Responses to Nurture Human Talent

Responses to my Huffington Post, Nurture Human Talent, have been positive, and I'm thankful to each of you in my network who chose to retweet it. Yet, it might come as no surprise that the power of getting Huffpost out there is the ability to reach an audience NOT in my professional learning network.

So, forgive me, if I take a moment to thank Jose Vilson and Ed Jones, who left this comment on my HuffPost and I link to his blog entry on the subject. I hope you'll take a moment to respond to Ed, too, in whatever venue works best for you (obviously, Huffington Post comment section would be appreciated).

Ed's comment and a link to his blog entry:
There's not much room here, I'll post my extended thoughts back home: http://blo­g.openhist­oryproject­.org/2010/­10/normal-­0-false-fa­lse-false.­html

We are ­creativity­­-ing ourselves down the path of the Roman Empire. We build 14,000 ‘apps’ on top of Twitter alone. 250,000 for the iPhone. Every minute we upload another 24 hours of video to YouTube.

What do we know of the world? Our place in it?

We need people who are productive and dependable. Especially when they are young and still learning what it is to be an adult, let alone lead adults. We need people who can care for the elderly and do repetitive research on sickle-cell anemia. We need people who will plant the seed each spring and gather the harvest each fall to feed a malnourished world.

Great teachers don’t teach you to be dangerous. All those dangerous people—they’re the ones keeping the sub-par teachers in place, distracting funds and resources from those in need, muddling the debate, spreading false economics, electing status-quo leaders.

Great teachers don’t teacher you to be creative because no one is creative standing alone. All build on the shoulders of giants. It’s getting harder to learn everything the giants have given us. Things all learned over time, while being productive and dependable.

My response:
Ed, thanks so much for your thoughtful response. Mind if I sound off

"Great teachers don't teach you to be dangerous," you write, to which I would add, "...they teach you to be real, to ask tough questions, using technology as a way to accomplish that." Unfortunately, those in power resist questions, resist the use of technology in ways that enhance the dialogue. Why? It threatens them.

I wholeheartedly agree with your point about not being creative in a vacuum. The power of the Read/Write Web that facilitates human beings doing what is essentially who we are--creating, connecting, collaborating, not in that order--resides in the power of those connections made. This doesn't mean that you can be a gardener, planting and harvesting, but that you can, like a New Zealand gardener I met, rediscover the beauty of nurturing life and sharing that experience.

That NZ gardener--a Ms. Jenny Litchfield, I believe--thought she had nothing worth sharing with the world. Technology--her blog--allowed her to share her passion about gardening, and receive validation and feedback from a university professor enchanted with her work. Although an older person, her situation as a teacher had conditioned her to do nothing...dangerous.

As a parent, I want my children's passions kindled and nurtured by educators unafraid to share their passion for learning. . .I want them to feel comfortable to be giants in their own right so that others may stand on THEIR shoulders.

And, here's Jose Vilson's comment:

That, my friend, was heartpounding. As someone working in a large urban school district, I felt this essay from the first sentence on.

It hurt moreso because it made me feel I was subjecting my kids to the mundane and ridiculous, mainly because of the mandates of "success" placed on me and teachers like me. We're entering an age where ... well, this sort of education is implanted in us. People like you, though, push me to consider something else, other ideas, ones that work for my students.

Thank you.
And my response to Jose:
Jose, thanks for the feedback. Finn's last quote in the blog entry above signals the true problem. We accept the political reality in our schools because they aren't controversial...yet if we were to deviate from the actions we take every day, there would be consequences. Should we avoid the consequences because they threaten our livelihood? Or embrace them because they change the future?

What in your experience resonated? What is YOUR story?

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Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin's blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure


Jose Vilson said…
I shared your post with my own network, and they ate it up for sure. Well done.

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