Changing education paradigms

Mike Ion's picture
I am presently in the middle of reviewing Ken Robinson's new book 'Out of our minds' for the TES. Last year the I went to listen to Sir Ken talk about the need for us to be more radical in terms of education policy in the UK. The RSA (who sponsored the lecture) have since created a YouTube animated version of Sir Ken's talk - for me it is possibly the most personally inspiring talk I have heard in the past twenty years. This version is only 11 minutes long - why not take a look and if you like it, please let make others aware of it - it is excellent for use in schools, colleges etc.
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What a brilliant animation. Some really good points as well, though I'm not sure I agree with everything he says.
Interestingly, his points about how we perhaps shouldn't teach kids in batches and also promote divergent thinking are very similar to the Kunskapsskolan pedagogy (a Swedish provider who also operate some academies in England.) There, at least in Sweden, students set themselves based on their ability and where they happen to be in reaching their own personal targets, and you often find students from different year groups in the same class, perhaps only for a few lessons until they grow apart in their needs. Students are also given a great deal of flexibility about how they prove to their teacher that they have fully understood a section of the syllabus, it could be through an essay, a piece of art or a different medium.
I saw this system working really well, although it may not suit everybody.

Janet Downs's picture
Wed, 16/03/2011 - 08:24

The video is inspirational and has inspired me to read the book "Out of our Minds" which Mike Ion described as new. However, the version on Amazon is dated 2001. Has it been updated?

Mike Ion's picture
Fri, 18/03/2011 - 08:34


Yes, it is the 'new' revised edition published in February 2011.

Andrew Old's picture
Mon, 21/03/2011 - 12:33

The video is just plain anti-academic. It also seems to be based on complete ignorance of the last hundred years of education policy and suggests ideas largely based on the deschooling fad of the 1970s. It is terrifying that somebody who is inspired by this stuff could influence Labour Party policy.

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