3 Strategies for Continual Learning
Kelly Christopherson

John Dewey also believed in continual learning. He describes this educative journey In The Child and the Curriculum (1902):

Just as two points define a straight line, so the present standpoint of the child and the facts and truths of studies define instruction. It is continuous reconstruction, moving from the child’s present experience out into that represented by the organized bodies of truth that we call studies.

Unfortunately, despite his influence, Dewey hasn’t had the impact on schools and education he hoped. Traditional education ignores the source of this journey, while the progressive education movement, which he helped found, ignores the destination—focusing on experience rather than on continuity of experience.

Like you and Dewey, I believe the only way we will improve our schools is if we build the capacity of the people in those schools. However, I don’t have the same confidence that “we have the ability to shift the culture of school to reflect the learning journey as a continuum” as you do. I’ve been working at this for over 20 years, and Dewey worked at it for over 50 years—and we still have a long way to go. Right now, I’m in the process of trying to identify and understand the mechanisms behind continuous learning. While your list of strategies is a good start, it’s not enough.