Why the education system is failing our kids and how we can start the revolution that will save our schools
With their emphasis on regurgitated knowledge and stressful exams, today’s schools actually do more harm than good. Guiding readers past the sterile debates about City Academies and dumbed-down exams, Claxton proves that education’s key responsibility should be to create enthusiastic learners who will go on to thrive as adults in a swiftly-changing, dynamic world. Students must be encouraged to sharpen their wits, ask questions, and think for themselves - all without chucking out Shakespeare or the Periodic Table.
Blending down-to-earth examples with the latest advances in brain science, and written with passion, wit, and authority, this brilliant book will inspire teachers, parents, and readers of all backgrounds to join a practical revolution and foster in the next generation a natural curiosity and the spirit of adventure.
Guy Claxton is one of the UK's foremost thinkers on creativity, learning, and the brain. He is Director of the Centre for Real-World Learning at the University of Winchester, and the author and editor of over twenty books on learning and creativity, including the best-selling Hare Brain, Tortoise Mind: Why Intelligence Increases When You Think Less.
"This inspirational book will be of interest to all parents and teachers. It should find its way on to the reading lists of our teacher and training courses and become compulsory reading for any politician connected to our education system."
– Oxford Times
"The book has much worth, not least for its eloquent and powerful critique of today's educational malaise."
– Ink Pellet
"This brilliant book shows the way, as its subtitle puts it, that we can rediscover the heart of education."
– Scientific and Medical Network
"Comparing how well young minds can work with how poorly schools do work, Guy Claxton celebrates the curiosity, courage, and imagination of young learners and constructs a vision of education that would kindle rather than quench such virtues."
– David Perkins - Senior Professor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and author of The Eu
"Education is failing our students disastrously and so are most education reforms. In this powerful, passionate, and persuasive book, Guy Claxton argues that the challenge is no longer to reform education but to transform it. The only way to do that is through a genuine revolution in how we think about learning - and about teaching. Guy Claxton says why - and he also says how."
– Ken Robinson - author of The Element: A New View of Human Capacity
"A hymn of praise to the qualities crucial to learning as well as an informed and reliable guide to nurturing them."
– Howard Gardner - Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education
"Guy Claxton gets right to the heart of the issue that is one of the most important for shaping 21st century society."
– Baroness Susan Greenfield - author of ID and Tomorrow's People
"This book is a must read for us all, not just those interested in formal education. In his brilliant unpacking of what it is to become a good learner, Guy shows us how to create environments that encourage people to learn, how to take risks, how to challenge, empathise, play, and innovate. This book should persuade politicians around the world that what future generations need most - to be both happy and productive - is the capacity to learn, and that schools can and must teach it"
– Kathy Sykes - University of Bristol, Television presenter, and author of Alternative Therapies, R
"Why is our current school system failing so many children? How can we best educate the next generation to face the challenges of the 21st century? Professor Claxton provides a masterly analysis of what's wrong with education and how we can put it right. Every parent, teacher, and politician should read this book."
– Sue Palmer - author of Toxic Childhood
"That very rare thing, an up-to-the-minute and gripping read on what learning’s all about. Invaluable for teachers and parents alike. This book will challenge all your assumptions about how we are educating children, and make you think urgently about the need for fundamental change. Guy Claxton is right at the cutting edge of his field. "
– Hilary Wilce - author of Help Your Child Succeed At School
"With a focus on the demands of a new century, the information revolution, and the need to help young people find their own learning powers and passions, Guy Claxton reveals the true essence of education. Enjoy the book – and remember the point of school: to open hearts and unlock minds."
– Mick Waters - Director of Curriculum, UK Qualification and Curriculum Authority
"A highly readable and provocative book, which both confronts and challenges us to seriously re-think current assumptions about educational practice. Claxton is one of the most relevant educational writers for our time."
– Clarissa Williams - President of the National Association of Head Teachers