in the city
Seeking to improve learning for a classroom of 3rd graders, for an entire school, or even for a business, is a boost for sure. But perhaps those very structures (mental and physical) are at the heart of the problem. Perhaps authentic learning/connecting/being thrives in more organic/chaordic spaces. Perhaps the sharing of resources (people, spaces, things) city-wide is where we might get at a cross-generational, eclectic community of people, a village.
The purpose of public education is a democratic society – John Dewey
Perhaps we redefine public education so that cities are co-created ongoingly, bettering each moment. Perhaps we create more human capital by believing we really can learn/be/do anything we want, and that the more we facilitate that for everyone, in a city, rather than regulate/manage some given/standard ideal, this debate becomes an ongoing conversation — a crowdsourcing — about what matters most.
The progressive ed reform movement often commits this outcome-over-process error when committees or research or prominent voices are taken as “what we should be doing,” when really we need to encouraging participation in the processes of determining for ourselves and our communities that which we care about and how we can work together to accomplish our goals. A list of “21st century skills” might be really fun to create as part of some meeting of prestigious educators, but please don’t think that pushing that outcome or list down to schools, teachers and students is what would really benefit them. Instead, we should be pushing down or encouraging the process of creating such a conversation to local levels, where all involved might participate in the discussions that attend the process. … ie: Are we asking students to have voice in an existing system? Or is this an awkward power struggle? - Steve Hargadon
In old age the emphasis shifts from doing to being, and our civilization, which is lost in doing, know nothing of being. It asks: being? What do you do with it? – Echart Tolle
Imagine city as school with the entire city as the floorplan. The high school buildings become resource centers and meet up spaces. There is a city-wide art hall and engineering hall, forensics hall. The town acts more like a university campus.. where people are walking and biking to and from buildings through the course of a day, as the day. Feeding off each other. Feeding off life.
We need a move toward a more practical, sustainable learning model that is less based on market-driven accreditation and more on the inevitable give and take that happens among people who engage in similar activities and share similar forms of literacy and worldviews. …. Community as curriculum. Community as measure. How are the people around you doing. – Dave Cormier
Who’s together in a room or space becomes a per choice proposition.
Once we understand that learning can and should occur outside the classroom, it will become commonplace to see students engaged in learning activities throughout the community. - Stephen Downes
Master of experimenting with a city, Tony Hsieh - how to support and accelerate people’s dreams and visions.
Where do the children play? – child in the city.