From Will Richardson’s post Zen and the Art of School Change:
And the idea that schools (meaning the people in them) do this for “the perpetuation of their own functions” is absolutely true. If we truly were to move agency over learning to the learner and hew to the truths about learning, our functions would radically, fundamentally change. Teacher wouldn’t be teacher. The architectures of schooling would be seen as barriers to learning, not as paths to efficiency. The narrative would have to be completely rewritten. But the reality is we’d rather be “better” than “different” because the former doesn’t require huge change.
It’s that last line that resonates with me. In my job, it’s all about better scores, better instruction, better strategies, better curriculum.
But when I suggest things in classrooms need to be different for them to be better, I am often met with resistance. That’s because there’s a huge mindset shift with different. There’s the realization that things need to be totally redone with different. There’s the idea that different means a lot more work.
But that different work is in the direction of what’s better for kids. And that’s why we’re in education, isn’t it?
Just because it’s different doesn’t mean it’s wrong. Sometimes it’s just the idea we need to stop doing the same things and expecting different results.