James Ballard: the purpose of education is to delight (#500words)

James Ballard on the purpose of education

Rounding off week four of the Purpos/ed #500words campaign today is James Ballard who writes:

For me delight is the interest that can spark a connection with the world. Interest-driven learning or rhizomatic learning provide examples where there aren’t ‘things people should know’ but rather ‘new connections to be made’. The purpose of education and importance of teachers becomes to help learners follow their delights and make new connections; the community becomes the curriculum

You can continue reading James’ contribution at: http://infiniterooms.wordpress.com/2012/05/26/the-purpose-of-education-is-to-delight-purposedu-500words (please do leave comments for him!)

The list of all contributors during this campaign is at: http://bit.ly/purposedu500

One Response to “James Ballard: the purpose of education is to delight (#500words)”

  1. Meg Tufano June 5, 2012 at 6:41 pm #

    The Purpose of Education

    Education is the interactive questioning about ‘the good’ that is demonstrated by Plato or Aristotle, for example, and is the kind of activity that brings two human beings as close as perhaps they can ever get to being united, and, so, brings them to the experience of human contact and significance. This, in fact, is why universities exist, to reconstitute that unity among new generations of questioners.
    But even more important, the reason that people desire to become educated at all is captured in the following dynamic: the life of most individuals can be described as the struggle for human contact and significance. This is why Socrates said the unexamined is not worth living because of the isolation and insignificance that is the result of choosing ignorance and prejudice.

    In fact, though most students think they are going to college to get “jobs”–the real reason they want (better) jobs is because they are seeking deeper human contact and significance at both the personal and professional level: better friendships, more fulfilling marriages, richer lives for their children, or more personally satisfying careers. These are the reasons why people desire to learn. Education, then, is about creating exciting opportunities for interactive questioning about things that matter to make life worth the living.

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