Education essence: knowing we don’t know

It’s an ongoing frustration of mine that I don’t have (or, perhaps, take) the time to write on this and other blogs. I can’t believe I haven’t posted since December. But the evidence is right there.

I still don’t have time to go into depth, but I wanted to share a post called What We Know, Don’t Know, and Never Knew. It’s from a personal finance blog, but it gets at something very much at the heart of education. I often tell students, “You must be willing to feel dumb on the way to getting smart.” Too many people quit because they’re uncomfortable, whereas if you’re really learning something you don’t already know, you are bound to feel uncomfortable. This post looks at another side: the likelihood that you will continue to feel dumb, even when most other people would view you as accomplished and competent.

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New category, extending old principle

This is the first post in a new category for this blog, called simply “Buccaneering.” The idea comes from an approach to education explicated by James Bach in his book Secrets of a Buccaneer-Scholar: How Self-Education and the Pursuit of Passion Can Lead to a Lifetime of Success. Some people love the book, some hate it, but there is food for thought here. Learning is a much more complex thing, and yet a much simpler thing, than many in the education establishment would have it. I’ll have several posts jumping off from these ideas, but I’m hoping we’ll have some discussion around the idea of what constitutes education.

You can get some quick background by taking a look at Bach’s own blog, How I Learn Stuff.

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