Originally posted to Tumblr
In today’s educational reality, it’s no longer enough to go through a subject by way of a predetermined, sequential pattern that’s the same for everyone. Even MIT is considering breaking up some of their courses to become more modularized and configurable to better match how students actually want to learn.
For lack of taking into account your unique mix of interests and abilities, typical “fixed-route” learning is not only less interesting than it could be, it’s also less effective. By instead recognizing what you already know, love, and are curious about, it becomes easier to wend your path through the adjacent possible, exploring new ideas and areas of study that have just the right mix of challenging, fun, and useful for you, and getting where you want to go.
I’d like to try helping a few individuals through the process of designing and implementing a bespoke curriculum.
The core ideas behind this are that you learn best when you 1) have a curriculum that matches your interests and learning style, and 2) have individual encouragement and guidance along the way.
You can learn because you want power; you can learn because you want respect; you can learn because you want opportunity; you can learn because you want creative fulfillment; you can learn because you want to belong to a community — you can learn for the pure fun of it. There are a million different motivations for learning, a billion unique goals and dreams that support your desire to know more. I want to understand what those things are for you — your history, your life experiences, your current situation, your interests — so that I can help you learn in a way that’s right for you.
My goal is not necessarily to make it easy for you to learn, but to make it more comfortable and enjoyable, to better tap into what makes you unique and work with that existing current to develop a path of study that feels like an extension of your true self, rather than something externally imposed. It may still be difficult and require a lot of hard work — but it will at feel more natural and intrinsically rewarding.
So what does this — this “service” or “program” or “offering” I’m proposing — actually look like? I imagine it will look a bit different for each person, but will start with a meeting to assess your goals, interests, preferred learning styles, and how we can best work together. Then I’ll take a few days to come up with a proposed starting point both for an approach I think would work well for you, and some learning materials (books, websites, project ideas, etc.) that will take you an an interesting and fruitful direction. After that, we can meet somewhere from once a week to once a month, to track your progress, evaluate goals (and set new ones), continue building your curriculum, make potentially helpful changes, and keep you motivated.
Is this right for you? If you have something you really want to learn, but feel stuck, or uncertain, or like you could be doing more, taking bigger steps, and learning more effectively, then yes, I want to work with you. This may not be a good fit if you’re purely looking to learn a narrow set of professional skills, or aren’t passionate and excited about creating a personalized learning path. But I think this could be useful to people in a variety of different situations. Maybe you’re about to start college and need help figuring out what to major in. Maybe you’re looking to harness your passions in a more fulfilling way. Maybe you’re thinking of making a big transition that would require learning new things. If you think that you could benefit from something like this, please get in touch!
This will take considerable time and effort on my part. I love doing it, but if we’re going to work together I need to know that you’re equally committed. At some point this will likely have a significant cost attached, but right now it’s free, and the deal here is simple: in exchange for a substantial amount of one-on-one conversation, custom research, and individualized guidance I’ll provide as we develop your custom curriculum and learning path, I’ll expect you to commit at least a few hours a week to this, and help me with feedback on how it’s going and how I can improve the service. If this sounds good, please get in touch, and I’ll get back to you soon!
If you live in NYC and are interested in this, I’d love to meet in person. I’ll have a few hours available this weekend (Aug. 30-31) to schedule one-on-one introductory meetings, where we can talk more and see if this program is mutually a good fit. I’ll be in Manhattan (LES) Saturday, and Brooklyn (Prospect Heights) Sunday. Click below to see available times and sign up for a one-hour slot (I’ll email you w/ exact location). If you’re not in New York or aren’t available this weekend, shoot me an email, I’ll contact you to schedule a Skype session sometime in the next week or two, and we can go from there.
Click here to sign up for a time to meet this weekend in NYC.
UPDATE: Read more about Curriculum Concierge here and email me to schedule a meeting and talk more!