David Goggins
Former Navy Seal
Career Development
Bryan Cranston
Critical Thinking
Liv Boeree
International Poker Champion
Emotional Intelligence
Amaryllis Fox
Former CIA Clandestine Operative
Chris Hadfield
Retired Canadian Astronaut & Author
from the world's big
Start Learning

The student-teacher relationship is one of the big keys to education. Let’s innovate.

The COVID-19 disruption is a really an opportunity for collaborating and building stronger relationships.

JACKIE JODL: What's very important to understand about the literature, the research, the evidence based is that relationships are important for all learners, but they're even more important for those learners who are more at risk. So, if you look at the research for one great example is that there are tremendous differences in educational outcomes for males versus females and it's not often talked about. But, what you find when you really look at that research is that relationships for boys are even more important than they are for girls in terms of driving their engagement and ultimately their persistence, their ability to sustain their performance in school and ultimately to graduate, to attend college. So, that to me is why I think that when we're talking about this new environment and everyone is talking about widening disparities, when you look at any of those populations were we suspect they're going to be already exist and continuing to be contributions to the disparities relationships are going to be even more important.

The question prior to COVID was so does technology really contribute to better student learning? That's an open question. And now there's an entire shift, now the question is okay it has to contribute to better student learning. We have to use it as an opportunity to re-envision education. So, how are we going to figure this out? How can it contribute to better student learning? And given that relationships are the foundation of student learning, you know, the mediator is of course engagement, then how are we going to figure that out? And I don't really see those conversations occurring right now. I see it much more on a technical level okay we need what platforms creating access, you know, of course to students who don't have access to Internet in their homes, all those other questions that I think are obviously important, but the bigger one that's going to take some real work is figuring out how to make relationships real in an online remote learning or even a hybrid setting.

I come from a family of teachers and the best example of a teacher where I think a teacher that just gave me a great inspiring story is my younger sister Susie, who is a kindergarten teacher; she's been a kindergarten teacher for 35 years in a working class middle-class suburb in Minnesota. And what she decided to do early on is she decided to really engage students by bringing them into her life at home. So, for example, her dog Oli, Oliver, a little teeny yippee kind of a dog has become part of her math class. Her piano in her living room has become part of the music lessons. Her yoga mat is part of her recess. So, she's really brought them into her life and through that she's been able to build a more personal relationship with her students because one of the things that every kindergarten student is curious about is what's going on in his kindergarten teacher's house. And so, she took advantage of that curiosity to engage them in learning.

This disruption is viewed as also an opportunity by many stakeholders, you know, from the policy maker in the governor's office, from the higher ed folks that I talk to at the University of Virginia, from all the teachers that I talk to, to the parents as well. I think the parents among those groups of parents are less likely to really be able to envision this as an opportunity because they're so concerned about the immediate consequences, but I think that overall that this is going to force a coming together of all the different stakeholders to say okay we've got to make sure that we do this right this time.

  • Relationships are important for all learners, says strategic education advisor Jackie Jodl, but they are particularly important to those who are at risk. When it comes to promoting engagement and sustained performance, the research shows that boys are more dependent on these student-teacher relationships than girls.
  • An important question in the wake of COVID is how technology can enrich these relationships and contribute to learning in remote and hybrid settings?
  • Jodl sees this "disruption" as an opportunity for all parties involved—from teachers and parents to policy makers—to come together and make this new form of learning work.

This video is part of Z 17 Collective's Future of Learning series, which asks education thought leaders what learning can and should look like in the midst and wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

The “new normal” paradox: What COVID-19 has revealed about higher education

Higher education faces challenges that are unlike any other industry. What path will ASU, and universities like ASU, take in a post-COVID world?

Photo: Luis Robayo/AFP via Getty Images
Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • Everywhere you turn, the idea that coronavirus has brought on a "new normal" is present and true. But for higher education, COVID-19 exposes a long list of pernicious old problems more than it presents new problems.
  • It was widely known, yet ignored, that digital instruction must be embraced. When combined with traditional, in-person teaching, it can enhance student learning outcomes at scale.
  • COVID-19 has forced institutions to understand that far too many higher education outcomes are determined by a student's family income, and in the context of COVID-19 this means that lower-income students, first-generation students and students of color will be disproportionately afflicted.
Keep reading Show less

Creativity: The science behind the madness

Human brains evolved for creativity. We just have to learn how to access it.

  • An all-star cast of Big Thinkers—actors Rainn Wilson and Ethan Hawke; composer Anthony Brandt; neuroscientists David Eagleman, Wendy Suzuki, and Beau Lotto; and psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman—share how they define creativity and explain how our brains uniquely evolved for the phenomenon.
  • According to Eagleman, during evolution there was an increase in space between our brain's input and output that allows information more time to percolate. We also grew a larger prefrontal cortex which "allows us to simulate what ifs, to separate ourselves from our location in space and time and think about possibilities."
  • Scott Barry Kaufman details 3 brain networks involved in creative thinking, and Wendy Suzuki busts the famous left-brain, right-brain myth.

Dinosaur bone? Meteorite? These men's wedding bands are a real break from boredom.

Manly Bands wanted to improve on mens' wedding bands. Mission accomplished.

Sex & Relationships
  • Manly Bands was founded in 2016 to provide better options and customer service in men's wedding bands.
  • Unique materials include antler, dinosaur bones, meteorite, tungsten, and whiskey barrels.
  • The company donates a portion of profits to charity every month.
Keep reading Show less

What if Middle-earth was in Pakistan?

Iranian Tolkien scholar finds intriguing parallels between subcontinental geography and famous map of Middle-earth.

Image: Mohammad Reza Kamali, reproduced with kind permission
Strange Maps
  • J.R.R. Tolkien hinted that his stories are set in a really ancient version of Europe.
  • But a fantasy realm can be inspired by a variety of places; and perhaps so is Tolkien's world.
  • These intriguing similarities with Asian topography show that it may be time to 'decolonise' Middle-earth.
Keep reading Show less

How #Unity2020 plans to end the two-party system, bring back Andrew Yang

The proposal calls for the American public to draft two candidates to lead the executive branch: one from the center-left, the other from the center-right.

Photo by David Becker/Getty Images
Politics & Current Affairs
  • The #Unity2020 plan was recently outlined by Bret Weinstein, a former biology professor, on the Joe Rogan Experience.
  • Weinstein suggested an independent ticket for the 2020 presidential election: Andrew Yang and former U.S. Navy Admiral William McRaven.
  • Although details of the proposal are sparse, surveys suggest that many Americans are cynical and frustrated with the two-party system.
Keep reading Show less