Jeff Bloom's Blog

Mullings on teaching, learning, schooling, society, ecology, systems, spirituality, connections…

Communication & Information – Norbert Wiener’s Paradox

| August 26, 2016

“…We cannot afford to ignore Norbert Wiener’s observation of a paradox that results from our increasing technological capability in electronic communication: as the number of messages increases, the amount of information carried decreases. We have more media to communicate fewer significant ideas.” FROM: Neil Postman & Charles Weingartner. (1969). Teaching As a Subversive Activity. — […]

Habits of Mind

| June 12, 2016

We have these habits of mind in the West where we think along lines that are linear… simple cause and effect. But, the world (outside of simple physical, nonliving events) does not work that way. We must think about the complexity of multiple systems interacting and where the “blame” is in the relationships, which is […]

“Knowledge and Thought Have Parted Company”

| May 17, 2016

“If it should turn out to be true that knowledge… and thought have parted company for good, then we would indeed become the helpless slaves, not so much of our machines as of our know-how, thoughtless creatures at the mercy of every gadget which is technically possible, no matter how murderous it is.” — Hannah […]

Brainwashing

| April 21, 2016

The brainwashing discussed in the article about the Dalai Lama, below, also applies to other areas, such as our thinking about schooling/education, the nature of our world, how we view others, relationships, life in contemporary societies, and much much more. We need to question all of the assumptions that underlie everything we do. It’s difficult, […]

Epistemology, Epistemological Shock, and Schooling: Part 1

| December 18, 2015

I want to elaborate on a discussion that followed a re-posting of call for university students to stop whining and suck it up when “scary new ideas that challenge your beliefs…” (supposedly by Larry Winget) are presented. In my re-posting, I said: Mary Catherine Bateson called this experiencing epistemological shock. I have felt that as […]

Learning Content is the Trivial Part of Learning

| November 5, 2015

We really have it all backwards. We are completely focused on having kids and adults learn copious amounts of content as the supreme goal of education. But, such a goal is really rather trivial within the entire scope of learning. This is blasphemy in the politico-corporate controlled institutions of education, testing, and publishing, but I […]

Being in a Learning System

| October 25, 2015

Last evening, I had the pleasure of participating in the International Bateson Institute session at the October Gallery in London with a number of wonderful IBI colleagues and extraordinary guests. Our discussion skirted around the notion of how systems learn. At one point, one of the guests asked, “What is it like to be in […]

Play and the Killing of Children’s Spirits in U.S. Schools

| October 7, 2015

Play may be the most powerful form of learning. Play allows us to break rules, test boundaries, look at things upside-down. I can’t imagine a Richard Feynman who didn’t play; or, a Charles Darwin, or an Albert Einstein, or a Carl Sagan, or a Lynn Margulis, or a Stephen Jay Gould, or a Jane Goodall, […]

Jerome Bruner Turns 100 Today, October 1, 2015

| October 1, 2015

Jerry Bruner was and still is an inspiration for my own work (teaching and research). I mentioned to him many years ago that he reminded me of Gregory Bateson, and he responded that he wasn’t even close to being at that level. He is a humble man with a great mind and heart. And, I […]

Thinking, Flexibility, and Dogma: Survival or Extinction

| September 30, 2015

Dogma has a meaning related to an official opinion or a set of principles or knowledge that is handed down from some sort of authority. But, we often use this word to mean any sort of knowledge claim that is presented in an authoritative way. I’ve used it that way. However, I am not sure […]