I brought up one academic’s view on the state of the educational system last week, it’s certainly worth sharing the view of an outspoken non-academic–Dan Brown and his “Open Letter to Educators“:
What I find particularly exciting, is that Dan’s confrontation and engagement with the problems in institutional education has caused him to change his own actions. He plans to continue engaging in other important conversations after seeing the kinds of interaction and dialogue that can come from contemplating these important topics:
I think that is stellar cool.
Now, of course, some people would disagree with Dan’s thoughts/opinion. This guy, for instance:
Personally, I think they both do raise thought-provoking points, but I have to side with Dan on this one. Maybe it’s the other guy’s snarkiness and continual attack against Dan as a college dropout (which, I think, does not give him much credibility in understanding the amount of people who aren’t college educated), but, to me, arguing that “this is the way things have always been done, so we’re gonna keep doing it” is not a valid counter-argument. I fail to see what is wrong with creating an environment where students are engaged. Yes, each student is responsible for their own education and they should actively involve themselves in class discussions, exercises, etc. for their own benefit. I truly do believe that, but, as anyone who has spent time in a classroom environment knows, environments where students are engaged leads to better discussions. It’s leads to a better learning environment. And, for educators, shouldn’t that be the point?
I’m not trying to discount research. Of course, research is important and beneficial to our society, but it’s only one facet of the educational system. That’s why some fields delineate between researchers and those who practice that research. But, if we’re talking about “educators,” then they should be invested in and concerned with educat-ing. To me, that means also being open to better ways of doing just that.
via The Clever Sheep