← Conversations

Why it may be more important for schools to provide networks than knowledge.

Session 6
David Berg — Big Picture Learning

There is research that challenges the historic assumptions about the role of school in the lives of young people. Specifically, we are learning that the ability of school to provide diverse networks of 'who students know' may offer more post-school opportunity than 'what students know' through core-content instruction. As a recent NYT times article called out: "[W]hat the researchers called economic connectedness — had a stronger impact than school quality, family structure, job availability or a community’s racial composition. The people you know, the study suggests, open up opportunities, and the growing class divide in the United States closes them off."

This assertion may challenge the traditional notion of the educator as deliverer of content, but it also may be an opportunity for educators to redefine their role in an age of just-in-time online learning for digital natives. In this proposition, educators can begin to support and measure not just what students know, but also who they know.

This session gives an overview of some of the emerging research and offers insight and disruptive tools that allow educators to shift to this new reality of their role in the lives of young people.

Conversational Practice

I would like to include practitioners in this work from the Philadelphia. Those folks can offer insight. I will also challenge attendees to offer tips and hacks for providing students enduring connections to a broad array of people. This is an inherently disruptive topic, so we are looking forward to facilitating an active conversation. This will include prompts and table-group conversations.

Conversation Links

Presenter Profiles

David Berg
David Berg
Big Picture Learning


JSON feed