Sunday, April 27, 2014

1) A Finnish guy, an American hero; and 2) H.e.a.r Chi Talk

Many thanks to those of you have rsvp'd for H.e.a.r. Chicago Talk. I'm getting very excited about this one. I just heard Pasi Sahlberg speak yesterday, thanks to Raise Your Hand Illinois, and, while listening to how Finland employed mature vision, humble intelligence, and faith in its people to strengthen their society is rather deflating because, well, frankly, this sort of behavior is not in the cultural DNA of the U.S, a place with a history of addressing complexities through stridency and slogans--it is also inspiring, or galvanizing, because it helps give shape to problems and solutions.*

Sahlberg mentioned that all of Finland's great edu-ideas--the ones on the right-hand side of slide 14 here, came from the U.S. Say wha? Really?? Which?! Where?! When?! I gathered by the end of the presentation that what (I think) he meant was there are innovative and engaging and pedagogically appropriate and child-developmentally-appropriate and teacher-respectful practices happening at individual schools, and that Finland's really done its research over the past forty years--but there is no mechanism to catalog, disseminate, propagate, and scale these individual and locally occurring ideas.

So. Here's where I get back to H.e.a.r. Chicago Talk. Sharing and amplifying these localized ideas is the exact point of this idea exchange. That's why I started it. That and the need for a counter to the yelling and anger and conflict that's been happening in Chicago and nationally in edu-fields. H.e.a.r. Chicago Talk is meant to be a place where great ideas can be shared and those who reach and teach can feel inspired and re-charged.

There is so much to learn from Finland's experiences. Let's start by sharing and learning from our own great ideas.

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