RobinsonSir Ken Robinson. The man in glasses who brings us clarity. Robinson tells us about the loss of the creative artist in children, the false linear connection between the degree and career and the way in which we incorrectly perceive social structures. He says rather than trying to fix the broken model of education, or reform the system, we need to start anew and transform it. More specifically, he feels the need to move from an industrial model to an agricultural model (“organic process”) where we can create conditions in which we can begin to flourish and grow.  Robinson inspires me to examine my passions in educator, embrace my creative mind and support students to be their most authentic self, bringing life to the professional spirit.

KohnAlfie Kohn. The educational “evaluator.” This scholar speaks strongly against the standarized testing in public schools. He claims that by focusing on this, teachers move away from the passion of the lesson, removing the spirit of learning. His words encourage me to stay focused on engagement while embracing the complex nature of diverse students. This includes moving away from the mind numbing model of busy work and testing and working toward creating “competent, caring, loving and lovable people.”

PalmerParker J. Palmer. The man who evokes the spirit. Palmer believes the role of the teacher is to act as a spiritual mentor. He explains that the educator should encouraged exploration and discussion of existential questions. We are aware that young adults reflect upon the mystery of being alive. Therefore,  we should provide a platform for students to understand their spiritual dimensions. Give them a voice to discuss the “bigger picture.” By embracing this philosophy, I seek to assist students in their social and emotional capacities so they can better understand their role and service in the world.