Considering U.S. Education


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A presentation I was asked to create relating to the current state of the U.S. education system, global performance, and competition.

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  • Sir Kenneth Robinson (Liverpool, 4 March 1950) is an English author, speaker, and international advisor on education in the arts to government, non-profits, education, and arts bodies. He was Director of The Arts in Schools Project (1985–89), Professor of Arts Education at the University of Warwick (1989–2001), and was knighted in 2003 for services to education. Source: link:
  • We’ve lost teaching children what it means to be productive in society. Before the industrial revolution you had multiple generations living in the same household, where everyone had to be productive for economic survival and growth. After the industrial revolution, and even more so after the growth of the service economy, children don’t see what their parents do all day to earn a living, and one day a year is not sufficient. In order to meet that economic model, we changed the school day so that both parents could work. As a society then we foisted developing an understanding of morals, of work ethic, of productivity of on schools, limited what they can do, and then required them to do things that don’t lead to learning.
  • Source: From
  • In comparison to other developed nations, the U.S. does rank high in these categories.
  • Unfortunately what the one size fits all teach for mandated testing culture creates students who only gain enough knowledge to remember it for the test on Friday, and by Monday they can’t remember it because they’ve never learned how to apply theory to real life. We don’t teach that.
  • Howard Gardner is an American developmental psychologist who is the John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education at Harvard University, Senior Director of Harvard Project Zero and author of over twenty books translated into thirty languages.Andrew Martin fromUofM says: This topic has become especially relevant in our class and in society as a whole as it relates to the governmental policy of No Child Left Behind (NCLB). With its focus on testing and assessment in a limited area of skills, NCLB forces people to narrow their lesson plans to include only the so-called “hard” intelligences like math and linguistic abilities. School districts are forced to cut anything that isn’t directly related to passing the state mandated tests, and what truly gets left behind are the children who excel in more creative and personal areas that can’t be measured accurately through a multiple choice evaluation. It robs these children of their true potential, and it robs all children of the chance to expand their knowledge beyond what they can do with a pen and paper. More than the intellectual benefit that kids might obtain, extracurricular activities that are related to multiple intelligences can mean something special. I can remember trying to play “Hot Cross Buns” for the first time on my recorder and failing miserably. I’ll always remember booting the game-winning homerun in kickball in 3rd grade, or tripping during the finals of the relay race before limping my way across the finish line to rousing applause in 5th grade. The best memories are the ones that are made outside of a desk, and we are losing focus on improving students as a whole. Source:
  • Exercise boosts brain powerThe brain evolves tooEvery brain is wired differentlyWe don’t pay attention to boring thingsRepeat to remember (short term)Remember to repeat (long termSleep well, think wellStressed brains don’t learnMultiple stimulation – sensesVision trumps all other senses Male & Female brains are differentWe are
  • Reason: Allowing members to understand the need for change.Research: Providing important information that supports the reason.Resonance: The understanding of change must reach to the core beliefs of members.Redescriptions: The basis for change must be expressed in multiple forms (numbers, graphics, etc.). Schein suggests that the stories which bind members together are the most important (Schein, 2004)Resources and Rewards: Members must have the tools they need to complete the change, and a reward for success (beyond simply keeping your job).Real World Events: Change will not be successful if it doesn’t relate to real life and what’s occurring outside of the organization.Resistances: Every human comes from their personal paradigms and resistance to change is inevitable, but can be overcome.
  • Wagner, R & Harter, J.K. (2006). 12: the elements of great managing. New York, NY. Gallup Press
  • discipline. Firstly, what our grand-parents knew -- you should work regularly and steadily on things and eventually you will get better. Indeed, any practice will build up disciplinary muscle. The second—is the heart of what happens in middle and secondary school—is mastering the major ways of thinking. The third connotation, which is so important if we want our children to be gainfully employed and have a full life is becoming an expert in at least one thing. Because if you are not an expert, you will not be able to work in the world of the future, or you will work for somebody else who is an expert.The Synthesizing Mind realizes that nowadays, we are all inundated with information. Many of them are of questionable value and you need criteria for deciding what to pay attention to and what to ignore. Additionally, to synthesize for yourself, you have to put information together in ways which cohere, which make sense for you. The Creative Mind is embodied by Einstein in the Sciences and by Virginia Woolf in the Arts. People who are creative are those who come up with new things which eventually get accepted. At the same time it is difficult to be creative unless you’ve mastered a subject, which we know takes up to ten years of working in the field.The respectful mind is recognizing that the world is composed of people who look different, think differently, have different belief and value systems, and that we can no longer be hermits and live in complete isolation. Therefore, our initial choices are to make war, (which is what we did in a tribal society), or to hold our nose and tolerate others. Or we can be more ambitious. We can try to understand better, make common cause with, and give the benefit of the doubt to other people. The Ethical Mind doesn’t talk about rights, but about responsibilities. Itreflects on different roles that we fulfil and talks about what are the proper ways to fulfil those roles and tries, though not always successfully, but at least makes the effort, to fulfil those responsibilities.
  • Considering U.S. Education

    1. 1. CONSIDERING U.S. EDUCATION Jon R. Wallace: Fall 2012
    2. 2. Sir Ken Robinson
    3. 3. Productivity & Family Structure
    4. 4. 2010 PISAU.S. Results17th Reading23rd Science 32th Math
    5. 5. High U.S. Rankings?#2 - Children Living in Poverty #1 – Percentage of Citizens in Prison #1 – The cost of Healthcare #1 – Self-centered Individualism
    6. 6. Bloom’s Taxonomy
    7. 7. Gardner Multiple Intelligences
    8. 8. Brain Rules – Dr. John Medina If you want to design an education system completely opposite of how the brain works, you invent a classroom.
    9. 9. Exercise Exploration Survival Gender WiringVision Attention Sensory Short-term Integration Memory Long-term Stress Memory Sleep
    10. 10. Gardner – Changing Minds1. Reason2. Research3. Resonance4. Redescriptions:5. Resources and Rewards6. Real World Events7. Resistances
    11. 11. Peter DruckerCompanies today aren’t managing their employee’s careers;knowledge workers must, effectively, be their own chiefexecutive officers. It’s up to you to carve out your place, toknow when to change course, and to keep yourself engagedand productive during a work life that may span 50 years.To do these things well, you’ll need to cultivate a deepunderstanding of yourself—not only how you learn, [but]how you work with others, what your values are, and whereyou can make the greatest contribution. Because only whenyou operate from strengths can you achieve true excellence.
    12. 12. What Employees Need to Suceed1. I know what is expected of me at 7. At work, my opinions seem to work. count.2. I have the materials and equipment 8. The mission or purpose of my I need to do my work right. company makes me feel my job is3. At work, I have the opportunity to important. do what I do best every day. 9. My associates or fellow employees are committed to4. In the last seven days, I have doing quality work. received recognition or praise for doing good work. 10.I have a best friend at work.5. My supervisor, or someone at work, 11.In the last six months, someone at seems to care about me as a person. work has talked to me about my progress.6. There is someone at work who 12.This last year, I have had encourages me development. opportunities at work to learn and grow. Wagner, R & Harter, J.K. (2006). 12: the elements of great managing. New York, NY. Gallup Press
    13. 13. Gardner Again Disciplined Mind Synthesizing Mind Creative Mind Respectful Mind Ethical Mind
    14. 14. Suggestions? Spend more money  Teach practical educating the future applications (critical than you do on thinking, conflict prisons and management, budgeti prisoners. ng). Test for skills,  Eliminate passions, and standardized testing interests earlier in and teaching. elementary school.  Experiential learning.
    15. 15. Margaret Wheatley