What exactly is education?
Education. One of those words that we throw around so carelessly in the course of our daily lives. So essential, yet so ignored. Most of us automatically think of places like schools and universities when we hear the word “education.” However, what exactly does it mean to be educated? The same question has popped up in Elon Musk’s brain as well. In this article, we are going to analyze how Elon Musk sees our education system. Does Elon Musk think about how to revolutionize the education system? Let’s find out…
Has education failed us, Elon Musk?
Elon Musk, a revolutionary innovator and thinker. He has repeatedly stated that traditional schools are pointless. He rather would prefer to teach himself instead of going through the conventional educational system.
“We don’t need no educationPink Floyd
We need no thought control
No dark sarcasm in the classroom
Teacher, leave them kids alone
Hey! Teacher! Leave the kids alone!”
The above lines are from “Not another brick in the wall” by Pink Floyd, which glares critically at the concept of education. A song, well-known for both its satirical take on the institution of formal schooling and its trident cry of defiance against those in positions of authority.
Elon Musk’s vision for education
Musk, like Pink Floyd, does not want any “thought control” and he advocates for an education system that would free a child’s mind and trigger an underlying appetite for learning.
The mastermind behind the innovations of Tesla and SpaceX is a firm believer that teachers should present their students with a diverse array of learning possibilities and offer them the freedom to experiment. Students should be free to learn effectively, which is an essential ingredient in innovative and creative thinking.
He indicated that he does not believe in forcing students to become specialists in a particular field but instead wants them to have a broad awareness of all things. This contrasts his previous belief that students should be experts in a specific area.
School kills creativity
Have you ever crammed for an exam, memorized notes and formulas that seemed disconnected from anything you cared about, and then forgotten it all a few weeks later?
A curriculum geared toward exam success does not cultivate critical thinking skills, as there is only one or a limited number of “correct” answers to every question. In addition, it trains students to look for the correct answer instead of using their natural curiosity or critical thinking skills while observing or trying something new.
When a child is always worried about whether or not they will do well on an exam. They stop learning for enjoyment and become mindless students who regurgitate everything they’ve ever learned in school and then anxiously await their answers and grade to brag about.
Experience what you learn – Elon Musk
According to Musk, his children learn more online, even though he has acknowledged there is still learning in school too. Gamification and game-based learning allows a child to make mistakes and learn from them. The result is there is no fear of making mistakes.
The serial entrepreneur says that “it’s important to teach problem-solving or teach to the problem and not to the tool. So let’s say you are trying to teach people how engines work. You could start by the more traditional approach to teach all about screwdrivers and wrenches and even have a course on screwdrivers and wrenches”.
He chooses an alternate path to allow the learner to experience the process than learn about it in theory. One may display the engine and declare, “Let’s disassemble it. What strategy will we use to dismantle it? Uh, a screwdriver will come in handy. Put the screwdriver to good use”. Here, Elon Musk points out that something significant is taking place. Suddenly, the tools’ usefulness stands out.
Why is formal education a failure?
Children are like pliable clay; they take on whatever shape you put them in. However, schools accept them and mold them into bricks, even though a skilled sculptor can accomplish incredible things with clay. It’s about going back to basics, learning how our ancestors did, and moving at their pace.
The questions are off-limits. Creativity is the entire class drawing the same picture. Critical thinking is an unexplored arena. This has been the way that schools have functioned for many years. Musk believes children are perplexed about the content of the lessons they are being taught in school and the significance of the material given to them.
There is a significant quantity of material that is included in the curriculum of schools that is not even pertinent, and there is a possibility that this material will not be of any use in real life; despite this, it is nonetheless taught with a defiant attitude toward the traditional educational system.
Children in traditional schools are typically grouped based on their ages, the presumption that this is an essential factor. Traditional educational models presume that children of the same age would acquire knowledge at the same rate. Musk disagrees with this concept.
Elon Musk revolutionizes education
“To the stars” is the inspiration behind Elon Musk’s creation of Ad Astra. Unlike conventional educational institutions, students here are not graded. He says at Ad Astra, all the kids take the same classes simultaneously. This is because some people have a deep appreciation for English or languages, while others have a passion for mathematics and yet others for music.
Education should be individualized to each student’s aptitudes and strengths in each subject area, and different skills should be emphasized at various stages of development. Recent developments have resulted in Ad Astra morphing into Astra Nova. Their approach to education is commendable. It places a premium on the unique capabilities of each student, celebrates curiosity, and promotes both problem-solving and critical thinking.
What if students’ time was respected, and their education was prioritized above all else? Astra Nova is committed to providing meaningful educational opportunities to students of all ages and in all subject areas.