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Last Updated: 05/03/2010Time flies, things change, and learning is life-long
I finished my graduate program in international education in the summer of 2002. One key take-away that ‘stuck’ with me is that schooling in most countries had been modelled on an industrial-age factory. They move students from one disconnected subject area to another and then from one grade to the next, if they pass standardized tests – much like a ‘one size-fits-all’ assembly line. I recognized this description from much of my own educational experience.
A few years later, now working at the University for Peace, I was inspired to develop a course for educators that creates a space to question the purposes and structure of our educational system. The central question of the week-long seminar is, “How can we create meaningful learning experiences to equip our students for a future that is constantly changing and that we can barely visualize?”
A few weeks ago, as I was updating the description of the seminar which is called, ‘Educating in the 21st Century’, I realized that this course now needed to be re-titled – we are already 10 years into the 21st Century! But too late for that – the flyers had gone out…. It also dawned on me that my own thinking on innovative educational practices needed some new stimulation. Call it the ‘law of positive attraction’ or a pure coincidence, but I received an invitation from my professor at Harvard School of Education, Fernando Reimers, inviting to be part of a Think Tank titled, ‘Education for What Ends?”
It was a highly engaging three days, with inspiring cases of individuals who’ve gone from visualizing a new paradigm for learning to implementing it. Here are five of the key messages from the Think Tank, captured by Professor Reimers during the closing session:
The Centre’s June seminar will hopefully leave participants the inspiration and the concrete tools to rethink their education practice. What can you do within your sphere of influence?
Editor’s Note: If you are interested in joining this limited enrolment seminar, there are still a few spots open. Please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Mohit Mukherjee, Resident Faculty at UPEACE and Director of the UPEACE Centre for Executive Education.