Throughout my two-and-a-half year experience at the University of Regina, I have watched many videos related to education and have seen several of them numerous times. One such video that I have seen repeatedly is Sir Ken Robinson’s “Changing Education Paradigms”. Despite seeing this video many, many times, there are several main points that stand out to me.
First, I feel very strongly about the portion of the video where Robinson compares the current school system to a factory setting that produces batches upon batches of the children only grouped together based on age. As I see it, assembly lines should only be used to create cars, not people. Although some assembly lines may produce the most high performance cars possible over and over again, this is not the case for children. Perhaps we need to change the product coming off the assembly. Maybe we build bikes? Riding a bike may be much harder work than driving a car, but there are much better benefits to coincide with the hard work. This is true with our students. If we require the absolute best from our students and have them push themselves we can produce top quality minds.
In regards to medicating children, Robinson delivers several observations about ADHD in this speech. As Robinson put it “These kids are being medicated as routinely as we had our tonsils taken out.” Robinson sends a similar message in his TedTalks video “Schools Killing Creativity”. Rather than being so quick to judge the behaviour of a student and immediately put them on medication, we as teachers should find alternative avenues for them to follow and find what interests them.
Finally, in our technology-filled world, children today have access to an unbelievable amount of resources. Despite this fact, these advancements are frequently removed as punishment and deemed to be a distraction. This is where multiple intelligences come into play. Personally, I focus much better on classwork when I have headphones in and my music playing. As educators, we need to find ways to effectively implement this vast array of resources to expand our students’ minds outside the classroom. When utilized properly, technology can add an entirely new dimension to the classroom experience, both in terms of ability to work and research.
Overall, I greatly enjoy this speech by Sir Ken Robinson. Despite seeing this video numerous times in a variety of classes, I seem to realize something new each time I watch it. This is a definite must-watch for any teacher.