Like an Alien in my Own Country


This Was My First Blog…
September 27, 2012, 16:48
Filed under: Wonderings

I do not use this blog anymore so if you want to hear and see what I have become, please go to the blog that I use daily:

alientoinquirytoo.wordpress.com

Thanks,

Andre

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Conservative Values Make Schools Alien?
January 16, 2011, 23:14
Filed under: Wonderings

As a teacher in Elementary school, the values that are a part of the curriculum are intended to mold children into moral individuals that can fit into the patchwork quilt of Canadian society.  The development of a social conscience, the ability to interact with others and common moral values that were once taught in the home, have become the responsibility of the teacher.  The movement towards a reward based value system is slowly being replaced with that of one that pushes intrinsic motivators.  Above all the goal is a society of like-minded individuals with the skills, abilities and values that are Canadian.  Some go so far as to say that institutions are to mold the minds in such a way as to create a reliable citizenry!  At times this may lead one to believe that the goal is to create minions, that pander to those in charge and compete in order to thrive.

This is where beliefs conflict.  From the perspective of one that follows to one that questions and wonders where there path is.  One who is on an eternal search for one’s self and the best way to live life, while questioning the musing of others around her or him.  To realize that they are not alone and instead of competing with one another, they should work towards a common good.  As I have been educated as a part of this system, I have also learned much outside of it and come to question the validity of its ways, but can that be asked of elementary school children?  It may be a starting point, but there is always much to be learned!

Working together should not be such an Alien concept!



Going an Alien’s Pace
January 16, 2011, 20:39
Filed under: Wonderings

In most districts, but especially the one I have surrounded myself with, there are a number of challenges that one must overcome.  Some have more difficulties than others, but the one I am writing about is quite unique.  Most who have been born where I work, also die here.  Very few want to leave or want any change.  That being the norm, it is no wonder that the availability of anything technical is an Alien concept.  If it is any indication to the speed that they are moving, for about twenty years they have been trying to get a new school built to replace one of the old, dilapidated ones and still haven’t managed to break ground.

There is no wonder that the twenty-first century learner will be hard pressed to grow his or her digital footprint as a student there.  The new trend is to use the idea of Universal Design For Learning…where the teacher builds lessons that have varying levels of engagement and assessment.  This being a new direction for the district, leaves them in the technological fray as the new catch phrase has become “individualized learning for the student of the 21st century”.  When it means the implementation of technology and ideas, then it will take a steering committee to guide all towards the path, let alone take them down the right one.  They may even need a star chart and a space ship, because all districts are headed for uncharted lands and for some it may seem like they were headed in to outer-space.

It takes one to know one…Alien to the journey



More of an Alien Everyday…
January 1, 2011, 22:57
Filed under: Wonderings

What are we doing to our kids…providing them with the world, but not preparing them for it?  One often hears parents say that they don’t want their children to go through the hardships that they had to, especially those that have come from a life of hardship or that have immigrated to the west from a land not so free.  Are we really helping them or are we hampering them by pampering them?

Decadence has allowed for a change in priorities throughout the western world.  In the past, many leaders, countries, cultures and religions have set the stage for grief, poverty and tremendous hardships for those that were not apart of the ruling elite.  More recently, the western world has separated itself from conflict and hardship, building safety and security afforded them as a result of years of democratic freedoms and economic stability.  Now these same societies have, in numerous instances, allowed the will of the individual to out weigh those of the of the will of the majority.  This may have gone so far as to create the new world’s educational culture that revolves around a diverse student base.

Along with this new simple and easy lifestyle, came numerous technological advancements and the innovation of gadgetry that has lightened the burden of the work-a-day world.  Therefore, less time is needed doing menial tasks and more time has been set aside for the individuals enjoyment.  I mention the individual, because this brings the world away from a model where people had to depend upon one another, but rather to an individualized wrapped society where the rights of the one win out over those of the society or the world!

This brings us to the new ‘Moral imperative of the educational world’ the personalized learning of the 21st century learner.  This idea has been building steam since the 1990s and is now repackaged and sold or pushed upon schools not only by all these afforded freedoms, but also because of a cocktail created by large and rich corporations and the amazing advancements in technology that they are touting and creating.  Humans are not immune to this virus and are often ill prepared by those same, faceless, money hungry entities that drive the world towards individualism and materialism.  As an onlooker, I believe those that are ultimately responsible for this calamity are the leaders that want to force the issue.

This idea of bringing schools an learners into the 21st century is not a new one or a bad idea, but it is going where no human has ever been and where no one knows what lurks around the corner.  It is believed that we are preparing our world for something that we have not even created or know anything about, so then how is it possible to go ahead with these ideas?  How is it possible to put all of the burden on a school system that is ill prepared?  How can the implementation be successful if there is no money to fund the technological needs of a school still in the 20th century let alone for a school in the 21st century and beyond?  Who will profit from this?  Why should people ever profit off the education of a future work force, citizenry, land, people or generations of people?

Something has got to give (see video on Ever Exploding Brain page)!??

Even the concepts are Alien…



Sharing Will be ‘The Moral Imperative’
January 1, 2011, 22:15
Filed under: Wonderings

After watching and reading posts that look at sharing between educators and institutions, I believe that Dean Shareski is an earthling with it all together.  I know that this is a difficult concept to grasp mainly because of the competitive nature amongst North Americans or most earthlings that live as a part of a capitalistic democracy, but the will of one never should out measure the will of all.  When those that are weak of heart and mind finally realize the implications of this cooperativeness that we Aliens are used to, there is no telling the potential of the human race.

If you haven’t seen the video…then you should!

Sharing: The Moral Imperative – Transcription in progress | dotSUB.



Earthlings Still Read Books…
November 12, 2010, 19:33
Filed under: Wonderings

When sharing resources, humans seem to use the written word to learn from and develop ideas.  There were many great ideas thrown around and a little bit of light reading for anybody ready to do so.  As a fly on the wall, I might have consider this to be a forum for sharing one’s research and a snapshot into one’s class.  From all of the experience that was evident, there was a lot that I would like to read and hope that the others are willing to share their resources.  If one was so inclined, one would have a hearty list from which to get ideas, but this list is not the be all end all of the profession although it may lead one on many great journeys through their mind and others.  It may also lead us to develop our work in-spite of our own inspirations, changing directions and allowing the path not to be detracted, but enriched opening up numerous connected possibilities.

Totally Alien!



What Creates Motivation?
November 7, 2010, 22:47
Filed under: Wonderings

I have been really trying to understand what motivates earthlings, what will make them go beyond their comfort zone and take real risks.  There have been many studies done and before looking at the research one would believe that improved efficiencies come with incentives and in a capitalistic democracy like North America, this must mean a pay bonus or incentives that in the long run leads to monetary gains.  Daniel Pink has done his research and so has M.I.T. and numerous other groups and the solution is…well watch this video(http://www.danpink.com/)!