Courtesy: 21st Century Learning Initiative

Courtesy: 21st Century Learning Initiative

At the UC Think Tank headquarters, we came across a daring piece of literature and thought we had to share it with our education-minded supporters.

In his recent manifesto, Battling for the Soul of Education, 21st Century Learning Initiative's John Abbott brings together 30 years of insight from teaching and scientific research on the brain and learning to propose a new way of educating kids. In it, he asks, "How can we, as a society, leverage this new information to overhaul our education delivery system?"

"Given what we now know from research into human learning, it would seem that what we need is not further school reform, but a radical transformation of the education system based on the complimentary roles of home, community and school."

It’s a compelling argument that first begs the question: What kind of world do we want our future generations to live in? The path to that ideal world, Abbott argues, relies on the collective work of families, communities and schools —teachers and legislative reform alone will not get us there. Secondly: Are we raising our youth to repeat what they see or are we raising them to think outside of the box for the betterment of their community? Our society must instill and encourage from a very young age curiosity and risk-taking as safe platforms for discovery and true learning, Abbott says.

Born to Learn, a 21CLI affiliate, has a fantastic set of animations that distills this very idea:

Battling for the Soul of Education is worth the read (and it's free!). Should it interest our dear readers, Abbott (with colleague Heather MacTaggart) released a book that more deeply delves into how our current understanding of the brain, learning and society demands a new way of teaching.

Have any thoughts on Abbott, his work or movements to transform education in general? Share in the comments below!

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