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Education Nation: Six Leading Edges of Innovation in Our Schools
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Education Nation: Six Leading Edges of Innovation in Our Schools

3.54  ·  Rating details ·  162 ratings  ·  24 reviews
An educational innovator who worked at Sesame Workshop and The George Lucas Educational Foundation offers a new vision for learning As a result of constant innovation, learning is no longer limited by traditional confines and we're moving beyond students tied to their chairs, desks, and textbooks-and teachers locked away in classrooms. In Education Nation author Milton Che ...more
Hardcover, 296 pages
Published July 6th 2010 by Jossey-Bass (first published June 18th 2010)
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Sep 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Overall, I was quite surprised to learn about a lot of resources and of just what was happening around the country back when this was written (2010) that I had not heard of before. I may need to do my own research and see what other great programs and steps are being taken since this was written. I was a little annoyed by his remarks about the last two generation not knowing what a typewriter was. It's great that he gave his daughter a computer in the 90s, but not everyone could afford that. I s ...more
Kyle Harrison
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In line with my interest in learning more about education, I had the chance to read this book where, little did I know, was sponsored by George Lucas’ foundation. From Star Wars to education, the man has range. What was fascinating about this book was the practical examples they gave of these new educational philosophies.

Thanks to Powell’s in Portland for exposing me to this book.
Patrik Bystrom
I finally concluded this book. I probably should have put it down rather than read it all. It is a book that has lost all relevance. Not that advice and predictions were poor in 2010, but since most strategies offered are now bread and butter to all teachers it has very little to offer today.
William Lawrence
Apr 02, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: education
Milton Chen's Education Nation gets two stars for his detailed compilation of education ideas. The problem with many of these ideas and theories is that there's no evidence that says spending billions on devices or computers will indeed lead to anything more than comfortable students and wealthier tech companies. He claims schools are locked in a time capsule from thirty years ago, but then in the same paragraph a few sentences later says schools in the 70s were actually better. Which one is it? ...more
Sep 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
I read this as part of an eBook club sponsored by our DOE. What I liked most about it was the exhaustive footnotes, many complete with links, and separate list of recommended sites in the back. For a topic like this, I think it's very important that you "show, not tell". I think one of the best advantages of technology (that we don't use enough) is sharing success stories, great ideas, great teaching. I've been on the receiving end of so many great teaching ideas, especially at professional conf ...more
Oct 19, 2013 rated it liked it
Recommended to Vicky by: Innovations in e-learning class
Milton Chen growing up on south side of Chicago, going to Harvard, working on Sesame Street, standing next to Big Bird in a photo of their crew on the Great Wall of China. Cool! I gathered from reviews that he has never taught in a classroom, and neither have I, so I'm following him along and agreeing with his perspective and tone of voice, but with some reservations. Until I get to points he brings up that I haven't thought about before, like rowdy schoolbuses that turn into study halls once wi ...more
Sep 26, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: education
What I liked about Education Nation is what I disliked about it – namely, someone without experience inside the public education system writing about it without regard for the limitations that system currently has in place. He's able to point to many exciting innovations and be inspiringly imaginative. However, while he acknowledges the restraints that the system has that hinders such innovation, he really fails to address them. Perhaps that's someone else's job; he's just the "idea man." He see ...more
Aug 16, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Drawing on decades of extensive experience exploring effective education (that's enough "e" words for the moment!), Milton Chen presents the most cogent, articulate, and practical vision for "creating the new world of learning."
Presenting "six leading edges of innovation" for education, Chen backs up his edges with myriad rich examples and even more follow up resources.

If I were in charge of the world, I'd use this book as a basis for collaborative inquiry with groups of educators and learners
Christian Crowley
Aug 29, 2014 rated it liked it
This book feels largely like a listing of all the items the author has collected in a file of news clippings. The common thread of the six "leading edges" functions more like a rough system for organizing descriptions of interesting programs and initiatives than a overarching story. The book presents many ideas worth exploring, sharing and learning more about, though it's difficult to keep them all in mind as the reader progresses from one chapter to the next.
Sep 01, 2013 rated it liked it
Chen offers a nice compilation of good ideas, but nothing particularly original or world-changing. The content applies primarily to public education. While I applaud both his call to action for a nation (the U.S.) that clearly does not value education and his appreciation of teachers, I found the book not entirely engaging.
Jun 20, 2011 rated it it was ok
I read this for a book discussion for work. The author included a lot of examples, which I thought I would like, but I didn't really find them helpful. I think the main points of this book could have been gotten across much more concisely in a ten page article. The writing style is definitely academic and I did not find it engaging.
Jan 08, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: education
Milton Chen lays our a compelling vision of school reform. His construct makes great sense and he aligns the visions with examples, including my own organization, The National Academy Foundation. This makes an excellent guidepost of changes in public policy and practice.
Jun 08, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: education
This book was full of so many exciting ideas, and I loved that about it. I basically felt like it was sort of a "Highlights of Edutopia" more than anything else, but the ideas in this book really inspired me and made me think.
Jul 06, 2011 rated it it was ok
Half-way through the book I realized the author has never been it teacher. He's a cheerleader for every project-based or high-teach teaching idea he's ever heard of. Some of those ideas are good ones, but the book seemed uncritical and not all that thoughtful.
Apr 27, 2013 rated it liked it
A moderately interesting book about the future of education. Nothing especially novel here, but echoing other recent books on the subject, offers plenty of suggestions for how to improve our education system.
Sep 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is a great book on how we need to teach children that learn is fun. Schools should should use the new technology to teach children that learning should be project based instead of lecture based.
Jun 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
I definitely recommend all educators read this book. The stories of innovative educators and school districts are inspiring and motivating. It got a little long at times with lists of stories, but overall it read quickly and easily. I recommend it!
Apr 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Any educator or child advocate will love this. Mr. Chen looks into the future and challenge as old-timers to think futuristic. What if we can send our children to a school where they WANT to go back to school?
Aug 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
How education is changing - makes you wish you could go back to one of the schools or programs he describes.
Next book that LP Parents Read is reading ... should be interesting.
Sep 06, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: haveread
Must reading for all educators and politicians and parents. Our education system is antiquated and the time is now for change that will connect the world to students and learning to their brain.
Charles Hoffman
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