Friday, April 1, 2011

Education is a Push

In lean terminology, there are pushes and there are pulls. Pushes are bad and to be avoided. They're when you make something for a customer — or the next process in your sequence — regardless of whether it's needed. Pulls are good. They're when the customer — or the next process — asks for something and then you make it.

Classroom education is largely done as a push. The process usually pushes a class identical units of information — lectures, homework and reading — regardless of any individual's specific need. (Sometimes you get time for questions and answers, which is an example of pull.) Anyone who's dozed through a class knows push education can be boring as hell. And often not terribly effective.

Here's some interesting news about a school that's trying to make education a pull process,  one that responds to what the student needs when they need it. They are creating classes that are customized daily. It's an interesting experiment.

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