I have a feeling that the stage is being set up for a grassroots revolution in the field of education. Bill Gates is backing Khan Academy to develop internet based course content that is relatively easy to grasp. Ivy League institutions like Harvard, M.I.T., Yale and Stanford are making their course materials available online.
However, a lot more needs to be done beyond just providing the course content to get a revolution going in education. There are already reports like The Online Education Revolution Drifts Off Course. We need more than just an education revolution. We need a learning revolution at the grass roots level.
The following factors are required for the success of such a revolution.
Generating a passion for learning in the young and old alike.
Rapidly addressing past failures in one’s education.
Providing a practical course in learning how to learn.
Making course content available that is easy to assimilate.
Setting up the student to start learning on his or her own.
It is the product in (5) that will ignite the learning revolution. By filling up the blanks in understanding we may very well handle the past failures in education and restore the passion for learning. Courses on learning how to learn may very simply be organized along the lines of Subject Clearing. Easily graspable course content is already being made available on Internet.
I envision setting up a Tutoring and Coaching Center where service is available to carry out the above functions. A person will be assisted on a one-on-one basis to clear up the obstacles encountered in learning. The person shall then be coached in the best practices of learning until he starts to learn on his own. After that he shall learn under supervision on a personal program that is customized for him.
I am close to retirement. I have enough experience from running a Math Club, and otherwise, to set up such a center and run it full time. I shall be happy to provide such services free. I shall also be willing to train other volunteers on providing these services. I believe that such services should be provided free on a broad basis; only then we may be able to spark a learning revolution.
I would like to see this center having a place of its own where computers, or docking stations for computers, are provided. The expenses shall be minimal and it would be possible to run the center with community support. Once a passion for learning takes hold the progress will accelerate. Then only the sky will be the limit.
I welcome suggestions on this thread to make this project become a reality. I shall keep you informed of the progress.