For my blog post today, I’m sharing a recent post I wrote for Common Dreams, a progressive news site. Here’s an excerpt from “Returning to School: Education for a Livable Planet”:
“Students and teachers are returning to school. I know few in either group who are genuinely excited at the prospect. This is a travesty and a tragedy.
Humans are, by nature, passionate about learning. It is truly extraordinary that in a few thousand years our species has learned to create elaborate shelters and to heat and cool them so that the temperature is always comfortable. We have turned minerals and ores into metals that we’ve shaped for every possible purpose, creating the bicycle, the toaster, and the airplane. We have made televisions and computers that the great majority of us cannot actually comprehend, but which we can use effortlessly nonetheless. We have done these things and so much more because our curiosity and imaginations, coupled with our desire and capacity to learn, continually spark creative problem-solving to increase our pleasure, comfort, and freedom. True, we create destructive and unhealthy things too, but the seeds of all creation, good and bad, emerge from our ability and desire to learn.
Almost all of us can easily recount times when we have experienced profound joy and excitement while learning something new. Learning is deeply pleasurable, a source of energy and enthusiasm and the foundation for virtually all growth, innovation, and invention. And this is why it is a travesty and tragedy that so many students and teachers lack enthusiasm each September.”
For a humane world,