Dr. Michael Wesch: Rethinking Education (and Libraries,Too)

I somehow missed this video when it was first released in January, but thank you to DML Central and Open Culture for helping me discover the video, “Rethinking Education” from Dr. Michael Wesch . I found myself exclaiming “yes!” several times while watching this video from thought leader and teacher extraordinaire (and inspiration agent for Media 21) Dr. Michael Wesch.  A little background on this video designed to be a “conversation starter”:

This video was produced as a contribution to the EDUCAUSE book, The Tower and the Cloud: Higher Education in the Age of Cloud Computing, edited by Richard Katz and available as an e-Book athttp://www.educause.edu/thetowerandthecloud or commercially at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0967285399/ref=kinw_rke_rti_1 Produced in 2007 as a conversation starter in small groups. Released in 2011 as a conversation starter online.

Although targeted toward the world of higher education, this video speaks to the challenges we face in K12 education and consequently, libraries at large as we now realize, “there is no shelf”; the video speaks to the fundamental shifts in how information is distributed and how we are now constructing and sharing knowledge.  While many statements stood out to me, one in particular captures the sense of urgency I feel in my work as a librarian and teacher:

‎”The critical thing that is happening is the public is existing now, is living and breathing, within a much larger sphere of information and knowledge.  That critical openness to knowledge, that is something we had better address, or we are ill-serving our students.”

The possibilities for initiating, inviting, and sustaining conversations for learning about these organic changes in the information landscape are what I find incredibly exciting and what give me hope, in spite of what seem to be insurmountable challenges at times, that we can disrupt and topple the banking system of education that treats students as passive receptacles of knowledge and devalues the potential of participatory learning, critical thinking, and inquiry.

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