Stop Stealing Dreams

This week Seth Godin released a 30,000 word manifesto entitled “Stop Stealing Dreams.”  I asked my kids to pick a part that sounded interesting to them and then respond on Today’s Meet.   It was fascinating to watch the process unfold…As the students began they were sharing the piece they read and trying to give a one or two statement synopsis or quick reaction.

Then the conversation took off and they began discussing dreams and the purpose of school.  What amazed me was the insight of these 10 and 11 year olds.

“Schooling was invented to teach kids how to be obedient.”

“I think that dreams are some what EASY to build but even EASIER to destroy. It angers me.”

“It is very sad that most teachers don’t help you follow your dreams, they just tell you to sit down shut up and listen.”

“KIDS ARE NOT DOGS WE DO NOT HAVE TO GO TO OBEDIENCE SCHOOL!!”

“”We all will grow up on the outside, but I will stay like a kid on the inside.”

But my absolute favorite is

“This is a question for everyone- This sit down, be quiet and follow the rules has been going on for 80 years. Why have things not changed?”

That kid follows up with: “Why are we just complaining and not making a difference?”

 

I asked them what school should look like and got two responses that basically said “that’s a tough question.”  I know it is, but I also know they are thinking about it.

I showed the Today’s Meet to their parents in a “Learning Lab” we had this past week.  Several students said they had gone home and asked their parents to read it.

 

I can’t wait to revisit this conversation with them next week.  I think my beginning question will be something like “Last week we read parts of a manifesto named “Stop Stealing Dreams.” What have you thought about that since then?”

 

Do you have a better suggestion for a question?

 

3 thoughts on “Stop Stealing Dreams

  1. I also think we should change the school system. In our digital, fast-paced era, where things are instant and interactive, we can’t teach by just standing in front of a board and talking about some subject. We need to move forward from that model of teaching and make classes more fun and interactive. We also need to move away from standardized testing, because all you have to do is memorize a few things and you’ll be okay. We also need to work on getting those who learn faster, or slower, than others a better way to learn. For those who learn fast, we need to let them explore their interests and learn what they want. Kids that learn slower need to be spent some extra time with. This is what needs to happen, because otherwise we will not be able to educate people to get good jobs that they like and pay well. Otherwise they get jobs that they don’t like and have just to pay bills. Is that what we want?

  2. @Nicolas. This is an excellent reflection on the state of teaching. I might have a job for you in a few years time ; ) Keep up the good work.

  3. Pingback: Reflections of the TZSTeacher » When Is Listening Not Enough?

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