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Episode Info:

Our guest this week is distinguished education professor Dr. Yong Zhao. Technically, Dr. Zhao’s work focuses on the implications of globalization and technology for education, but as you’ll soon hear in our podcast, his real focus is on kids relationship with education: how it should evolve, what it could be, and how they should take a larger role in determining what it looks like. For that reason, Dr. Zhao’s focus and vision are firmly fixed on the future of education. Though each generation has differing values, beliefs, and norms its difficult to overstate the current gap between most teachers and students in the digital age. The advent of the internet, social media, and ubiquity of personal devices have drastically altered how we communicate, connect, and share information as a society. There have been titanic changes throughout history of course, but the current rate of change is dizzying like never before, and Dr. Zhao believes education has struggled to keep up. One of the best parts of this conversation is the fact that Dr. Zhao remains undaunted. Despite the issues facing education currently, he strongly believes that we all have the capacity to evolve education, even as individual practitioners. He advocates, like some of our previous guests, the first place we should start is with ourselves: Why did we become an educator? What do we want for students? How can we look back on our careers and feel good about the difference we made in kids' lives? These are just a few of the insightful ideas he offers in today’s episode. We hope you enjoy!

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