TED Conversations

Mary Mascaraque

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How can we transmit new Paradigms to students attending compusory education in our public traditional schools?

The Studio school is a challenging and right way of coping with changes in learning today. Kids feel more free and self confident.
On the contrary, in most of our traditional schools students think they are wasting their time, get bored and lazy. Could NLP strategies help to develop responsability in them and an outcome of success?

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    Sep 30 2011: Good afternoon Wayne and thanks a lot for your comments and remarks. As for the answer is not "so crystal clear" for me, at least in the practice. I agree with you about the point that a learning process based on doing things is very rewarding for both students and teachers and it is true that our Educational System(The Spanish one) does not favor it.( It might have other goals in mind). However, I, as a teacher, am interested in solutions that can provide profit and happiness for both my students and myself. I mentioned NLP-Neuro Linguistic Programming-because it is considered the science of achievement as it focusses on reprogramming our minds for success. It takes into account people multiple intelligences( Gardner) in order to make them aware of their personal talents and become more self-confident to adopt a different attitude. It is true that responsability must be given back to the students, actually to the individuals of the whole Western Civilization( if we consider the confusion existing in all fields).However, we all have to contribute in putting into words our thoughts to make them become real ( George Steiner: The creative value of the Word)- If we change our way of thinking we can change reality, if teachers change approach and help students to view the world differently, a new reality will appear.
    The Education System created after the Industrial Revolution has become obsolete. We cannot send people to a special class anymore when sociaty needs flexibility to survive. In the era of high-tech, everything transforms fast. We cannot pretend changing things in order to leave everything remaining just the the same as The Prince of Salinas in "El Gatopardo",perhaps Politicians migt.
    If teachers are still in the old rut of "what ...to do" it means that many are in the need of inner guidance to believe in themselves and in their mission.
    • Sep 30 2011: Thank you for your thoughtful response and what NLP means. I did not mean to be cryptic in when I said, the answer to me is crystal clear … I just ran out of words.

      As I alluded to in my comment’s re TED’s talk, and in my response to you, we run an uphill battle against the dominant discourse in terms of the average citizen’s perception of what good education is, and how it is to be achieved. In democratic countries (and by that, I do not mean capitalistic … two very different animals that do not mix very well), it is supposed to be the populous that has the power to change. If that is true, one might ask why is it that so many citizens of the world accept, and in many places demand what has become known as “formal” or traditional education, even though it didn’t work for them, and it's not working for their children either. In fact, I would go so far as to say, that we as a species are getting stupider and stupider because of it.

      Scott had one suggestion; to do what you as a teacher know deep in your heart to be right. Unfortunately that may only apply to curriculum delivery. The tough part comes when you must conform to a system of assessment and reporting that generally is standardized. I got around that by giving the students and parents a second assessment based on what the students actually accomplished, not what they were supposed to have accomplished in the time given (usually a semester or term).

      HOWEVER, and it is a big however, all of this is a function of the power and control school administrators have over their teachers. And by the way, don’t think for a moment teacher unions can help you. Their hands are usually tied as well. You need to have a courageous and strong chain of command that can support your efforts, and most importantly, defend your classroom practices. but this doesn't always work. In one school district in which I worked the superintendent was fired because he didn't fire me.

      To be continued, I am curious about your thoughts.

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