The Joy of learning: A Manifesto on nourishing the mind -

The Joy of learning: A Manifesto on nourishing the mind

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has”.

– Margaret Mead

Tony Pfeiffer has an undergraduate degree in business and a master on community leadership. His work experience ranges from accounting, management, ministry, non-profit programming, training, coaching, and teaching. He acknowledges himself as a “part scientist, part inventor and part teacher”. As a Middle School teacher, working with 6th and 7th graders, coordinating with other teachers and attending not-so-friendly PTA meetings, he had a first row seat to the Public School System in Cleveland, Ohio. Two questions kept prowling on his mind as the years went by: How did the Public Education System got so weird? Since we know how the brain develops and grows, why aren’t schools teaching universal learning principles and common sense practices to moms & dads in their own homes?

On a quest to finding answers to these, he wrote a manifesto on learning and his thoughts on a system that wants children to obey rather than have their own criteria about life. This is his manifesto:

“My proposed abstract for a workshop (now a poster presentation) for the IPEN conference started with a question and later invited folks to co-create the learning eco-system.

What if we change the conversation and yardstick of learning?

The problems of public education are addressed by many experts who come in all sizes and shapes as TED Talks, books, workshops, consulting. The solutions range from more money, better trained teachers, increase standardization testing, less tests, more Common Core, no Common Core, more technology,etc. The answer for those voices clamoring for attention is that public education is not broken and does not need fixing. The system works well in its original design: To keep children, in their place, dumb, obedient to all authority and slaves working for others.

See and share the vision of the ecosystem of learning that is joyful, beautiful, and life-long. An organic support system that nurtures each and everyone to be their best for the greatest good. Learning that is sustainable and full of wow and wonder. Learning design that is brain friendly and pays it forward to the next door neighbor and next generation. Together in this workshop we will co-create learning for all. Let’s keep and protect the joy of learning.

Our family and homes have the potential to be the green house environment to nurture life-long learning. Each one teaches while learning – a mutual we-learning system of person to person, and peer to peer. Mom and Dad learn and teach each other. They then teach and learn side by side with their children. The children in return teach and learn. It grows beyond the home and into the community – an ecosystem of learners throughout the planet.

I propose a manifesto as a challenge and a call to arms to claim our right and responsibility to learn and teach. We take ownership of the direction and content of our learning. We establish a learning tradition of life-long learning and a legacy of learning.

The We-Learning Manifesto by Tony Pfeiffer

I know how my brain is wired to learn.

I know my beliefs, values, strengths, interests and learning style.

I learn what I want at my pace and I am supported every step of the way.

I teach what I learn. I learn what others teach me.

I help each family member discover their beliefs, values, interests and learning styles.

We, as a community of learners integrate the best learning processes and programs to support us to learn personally and together in fun and easy ways.

You are invited to co-create our learning eco-system. Become a Learning Ambassador, a burning torch bearer leading and lighting the way for life-long learning for all. Let’s keep and protect the joy of learning and pay it forward to the next generation and next door neighbor.

Together, we change the conversation and yardstick of learning, one family at a time.”

This article was originally written by Tony Pfeiffer and was published on The International Positive Education Network