Of interest is the one of the authors’ experiences as a teacher chaperoning a group of senior high school students on a field trip to North Africa. The headman of the village tells the teacher that unlike the village kids, who at a similar age are already contributing to their family’s and community’s well-being and productivity, the kids from Western societies are still dependent on their family and are unable to accomplish even the simplest of domestic/agricultural tasks.
Also, there is a reflection in the first chapters of the book on the role of apprenticeships in helping the younger generation find meaning and status in life, and the role of adult mentors in providing young people with structure and challenge. Schools have taken the ‘factory model’ too far, dampening the natural instincts of their students by imposing a lock-step, one-size-fits all model. The current needs of humankind require more of schools including the need to prepare young people to face the big challenges like environmental degradation, globalisation, peak oil etc.
In all, not a new message, as evidenced by many other commentators, Sir Ken Robinson, John Seely Brown, Marc Prensky, dana boyd, Michael Wesch to name but a few well-known internationally, and locally in New Zealand we have Stuart Middleton and Derek Wenmouth)
The website has packaged the message into an easy to understand and accessible medium for parents, teachers and policy makers.