You won’t find Pratchett like imaginings about possible futures for teaching and learning in Time Magazine’s Annual Special Issue on “10 ideas changing the world right now”.
In fact you won’t find anything about teaching and learning in the ten ideas listed – except perhaps in the “seeking security in risk adverse careers is the new cool” suggestion woven into #1 Jobs Are The New Assets –
The Annual Special Issue "10 Ideas Changing the World Right Now" claims - The global economy is being remade before our eyes. Here’s what’s on the horizon
- WHY YOUR JOB IS YOUR MOST VALUABLE ASSET
- REPURPOSING THE SUBURBS
- SURVIVAL-STORE SHOPPING
- BIOBANKS: SAVING YOUR PARTS
- NEED LAND? RENT A COUNTRY
- THE NEW CALVINISM
- ECOLOGICAL INTELLIGENCE
- AMORTALITY: FOREVER YOUNG
- AFRICA: OPEN FOR BUSINESS
- REINVENTING THE HIGHWAY
The irrelevance of ideas around changing education (teaching and learning) in Time Magazine’s “changing the world” list captured my attention.
It worries me that children and their learning seem so easily excluded from these imaginings over remaking the global economy.
Are we as teachers so professionally predictable that when global remaking is going on we have nothing new/relevant to contribute?
Has our secure government salary meant that “paradigm shifting” edu_conferences and edu_ un_conferences – our “future focussed Web2.0” edu_blogs and edu_twitter streams –our “best evidence synthesis based” edu_professional learning communities – and our “knowledge waved” edu_policies and edicts allowed us a false sense of our own relevance?
Has being pre-disposed to risk adverse behaviours – behaviours like choosing to: train for a job with a predictable salary, apply for a job with a predictable salary, and work in a job with a predictable salary – excluded us from 10 ideas changing the world right now.
How would Time Magazine feel about us/ write about us if teachers were filchers of Black Orpingtons ... rather than Chomskiian ”tamers of the young of the bewildered herd”?
How might we alter our pedagogical approach if we thought we were working in uncertain careers in perilous times?
How might we alter our pedagogical approach if what we could offer was not needed every day?
How might we alter our pedagogical approach if what we could offer was only occasionally useful?
In a remade global economy wandering teachers will undoubtedly have stalls offering Pratchett’s -
1. Absolute Certainty about the Comma.
2. I before E Completely Sorted Out.
3. The Mystery of the Semi-Colon Revealed.
4. See the Ampersand (Small extra charge)
5. Fun with Brackets.
Will accept vegetables, eggs, and clean used clothing.
But the temporarily erected tent stall in The Wee Free Men – A Story of Discworld that interests me the most is the one with the sign outside that reads - “I can teach you a lesson you won’t forget in a hurry”
If I was a wandering teacher – living on baked hedgehogs and stealing chickens - whilst the global economy is being remade - what would I offer as a lesson that wouldn't be forgotten in a hurry?