I have been thinking a lot more about education this week. Education is usually top of mind for me, but recently has become a recurring topic at work and home.
Here are some takeaways I wanted to share with you:
> Every morning, I try to read a passage from Seneca. It goes like this, “In a single day there lies open to men of learning more than ever does to the unenlightened in the longest of lifetimes.” Please note: Seneca lived during the Roman Empire and forgot to mention that women are an important part of learning and should be included here. This is one the many reasons why women need to advance their educations so they will never be forgotten or left behind by men.
> I just added “learn each day” to my list of daily work activities and reminders. I also tried to get more specific by including, “Learn each day…something new, something deeper and something through doing.”
> I realized three of perhaps the most important drivers of an education are to: 1) be open to it; 2) create an environment or culture for it; 3) be active in it.
> I watched, and would recommend you watch, the independent film Captain Fantastic. If you do, I believe you will realize the importance of being open to all forms of an education. Learning comes in a lot of different shapes, sizes and sources. The movie also showed me the pitfalls* of learning in isolation and reinforced the need for education to be interactive, dynamic and applicable. It also drove home how education should never be mutually exclusive; it should always be inclusive and beneficial. And, when learning interacts with real-world cultures, it should be directed toward those environments. If it’s not much valuable knowledge can get lost.
I realize a lot people and institutions have many opinions and differing ways to go about providing an education, which I greatly respect. What I try to instill in the reader is a sense of ownership, value and understanding in getting their education. I have always tried emphasizing to both of my children how education is a two-way street. They must go out and get an education in addition to receiving one. That’s because the world not only favors those who learn but also active learners. More often than not, they are one and the same.
* By chance, when I Googled the definition of “pitfall’; it returned the example, “home schooling has its pitfalls”. Take it for whatever it’s worth to you. I have included the notation here because I pay attention to serendipity.