If you think about solving the world’s problems or any other problem, you can quickly come across a common solution. This will be education. When people are better educated, there are fewer conflicts and more great work done. People with a good education archive more. Education is a super good tool for everything. Sounds like a scam ad, but you know that it’s true. Still, we’re not making education a high priority for our society. We’re pushing international privacy laws, but we’re not pushing an international system for essential classes. Every country utilise its way of teaching the same things, and the results are average at most.
Fake news and social polarization are simple consequences of lousy education. We’re now trying to fight misinformation worldwide by inventing a fact-checker institution, but the only reasonable solution is education. Well-educated people are immune to fake news and misinformation. They can fact-check things almost instantly. Intelligent people will not tend to become an extremist, they can talk instead of manifesting their beliefs. I want to share some ideas about improving the education process.
Set Communication as the most important class
The first class in early education is the country’s primary language. We need knowledge of speaking, reading, and writing. A result of knowing those skills should be good communication with other people. Sadly I think the level of global communication is terrible. Most people don’t listen in conversation and have problems putting their thoughts in an easy-to-understand form. It's not a problem with language knowledge. Most of us know our primary language very well, but we’re still struggling with good communication with others. There is much more than knowing your words and making a correct sentence. You need to listen and adjust what you’re saying to the person you’re talking to. Communication classes should also take advantage of psychological concepts, which would help understand the person, you’re speaking to.
In my home country of Poland, we emphasize learning the polish language in early education. We need to read a large number of books. Many of them are written in old or advanced form. We’re learning how to interpret those books and poetry. The focus is not set on achieving the best communication skills possible. It's set on understanding what the author meant to say.
Embrace the use of simple words
There is some perception that educated people use complicated words. But in reality, they talk with simple words. They know that it’s good for everyone if more people will understand. Many disciplines created unique words to simplify internal communication. They thought it would help them, but they forgot about new people. They build facades for new members. Disciplines with a stip learning curve will not grow as good as those easy to get into.
You can see it in finance. There are so many words for naming things that finance discipline appears difficult for most people. We don’t want that. We want to make it easier for people to join the party.
Organize schools like startups
The word startup manifests a good, fresh approach to creating an elastic environment of success. I always refer to my business as a startup to underline the good values of making things done. Although my business Responsly can be called a startup, I plan to call it a startup forever.
There is much discussion about paying more to the teachers, so we’ll have more qualified educators, but will it work? Do you see a professional who doesn’t want to learn more, stop, and teach some basics to the kids? I think it’s a conflict of interest. We want specialists to evolve their skills, work in business and create better things. So who should teach our children?
In the future education system, I don’t see a teacher as a person well educated in topics like Maths, Biology, or any other subjects. I see the teacher as a project manager. The project is children’s education. The teacher will use available educational materials to provide and verify knowledge. The main focus of the teacher will be managing children. Solve motivation problems, conflicts, and the general progress of the group.
Global curriculum, the best curriculum
Imagine every country will do a version of Martin Scorsese‘s The Godfather. For sure, most countries will create horrible versions. It’s hard to create something outstanding. I think the same about the education curriculum. We want to learn from "The Godfather" of education materials.
Due to a lack of Physics teachers, I skipped two years of Physics education at high school. Other years I got teachers that are not well motivated and couldn’t interest anyone in this class. Looking at this situation many years later, we only need good Physics materials, video clips, some exercises to practice, and some tests to verify this knowledge. No Physics teacher, only a general pedagogue. For some people, it could sound ridiculous, but during my studies, I spent hours learning from Youtube. My university lecturer assumed we knew the basics and quickly skipped to advanced things. Most of the students were lost. We found that MIT, Stanford, and Harvard published their lectures on Youtube, which were really good. Smooth transition from basics to more advanced topics. Why we’re not doing that with elementary courses? This could open the door for global learning materials. Created by the best in business. Similar to Masterclass courses. That can open doors for learning from the best physics educators, like Neil deGrasse Tyson.
Apart from Communication, I see Creation classes that will utilize Math, Physics, Biology, Computer science, and Art to create something. The skills of creation are precious. They are hard to get, but when a person knows how to do that, they come across an ocean of opportunities. Also, using knowledge in a practical example is a better way to absorb Math in a real context. Children have been struggling with Math for many years, and we're not reinventing the curriculum as we reinvent phones, watches, and whatever is next.
Summing things up. It’s tough to reform something set so long ago, people are used to this kind of education, but if we want to create better future education, we need to do that.