Maureen Jobson – our Quality Improvement Manager, Learning and Teaching, had the task of closing today’s Depute Head Teachers’ Conference.
Maureen considered some of the things which we used to do in the past which we now take for granted or violently object to. e.g. – she explored how slavery was accepted practice 200 years ago; how people throught that the minimum weight for a computer by the year 2000 would be one a half tons; etc.
The point she made – forcefully – was that we – human beings – are often trapped by what we know and can’t lift our heads to see any alternative.
I couldn’t help the old Smash advert jumping into my head as Maureen was speaking.
Cadbury ran a 1974 TV advertising campaign featuring the now famous Smash Martians, a family of Martian robots who would watch humans laboriously preparing mashed potato the traditional way on television. The robots would laugh as they heard how the
“Earth people peeled their own potatoes, boiled them for 20 of their Earth minutes, then smashed them all to bits”, instead of using Smash.
Watch it here
Perhaps fifty years from now people will be laughing at how we organise and deliver education in 2007 and will wonder at all the angst and resistance we put up to any significant shift from what we know.
Possibly not a great example – I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t say that eating Smash instead of proper mashed tatties was desirable progress!
Yes, funny how we can now laugh 30 years later at an advert that encourages us to eat processed potato granules and water (Jamie Oliver would have a fit)! The conference looks as though it was really inspirational however. Looking forward to finding out more and seeing how the ideas develop in practice.