Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

I have zero desire to engage in the culture wars but I also take note of how often they overlap into my own world and my own work. This post from Alfie Kohn sets a stage not only for today's newsletter but for a lot of my own work in general. A form of educational activism has emerged that not only seeks to limit content, but also pedagogy, in such a way as to have students learn based on authority, rather than through their own skills and inquiry. Every time I comment on the need for diversity, for critical thinking, or for active learning - and contrary, therefore, to things like direct instruction or content-based pedagogy - I am being drawn into this conflict. I see the same things Kohn dioes - but in my own analysis I keep the words 'religious' and 'right' out of it. These are just facades. To me, it's a matter of money, power and control, and whether we will ever get to live in something like a genuine democracy, or be entrenched forever in an oligarchy.

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada
stephen@downes.ca

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Last Updated: May 06, 2022 2:28 p.m.