Noam Chomsky and Graham Brown-Martin

Noam Chomsky on Technology & Learning


As far as technology itself and education is concerned, technology is basically neutral. It’s like a hammer. The hammer doesn’t care whether you use it to build a house or whether on torture, using it to crush somebody’s skull, the hammer can do either.


Noam Chomsky


For the Learning {RE}imagined book and digital resource project being published later this year I interviewed Professor Noam Chomsky where we discussed the purpose of education, the role and impact of technology and the challenges of assessment with standardised tests.


I thought visitors to this blog would enjoy this 5 minute excerpt from my conversation with Noam where when asked about technology and its impact on learning he argues that:

You have to know how to evaluate, interpret and understand. Let’s say, biology, again. The person who wins the Nobel Prize in biology is not the person who read the most journal articles and those notes on them. He’s a person who knew what to look for and cultivating that capacity to seek what’s significant, always willing to question whether you’re on the right track. That’s what education is going to be about whether it’s using computers and internet or pencil and paper or books


Do you agree?


Have a listen and please feel welcome to add your thoughts and comments below.



Sir Ken Robinson & Graham Brown-Martin

Sir Ken Robinson : The Art of Teaching

That’s why I always say that teaching is an art form. It’s not a delivery system. I don’t know when we started confusing teaching with FedEx. Teaching is an arts practice. It’s about connoisseurship and judgment and intuition. We all remember the great teachers in our lives. The ones who kind of woke us up and that we’re still thinking about because they said something to us or they gave us an angle on something that we’ve never forgotten.


Sir Ken Robinson


One of the many people I met and interviewed during the research tour for #LearningREimagined was my friend and mentor Sir Ken Robinson. The full interview will be published later this year as part of the Learning {RE}imagined book and accompanying app but I thought you would enjoy this 5 minute excerpt.



Let me know what you think in the comments section below and please feel welcome to share with your friends and colleagues.



Seth Godin on Education Reform

Happy New Year everybody and please accept my apologies for being quiet on this blog. After completing my travels and returning to London at the end of November I needed some time for reflection as well as taking care of some family matters as a result of a bereavement. 🙁


My visits to China and India were quite frankly, eye-opening, insightful and enlightening. I regret that I haven’t yet been able to post updates from these visits but will endeavour to do so in the weeks ahead.


If you’re new to this blog the journey starts here otherwise read on.


Things have been very busy behind the scenes however as my team and I have been processing and curating the most amazing treasure trove of photographs (taken by Iran’s most acclaimed young photographer, Newsha Tavakolian), hours of video recorded interviews and case studies, audio recordings, transcriptions and several journals worth of notes.


EDlabs StudioI am now held hostage in my small but perfectly formed study in SE London where I’m carefully crafting the words, editing the videos, curating the photographs, coding the mobile app and working with my publishing team to create what I hope will do justice for all of the wonderful participants in this story.


Some have expressed surprise that I am doing much of this myself imagining a team of programmers and video editors but for me working in this transmedia approach makes perfect sense and chimes with the theme of the book. There are too many books and statements made about digital technology for learning by experts who haven’t used it and I didn’t want to be one of those.


As a New Years treat I thought I would share with you one of the many recorded interviews that will form part of a library of exclusive interviews, films and other digital resources that will be unlocked via the printed book when it is published later this year. My hope is that the printed book, lavishly illustrated, with my accompanying notes, documents, thought pieces and interviews will be an artefact in the physical world that is a delight to hold and explore whilst acting as a spring board into a digital ocean of additional material. Well it’s not like me to aim for the stars is it? 😉


Thanks to Seth Godin for his patience, passion and time. Seth has published a book on education reform that is available free in PDF/eBook format – Stop Stealing Dreams


I hope you enjoy this interview, I have plenty more that contradict it!