Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Thinking Ahead

We all "think ahead" to what's next. What's coming up today? What do I need to plan for this week? What's happening this month, this year, that I need to anticipate? This is a temporal way of thinking ahead. But I look at thinking ahead as a qualitative description--a way of thinking that goes beyond the way we have thought traditionally.

High Meadows practices both kinds, but excels particularly in the qualitative. Here are some contrasts with conventional "school" thinking that will show you what I mean:

Conventional Thinking vs. High Meadows' "Thinking Ahead"

Academic rigor vs. Intellectual vitality
Preparation for life vs. Life itself*
Be the same vs. Be the change**                               
Tell vs. Ask
"Houston, we have a problem." vs. "Atlanta, we can find a solution."
Teacher as pail-filler vs. Teacher as fire-starter***
Accept information as truth vs. Question the veracity of information
Study it vs. Do it
“Good job on your essay!” vs. “The metaphors in your essay are quite vivid!"
Book report vs. Book review
Specials vs. Connections
Compliance vs. Self-advocacy
Flourescent light vs. Sunlight
Arbitrary Punishments vs. Logical Consequences
“Work quietly on your own." vs. “Work together and talk it through.”
“School? Nooooooo!” vs. “School? Yessssssss!”

What did I miss? Comment and let me know!

*Props to John Dewey
**Props to Mahatma Gandhi
***Props to William Butler Yeats