Freedom to Education

Watching Logan LaPlante’s TED Talk, “Hackschooling Makes Me Happy” and reading Bud Hunt’s blog post “Centering on Essential Lenses: Make/Hack/Play” has given me something to think about that hasn’t ever occurred to me. Schools don’t teach students how to be happy or healthy. We teach students how to make a living by listing all of our standards and making sure all of our students are proficient. What would happen if we started educating our students how to be happy and healthy? I don’t see anything wrong with this idea. I actually think it’s a great idea. We’re use to students coming in every year with their educational level, and then we go down the list making sure we hit all of the standards before the school year ends. Where’s the creativity in this? We are simply giving our students a blank paper without any supplies and telling them to turn it into a master piece. How’re they able to do this without color or having inspiration? “Creativity is as important as literacy”, said Ken Robinson. We have to have our students use their creativity to enhance their learning. Logan mentioned the 8 things he uses to be happy: exercise, diet and nutrition, time in nature, contribution and service, relationships, recreation, relaxation and stress management, and religious and spiritual (called TLC for short). A point Logan made in the TED talk video was, “A lot of kids are just wishing to be happy.” In school learning to be happy and healthy isn’t a priority for us to teach our students. If we used hackschooling in our classrooms I feel there would be a lot more freedom. If we use our curriculum to intertwine with their interests than I feel we will reach them on their level. They will be interested in school and actually enjoy it. Learning happens when we make things happen and when we create. “And maybe the best sort of way to spend your time as a learner is through making, or hacking, or playing.  Or maybe all three.  And along the way, you might rediscover the parts of yourself that have gone to sleep.  Or have never been awake.  Those are the parts that you can use to make and hack and play wherever you happen to be,” said Bud Hunt. Freedom to education is essential. Freedom to do the things you love doing is powerful and can be rewarding. People can learn so much about themselves with having freedom in their life in any situation. The key to happiness is having TLC.

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Photo by Carmela Nava

 

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4 thoughts on “Freedom to Education”

  1. I completely agree that teachers should break out of their comfort zone that has walls built of standards, college and career ready education, and strict rules and expectations. I realize after watching this video that teachers, today, have become so tied into getting their students an education so they grow up to become productive members of society. There isn’t anything wrong with that necessarily, but it’s not the whole picture. How will you, as a teacher, take a walk off the beaten path and teach your students how to be happy and healthy?

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    1. Chelsea, as a future teacher I feel there’s a lot that I still must learn. Even though I have written my philosophy of education there could always be changes. I feel when I become a teacher I will bring creativity to the table. I will gather my students interests and work with them on building their dreams for life. I feel that my students interests will be a great starting point to go from there. I will take advantage of my PLC meetings to get feedback from the teachers that have been there for awhile. Take their advice and criticism and apply it to my classroom.

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  2. I feel like the teachers that disagree with LaPlante’s approach are definitely in the minority. We all know we should educate students in this manner. It’s just hard to fit it in when you have a dozen other things to worry about doing that are dependent on us keeping our job. There needs to be an external push and more support for this so that teachers feel like they are doing right by their students and don’t have to fear for their jobs.

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    1. Savannah, I agree that teachers are quick to fall in line when it comes to the old ways of teaching because of fear for our jobs and also because it works for us right now. But what if we did have the approach of LaPlante’s and focused our education on happiness and health? I bet there would be a huge difference in our student’s drive for knowledge and education.

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