Monday, December 20, 2010

Talent,Friction, Smartboards, and other Matters

We make very poor use of our talents . . . .There are many possible explanations for it, and high among them is education. Because education, in a way, dislocates many people from their natural talents, and human resources are like natural resources-- They are often buried very deep. . . .You have to create the circumstances where they show themselves. And you might imagine that education is the way that happens, but too often it's not. . . Every education system in the word is being reformed at the moment. And it's not enough. Reform is no use, anymore. Because that's merely improving a broken model.

Sir Kenneth Robinson, Bring on the Learning Revolution, TED Talk.

Many academics question industry-backed studies linking improved test scores to their products. And some go further. They argue that the most ubiquitous device-of-the-future, the smartboard -- essentially a giant interactive computer screen that is usurping blackboards in classrooms across America -- locks teachers into a 19th-century lecture style of instruction counter to the more collaborative small-group models that many reformers favor.

Stephanie McCrummen, " Some Educators Question. . . ." Washington Post


The new media have caught on for a reason. Knowledge is increasing exponentially; human brainpower and waking hours are not. Fortunately, the Internet and information technologies are helping us manage, search and retrieve our collective intellectual output at different scales, from Twitter and previews to e-books and online encyclopedias. Far from making us stupid, these technologies are the only things that will keep us smart.

Steven Pinker, "Mind over Mass Media New York Times

It's not good enough to ask your team to "be more creative" or to "tighten up the purse strings" . . . Inertia and decision paralysis will conspire to keep people doing things the old way. To spark movement in a new direction, you need to provide crystal clear guidance

Chip Heath and Dan Heath, Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard

"ken being smart on the smartboard" Flickr CC photo by 46137

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