TED Conversations

TED Book Chat

This conversation is closed.

Live Chat today at 4pm Eastern: "Why School? How Education Must Change When Information and Learning Are Everywhere"

Author Will Richardson will be joining us for a live Q&A today at 4pm Eastern!

Continuing with our series of TED book chats, for the next week and a half we'll be discussing Will Richardson's new TED eBook, "Why School?"

Traditional educators, classrooms, and brick-and-mortar schools are no longer necessary to access information. Instead, things like blogs and wikis, as well as remote collaborations and an emphasis on 'critical thinking' skills are the coins of the realm in this new kingdom. Yet the national dialogue on education reform focuses on using technology to update the traditional education model, failing to reassess the fundamental model on which it is built.

In TED's new eBook, "Why School?", educator, author, parent and blogger Will Richardson challenges traditional thinking about education—questioning whether it still holds value in its current form.

The book is available for Kindle, Nook, and iOS devices (which have a great new custom TED Books app):

Kindle copy: http://www.amazon.com/Why-School-Information-Everywhere-ebook/dp/B00998J5YQ
iOS app: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ted-books/id511071050?mt=8

You can also read more on Will's blog: http://willrichardson.com

So, let's get things started... when information is everywhere, what is the purpose of traditional schools?

Topics: education

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Oct 8 2012: Hi Will,
    Regarding assessment. I understand we are completely rethinking education, here. And with good reason. Even John Seely Brown, in his long tail and learning as enculturation ideas, talks about a virtuous cycle between niche interest development and coming back to the "fat part" of the tail to learn that core knowledge and then students returning to their niche interests to apply it. He says a core curriculum based around critical thinking (and I would add literacy and numeracy to a point). Could Performance Assessments (I know they present many challenges for reliability, etc.) that are open ended and authentic provide some common ground between competing views on approaches to education?
    • thumb
      Oct 8 2012: Yes. But again, the devil is in the details. how much of that "fat part" are we going to require and how are we going to assess it. That's the biggest question we're facing right now. Does EVERY child need EVERY thing in the curriculum? What, really, do ALL children need?

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.