Rliberni's Blog – Radical language

March 31, 2010

Passion in Education and How it can Drive Change

Passion in Education is truly alive and well!


    3-30-2010 – 18:00 CET 12 PM EST    

Yesterday’s edchat followed a slightly different format. In preparation for the webinar with Sir Ken Robinson hosted by The Future of Education and due to take place in the evening, it was decided that a discussion, as a lead in to the webinar would be held. The topic was on passion in education, a theme in Sir Ken’s book, The Element, which was going to be the basis of the webinar. As ever a crowd gathered at the appointed time (though there was still some confusion over clock changes!) and off we went! 

The discussion was lively and yes, well, passionate! 

Here are some of the emerging themes – there were so many: 

  • Passion is the love of something for its own sake.

  • Education needs to help people to find their passion (students, teachers, all involved in education)

  • Passion in education is about serving others.

  • How to sustain and maintain it? What causes it to go away?

  • Passion is a two-way street, both teachers and students can spark it.

  • How do pay & conditions, systems, testing etc.. affect passion?

  • PLNs can have a strong positive impact on nurturing and growing passion.

  • Does passion translate into vision?

  • Passion needs direction and guidance

  • Is passion the difference between great teachers and mediocre ones?

Here is a flavour of some of the comments.

MatthiasHeil: To me, passion is what makes us tick, and explore – even at great cost. Has to do with teaching, I guess…- 

 joe_bower:  Passion is a love for something for its own sake and someone couldn’t stop you from doing it if they tried. 

Malcolmbellamy: can we change passion to vision? I feel this is essential for change 

 Msmultipoint: Passion is what makes the world go around. Certainly in teaching, there has to be a HUGE amount of passion for serving others. 

 SECottrell: If you don’t have a passion to teach, you will end up wishing you were anywhere else. 

 cybraryman1: Passion is boundless enthusiasm 

 derrallg: Passion is the overiding drive backed by reason and emotion to accomplish what is more important than ourselves 

 Horizons93: PAssion is essential for learning. Most schools kill it. 

 tomwhitby: Is the amount of passion the difference between great teachers and mediocre teachers? 

 InspiringEd: Do you feel like passion is more of a goal of education (creating it in students) or a way of approaching the educating process? 

 Teachingwthsoul: But can we not continue “against all odds”? This is the key to never allowing the external systemic pieces to put out the fire 

tomwhitby: What drains the Passion from those who have it? #edchat Old ideas and habits from above 

 iangowans: If you think of YOUR favourite tchr growing up, one quality I’d bet you name about them was their passion. 

 rliberni: I think we see it when students begin to ask lots of questions when they hunger for more 

 akenuam: to inspire passion we need to show how our students are so much more capable than people give them credit, raise expectations. 

 Mamacita: All too often, truly passionate, dedicated teachers are targeted & disciplined for that very thing. Dangerous wavemakers! 

 Teachingwthsoul: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”~Eleanor Roosevelt 

jorech : The more I hear, the less I like the word “passionate.” Is “focused” better? I have known some “passionate” yet ineffective teachers 

 elanaleoni: #Education is the civil rights movement of our time. Without passion all hope for change is lost. 

To follow the complete discussion see here  

 For the stats on #edchat participation see here  

 As ever, there were some great links shared: 

@cybraryman1: Teaching is not a profession; it’s a passion.Ed. Quotes: http://bit.ly/EPRmh 

@joe_bower: I wrote this last night in anticipation of today’s passion/Sir Ken Robinson talk on #edchat http://bit.ly/9MREpU  I am passionate about this! 

@Edu4U: Good read on the changing face of the University http://budurl.com/q2kq 

@joe_bower: You have 2 convince the kids who hate school to become tchrs if you want it 2 change (@rrmurry) <–real change! http://bit.ly/cLcPeB 

@joe_bower: Wanna get ready for @Sirkenrobinson’s #edchat webinar? Read on! http://bit.ly/beKRyZ http://bit.ly/9FTZsY http://bit.ly/d0xD6q   

@DUMACORNELLUCIA: Web 2.0 and new tehnologies in education #edchat , #edtech20 http://web20ineducation2010.ning.com/  http://tweetphoto.com/16427534  

@R4RLA: Collaborate with professionals to renew your passion! Attend/present at our conferences http://bit.ly/ccP37Q 

@DeputyMitchell: Coveritlive has #edchat in one place here: http://bit.ly/9uOQrL 

@malcolmbellamy: for a short introduction to Sir Ken Robinson’s ideas see http://bit.ly/aXl6AQ 

@MikeGwaltney: Most people are more afraid of Failure than Mediocrity. It should be the reverse. http://bit.ly/9dhrUh @danielpink 

@akenuam: what teachers make: http://bit.ly/27oCDA 

@web20education: Teachers connect with other teacher @ShellTerrel – passion #edchat http://web20ineducation2010.ning.com/video/web-20-and-new-tehnologies-in 

@graingered: @joe_bower Yes, inspire mindful students #edchat @ http://tinyurl.com/yc58hyd 

@tomwhitby: Upon the conclusion of #edchat watcht this video on leadership. It fosters passion in followers. http://bit.ly/b9b6M4 

@isteconnects: ETAN needs teacher advocates to tell Congress their stories. Share your passion! http://bit.ly/9enJ8M 

joe_bower: Sometimes subversion is an act of professionalism to salvage passion in public edcuation http://bit.ly/bkDVoG 

@graingered: We (teachers) look far & wide 4 solutions in education… we R the SOLUTION! We need to find our passion! http://tinyurl.com/ydhkd8r 

@irishscott: Might read before the webinar: Sir Ken Robinson and The Element – http://bit.ly/w0Mdj 

@joe_bower: Studies show that behaviourism, extrinsic manipulators like rewards and punishment are corrosive to passion http://bit.ly/aK3fXG 

@DUMACORNELLUCIA: Our students learn more if they have a passionate teacher http://differentbutequaletwinning.blogspot.com/ 

@graingered: @rliberni Its OK to be wrong, right? http://tinyurl.com/yl6hhov 

@graingered: @TEFL Know your students! Create personal learning stories http://tinyurl.com/yjggtwo  Find their passion 

@DUMACORNELLUCIA: Web 20 and new thnologies can bring passion for teachers and for students http://teacherluciandumaweb20.blogspot.com/ 

@joe_bower: Here is a cool TEDtalk on passion in education. Very cool story from India http://bit.ly/9cFfR1 

New to Edchat?

If you have never participated in an #Edchat discussion, these take place twice a day every Tuesday on Twitter. Over 800 educators participate in this discussion by just adding #edchat to their tweets. For tips on participating in the discussion, please check out these posts!   

More Edchat


If you’re new to hashtag discussions, then just show up on Twitter on any Tuesday and add just a few tweets on the topic with the hashtag #edchat.   

What do you think about passion in education? Leave a comment!



  1. I participated in the #edchat post and tried to raise at least a yellow light about focusing on passion. It’s very hard to make the point in a twitterstream, but I do think there is a serious concern that should be addressed.

    To be clear I’ve learned and continue to learn an enormous amount for edchat. In fact I think it is “the change we want to see.” it’s pretty clear from many comments that hastags combined with blogs and wiki are a robust platform to deliver peer to peer Professional Development. Much more effective while allowing budget to be redirected from less effective forms.

    My point to put on the table: A focus on Passion has a very bad history both in the US and the rest of the world. I think it’s fair to say that much of the Tea Party movement is energized by passion that is being manipulated by politicians in the service of getting re elected.

    The concept is precisely correct, but perhaps a better term might be “engagement”. I think it more precisely communicates the reality that underlies sustainable learning.

    I look forward to next week’s edchat.

    Comment by Michael Josefowicz — March 31, 2010 @ 9:11 pm | Reply

    • Thank you Michael for your comment. It will be interesting to get other people’s comments on this. My own personal feeling is that within education passion is important as the spark to get others engaged, enthused etc.. I am thinking more about passion for learning or a particular subject. I do feel, and I think I made this point during edchat, that training is equally important for teachers as pure passion can only go so far. Ongoing training is also key to both nurturing the ‘passion’ and ensuring others benefit from it. A combination of passion and skills. I do feel that the skills without the passion would be hollow and yes, the passion without skills or direction might be dangerous. Passionate people are perhaps easily manipulated. I can’t comment on the Tea Party movement as I know only a little about it (I’m in the UK). I think our UK politics could do with some passion and vision and a little less self interest!

      Comment by rliberni — March 31, 2010 @ 11:10 pm | Reply

  2. Your article was most tweeted by Education Technology experts in the Twitterverse…

    Come see other top popular articles surfaced by Education Technology experts!…

    Trackback by Most Tweeted Articles by Education Technology Experts: MrTweet — April 2, 2010 @ 2:18 pm | Reply

  3. […] Here’s another teacher’s blog after the #edchat and the webinar (we had our regular #edchat on that day about passion in education): Passion in Education and How it can Drive Change. […]

    Pingback by My Recent Readings… | Mr. Gonzalez's Classroom — April 9, 2010 @ 11:04 pm | Reply

  4. […] *This list comes from previous edchat […]

    Pingback by How can we nurture passion in a school setting? - Teachers With Apps — March 19, 2014 @ 6:56 pm | Reply

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