Episode Title: Closed Vessels
Gen Z is the first generation that demands that we kindle their flame before they will let us fill their vessel. Here’s what that means, next on The Perna Syndicate.
Ep 703 show:
You’re now in The Perna Syndicate—welcome! What does a first-century Greek philosopher have to say about education today? Quite a bit, actually. Writing in the first century, Plutarch made the fascinating observation that “The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.”
Yesterday we talked about how Plutarch’s point was probably more about the student being active rather than passive in their education. So yes, vessel-filling is needed—but there’s a very stark difference in how today’s young people respond to vessel-filling versus every other generation.
In the past, teachers could fill the vessel without much time dedicated to kindling the flame. Education wasn’t expected to be all that exciting in order for young people to give it their best effort. They understood that they needed to learn what they needed to learn, and they accepted it as it was given. By and large, you could fill their vessel with information.
But all of that is different now. Generation Z is the first generation in history that requires you to inspire their interest and passion before they will allow you to teach them the subject. We have to kindle their flame before we attempt to fill their vessel.
To take the analogy one step further, if we fail to kindle the flame of learning, they’ll put the lid on their vessel. On a closed vessel, everything we try to pour in just slides off. That’s not helping anyone—teacher or student.
Tomorrow on The Perna Syndicate, let’s get practical about how we can actually kindle the flame of learning for students, so that they will let us fill their vessel with knowledge. Take care and we’ll see you then!