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Caveman Skool | Mary Biever | One Writing Mother

Caveman Skool

Caveman Skool was the ultimate place for ambitious cavemen.  Their graduates were heavy lifters and great hunters.  As word spread from fire to fire, they expanded to two classes.

One day, something new rolled towards the school fire: a wheel.

Alpha class cavemen had a new toy! They rolled it between each other.  One smashed rocks with it.  They raced it.  Instead of listening in Grunting While Lifting, they painted their wheel.  

Alpha Class Teacher roared and banged his stick: “No more wheels in my class! Back to basics!” He rolled the wheel down the hill and demand his students listen to him.  They did, except when his back was turned and they had farting contests.  Followed by burping contests.  But they were heavy lifters.

Beta class cavemen got a new toy too.  After they played with it awhile, Beta Class teacher looked at what captured the class attention.  He played with it.  Then he asked the class: “How can we use this? What happens if we take 2 wheels and put a stick between them?”

As the students played, they built the first cart.  Their Grunting While Lifting class became the first Mechanical Design class – how to design the best wheeled cart to do the heavy lifting while you push.  Students got more excited, worked together, and honed their design.  Alpha students watched them in between their grunting contests.

After graduation, the Alpha class could lift heavier weights.  But the Beta graduates got all the business because they used wheeled carts.  In time, the Alpha cavemen went to work for those Beta grads who played in class with that wheel.  In their time off, Alpha cavemen still had their farting, grunting, and burping contests.

In the Beta grads’ time off, they still kept playing with that distracting wheel.  They invented better carts, then levers, then pulleys, and changed the world.

If you’re a teacher today, how do you use laptops, the Internet, and Social Media?

Are they a distraction, or are they a tool by which your students are preparing to harness new opportunities in our Information Revolution?

Are you training them to be lifters or thinkers? Or both?


2 Responses to “Caveman Skool”

  1. Yong C. Lee April 26, 2010 at 7:47 pm #

    Great post!

    I read the Washington Post article about laptops being banned in the classroom and had a similar reaction:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/04/24/AR2010042402830.html?sub=AR

    It’s frustrating to see, this lack of evolution among schools, especially when considering the frenetic pace of advancement in the “real world.”

    I love how you highlighted it here, will look for more from you!

  2. marybiever April 28, 2010 at 11:27 am #

    Thanks, Yong, not only for your comment but your constant, valiant work to change the culture of education for the better.

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