Seymour Papert, a co-founder of the MIT Media Lab passed away last week. His life was spent thinking about learning and how to make it accessible to everyone. Many of his contributions focused on the integration of technology and learning; he was a trailblazer. If you’ve not heard of him, please learn more. His work informs much of what we deem to be leading edge in our schools today: makerspaces, technology integration, teaching Scratch programming and more. He has left us with many writings and a great deal of inspiration. Montessori education focuses on helping children learn how to learn; learning is not stagnant. It is an ever-present goal for all of us. Thank you, Seymour Papert, for your inspiration and innovation.
“So the model that says learn while you’re at school, while you’re young, the skills that you will apply during your lifetime is no longer tenable. The skills that you can learn when you’re at school will not be applicable. They will be obsolete by the time you get into the workplace and need them, except for one skill. The one really competitive skill is the skill of being able to learn. It is the skill of being able not to give the right answer to questions about what you were taught in school, but to what you were taught in school. We need to produce people who know how to act when they’re faced with situations for which they were not specifically prepared.”
– Seymour Papert