Education – Are we still learning?

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“Why should society feel responsible only for the education of children, and not for the education of all adults of every age?”

Erich Fromm

Schools and universities have a mandate to educate.  To that end, they have created measurements systems and standardized tests to quantify whether or not learning has occurred.

As adults, how do we know we are still learning?

20 thoughts on “Education – Are we still learning?

  1. An interesting question, Rebecca. I try to learn something new everyday, however small, as part of my promise to myself to live the fullest expression of life. Ultimately, I believe we all hold the Wisdom of the Ages deep within us, waiting to be brought up into our human level of consciousness. Thank you for your thought-provoking material. It does my mind good!

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    • I agree wholeheartedly – thank you for adding your insightful comments. I especially like “My promise to myself to live the fullest expression of life.” We are surrounded by flawed measurement systems such as wealth, power, influence, that we sometimes lose track that there are others: joy, compassion, resilience. Today, I am going to live the fullest expression of life.

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  2. That’s a hard one. Especially when a lot of what I learn,or try to learn, seems to head straight to my forgettory. In this country we used to be able measure adult learning by the number of participants in, and the amount of Government funding for, adult community education classes. However, budget constraints in recent years, have meant a steep decline in the funding and variety of adult classes, so does that mean adults are no longer learning? I don’t know. A lot of adults would find it too hard financially to attend non subsidised education classes. But then perhaps they learn wonderful things in one of our fabulous public libraries.

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    • A very good question. Our current economic situation is more about survival and sustainability than about the finer points of education. And yet, learning is the key to our ongoing existence. My favourite place IS the public library. Over the past couple of years, I notice that many other people, young and old, have re-discovered the benefits of these remarkable institutions. It seems that life-long learning begins with curiosity and wonder. If we are still have a full measure of these qualities, perhaps that is how we know that we are learning.

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      • Yes, curiosity and wonder! Is there a wonder-meter out there to measure it? Most likely there is 🙂

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    • A long time ago, but it seems like yesterday. I chose that photo because of one of my favourite quotes by John Keats: “The only means of strengthening one’s intellect is to make up one’s mind about nothing, to let the mind be a thoroughfare for all thoughts.” Thanks again, for adding your wisdom to the dialogue. I really appreciate your visits!!!

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      • Nice one. My daughter is a Keat’s devotee. She encouraged me to watch Bright Star which I loved. She regularly tells me tales of Keats and his poetry.

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      • Another kindred spirit!!!! I have a feeling that poetry will be the bridge of communication in the next decades. Our language is ever changing, but it is the emotional connection found in poetry that gives us a common denominator.

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    • Quelle idée merveilleuse! Il ya des moments où je connais, sans réserve, que je fais le droit crois au bon moment pour la bonne raison. C’est alors que je sais que je suis d’apprentissage. Merci beaucoup pour l’ajout de votre voix au dialogue. J’ai vraiment appreicate votre visite.

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  3. Hi Rebecca

    I describe myself in my profile as “an erstwhile teacher and a permanent student” and that’s how I think of myself. I still attend a French class at the University Adult Education Centre in Cardiff and their prospectus is the first thing I look for at the beginning of the Academic year.

    My teaching days may be over and University tuition fees for full time courses at £9,000 per year makes formal University Education a very expensive investment for students these days in the UK, but I like to think that I am a fully paid up member of the University of Life. I have just gone out and bought myself a new file and a new diary to note down the wonderful things there are to learn on a daily basis.

    Old habits die hard, I’m glad to say.

    Corinne

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    • I love “old habits” especially if they keep us on the road to new paths of learning. I think the “University of Life” gives us a head start. It teaches us to learn how to learn. I especially like the title “an erstwhile teacher and a permanent student.” Great to have you visit – you always add wisdom to the dialogue…

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  4. As adults, we need to explore, there is so much out there that is new. To learn something new us exciting. Maybe that is the way we measure.

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    • I agree wholeheartedly. Excited about new and fresh…I think that we can come up with a scale from 1 – 10! I would rate today as a “10.”

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  5. “The Art of Loving” is a book in my library … So, I’m still learning 🙂

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