Ian Gilbert is an award-winning educational writer, speaker, entrepreneur and innovator who was recently listed by the IB organization as one of the world’s top educational visionaries and change agents. The following is a chapter excerpt from his new book - details below.
"If you must have a cake sale to raise money for some deserving charity then may I suggest a slightly different angle? Apart from spending time ensuring the children involved understand what their money is going to and how it is going to be used, you could also encourage them to ask why the situation is so bad that their baking skills are being called on in the first place.
For example, if you are ‘raising money for Africa’, as seems to be so often the case, why is it that a continent with such a wealth of natural resources is home to so many of the world’s poor? How is it that some of the very communities you are trying to help are not only sitting on vast reserves of oil, gas, diamonds and gold (not to mention various substances that go into making the mobile
phone in your pocket), but that the individual children and families you are trying to support are actually involved in mining these minerals?
Why are there repeated famines in certain countries? Why are people starving in countries where there is enough food to go round? If so many of these countries are so poor and wretched, why did he European empires go to war to have their ‘place in the sun’ and possess these same countries not that long ago?
Does having these countries poor have its benefits for the rich countries? What would happen if these countries became as ‘developed’ as say the UK or the US?"
© Ian Gilbert 2014 ISBN 9781781350553
Independent Thinking is an invaluable collection of reflections, ideas and insights on the nature of learning, thinking, creativity and, drawing on Ian’s experience across three continents, the role education has in changing not only people’s lives but also entire societies. Controversial, humorous and challenging, this book is both moving and personal yet carries an important global call to action from a man with a distinctive voice and a unique perspective who has earned the right to speak his mind.
Independent Thinking is available in print and e-book format.