From Fragmentation to Connection

People have often questioned in school, “What has this got to do with anything?” or “Why am I learning this?”  This is due to a lack of connection between curricular concepts and the real world, as well as the absence of any integration amongst school subjects.  Fragmentation often means checking reality at the school door, disconnecting not only concrete, real life situations from abstract, curricular concepts, but also studying each subject in isolation from one another.  Connection is about bringing together the real world and the curriculum in conjunction with interdisciplinary work.

The norm nowadays in school is for students to acquire knowledge as an end in itself, memorize and reproduce it on a test, then forget about it entirely.  In this scenario, students do not learn to use knowledge as a tool to apply in their current or future lives.  Likewise, learning through distinct subjects does not support students to make connections between the disciplines to mobilize when faced with real world problems.  In the real world, multiple connections and relations are part of life activities, connections that involve crossing over disciplines and making links between many fields of study.  Education should mirror the life in this way, building bridges between subjects through interdisciplinary work contextualized in activities that occur beyond the walls of the school.

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To transform education in order to move humanity forward to face the challenges of the 21st century, increasingly globalized world in a collaborative, creative, critical, connected and caring way.

The founder and primary contributor to Education for Contemporary Times is Sarah O. Weiler, long-time educator with a M.A. in Global Education from the University of Illinois and a M.A. in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Education at the prestigious Institute of Education at the University of London in the UK.
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