Random musings on a Sunday evening…


A while ago, I was uploading a file to my @DropBox account and noticed that they were hiring. Out of interest, I had a look at what working at a company like DropBox might entail, and saw this:


How cool! It describes how it offers a working environment that appeals specifically to to the way in which they want their employees to think and live.


What would a job description for a 21st century learner look like that truly reflects the skills and dispositions we are seeking to draw out of them? What would the job description for a 21st educator look like, if they are to be successful in drawing out those skills and dispositions? How might we define the ‘benefits’ of learning to reflect the type of mindsets we want our learners to develop, I wonder?


I would have loved ‘sense of fun, play and exploration’ to have been listed under ‘essentials’ in my own job description when I was starting out in the classroom, (although I believe that they were there, in invisible ink) and possibly even more so now. That’s that type of learning environment we always seek to establish when we are teaching. I hope that I express these qualities as ‘essential’ now in my work with educators.


Not only that, but it then makes me think of how powerful would it be if we, as educators, shared our expertise about how we learn with those who run businesses, laboratories or retail outlets. I wonder what impact that might have on the way in which the workplace is organised, how we might encourage innovation and how we could support organisations to actively and systematically nurture the capacities of not just our children and young people but those who are already in the workplace. Then everybody would have a chance to find fulfillment in what they do, how they act and how they contribute to future economies and communities for which we are preparing for our young people.


In this way, perhaps there is hope that we can create a truly collaborative environment of learning that looks and feels a bit like this…


1.Teachers and students learn about their subject as it is applied in a wider and applied context

2. Young people would have access to mentors, role-models and industry-trained and experienced practitioners

3. Industry would learn from educators about how to the develop skills, gifts and dispositions found in the individuals in their workforce

4. Industry would gain an insight into the perspective of young people, their next generation of consumers, participants, employees and leaders.

5. Schools and colleges would connect with local business and employers to form a genuinely collaborative and beneficial (for all) community hub


All of this would ensure that they schools can offer the best possible ways in which students can access the curriculum, in addition to the offer of an enhanced curriculum in itself. 


Surely this would allow us to take some really big steps to develop life-wide (rather than life-long) learning?