The video, titled “Hackschooling Makes Me Happy”, is something everyone needs to watch. Before I get into the material this young man presented, I’d like to comment on how well spoken and intelligent this gentleman is. Hackschooling must be working.
He starts off by talking about how when asked what he wants to be when he grows up, he responds by saying he wants to be happy and healthy. In my opinion that is a very mature response, even though he believes most adults believe the opposite. He talks about how schools don’t make being happy and healthy a priority. At first, I didn’t agree with him. I thought to myself being happy and healthy is a choice. That was until he mentioned that schools believe you should learn this outside of school, but some kids don’t have that opportunity. I think that is very sad and true.
He then introduces the eight TLC’s (therapeutic lifestyle changes). They are exercise, diet and nutrition, time in nature, contribution and service to others, relationships, recreation, relaxation and stress management, and spiritual and religious involvement. To me, these TLC’s are just as important as math or science. Being involved or taught these things are essential to being a happy and healthy person. Schools need to incorporate these into their curriculum.
Later, he describes hacking as challenging the system and finding more efficient, quicker ways to get the job done. He introduces the hackschooling system. This is basically the eight TLCs combined with creativity with the hacker mindset, experiential classes and camps, and technology and online resources. All with the goal to create a happy and healthy lifestyle. He uses many of his own examples to show how this works. One was learning to love writing by using his own experiences and ideas, instead of a topic he wasn’t interested in. This is huge in my opinion because no one is going to love to write if they are writing about a boring topic or something they aren’t interested in. He uses this example to show that you can get a lot more done if you’re motivated to learn something. That is the perfect example of hacking the learning system. You hack it by getting students to be motivated to learn, which in turn leads to more efficient and excited learning. Then he describes how they hacked physics by experimenting and learning from mistakes. In the traditional school system, you are told you are wrong which in turn leads to no originality. I believe learning from your mistakes is a much better way to learn something.
With hacking, you can become a more interested learner and a more efficient one. No one wants to sit around all day, learning stuff out of a textbook and being criticized for being wrong or making mistakes. In my opinion I believe a combination of the eight TLCs and hackschooling should be a major part of every school’s curriculum. This will lead to a world of excited and motivated learners. Students will also learn what it takes to grow up to be happy and healthy, which is most important.
In the article, Centering on Essential Lenses, Bud Hunt touches on hacking as well. He says that when we are hacking we are learning as well because you must know the situation your in and figure out how to mess with it in order to get the job done. I think this is true. If you are trying to hack something you can learn while doing so. Hacking is certainly a key tool in learning.