Column: Striking balance between education, true learning important for schools

Recently, the Chamber’s Education Committee conducted its annual Scholar’s Breakfast. At this breakfast, those seniors at Seymour High School who have met the school’s criteria for being “scholars” were given the opportunity to recognize the K-12 teacher who meant the most to them.

In her book, “My Insightful Stroke: A Brain Scientist’s Personal Journey,” Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor of Bloomington describes how, as an adult, she was forced to relearn everything following a stroke. She describes in layman’s terms how our brains work and learn. There is a subtle difference between learning and education. One is more right-brained, deals with organizing and using information and is outward. The other is more left-brained, analytical and inward. But they work in harmony in an amazing, almost magical, way.

Education, as we know it, is the outcome of the needs of industry at the end of the 19th century. Demonstration and replication of actions would no longer be sufficient for training. Reading and math skills were needed. The field of engineering really took off.

Internal combustion replaced steam. New materials made size considerations less important. Machining became more precise. To advance in manufacturing meant more education was needed. While the tools we use have advanced, the basic model of how we educate has not changed as significantly.

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