An Unexpected Conversation: What a Row Crop Farmer in Mississippi Thinks About Learner-Centered Transformation

Insights   09 August 2018

 

We all just want to have someone be nice and connect with us. Not all of us learn the exact same way and unfortunately our school systems are structured that way.

Lisa
Row Crop Farmer

We have a special story to share about the power of learner-centered education and how this is truly “an idea whose time has come.” All the way back in March 2018, our Associate Director, Dr. Ulcca Joshi Hansen, was preparing for a TEDx Talk at Drew University.

While sending the final draft of her speech to a colleague, she made a slight typo in the email address. For most of us, this would have simply kicked back, letting us know the email address didn’t exist. However, this email was received. Then, it was responded to. Here is that response:

“Hi Ulcca,

My name is Lisa. I am a row crop farmer from Mississippi. I believe you sent this to me by mistake. However, I’m in the field waiting on a tractor and had a few minutes so I read your attachment.

I agree with everything you said. We all just want to have someone be nice and connect with us. Not all of us learn the exact same way and unfortunately our school systems are structured that way.

We are taught subjects, but not how to do things or the importance of doing them one way as opposed to another.

As a farmer, I see most children have no idea where or how there food is grown. I believe nutrition is such an important part of the learning aspect…not just how to eat, but where and how things grow. I guess you could say I’m sharing a little food for thought!

I’ll be looking for your Ted talk…sounds like it will be a great one. Keep up the great work for our future.

Sincerely,

Lisa”

Well, Lisa, the TEDx Talk was a great one, and we are sharing it with those who see the same opportunity for a dramatic shift in our nation’s education system. Without further ado, here is Ulcca’s TEDx Talk—Rethinking the 3R’s: The Future of “Smart.”

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