Yesterday my favorite philosopher (my 6 year old son) helped me realize something very profound. Now, he does not mean to be a philosopher, but readers of the blog know that he has had at least one very profound statement about education and “learning”. Yesterday, I watched him get off the bus and start walking backward down the street. I wondered why he would want to walk backward all of that way. I thought about it for a little bit and I finally realized the answer. He was walking backward because it was fun and he just wanted to do it. When is the last time you walked down the street backward just because it was fun? Better yet, when was the last time you did something just because it was fun and was going to make you happy?
Lately, as I think about the direction of education and all of the “speed bumps” school district must maneuver around, I am afraid that all of us in education may forget to "walk backward". We forget that we are dealing with kids that just want to “walk backward” sometime. Let’s keep education simple. Teach the kids things that are useful to them in life in a way that is interesting and engaging. Period…and then we can all go outside and walk backward!!