“When I grow up, I want to be happy.” This quote by 13 year old Logan LaPlante is what defined one of the most watched TEDx talks on the future of education. With more than 8 million views, Logan LaPlante coined the term Hackschooling, which is a concept that education is opened to being hacked or made better, just like everything else in our lives. By going outside the traditional walls of education, LaPlante and his family are finding better ways to ‘hack the status quo’ and really question why we learn for a better, more simple outcome in life, and that is just being happy and healthy as an individual. These views are radical and challenge the status quo when it comes to the traditional education system. The question is, how will the LaPlante family program ensure Logan’s education is not only valuable to him but to society.
LaPlante’s family educational views are based on the ideal that making health and happiness a part of your education practice throughout life is key for a well-balanced lifestyle.
Utilising Dr Roger Walsh’s 8 simple therapeutic lifestyle change (TLC) system, Exercise, Diet & Nutrition, Time in Nature, Contribution & Service, Relationships, Recreation, Relaxation & Stress Management and Religion & Spirituality, Logan has managed to integrate a diverse mix of mental practice as well as practical experience to develop his learning schedule. Dr Walsh has the view that a lot of education today is based on making a living rather than a life.
Logan’s program also includes, Technology & Online Resources, Creativity Hacker Mindset, and Experiential Classes & Camps as part of his hackschooling. As a consequence of this, Logan gets to experience his learning rather than it being theoretical. This approach is flexible, opportunistic and never loses sight of making Logan happy and keeping his mindset positive. In addition, hackschooling has given Logan a far richer network closely aligned with things that interest his future.
“It’s a mindset, not a system,” says Logan.
To further his diverse experience in math, physics and emergency responsiveness, Logan does his work experience at a hat making company where he learns to sew, scrub toilets and the value of hard work. At a ski company, where is he learning how to run his own business someday and spending time with a ski patrol unit to learning more about safety on the mountain as skiing is what makes Logan the most happiest.
There are so many lessons to be taken out of the LaPlantes approach to learning. Not only is Logan learning and developing at a rapid rate but also by hacking the schooling system, he has opened his opportunities and spectrum on life and working out what is truly important for the future.
This dynamic shift in the way the next generation are learning and how they are learning will has the ability to impact our education system. Already we have seen a shift in hybrid learning, whereby education brokers are combining online education with offline, real world experiences. And companies such as Silicon Valley giants Apple and Google who are offering internship programs that champion imagination, creativity and intelligence.
Although a fairly new trend, hackschooling is destined to shift the mindsets of parents and their kids. Opting to be educated through a home system could affect education budgets, resources for schooling, the need for teachers and ultimately institutions themselves. Once the schooling system gets hacked, it then starts a ripple effect and causes disruption across careers, economic viability and more so keeping a balanced society.
The end of schooling means the end of Universities. Hackschooling opens the ideal that the conventional education system can be challenged. As a consequence, this disruptive attitude can undo everything we know about traditional education. On the flip side, its evolving to a point whereby the education system will need to change at the rate and context of which the modern student would like to learn.
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