What Am I Saying?

Every once in a while, I manage to say something that resonates with people. They come up to me some time later or send me email and riff on how what I said inspired them in some way. Here are a few of the phrases that people accuse me of having uttered that they’ve felt compelled to comment on.

  • “At least this won’t affect me” should never be uttered to justify a failure to stand on principle.
  • If you have shallow questions, then shallow answers suffice.
  • It’s a crime that laws, conceived in order to ensure an abundance of creativity and creation, are now used to enforce an artifical scarcity.
  • Expect students to act ‘as’ professionals, rather than ‘like’ professionals, and amazing things WILL happen.
  • We should ‘expect’ our students to engage, not ‘allow’ them to. A teacher believing that ‘allowing’ students to do anything is the first step to good education is a sure sign of the end of good education.
  • Sometimes the most effective way to teach is to step aside and get out of the way of students’ learning!
  • I am altogether too frequently reminded of the many people who think ‘teaching’ is about the teacher… they’re wrong, of course.
  • We forget that it’s not about what we know is right, but rather what we know right now.
  • abide not willful ignorance
    embrace silliness
    and have the wisdom to tell the difference
  • of knowledge I can say only this:
    I found nothing I was looking for,
    but more than I dreamed possible.
  • We teach students about answers, and so they think that the discipline is about answers. However, answers are easy to come by, once you’ve got a good question and reasonable methods. Good questions are difficult to come by and are the core of what we do. We need to teach people how to find good questions.