Healthy Discomfort?

Healthy Discomfort? post thumbnail image

I realized the other day that I live in an almost constant state of discomfort.

Not a physical or mental discomfort; my life humbles me.

It’s
an intellectual discomfort that just won’t go away. It’s a discomfort
driven by questions that I struggle to answer. It’s a state of constant
not knowing that I can’t seem to shake.

Honestly, I don’t think I want to shake it. In fact, I kind of like it.

It’s that discomfort that drives me to read and write and think and reflect every day. It’s what keeps me curious.

It’s what keeps me learning.

This
is a moment that probably should cause all of us some discomfort, some
healthy sense of not knowing. So many questions seem almost unanswerable
today. So many feel huge and existential.

And that’s true as well for schools and education.

The
difference in schools is that our student’s discomfort comes from not
knowing the known, from not knowing the “right” answer or the “right”
process. It comes from the evaluation and the judgement that follows.

What
if instead of making students focus on what’s known, we helped them
thrive in the unknown? What if we supported them in finding their own
healthy discomfort, their own questions that matter? Wouldn’t that keep them more curious? More engaged?

Wouldn’t that keep them learning?

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