Interesting post from the Scientific American‘s blog. Here’s an excerpt:
A democracy relies on an electorate of critical thinkers. Yet formal education, which is driven by test taking, is increasingly failing to require students to ask the kind of questions that lead to informed decisions. . . .
Informal learning environments tolerate failure better than schools. Perhaps many teachers have too little time to allow students to form and pursue their own questions and too much ground to cover in the curriculum and for standardized tests. But people must acquire this skill somewhere. Our society depends on them being able to make critical decisions, about their own medical treatment, say, or what we must do about global energy needs and demands. For that, we have a robust informal learning system that eschews grades, takes all comers, and is available even on holidays