The Element describes “the meeting point between natural aptitude and personal passion.” Robinson’s premise: this is the most ideal place to live our lives because we are most fulfilled and most able to fulfill our purpose in the world.
“When people are in their element, they connect with something fundamental to their sense of identity, purpose, and well-being. Being there provides a sense of self-revelation, of defining who they really are and what they’re really meant to be doing with their lives.”
The book is chock full of stories of people who have found their way to their own element, most often by overcoming their school experience. Once there “they feel like their most authentic selves…. more alive, more centered, and more vibrant than at any other times.”
He outlines some key points:
- discovering and honoring all types of intelligences
- eliminating the hierarchy of subjects (i.e., math as superior to music)
- the value of mentors and mentoring
- the transformative effects of finding one’s tribe.
And, he expresses what most sparks my passion: “education doesn’t need to be reformed — it needs to be transformed. The key to this transformation is not to standardize education but to personalize it, to build achievement on discovering the individual talents of each child, to put students in an environment where they want to learn and where they can naturally discover their true passions.”
Wow. This so eloquently supports the vision of Open Doors. Can’t wait to hear him in person.