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The One World Schoolhouse: Education Reimagined Hardcover – October 2, 2012
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"Since its founding in 2006, Sal Khan's project-the Khan academy-has revolutionized our thinking on the potential and promise of unfettered, open-access online education. In his new book The One World Schoolhouse, Khan presents his vision and blueprint for how online technology can, and should, play an integral role in educating communities across the globe, closing the opportunity gap and providing high-quality education for all."―Al Gore
"In this book, Salman Khan sheds light on how our current education system leaves a gap in every student's core knowledge. He found ways to fill this gap by encouraging differentness, fresh thinking and implementing creativity in the learning process. I strongly believe that all human beings have unlimited creative power. The role of education is to unleash that power. The way he relates the proper goal of education and the natural bent of the child is fascinating. He refers "natural bent" as the particular mix of talents and perspectives that makes each mind unique, and allows minds to be strikingly original. The way Khan portrays the concept of education and the mechanism of learning is revolutionary. This book is a must-read for those providing real education to our children in this new age of technology."―Muhammed Yunus, the founder of Grameen Bank, and the 2006 recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize
"Sal Khan's passion and innovation is transforming learning for millions of students worldwide. The One World School is a must-read for all who are committed to improving education so students everywhere can gain the skills and knowledge to be successful in school, careers and life."―George Lucas, Filmmaker and Founder of The George Lucas Educational Foundation, publisher of Edutopia
"I discovered Sal Khan and Khan Academy like most other people - by using these incredible tools with my own kids. Sal Khan's vision and energy for how technology could fundamentally transform education is contagious. He's a true pioneer in integrating technology and learning. I'm happy that, through this book, even more people will be introduced to this ground-breaking innovator."―Bill Gates, co-founder & Chairman, Microsoft
"The world dreams of education reform, and Sal Khan is delivering. His pioneering video lessons have brought the thrill of learning to millions. In this compelling book, he tells the remarkable story of Khan Academy, and explains the potential in students learning at their own pace and achieving true subject mastery."―Chris Anderson, TED Curator
"Sal Khan makes a powerful argument for fundamentally rethinking the way we teach and learn. THE ONE WORLD SCHOOLHOUSE illuminates the tremendous potential for online, universaleducation to enable any child, anywhere in the world, to succeed-not only in school, but in shaping our future."―Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman of Google
"Sal Khan is changing what we believe is possible in education. Through humor, charm, contagious enthusiasm and quiet brilliance, Sal Khan has made his lessons irresistible. Now, he brings those same gifts to explaining the revolutionary ideas behind Khan Academy. You'll adore this book because it's just like his lessons-approachable, good-hearted, smart, and ultimately profound. The story Sal tells is quite simply the story of what education will become... and indeed IS becoming, thanks to his example and to a generation of inspired teachers and intrepid education entrepreneurs."―Ted Mitchell, President and CEO, NewSchools Venture Fund
"When you read this book, you will understand how the dignity of each student is addressed by education's visionary, Sal Khan."―Ann Doerr
"Sal Khan has developed the best and most cost-efficient way to use technology to bring high quality education, creativity and innovation to all countries, including the poorest."―Carlos Slim Helu
About the Author
Salman Khan was born and raised in Metairie, Louisiana, to immigrant parents from India and Bangladesh. Before founding the Khan Academy, he was a hedge fund analyst. He's also worked in venture capital and engineering at Oracle and several Silicon Valley start-ups. Khan holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, where he was president of his class, and three degrees from MIT.
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Top Customer Reviews
Amidst all of this consternation, Salman Khan has given us 1) a wonderful and optimistic learning example and design with his Khan Academy and 2) now a book that explains what and how he did it. Where other such ideas and solutions have done little but create more debate and finger-pointing, Khan did this first by starting with one person, then a few more, then all who would go to his YouTube channel, and eventually working with people and companies who wanted to help him succeed. What's most impressive and brilliant about his work is that he bases his designs on what seemed to work best for him as a learner, as an engineer and as a person who was not intimidated to work with VIPs. He was able to come up with pedagogical insights--not because of what he learned in teacher training ... he doesn't have any--but from what worked for him as a high school and college student that he then applied when having to address progressively larger audiences.
What's completely effective, creative and totally original about "The One World Schoolhouse" is how Khan weaves together and sequences his ideas, metaphors and anecdotes in a way that's easy to understand, that still makes you think about what he is observing, and that is totally self-effacing and unpretentious...
1. He starts by laying out the principles he follows to engage students and describes in common sense ways why this works for students and learners. This could probably be considered his educational theory but in the way Khan describes how his cousins and then learners in general responded to his design this feels nothing like science.
2. He then describes how we have gotten to our current state in education and how his solutions address the issues he points out. This is so comprehensive that it addresses issues across the whole learning landscape and not an isolated part of the context of schools and learning.
3. In the third part--my favorite--he describes how he and his wife decided to go all in on the Khan Academy and how some very important people--inspired by their own personal use of his videos for themselves and their kids--offered him capital to build out his solutions. It seems rare when people make decisions for the good of their audiences and are then rewarded for it. You can see that what has made Khan and his Academy so successful has been his personal ability to break difficult concepts into building blocks and knowledge maps that allow each learner to eventually learn successfully. The way he constructs this third part of his story is genius and just plain inspirational.
4. Having established his credibility, Khan then completes the book with nine components that make up his vision of education for the future. This part could be seen by many as idealistic, but for the fact that he has been so successful so far by following those same instincts.
This is an incredibly important book in the face of all that's happening in our country politically and economically, where it appears hopeless for disadvantaged people and their children to succeed in schools and then professionally. It cuts through all the fears and rationalizations educational and training people are expressing now about their future roles in teaching others. Hopefully, Khan's example will inspire others to think about learning in very different ways.
This book is a must read - especially for anyone who has any interests in the current system of education. The book elegantly weaves together three separate threads: (1) A mini-memoir of Sal's life and the history of the Khan Academy; (2) How the current educational system we have in place came to be and fundamental issues with practices employed by the current system (especially as it relates to both how we learn and what function education plays in today's world); (3) Paradigm shifting ideas for dealing with some of the shortcomings that are in place today.
Education reform can be a touchy subject, so I suspect that a book of this nature will attract polarized reviews. However, I do believe there is still tremendous value in reading a book, even if you don't agree with 100% of what it has to say.
While reading this book, you get a peek into how Sal and other efficient learners operate. They are curious and aren't afraid to ask even basic questions. They make connections between the material they are being exposed to and what they already know. Moreover, they engage actively with the material (rather than restricting themselves only to receiving knowledge passively through a unidirectional lecture). Finally, they dive deeper into that material (often repeating all of the above steps over and over again). There is nothing sacred about these processes - almost anyone can become an efficient learner if they are afforded an opportunity to employ them.
Unfortunately, many of our current educational practices, which were inherited hundreds of years ago from the Prussians (with minor adjustments made over time), are at odds with these more optimal learning processes. For example, antiquated models limit the amount of "time" we have to learn a particular concept, and in-turn introduce variability into how well we understand that concept. With a limited amount of time, we aren't always able to engage our curiosity or make deeper connections nor are we always able to engage with the material actively and in depth. The result is that significant deficiencies in a student's knowledge are introduced. Those shortcomings get compounded over time, leading to Swiss-cheese gaps that render it impossible for students to attain requisite proficiency, especially in more advanced subjects.
Sal describes how these concerns formed the basis for the Khan Academy's vision. He notes that we are undoubtedly dealing with a thorny problem. Not only are some of the traditional approaches to education flawed based on today's needs, but there are a veritable quagmire of interconnected practices that make it hard to rectify any one issue in isolation. Fixing the system will require us to make fundamental changes and necessitate a larger conversation. We are at a historical inflection point where we have the ability to make important changes in education. You should absolutely read this book so that you have an opportunity to both follow and actively engage in what is certain to be one of the great dialogues of our times.