Core Values: Why are we here…on this planet…living this life?
It starts with One belief: our primary goal is to be happy now. Not tomorrow, not yesterday, but now. “Our only reality is the present moment…The truth about success is that our ability to achieve extraordinary results in the future lies in stringing together powerful moments…your ‘present now’ and all ‘future nows’ are determined by this now.” (Gary Kelly, The ONE Thing.)
The goal to be happy now is the same now as it was 100 years ago, but society has evolved. The needs of society and the workforce are very different today than during the industrial age. Our education system was designed to further a society in the industrial age but we now live in an information age. What this means is that information is simple to obtain, but what we do with and how we manipulate that information is what drive society.
The perfect example is Google. The Google search engine can find you information on just about anything you want, but how was that search engine built? It took a vision, dreamers, problem solvers, managers and leaders to take the idea and transform it into a usable tool. The only physical-ish output Google needed are programmers, which only exist to organize information in to specific logical sequences.
The point being that almost every job at Google did not exist 100 years ago, so why are we educating people using a system for jobs that no longer exist?
Everyone on the planet has something they can do that will help others; life is supposed to be enjoyed, discovering that one thing means we’re focused on the now. When you find that thing you can do well, you’ll be excited. When you learn to share that thing with others, you will change the world.
“For it is in giving…that we receive” ~ Prayer of St. Francis
“Man is a political animal” ~ Aristotle
We are social beings who have learned we benefit when working together. Humans love it when they are successful and it brings us joy and happiness to see others succeed as well. When we discover we are good at something (successful) AND we’re critical thinkers, we’ll naturally question ourselves in relation to others and how our talents can help other people have the same success. When we start to see the benefits of our talents for others, it makes us feel good. We are happy. We enjoy seeing others succeed because of what we do.
Shawn Achor calls this “Spiraling Upward”, the more we succeed and use our gifts to allow society to succeed, the more we benefit from that society, and up and up we go. Therefore, it is true that in giving our gifts to others we thrive.
The Core Curriculum (CC) at Phiolo will focus the core values and it will be something the students carry with them for the rest of their lives, more on the CC below.
The beautiful thing about giving your gift is that you feel great doing it and you don’t feel bad because you don’t have the same gift as someone else. The CPA does our taxes, the lawyer writes patents, the plumber fixes leaks, the tutor educates. Each person has a specific role they do and they love doing it. No one expects their lawyer to fix the leaking pipe, just as much as you don’t expect the plumber to do you taxes. The division of labor mandates at core value that has been removed from the industrial age education system.
Somewhere along the way someone decided we needed to know the basics of everything in order to discover what we would enjoy.
Here is how Seth Godin puts it:
The industrial school had several generations and billions of dollars to drill and practice us into game show champions, and it has failed, miserably.
Cultural literacy is essential. A common store of knowledge is the only way to create community, to build and integrate a tribe of people interested in living together in harmony. But that store of knowledge will never be infinite, and what’s more important, we cannot drill and practice it into a population that has so many fascinating or easy diversions available as alternatives.
I’m concerned about fact ignorance and history ignorance and vocabulary ignorance.
I’m petrified, though, about attitude ignorance.
If we teach our students to be passionate, ethical, and inquisitive, I’m confident that the facts will follow.
The industrial age model of Bloom’s Taxonomy puts out great Jeopardy contestants who can follow the rules. The information age model generates the rule creators. It is no coincidence that Analyzing, Evaluating and Creating are the top levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, for these are exact the skills needed to enable an autonomous student.
In the past education systems were concerned with the passing on of culture, ritual, or the skills of living. (Furedy & Furedy, p. 53.) In the new education system we aim to not only pass on that which is already known but also stimulate minds so they create the unknown.
Autonomous doesn’t mean balanced. Autonomous means we find others in our society that can help us accomplish things we can’t do on our own.
Again, Godin states it this way, “Should we be teaching and encouraging and demanding passion (and then letting competence follow)? In others words, if we dream big enough, won’t the rest take care of itself?”
Phiolo Curriculum and the Phiolo Paradox
A) What you learn is not nearly as important as how you learn it.
B) Choosing what you learn is critical to your success and happiness
The goal is to get students to care. Get students interested in a subject, viz., get them to care. Well, what interests them, things they are good at. What are they good at, problems that they can solve and questions that they can answer. When we achieve even a small success, we’re motivated to keep going. The beauty of critical thinking questions are there is no right answer, which means there is no wrong answer, which means students success is guaranteed. When you ask a student, “What else is this like and why,” there is no one right answer, you’ve set the student up for success.
Core value four is critical to anyone’s success. Saying you want to be an astronaut or professional basketball player is lofty and unattainable by most. These types of dreams are typically crushed at a young age and then we never want to dream again. If a dream is attainable it becomes something you actually get excited about when you wake up in the morning. As Seth Godin puts it, “Passion is driven by success.”
My dream is to build a new type of education system, it’s something I can work on everyday as I’ve written out my daily, weekly, monthly, yearly, 5 year and someday goals. I’m working on it right now as I right this.
As stated above there are some things students need to know, such as how to read and write. These 2 skills are the tools they need to hone critical thinking skills and therefore are part of every subject taught.
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