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As a teacher, I think anyone in the education field should read “The Tipping Point”. In fact, I think even those who have their hands in education, like parents and politicians should read it too.
Why? Because if you read it with education in mind, then those who created No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and Common Core, would understand that that these ideas/mandates do not really help the issue. That a one-size fits all kind of attitude does not work, but that these mandates should be treated as roll-outs or instituted into increments.
Because according to Gladwell, if it is done in stages or with a few strategically placed Connectors, Mavens, and Salesmen using the most “simplistic, obvious solution” that our education retention, (ending dropouts), growth (competing in the global world), and reach (3rd grade reading requirement), would have a much larger impact.
When I first picked up “The Tipping Point” by Malcom Gladwell, I thought of several comedic sketches: 1. The last straw on a camel’s back, 2. Cow tipping (favorite past time in Texas) and 3. When someone reaches the boiling point.
Now, I may be a cynic when it comes to reading informational texts, but after reading the first 3 chapters of “The Tipping Point” and reading the word epidemic over and over, I couldn’t help but think of how videos go “viral” on YouTube, Twitter explodes with different hashtags like: #Congress #edchat #sharknado, and Facebook is used by businesses more than consumers…just to name a few.
Most recently, I was involved in a twitter chat called #1to1techat. On November 6th, we had an extensive discussion about using technology in the classroom and if administrators should make it a mandatory requirement for all educators.
Many Twitter chats are archived for reference, You can see the archives here:
In chapter 2, the author discusses “a Connector”. So does that make me a connector? Or connected?
I most recently was hired based on my LinkedIn profile. So again? Am I connected or a connector? I got a job through a personal connection, a reference, a previous professor, an acquaintance. But I’m not sure what the author would call that one.
I like to think of myself as a Maven; someone with a wealth of knowledge about computers, technology, and teaching. I feel I need to be continually learning in order to stay current and on topic. I’m not trying to sell anything,(well maybe I am —to use technology in the classroom) So maybe I am a Salesman too…even though I’m just letting you know it’s out there and how to use it.