“E Pluribus Unum.” Out Of One, Many?
How should the motto of the United Sates be honored? By making everyone the same, or by building on diversity?
Uniformity in some things is a necessity, such as an allegiance to the US Constitution. But in all else individuality is what has made America great. And that same diversity, if leveraged, will help propel the US into the 21st century.
No two human beings are alike: not even identical twins. In America, that is truer than in all other nations. To read more visit CNBC article:
At Least 350 Languages Spoken In US Homes: New Report Juan Castillo | CNBC
We are the most diverse nation in history. For our children in school, there already is no majority ethnic group, and by 2044 that will be true for the nation as a whole.
To read more visit the LA Times article:
In the U.S., diversity is the new majority William H. Frey | Los Angeles Times
Our diversity on the one hand and our need for cohesion through conformity to norms of behavior, on the other hand, will always cause tension. It happens in families, companies, armies, other enterprises and certainly in schools.
However, attempts at homogenization have serious downsides. A one-size-fits-all approach works only to a point. Even in the military, and certainly in business, more and more responsibility is being pushed down the organization. Most organizations, except our top-heavy education system, are becoming more open to a bottom-up way of operating. Creativity comes from tension, not from rigidity.
So, the question is this “Why are schools lagging behind societal change, especially now when change is the new normal?”
The answer has to be a failure of leadership. For a complete analysis of the problem see my article Are American Schools The Newest Black Swan.
A CALL TO ACTION.
There is something teachers can do. BEFORE telling students to open their “textbooks,” organize them into self-directed teams and ask them to analyze through questioning why what they are doing is valuable to them. If you teach algebra or history, ask your students to decide for themselves why algebra or history is important to them; that way they buy-in to the need for them to learn algebra or history. The same goes for any subject. It’s the Terego Method™.
Alex Terego After 40 successful years in the hi-tech business, during which he participated in all phases of computing, beginning with IBM and culminating in selling his voice mail company, Alex became an early thought-leader in 21st Century skills development. He developed his Terego Method™ when teaching Critical Thinking at the Thunderbird School of Global Management and the Eller Graduate School of Business at the University of Arizona.
The program is now available at no cost for schools. Click to see this narrated video It is an investment of seven minutes of your time to discover how you can teach students to think for themselves and in teams.
Follow me on Twitter @alex_terego