So I secretively have this bucket list of keynote presenters that I really want to see. Some of those on the list that I have already seen include Kevin Honeycutt, Tony Wagner, Leslie Fisher, Alice Keeler, George Couros, Michio Kaku and Rick Wormeli. But there are others that I have not yet been able to meet, including: Yong Zhao, Catilin Tucker, Eric Sheninger, Simon Sinek, Daniel Pink, and the #1 person I wanted to hear speak was Sir Ken Robinson. Yes I am a nerd, yes I love to listen to good keynote speakers.
I think most people would agree, that once you hear his famous TED Talk, that has been viewed by over 300 million people, you would agree that this is someone that I want to meet and listen to.
I had the opportunity to attend the RTM Education Conference in Orlando, Florida recently. There were three keynote speakers and two of them were on my “bucket-list” Yong Zhao and Sir Ken Robinson, Ted Dintersmith (co-author of the book Most Likely to Succeed also gave the closing keynote). I had the opportunity to meet Sir Ken as he was signing books before the keynote. As I was standing in line, I was wondering what do you call him, do you call him Mr. Robinson, or Sir Ken Robinson, or Sir Ken. I wanted to be polite and not offend him. When it was my turn, I just went with the Hello, nice to meet you and avoided the name piece all together. (Us Americans don’t know how to interact properly with those that have been knighted :-)). Sir Ken (lets go with that) signed both of my books “The Element” and his new book called “Creative Schools.” We chatted for a bit and he asked about my work with our school district and seemed pleased by my answer of moving instruction forward with effective technology integration.
His talk was during the middle of dinner (in between the salad course and main course), which I thought was interesting as people can get cranky if they hungry. Anyway, his 60-minute talk covered some of major points of his three TED talks. Including that school needs to be reinvented not a revolution. Schools are managed by bells and that is a organizational method, not an educational one. ADHD is something that was invented for people to diagnose kids with that can’t sit still. And that the arts need to be given more status and time in school.
Sir Ken during his talk had the entire room of 250 people, fully engaged with no use of powerpoint or visual materials. He was a fantastic speaker and I could have listened to him and his message for three hours and been fully engaged. Thank you to Sir Ken for his message and helping to right the ship of public education in America!
Below are a few short clips of his keynote. I really wanted to enjoy and listen to his talk instead of sticking a camera in front of my face the entire time. So please enjoy these three short clips.