Yesterday I got into an extended discussion on Twitter with Tom Peters, Mark Bradford, Jeni Little and a few others about how teacher training needs to be modified so that it is in step with the world that our students are graduating into. The discussion was sparked by this blog post by Tom Peters, which I recommend you read.
Anyway, it's got me thinking about how as an educator one can develop an entrepreneurial spirit in young people. The reason I think this is so important is because, as far as I can tell, the world that our students are going into is full of uncertainty and unpredictability. If they are to thrive in this environment they will need to be highly adaptable, and able to make the most of any new situation they find themselves in. In this context I'm defining an 'entrepreneur' as someone who is able to use their networks and practical and intellectual abilities to make the most of a situation, rather than just someone who launches new business ventures. I'm thinking social and educational start ups, not just money making.
So, that leads me to considering the role that this project is playing (or perhaps is not playing?) in developing entrepreneurs.
There is a school of thought that says that students will learn better if they are aware of what they are learning (eg having a written learning intention on the board for each lesson). We are not explicitly teaching entrepreneurial approaches through the project, and I don't think I've ever talked with the students about what they're learning in terms of them becoming entrepreneurs. But I do hope that the attitudes they're developing in relation to learning (perseverance; seeing challenges as problems to solve, not walls; making connections with others out in 'the world') are setting them up for the lives they're going to live.
Is this enough though?
I'd love to read your thoughts.