Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Hope For Humanity



This new movie from David Sereda through Voice Entertainment has introduced me to some new concepts regarding education. There is no doubt that the children entering our world now are different from past generations. Grandparents can tell you that they are different, in many ways, than their children who are having them. They learn at screaming speeds. They are interested in concepts that seem beyond their years. They are busy, curious, and full of energy. They are also being diagnosed in astonishing numbers to have ADD, ADHD, Bi-Polar Disorder, etc., and put on more and more drugs to control them.  So what is happening?

We know that each generation "inherits" certain knowledge passed on from previous generations. The Empty Slate philosophy, whereby children know nothing when born, has long been pushed aside in Human Development fields. In fact babies are very aware little beings the moment they enter this world. They just don't realize they are separate from their parents or their environment. Which may be more intuned with what is in fact reality, but that is another discussion.

I see an educational crises in our country, and I would bet the same thing is happening in many other countries. Our children have evolved past linear-sequential learning, which is the basis of how we teach in our school systems. We know that people learn differently - some are auditory learners, some visual, and some kinetic (touch.) Yet when these children (kinetic) go into an alpha state, which is a learning state, they are staring down and to the right - which is exactly when most teachers reprimand them for not paying attention.

Our children are learning in 3-D, especially through video games. They learn to assess situations as a "whole" not in the parts that are the basis of linear-sequential learning. This can be a big problem at the high school level. These young adults are simply bored. Their worlds are huge through the Internet, games, instant communication, the ability to follow up on anything of interest simply by using Google. They are getting information from all directions. They see the world differently. What could they learn about math, science, history, art, if given the opportunity to learn through mind-expanding techniques? Video games that teach, instead of brain wash them for war and violence? What if we taught our high-schoolers to meditate? To pay attention to their connections to Universal Consciousness. How could that change how and what they learn? Would they be able to teach as well?

Tomorrow we will look at some extraordinary children. Let's listen to what they have to say.

ADDENDUM - "Tomorrow" will actually be Thursday - I couldn't resist the Cairo post.

15 comments:

gypsywoman said...

oh, nancy! don't get me started on this thing of our young and their minds that act as sponges to stimuli - and what all our society has done/continues to do that deprives them of so much potential - i so agree with your analysis - and i was one of those children, bored with the rigid disciplined structured school room in which i sat with teachers who, in most cases, had no clue that when i colored outside the lines, it was because i saw things differently - that i saw possibility and probability instead of resolute boundaries - that when i colored grass in purples and oranges it was because i saw the magnificent sunset penetrating the blades of green grass with its own life giving colors - that when i started reading a book at the end instead of the beginning it was because i wanted to follow the road through the book with a better understanding of the whys and wherefores of the characters - that when i gazed out the window i was sometimes going within for quiet or sometimes going outwardly into those other worlds outside the confines of that boring classroom where thinking and imagining and dreaming were to be punished rather than encouraged -

sorry, i ramble - great post, lady, as always, here in your world!

Brian Miller said...

i agree completely...working with kids, i know they are bored and unengaged with the way the education system is treating them, but of course education is not the important issue, i mean congress had to get pay raises...smiles.

Jayne Martin said...

Boy, have you hit it on the head with this one. We're so far behind in education, we will probably never keep up. A whole new system needs to be designed, but until people realize that education is a priority for the survival of our nation as a whole and not some "luxury" they can continue to slash funds for, I do not see a bright future for our kids or our country.

Pat said...

A good teacher is one who finds different ways to teach to get the same point across be it verbally, visually or by touch. All kids DON'T learn the same way!

Trish and Rob MacGregor said...

Great post. I think the problem with education in this country is that so much of it is done by rote - teachers in Florida, for instance, have to teach for test given each spring.

Meditation would be a great place to start.

luksky said...

I am sooooo glad to see a post like this. This is a large part of the reason that we are 'life learners, unschoolers, etc. whatever technical name you want to give it.

Our educational system needs to be updated...or maybe we just need to take the que from our young people of tomorrow and let them lead the way. It's obvious that the previous generations have not done a good job of facilitating.

ds said...

Fascinating, and so eerily true, one has to wonder: if we cut down on the technology that bombards our young people (try to get a college student to use a physical rather than virtual dictionary), would it cut down on the number of ADHD diagnoses?
Technology alone cannot address all of the different learning styles. We need to remember it is a tool not a lifestyle (she blogged, hmmm...)

Nancy said...

Gypsy - I know exactly what you're saying!

Brian - And a lifetime pension after serving only one term...

Jayne - I couldn't agree more - it has to be a top to bottom reassessment.

Pat - And yet we are cutting education at a time when teachers are overwhelmed, overworked and, quite frankly, underpaid. Instead of more teacher's aides, we cut, cut, cut. And our children are the ones left behind. Ultimately we will all be left behind.

luksky - I am usually an advocate for most children to be in mainstream education, if only to learn to live in the society for which they will eventually have to navigate. But we are not looking at how we can actually meet the needs of today's children - and for that reason I can see the value of good home schooling. I've been watching you and your daughter - and she seems very well adjusted and happy being home schooled - you certainly spend a lot of time doing things, and you've addressed the social issues, so important to her age group.

ds - I think it's gone beyond tool and now needs to be addressed as being a part of how these children are actually learning. They are seeing things in 3-D and we are teaching in black and white. And how do we keep their interest and still instill the value of a good book, or dictionary, for that matter?

Natalie said...

You are beating my drum, Nancy.:D :D

Gaston Studio said...

I love the phrase from one commentor that the kids are learning in 3D and being taught in B&W; pretty much says it all.

Great post Nancy!

Butternut Squash said...

I have had the privilege of experiencing 3 different public school systems with my children. The biggest difference from one area to the next really has to do with the local culture and expectations of the parents for their children.

In the first school all the the children except one (who came from a different area of the country) came in to kindergarten already knowing how to read and write.

In the second school I went to help students learn basic three letter words in the first grade. My son was sent to the corner to read on his own because at age 6 he was reading at a 5th grade level. No one expected these kids should know how to read before entering school.

Where we live now, Art, and Music are all used to capture young minds along with the traditional basics and yes some meditation techniques. I have never before seen a school system with 9 music instructors. But it costs! the average teacher salary is $75,000 a year. The taxes are higher here than any place that we have ever lived. People are lying about where they live just to get their kids into a well funded progressive schools. My genius children once again look normal among a group of like minded peers. My advice is to vote for school funding and to volunteer. The schools and the teachers need you.

Guess you touched a nerve with your post.

Nancy said...

Butternut - Wow - beautifully said. It is nice to know that with money, time, and innovation these exceptional children's needs are being met. With more and more of them being born right now we need to follow your advice. Our future depends on it.

California Girl said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nancy said...

California Girl - I would be curious to know what his interests are? This is not a story that is lost on MANY parents. This is happening all over our country, and I would bet the world. Staring can be an Alpha state - NOT a stupid state, or a not-paying-attention state. I would recommend getting this movie - I would love to have your take on it. My youngest had problems with sitting still in class, mostly because of asthma meds, and some teachers were really cruel, and some were wonderful - seeing her excellent mind and potential. We need to encourage and PAY those teachers. The ones that should have retired ten years ago, need to do just that.

leilani said...

I agree with Gaston! how awful we must appear to our children! lol.. they see in flaming color.. we have chosen black and white to live breath sleep and learn in.. boy..