Deirdre Keating's Reviews > The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything

The Element by Ken Robinson
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's review
Jan 03, 2010

bookshelves: to-read

I don't really need to read a whole book on finding the crosspoint between passion and talent, but this is the quote that got me:

p. 238 The most powerful method of improving education is to invest in the improvement of teaching and the status of great teachers. There isn’t a great school anywhere that doesn’t have great teachers working in it. But there and plenty of poor schools with shelves of curriculum standards and reams of standardized tests.
The fact is that given the challenges we face, education doesn’t need to be reformed—it needs to be transformed. The key to this transformation is not to standardize education but to personalize it, to build achievement on discovering the individual talents of each child, to put students in an environment where they want to learn and where they can naturally discover their true passions.

If he can convince non-believers of that, then this book will be gold.

I actually had Aidan's teacher (2nd grade) tell me that since he's already so good at art, she doesn't want him to have the role of "artist" in his small group but instead to focus on his spelling. I know her intentions are good---she's aiming for well-rounded students. I just wish elementary teachers could spend time with "well-rounded" passionless high school students and realize their role in killing enthusiasm for learning. No one wants to do that, especially not teachers, but so often we do just that.
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