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V elementu PDF, ePub eBook


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Title: V elementu
Author: Ken Robinson
Publisher: Published 2016 by Lectour (first published January 8th 2009)
ISBN: 9789619405901
Status : FREE Rating :
4.6 out of 5

32852330-v-elementu.pdf

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KO ODKRIJEŠ SVOJO STRAST, SE VSE SPREMENI Element je prvina vsakega človeka. Je presek priložnosti, naše naravnanosti, zmožnosti in strasti. Za našo prihodnost je nujno, da ga odkrijemo in razvijemo! Ko smo v elementu, smo sposobni resnično daljnosežnih potez, o katerih smo vedno sanjali. Kako odkriti in živeti svoj element? Resnične zgodbe velikih osebnosti in zgoščene, s KO ODKRIJEŠ SVOJO STRAST, SE VSE SPREMENI Element je prvina vsakega človeka. Je presek priložnosti, naše naravnanosti, zmožnosti in strasti. Za našo prihodnost je nujno, da ga odkrijemo in razvijemo! Ko smo v elementu, smo sposobni resnično daljnosežnih potez, o katerih smo vedno sanjali. Kako odkriti in živeti svoj element? Resnične zgodbe velikih osebnosti in zgoščene, s humorjem obarvane razlage nam bodo pri tem zagotovo v pomoč! Dr. Ken Robinson v knjigi prevprašuje naše ustaljene predstave o ustvarjalnosti, nadarjenosti in inteligenci in nam zagotavlja, da se prav v vsakem izmed nas skriva pomemben potencial za osebno srečo in izpolnitev, pa tudi za edinstven prispevek celotnemu človeštvu.

30 review for V elementu

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jackie

    I was very fond of Ken Robinson after seeing his Ted speech, so I followed my friend's recommendation to read this book. This was a mistake. If you're wondering what wisdom lies in this book, don't bother; I'll summarize it for you: "Little Johnny didn't like school very much. He sucked at math and couldn't concentrate and everyone told him he was a moron. But then he quit school and read my book and joined a rockband, and now he's a multi-billionaire who won at life. This could be you, and the on I was very fond of Ken Robinson after seeing his Ted speech, so I followed my friend's recommendation to read this book. This was a mistake. If you're wondering what wisdom lies in this book, don't bother; I'll summarize it for you: "Little Johnny didn't like school very much. He sucked at math and couldn't concentrate and everyone told him he was a moron. But then he quit school and read my book and joined a rockband, and now he's a multi-billionaire who won at life. This could be you, and the only reason it hasn't happened to you is because you're not following my advice. So don't feel bad if you're an underachieving dumbass, because it's not your fault, you just never had the RIGHT education." Basically, Ken Robinson tells a bunch of success stories of the one in a million people who end up making it big in risky industries, then insists that it was simply because they found their "element", a term he invented which is actually the same thing as "passion". If you're wondering how to find your "element", don't look here, because Robinson never actually explains that. He does, however, tell you about all the people who found theirs and as a result are much prettier than you. I gave this book two stars because, in the process of spacing out while reading it, I actually came up with some decent ideas of my own. But if you're seeking out a long-winded motivational speech, I recommend looking elsewhere.

  2. 4 out of 5

    H

    I had came across with Ken Robinson’s speech on TED | Talks for TED Conference 2006. It was one of those I’m lost, what should I do afternoons. Every word, every sentence that he said has penetrated to my heart and soon enough my heart just couldn’t help it and started to scream: “I told you several times! You are a teacher; please stop going against your fate, your true calling!” Though the epiphany has yet to come only after I have read his book – The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes I had came across with Ken Robinson’s speech on TED | Talks for TED Conference 2006. It was one of those I’m lost, what should I do afternoons. Every word, every sentence that he said has penetrated to my heart and soon enough my heart just couldn’t help it and started to scream: “I told you several times! You are a teacher; please stop going against your fate, your true calling!” Though the epiphany has yet to come only after I have read his book – The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything. All my doubts, questions, and uncertainties about my true Element, Ken Robinson did not fail to reconcile each one of them through his book. And I know, this book is going to change my life forever. Without a shadow of a doubt, after reading this book, it had helped me reassured what my true calling is. It did not fail to inspire me in pursuing my dream of becoming a professional teacher. This book is full of inspirational stories of how people found their Element and how they fought for their way to further explore their element. The book has to be read not only with an open mind, but with an open heart as well. One must not be sceptical and circumscribe its thought by thinking “Isn’t it what the book is saying obvious?” or “I’ve heard these stories a dozen of times already; what’s new?” As you leaf through each page, uncover each chapter, you’ll find yourself reconciling with your inner doubts and accepting of who you truly are. Or, at the very least, open yourself to the possibility of re-exploring who are you as a person. You must be patient when reading this book before internalisation and self-realisation will surface. This book is a must to each and every one of us; imagine each one of us at our Element...

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jay

    The author defines "The Element" as the thing you are both passionate about doing and good at doing. He offers some basic ideas on ways to find the element for yourself, drawing on examples as illustrations. On the whole, I prefered Marcus Buckingham's "THe One Thing You Need to Know." One idea from the book did stand out. In talking about standards for educatuion, Robinson offers an analogy to standards for restaurants. Fast food restaurants have very rigorous standards which get applied to the The author defines "The Element" as the thing you are both passionate about doing and good at doing. He offers some basic ideas on ways to find the element for yourself, drawing on examples as illustrations. On the whole, I prefered Marcus Buckingham's "THe One Thing You Need to Know." One idea from the book did stand out. In talking about standards for educatuion, Robinson offers an analogy to standards for restaurants. Fast food restaurants have very rigorous standards which get applied to the letter. The results are predictable but don't lead to excellence. The other option is the Michelin Guide, which defines standards more broadly and leaves it up to each restaurant to interepret them. THey are evaluated by experts based on Michelin criteria. In education, programs like No Child Left Behind are held to a fast food standard, but the author argues a Michelin approach would serve us better.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Deirdre Keating

    I don't really need to read a whole book on finding the crosspoint between passion and talent, but this is the quote that got me: p. 238 The most powerful method of improving education is to invest in the improvement of teaching and the status of great teachers. There isn’t a great school anywhere that doesn’t have great teachers working in it. But there and plenty of poor schools with shelves of curriculum standards and reams of standardized tests. The fact is that given the challenges we face, I don't really need to read a whole book on finding the crosspoint between passion and talent, but this is the quote that got me: p. 238 The most powerful method of improving education is to invest in the improvement of teaching and the status of great teachers. There isn’t a great school anywhere that doesn’t have great teachers working in it. But there and plenty of poor schools with shelves of curriculum standards and reams of standardized tests. The fact is that given the challenges we face, 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. If he can convince non-believers of that, then this book will be gold. I actually had Aidan's teacher (2nd grade) tell me that since he's already so good at art, she doesn't want him to have the role of "artist" in his small group but instead to focus on his spelling. I know her intentions are good---she's aiming for well-rounded students. I just wish elementary teachers could spend time with "well-rounded" passionless high school students and realize their role in killing enthusiasm for learning. No one wants to do that, especially not teachers, but so often we do just that.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Wesjackson07

    An amazing book. I first discovered Ken Robinson via Ted Talks and was absolutely captivated by his speech, primarily because he spoke to something I've always believed was true but had never heard articulated so well. The specific chord that resonated for me was that schools are failing our students because of the hierarchy established in school subjects and how schools are only assessing certain types of intelligence. So many children are being told they're not bright or talented if their inte An amazing book. I first discovered Ken Robinson via Ted Talks and was absolutely captivated by his speech, primarily because he spoke to something I've always believed was true but had never heard articulated so well. The specific chord that resonated for me was that schools are failing our students because of the hierarchy established in school subjects and how schools are only assessing certain types of intelligence. So many children are being told they're not bright or talented if their interests and gifts fall outside the realm of the valued subjects of math, science, or English. In The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything, Ken Robinson elaborates on the themes touched on in the TED Talks. In many ways it can be viewed as a Self-Help book, one that aims at helping the reader find and explore their passions. However, Ken Robinson hits readers with good level of psychological and educational research, along with some great philosophy, which makes this book feel more grounded in truth than some typical self-help fluff. The book also includes great case studies of people who have found "The Element", celebrity and non-celebrity alike, and what their journey has been like. These case studies really give some practical life application for the principles Robinson talks about. In helping readers find the calling for their lives, he asks not "How creative are you?" but rather, "How are you creative?" That question may be my favorite part of the book. He challenges the reader to do some digging and some turning inward to determine what sort of activities, passions, pursuits they really connect with and encourages the pursuit of those things inside or outside of a career. He argues quite well that we are all talented and creative in our own way. I recently heard a commencement speech by Steve Jobs where he said the only way to do great work is to love the work you're doing. That's really at the heart of Robinson's book and I enjoyed every minute of it.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ian Laird

    25 March 2016: minor edits to correct sloppy proofing Like many millions (literally) round the world I am captivated by Sir Ken Robinson’s TED talks on education. He makes so much sense, by emphasising the need for education to be adapted to each individual, and pointing out that intelligence can manifest itself in a multitude of ways. He asked people in the audience to say how creative they are; usually they underrated themselves. Sir Ken’s thesis is that education is an industrial process which 25 March 2016: minor edits to correct sloppy proofing Like many millions (literally) round the world I am captivated by Sir Ken Robinson’s TED talks on education. He makes so much sense, by emphasising the need for education to be adapted to each individual, and pointing out that intelligence can manifest itself in a multitude of ways. He asked people in the audience to say how creative they are; usually they underrated themselves. Sir Ken’s thesis is that education is an industrial process which is applied in a one size fits all approach, combined with an emphasis on university entrance requirements and focussing on particular subjects (maths, science, English) with the humanities and the arts downgraded - even within the arts there is a hierarchy - visual arts comes in ahead of the performing arts, with dance last of all. This tends to distort intelligence and reduce creativity. Sir Ken uses many good examples to show the variety of intelligence and creativity. Despite narrowness and homogeneity in our education systems, a number of diverse individuals have led outstanding lives replete with achievements, even though their talent, skills and potential failed to be recognised in their schooling. Some of the examples: a hyperactive child who became a gymnast, a pool player who fell in love with the magic of the pool hall and a boy who wanted to be a fireman, disparaged by a teacher for his aspiration, ultimately saving the teacher’s life (and that of the teacher's wife) when he pulled them out of a crashed car. So I went straight out and bought this book – you can probably tell there is a ‘but’ coming. Sir Ken introduces the concept of ‘The Element’, how to find it and the joy of being in it. The element is that calling, pursuit or activity which is an ideal match for a person’s intelligence and creativity. However, the concept rings slightly hollow. This is because ‘the element’ seems identifiable by a number of other already familiar names like ‘passion’, ‘great love’ or ‘enthusiasm’, the activity which occupies your time and attention and makes the clock stand still. There seems to be no added quality or characteristic which could distinguish the term from ones which already exist. This is a shame because this construct - if we could all find 'the element' we could be happy and fulfilled, is valid, but perhaps more valid when expressed in conventional terms. Sir Ken’s educational observations are deep and profound; his attempt to add to that a new concept to find one’s calling is not made out as well. Perhaps I was looking for a silver bullet - to find out what makes me fulfilled and happy. Well no such bullet exists and Sir Ken probably knows that. I know that reading and writing and sharing my views with others puts me in a happy place. Elementary, my dear Watson…

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mahmut Homsi

    ؟ (your Element) كيف يمكن أن تكتشف جوهرك أعني كيف يمكن أن تعرف المجال الذي تبدع فيه .. المجال الذي لديك حماسة و حرقة لفعله ؟ و يسميه الكاتب بــالجوهر يحاول الكتاب أن يقدم الجواب بشكل مبسط و واقعي .. يبين لنا الوسائل التي تؤدي بنا لاكتشاف أنفسنا و اكتشاف الجوهر و ينتقد النظام التعليمي الحالي باختصاره للإنسان إلى آلات تتقن الرياضيات و الفيزياء و الطب و تحصر مفهوم الذكاء ضمن نطاق ضيق تقتل مواهب الطلاب و إبداعاتهم يؤدي هذا النظام التعليمي بالكثير منا إلى مهن و مسالك لا نحبها .. نفعلها كي نكسب المال أو ؟ (your Element) كيف يمكن أن تكتشف جوهرك أعني كيف يمكن أن تعرف المجال الذي تبدع فيه .. المجال الذي لديك حماسة و حرقة لفعله ؟ و يسميه الكاتب بــالجوهر يحاول الكتاب أن يقدم الجواب بشكل مبسط و واقعي .. يبين لنا الوسائل التي تؤدي بنا لاكتشاف أنفسنا و اكتشاف الجوهر و ينتقد النظام التعليمي الحالي باختصاره للإنسان إلى آلات تتقن الرياضيات و الفيزياء و الطب و تحصر مفهوم الذكاء ضمن نطاق ضيق تقتل مواهب الطلاب و إبداعاتهم يؤدي هذا النظام التعليمي بالكثير منا إلى مهن و مسالك لا نحبها .. نفعلها كي نكسب المال أو كي نمضي أوقاتنا فلا نساهم في تحقيق غاياتنا و لا نساهم في تطوير المجتمع ما هو الجوهر ؟ ( يتألف الجوهر من سمتين موجودتين أصلا فينا و هما: الموهبة و الحب ( أي حبنا وانفعالنا لهذه الموهبة و ينبغي أيضاً أن يتوفر شرطان نستطيع التحكم بهما ولا يتم الجوهر إلا بهما و هما: الموقف (أي موقفنا تجاه هذه الموهبة ) و الفرصة المواتية لاستغلالها إذن الجوهر هو موهبة نتمتع بها و نحبها حينما نمارسها و نعمل على تطويرها دائماً ضمن الظروف المحيطة المساعدة يشرح الكتاب بالتفصيل من خلال قصص الناس الذين وجدوا جوهرهم و أبدعوا في الحياة هذه العناصر الأربعة للجوهر كي تساعدنا على اكتشاف ما بداخلنا من طاقات و استغلالها أحسن استغلال و تجنب التأثير السلبي للمجتمع و الثقافة على جوهرنا الحقيقي الكتاب مشجع جداً أمدني بطاقة و أمل كبيرين.. و جعلني أكثر وعياً بالمحيط الذي حولي أدركني الأسى كثيراً و أنا أقرأ فكم من مواهب قُتلت ؟ و كم من طاقات دمُرت ؟ بسبب رؤية ضيقة و تعريف للنجاح بشكل سطحي و تافه أنصـــح به و بشــدة للأصدقاء غير التقليديين .. الذين هم في رحلة اكتشاف ذواتهم

  8. 4 out of 5

    Craig

    Although "The Element" was authored by Ken Robinson, this is the book I've been writing for the past ten years. For a long time, I've been arguing that passion is a bridge between our unique human potential and our social responsibility. I begin almost every workshop, speech, and lecture by asking my participants to talk about one of their personal or professional passions. Eyes light up and the temperature in the room rises as people connect to what Robinson would call "their element." His book i Although "The Element" was authored by Ken Robinson, this is the book I've been writing for the past ten years. For a long time, I've been arguing that passion is a bridge between our unique human potential and our social responsibility. I begin almost every workshop, speech, and lecture by asking my participants to talk about one of their personal or professional passions. Eyes light up and the temperature in the room rises as people connect to what Robinson would call "their element." His book is a collection of stories about people who have discovered their unique gifts—their element—the point at which natural talent meets personal passion. His writing is like a having a coach in the pages of the book. I wasn't surprised, in fact, I was waiting for his discussion of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's "flow state," a concept I've been including as one of the key ingredients for social profit sustainability in my recent talks. I liked the book a great deal. It made me think. It helped me realize how lucky I am to be among the very few who get to do what they really love; and it reminded me of my responsibility in helping others to uncover their own path—their own element.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Arturo

    I really like Ken Robinson. I feel that he is a very insightful thinker into changing education paradigms (in fact, if you youtube "changing education paradigms, ken robinson" a very excellent video of one of his speeches comes up.) I love hearing his talks. They tend to be very enlightening, concise and entertaining. Unfortunately, this book wasn't much of either of those. I felt that while some of the examples he gave were useful to help readers see how other people have reached their element, I really like Ken Robinson. I feel that he is a very insightful thinker into changing education paradigms (in fact, if you youtube "changing education paradigms, ken robinson" a very excellent video of one of his speeches comes up.) I love hearing his talks. They tend to be very enlightening, concise and entertaining. Unfortunately, this book wasn't much of either of those. I felt that while some of the examples he gave were useful to help readers see how other people have reached their element, the fact that there were so many meant you had to trudge through example after example to get to the good stuff. While the points he did bring up were important, they were just to cluttered in filler (to give you an idea, my notes for the element covered a grand total of 3/4ths of a page, from a person that usually needs 3-5 pages for a 250 page book). If you've got an empty afternoon, I think its worth giving it a short glance. I can see how it could be just what some people need to hear. If not, I wouldn't kill myself over missing out.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Kerrie

    Why am I reading stuff like this? I'm in a rut, where nothing interests me, my spark of interest in anything is gone and I want that spark back. Even when I have free time, I don't feel like working on my gazillion hobbies. Of course, I'm in school at 38, juggling a job, homework, home life/chores, and preparing for a career change, but that's neither here nor there, right? At the same time I'm reading The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity so I was interested in comparing the two Why am I reading stuff like this? I'm in a rut, where nothing interests me, my spark of interest in anything is gone and I want that spark back. Even when I have free time, I don't feel like working on my gazillion hobbies. Of course, I'm in school at 38, juggling a job, homework, home life/chores, and preparing for a career change, but that's neither here nor there, right? At the same time I'm reading The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity so I was interested in comparing the two. Both deal with the very real dilemma that so many people face - having an unfulfilling life, who wish that "Someday, I'll ___________", but that someday never comes, whether from outside forces (family/friends who hold you back) or even some (unconscious) self-sabotage. Of the two, I preferred this book because it was more grounded in reality with real-life anecdotes and some science rather than the eye-rolling woo-woo and New Agey crap that saturates The Artists's Way. There were no exercises or game plan in this book - the path was given by all the inspiring anecdotes of people (famous ones) who had found their Element and were living the dream. Robinson's main target in the book is the old-fashioned and outdated education system which he feels stomps out the burgeoning creativity of children and forces them to conform to a certain way of learning. There is no room for those children who have a different way of learning and therefore fail in school and are then considered "problems" or not very smart. I liked his approach to the question of intelligence, that the question is not "How intelligent are you?" suggesting that there is an objective scale of measurement, but "How are you intelligent?" Amen, brother. Some of the "smartest" people I know are the dumbest people on Earth when it comes to basic survival skills. :D What brought the rating down for me was buried within a paragraph in a chapter, after all the inspirational stuff, is the acknowledgement that "Yeah, your passion might not be able to support you, so you have to have a job that pays the bills and keep your passion as a hobby." Gee, thanks, tell me something I don't know already and am trying to learn to accept. >:-/ Not that I'm looking for An Easy Answer (though it would be nice), but there's a whole other book that addresses that Reality Wake-Up Call and isn't hidden as a "By the way, this is The Awful Truth, but aren't all these inspirational anecdotes AWESOME?" aside. Meh. But apparently this guy's TED talk was amazing so he expanded it to an entire book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Wayne Osborn

    I loved this book. I was particularly touched by the various stories that are told in which people have struggled with academics in school, and yet found their passion and became wildly successful. Gillian Lynne was a bundle of energy in second grade, and couldn't sit still or pay attention in class. Her teachers were sure there was something wrong with her (this occurred in the pre-ADD days) and urged her parents to take her to a psychologist. After interviewing her, the psychologist became con I loved this book. I was particularly touched by the various stories that are told in which people have struggled with academics in school, and yet found their passion and became wildly successful. Gillian Lynne was a bundle of energy in second grade, and couldn't sit still or pay attention in class. Her teachers were sure there was something wrong with her (this occurred in the pre-ADD days) and urged her parents to take her to a psychologist. After interviewing her, the psychologist became convinced that there was nothing "wrong" with her, she was just a dancer, and needed to be in dance school. Her mother signed her up, and soon Gillian was taking ten dance classes a week. Guess what? She grew up to be a very famous and accomplished professional dancer and choreographer, dancing professionally all over the world with the Royal Ballet Company (based out of London). Later in life, she also collaborated with a fellow named Andrew Lloyd Webber and helped to create a couple of very successful musicals you might have heard of: Cats and The Phantom of the Opera. All of this happened because someone recognized that she had a talent for dancing. I'm wondering that if in today's day and age, where sadly the arts are not valued in our schools, if she'd would have just been medicated in order to "calm her down", and her gift for dancing and choreography would have gone unnoticed. Sadly, creativity and innovation are traits that our school systems seemingly don't value at all. There are many, many other examples given in this fabulous book that point out the magic of "finding your element", which means finding the thing that you are meant to do. Sir Kenneth Robinson says that "the Element is the place where the things we love to do and the things we are good at come together." I urge you to read this book and see if you can find your element. If you are an educator, you might want to read this book twice. I think I will.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Denise

    Ken Robinson gave a lot of interesting stories and anecdotes in this book, but for some reason it fell flat for me in terms of igniting inspiration and sparking new motivation and thought. I enjoyed this book, but I was hoping for more. There were many times it brought up good questions to invite you to ponder on different aspects of what you want out of life however (my favorite being "HOW are you intelligent?"). He then goes on to talk more about divergent thinking and how you can only inspire Ken Robinson gave a lot of interesting stories and anecdotes in this book, but for some reason it fell flat for me in terms of igniting inspiration and sparking new motivation and thought. I enjoyed this book, but I was hoping for more. There were many times it brought up good questions to invite you to ponder on different aspects of what you want out of life however (my favorite being "HOW are you intelligent?"). He then goes on to talk more about divergent thinking and how you can only inspire others if you yourself are working from inspired action in a field that flows with how you are wired.. However there were a lot of extra things added that continuously made me think where is this going?" All in all still a good book, even laughed out loud a few times at some of his little quips. "If a man speaks his mind alone in a forest and no one is around to hear him is he still wrong?" This is one of my favorite quotes and I want it printed and framed so I can appreciate it for years to come haha

  13. 4 out of 5

    Cigdem

    I respect Sir Ken Robinson and his message. However, i unfortunately, felt that if you listened to the TED talk, you did not need to read the book.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jen Marin

    I checked this out of the library because I was looking for interesting audiobooks and the name caught my eye. It wasn't until I started listening that I recognized the author from a TED talk he had given a few years back- (If you haven't seen it, look it up. It is absolutely worth the 20 minutes.) I found this book to be inspirational, entertaining, and intimidating- all at the same time. Robinson is a good storyteller, and the book is chock full of interesting anecdotes of both famous and not-s I checked this out of the library because I was looking for interesting audiobooks and the name caught my eye. It wasn't until I started listening that I recognized the author from a TED talk he had given a few years back- (If you haven't seen it, look it up. It is absolutely worth the 20 minutes.) I found this book to be inspirational, entertaining, and intimidating- all at the same time. Robinson is a good storyteller, and the book is chock full of interesting anecdotes of both famous and not-so-famous people who lived happy lives because they found their element. What is the element? Robinson says: "The element is the point at which natural talent meets personal passion." By finding and nurturing this quality, we can ignite our creativity, and bring more vitality and passion to our lives and to the world. Robinson tells many stories of famous folk who are famous mostly because they found their passion early and were able to follow where that passion led. I found this part intimidating; how could I ever be like John Lennon, or Ray Charles, or Richard Feynman? He answered this question by many tales of not-so-famous folk, folk who discovered the element late in life, or who do work other than their passion to pay the bills. These people were particularly interesting, as it was very clear that the fact that they invested energy into their passion helped them with the other work in their lives that they were not quite so passionate about. As an educator, he really stressed the importance of discovering and nurturing these passions in our youth. He points out that the jobs of the future may not have even been invented yet, and that teaching kids a set of facts will not necessarily prepare them for this unknown future. Rather, fostering innovation, creativity, and collaboration can help them be ready for whatever the future brings. I enjoyed this book as an audiobook. Robinson reads it himself, and his British accent made the stories all the more enjoyable.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Kerfe

    My brother sent me a link to a video by Ken Robinson about education: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcD...#! I liked it so much that I wanted to learn more, and found out about his books on his website. "The Element" is for the most part a disappointment--pop self-help at its worst. We learn about many people and how they overcame adversity to find, and become successful and well-known, for doing what they love. Which is fine. But everyone can't be Paul McCartney or Monica Seles or Meg Ryan or My brother sent me a link to a video by Ken Robinson about education: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcD...#! I liked it so much that I wanted to learn more, and found out about his books on his website. "The Element" is for the most part a disappointment--pop self-help at its worst. We learn about many people and how they overcame adversity to find, and become successful and well-known, for doing what they love. Which is fine. But everyone can't be Paul McCartney or Monica Seles or Meg Ryan or Apraham Lincoln or Ray Charles. Robinson makes it sound like all you need to do is discover what you love and you'll reach this zone where everything falls into place--mentors and opportunities, fame and fortune. It's actually kind of depressing, like "what's wrong with me?--I know what I love to do, but no mentor has shown up to help and support me, and meanwhile my attempts to support myself doing it have utterly failed." Ask anyone who loves to act: there are many more opportunities in restaurants and health clubs than on stage or screen. Well then, he says: do it in your "spare time" and the drudgery you perform for 40 or 60 hours a week will become easier and more satisfying. Of course you enjoy doing what you love more than most work you can get that will support you and your family. But I think he's wrong to imply that most of us can hope to do more than fit it into our lives where and when we can. In that respect, the book offers no help or insight at all. At the very end of "The Element", Robinson does talk about education, and cover the same points as he did in the video. Here the book comes alive. Still, the video is much better, and enough. Take the time you would have spent reading this book and instead spend it doing what you love.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Austin

    For us dreamers, books like The Element are thoroughly enjoyable because it encourages us to continue doing what we do best..dream. However this book is not exclusive; it does not have a specific target market and therefore would be readable for people from all walks of life. Outside of reminding myself to be constantly looking for ways to engage my passions, this book changed the way I think about certain things such as intelligence, creativity, and believe it or not, the education system. The For us dreamers, books like The Element are thoroughly enjoyable because it encourages us to continue doing what we do best..dream. However this book is not exclusive; it does not have a specific target market and therefore would be readable for people from all walks of life. Outside of reminding myself to be constantly looking for ways to engage my passions, this book changed the way I think about certain things such as intelligence, creativity, and believe it or not, the education system. The author does a wonderful job of pairing the importance of discovering what we do very well with how that discovery can lead to personal growth and benefit those in our sphere of influence. Although challenging, it is not full of idealistic and unattainable concepts which is refreshing. I would especially recommend this book to those individuals that feel like they are not doing something meaningful or for those that feel unsure about what steps to take next in this journey we call life. If anything it will make you think, which is usually always a good thing.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Hans

    Skeptical of Robinson's TED talk, I picked up this book and found it even more disappointing. There are some sensible ideas: too many people give up on doing things better, testing had it's downsides, kids should be taught more music and art, and similar homilies. It's great to have such opinions, but these don't yet make an argument. Instead of offering such a substantiated argument, Robinson relies on anecdotes of his kids doing homework, or of some famous people that he talked to. No sane per Skeptical of Robinson's TED talk, I picked up this book and found it even more disappointing. There are some sensible ideas: too many people give up on doing things better, testing had it's downsides, kids should be taught more music and art, and similar homilies. It's great to have such opinions, but these don't yet make an argument. Instead of offering such a substantiated argument, Robinson relies on anecdotes of his kids doing homework, or of some famous people that he talked to. No sane person should take such writings seriously, and if anything illustrates the perilous situation of our schools it is that so many people give any credence to such slapdashary. What's most irking is just how pompous Robinson is, and how dismissive of alternative approaches, as if we didn't already have far too many people with underexamined convictions. Again, the basic sentiments are laudable but this is an awful and pernicious book. For good reading on education, turn to Paul Tough and other similar writers. For some of the background science, Steven Pinker writes lucidly and accessibly.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Tagwa Warrag

    So much enlighting and reassuring. Each and every line of this book is gold, will make sure that my kids read it! This is my second most favorite non-fiction after "The Outliers". It is the kind of books that you want to keep reading over and again, scratching down notes and researching further details for the mentioned stories. It just reminded me of someone I know who dumped a good paid and secure job position because it was nt really what he felt doing for the rest of his life. For finding your So much enlighting and reassuring. Each and every line of this book is gold, will make sure that my kids read it! This is my second most favorite non-fiction after "The Outliers". It is the kind of books that you want to keep reading over and again, scratching down notes and researching further details for the mentioned stories. It just reminded me of someone I know who dumped a good paid and secure job position because it was nt really what he felt doing for the rest of his life. For finding your true element requires COURAGEOUS ACTIONS. Highly recommended.

  19. 5 out of 5

    sleeps9hours

    “The Element” is nothing new, just recycling the idea of living your bliss, being in flow, but I’m willing to read many books on that concept. It does go into how our school systems don't encourage people to find their element, and ways to improve schooling. p. 60 Awesome photos of Earth in comparison to other planets. Gives perspective of how tiny we are in the universe. p. 117 Interaction with the field, in person or through their work, is as vital to our development as time alone with our thoug “The Element” is nothing new, just recycling the idea of living your bliss, being in flow, but I’m willing to read many books on that concept. It does go into how our school systems don't encourage people to find their element, and ways to improve schooling. p. 60 Awesome photos of Earth in comparison to other planets. Gives perspective of how tiny we are in the universe. p. 117 Interaction with the field, in person or through their work, is as vital to our development as time alone with our thoughts. As the physicist John Wheeler said, “If you don’t kick things around with people, you are out of it. Nobody, I always say, can be anybody without somebody being around.” The physicist Freeman Dyson says that when he’s writing he closes the door, but when he’s actually doing science, he leaves it open. “Up to a point you welcome being interrupted because it is only by interacting with other people that you get anything interesting done.” Isaac Newton, “If I saw further it was because I stood on the shoulders of giants.” p. 223 “Happy individuals seem to have a whole lot more fun than the rest of us ever do,” Dr. Michael Fordyce said in his book Human Happiness. “They have many more activities they enjoy doing for fun, and they spend much more of their time, on a given day or week, doing fun, exciting, and enjoyable activities.” p. 224 The Russian novelist Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn said, “If you want to change the world, who do you begin with, yourself or others? I believe if we begin with ourselves and do the things that we need to do and become the best person we can be, we have a much better chance of changing the world for the better.” p. 238 The most powerful method of improving education is to invest in the improvement of teaching and the status of great teachers. There isn’t a great school anywhere that doesn’t have great teachers working in it. But there and plenty of poor schools with shelves of curriculum standards and reams of standardized tests. The fact is that given the challenges we face, 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. p. 248 School systems should base their curriculum not on the idea of separate subjects, but on the much more fertile idea of disciplines. Math, for example, isn’t just a set of information to be learned but a complex pattern of ideas, practical skills, and concepts. It is a discipline—or rather a set of disciplines. So too are drama, art, technology, and so on. The idea of disciplines makes possible a fluid and dynamic curriculum that is interdisciplinary. Third, the curriculum should be personalized. The current processes of education do not take account of individual learning styles and talents. In that way, they offend the principle of distinctiveness. p. 249 Whatever it might be for, enthusiasm is the main thing that needs to be developed. The Element has implications for teaching. Too many reform movements in education are designed to make education teacher-proof. The most successful systems in the world take the opposite view. They invest in teachers. The reason is that people succeed best when they have others who understand their talents, challenges, and abilities. This is why mentoring is such a helpful force in so many people’s lives. Great teachers have always understood that their real role is not to teach subjects but to teach students. Mentoring and coaching is the vital pulse of a living system of education. The Element has implications for assessment. Education is being strangled persistently by the culture of standardized testing. The irony is that these tests are not raising standards except in some very particular areas, and at the expense of most of what really matters in education. To get a perspective on this, compare the processes of quality assurance in education with those in an entirely different field—catering. In the restaurant business, there are two distinct models of quality assurance. The first is the fast-food model. In this model, the quality of the food is guaranteed, because it is all standardized. The fast-food chains specify exactly what should be on the menu in all of their outlets. They specify what should be in the burgers or nuggets, the oil in which they should be fried, the exact bun in which they should be served, how the fries should be made, what should be in the drinks, and exactly how they should be served. They specify how the room should be decorated and what the staff should wear. Everything is standardized. It’s often dreadful and bad for you. Some forms of fast food are contributing to that massive explosion of obesity and diabetes across the world. But at least the quality is guarantee. The other model of quality assurance in catering is the Michelin guide. In this model, the guides establish specific criteria for excellence, but they do not say how the particular restaurants should meet these criteria. They don’t say what should be on the menu, what the staff should wear, or how the rooms should be decorated. All of that is at the discretion of the individual restaurant. The guides simply establish criteria, and it is up to every restaurant to meet them in whatever way they see best. They are then judged no to some impersonal standard, but by the assessments of experts who know what they are looking for and what a great restaurant is actually like. The result is that every Michelin restaurant is terrific. And they are all unique and different from each other. The future for education is not in standardizing but in customizing; not in promoting groupthink and “deindividuation” but in cultivating the real depth and dynamism of human abilities of every sort. Afterword: In 2006, the state of California spent $3.5 billion on the state university system. It spent $9.9 billion on the state prison system. I find it hard to believe that there are three times more potential criminals in CA than potential college graduates, or that the growing masses of people in jails throughout the country were simply born to be there. I don’t believe that there are that many naturally malign people wandering around, in CA or anywhere else. In my experience, the great majority of people are well intentioned and want to live lives with purpose and meaning. However, very many people live in bad conditions, and these conditions can drain them of hope and purpose. In 1750, there were 1 billion people living on the planet. It took the whole of human existence for the world population to reach 1 billion. In 1930, there were 2 billion people. It took just one hundred and eighty years for the population to double. It took only forty more years for us to get to three billion. After that came a spectacular increase. On New Year’s Eve 1999, you were sharing the planet with six billion other people. The human population had doubled in thirty years. Some estimates suggest that we’ll hit nine billion by the middle of the twenty-first century. By 2000, nearly half of the six billion people on Earth lived in cities. By 2020, there may be more than five hundred cities on Earth with populations above one million, and more than twenty megacities, with populations in excess of twenty million. Already, Greater Tokyo has a population of thirty-five million. This is greater than the total population of Canada, a territory four thousand times larger. This massive growth in the size and density of human populations across Earth presents enormous challenges. It demands that we tackle the crisis in natural resources with urgency. But it demands too that we tackle the crisis in human resources and that we think differently about the relationships between the two. We have to move beyond linear, mechanistic metaphors to more organic metaphors of human growth and development. A living organism, like a plant, is complex and dynamic. Each of its internal processes affects and depends on the others in sustaining the vitality of the whole organism. Michaelangelo once said, “The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.”

  20. 4 out of 5

    Loy Machedo

    Loy Machedo’s Book Review – The Element by Sir Ken Robinson Sir Kenneth Robinson is an English Author, Speaker, and International Advisor on Education in the Arts to government, Non-Profits, Education, and Art Bodies. He shot to fame with his TED Talks Video ‘How Schools Kill Creativity’ which was viewed a staggering 13 million times since it was first uploaded in February 2006. In 2010, the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce animated one of Robinson's speeche Loy Machedo’s Book Review – The Element by Sir Ken Robinson Sir Kenneth Robinson is an English Author, Speaker, and International Advisor on Education in the Arts to government, Non-Profits, Education, and Art Bodies. He shot to fame with his TED Talks Video ‘How Schools Kill Creativity’ which was viewed a staggering 13 million times since it was first uploaded in February 2006. In 2010, the Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures & Commerce animated one of Robinson's speeches about changing "education paradigms". The video was viewed nearly half a million times in its first week on YouTube. So if you liked Sir Ken Robinsons TED Talk, you will treasure this book – The Element. The Element is about Intelligence. Not just academic but the whole wide spectrum of Diverse Human Intelligence and Creativity. It is a book that speaks profoundly about Personal Passion Meeting Natural Talent, Nurturing and Expressing Oneself, Developing Circles of Influence, Attitudes & Aptitudes, Importance of being Mentored, Investing in oneself, Sacrificing for one goals and an Intense Desire to commit to one’s true calling. It is a book that mixes the concepts of the flow state (the work of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi) and Imagine (works of Jonah Richard Lehrer) combined with the research style of Outliners, The Tipping Point / Blink (Malcolm Gladwell) & Influence (Robert Caildini). The author sites various personalities and anecdotes to strengthen his argument. He gives the examples of 1. George Harrison (The Beatles) and how he and Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, Tom Petty, and Jeff Lynne formed their Album, 2. Zaha Hadid, the first woman to win the Pritzker Prize for Architecture who grew up in Iraq. 3. Ex-Beatle Paul McCartney, 4. Fleetwood Mac’s Founder & eponymous drummer Mick Fleetwood 5. Nobel Peace Laureate Physicist Richard Feynman, 6. Writer Arianna Huffington of the Huffington Post 7. The Creator of The Simpsons Matt Groening, 8. Internationally Acclaimed Actress Meg Ryan, 9. Vidal Sassoon, 10. International Best Selling Author Paulo Coelho, 11. International Best Selling Author Susan Jeffers, 12. Gillian Lynne of The Broadway Productions Cats & The Phantom of the Opera, 13. Richard Branson of Virgin Group 14. Paul Potts success through Britian’s Got Talent 15. John Wilson, who though being blind played a crucial role in curing blindness for millions in Africa. Some of the thought provoking statements he left me with were: 1. Gillian Lynne and Matt Groening who were hopeless at school but ending up giving pleasure to millions around the world because they found their Element. 2. The Element having two main features and two conditions aptitude (I get it), passion (I love it), attitude (I want it), opportunity (Where is it?). 3. How we take things for granted assuming we have only 5 or 6 senses – the 6th one being Intuition where are more diverse, dynamic and distinct senses. 4. How we should stop asking ourselves “How Intelligent Are You” and instead ask ourselves "How are you intelligent?" 5. Where the world population took, 180 years from 1750 to 1930 to double from 1 Billion to 2 Billion. It took only 29 years, from 1970 to 1999 for the population to double once again from 3 to 6 Billion. And how this uncontrolled explosion will impact Human Lives. 6. The three myths of creativity - only special people are creative, creativity is about special activities like the arts, design, or advertising and that people are either creative or not. 7. How imagination is different from creativity and how we should develop both. 8. The Zone is the place or time where we feel the true sense of freedom and authenticity. 9. That we are often confined in boxes like the MBTI personality test that group people into sixteen personality types. "My guess is that sixteen personality types might be a bit of an underestimate. My personal estimate would be closer to six billion." 10. The Importance of Finding Your Tribe and how Meg Ryan found her true self because she met people who gradually shape her Element. 11. How children are labeled as ADD or ADHD when in the past, no such category was invented and so Children were treated normally 12. The barriers to finding the Element are personal, social, and cultural. 13. How Attitude plays an important role in finding your Element. 14. How Mentors play an important role in the lives of people who have found their element. 15. The new definition of Amateurs, Professionals and Professional Amateurs. 16. The limitation of the current system of Education with its Hierarchy, Standardized Tests, Academic Inflation and in ability to customize itself to cater to different forms of creativity, imagination and talent. Criticisms against the book. I did a bit of research to see what the critics had to say. There were a few of them that stood out. 1. The inability of the author to answer how does one discover what their passion is? 2. Lack of Statistical & Factual Tools to Provide a Solution 3. The argument is based upon anecdotes rather than any meaningful survey or statistical analysis. I thought about these questions and found a sensible answer to them. 1. How does one discover what their passion is? Think, Reflect, Experiment and Find out. 2. Lack of Statistical & Factual Tools to Provide a Solution Until we come out with a tool to measure Intuitive abilities, degrees of creativity and imagination and quantitative methods to numerically give value to thought and reason – I do not see this how this can be made possible. 3. The argument is based upon anecdotes rather than any meaningful survey or statistical analysis. I doubt there is any statistical study undertaken to find out how many people are ambitious, how many have achieved their goals or have are focused on their goals. It is simply not possible. And if ever such a study had to be conducted, then we would require the experimenters and study group to dedicate their entire lives to this study without external factors like technology or innovations taking place – which in turn change the dynamics of the game. Moment of Truth – The overall Summary Even with such feeble criticisms, I have to applaud the author for taking such a pain-staking effort and dedication in grinding out the data to support, inspire and reveal such a thought-provoking book. Among all the books I have read over the past so many years, including the 182 books that I have given written Reviews, I rate this book as among the top five of all time. It was so good, that I read it back to back – twice. So if you were to ask me – I loved this book to bits and if you ever wish to do yourself or your loved ones a favor – this must be the book you should buy, keep, read, study, implement and share – Just as I have. Overall Rating. A Perfect Book - 10 out of 10. Sir Ken Robinson – Thank you for such a Timeless Masterpiece. Loy Machedo loymachedo.com | loymachedo.tv

  21. 4 out of 5

    Luis

    Esta es una de esas lecturas curiosas que descubres y piensas que va a perdurar en tu memoria durante mucho tiempo. Sir Ken Robinson, con su habitual tono amable y a la vez cargado de sabiduría, nos expone en este libro una verdad como un templo. "El Elemento" es un libro para paladear página a página. Está estructurado de una forma excepcional: a medida que se nos va describiendo la importancia de encontrar el Elemento en nuestras vidas y cómo podemos llegar a conocerlo, cada capítulo está salpi Esta es una de esas lecturas curiosas que descubres y piensas que va a perdurar en tu memoria durante mucho tiempo. Sir Ken Robinson, con su habitual tono amable y a la vez cargado de sabiduría, nos expone en este libro una verdad como un templo. "El Elemento" es un libro para paladear página a página. Está estructurado de una forma excepcional: a medida que se nos va describiendo la importancia de encontrar el Elemento en nuestras vidas y cómo podemos llegar a conocerlo, cada capítulo está salpicado de entrañables historias particulares, historias de personas exitosas pero tan reales como tú y como yo, que llegaron a ser lo que son porque tuvieron la suerte de encontrar lo que este libro describe. Así, las narraciones de las trayectorias profesionales citadas describen cuidadosamente cómo llegaron a descubrir su pasión y han llegado a ser lo que son, y también cómo se sienten y cómo entienden sus talentos. Matt Groeging, Einstein, Gillian Lynne, George Harrison... son sólo algunos de los fascinantes ejemplos de los que estás deseando saberlo todo. ¿Qué es realmente el Elemento? Para saberlo deberás leer el libro y descubrirlo por ti solo. Como resumen te diré que encontrar el Elemento es sentir que estás en la zona donde puedes desarrollar todas tus capacidades al máximo, disfrutando sin importar del transcurrir del tiempo y sentir que has nacido para dedicarte a ello. Se hace referencia no sólo al Elemento, sino a todos los factores que nos pueden ayudar a encontrarlo y a perfeccionarlo. La suerte es importante para hallarlo, pero la perseveración lo es más. Incluye al final una breve reflexión sobre si nuestras generaciones venideras pueden realmente encontrar el Elemento en el sistema escolar que les hemos preparado. Al fin y al cabo, Robinson es un experto en educación. Todos estamos destinados a encontrar aquella tarea que nos da nuestro lugar inequívoco en el mundo, pero no es fácil. Ojalá este libro te dé alguna luz.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Scotty

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. ED talks are one of the most popular ways a college student can waste time on the internet. If you are unfamiliar with them I highly reccmend that you stop reading this and check it out. http://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson... here is his most popular talk and there is another http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcD... that has similar point but more clever animation to keep you engaged. I first came across Sir Ken Robinson when I was in college on Facebook. I watched it and for the first time I r ED talks are one of the most popular ways a college student can waste time on the internet. If you are unfamiliar with them I highly reccmend that you stop reading this and check it out. http://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson... here is his most popular talk and there is another http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zDZFcD... that has similar point but more clever animation to keep you engaged. I first came across Sir Ken Robinson when I was in college on Facebook. I watched it and for the first time I really understood why school and education was so important because it prepares you for life after it. So that any child with the proper time and money spent can become anything they want to be. That is that allusiveness American Dream that makes this country so great. One of my favorite authors F. Scott Fitzgerald would agree that this dream does exist in the USA. However, like most things in the country its complicated and there is a catch. According to Sir Ken Robinson he believes that schools are killing the american dream because of its standardization and constant assessment that ruins creativity. In my education classes at the University of Minnesota, we always talk about being creative and what an import skill is it in the word today. What is creativity? is means that you "think outside of the box!" Which is by far one of the worst definitions in the world for creativity because it concretely defines somethings that is far from it. I bought the The element because I knew it would be a great investment for me as a future educator and could help me to develop some of my own passions. In the book he makes several quotes that really stood out to me.. Here are the highlights with my own analysis. " never underestimate the vital importance of finding early in life the work that you for you is play. This turns possible underachievers into happy warriors" When you are a child you like to play because it is fun. Simply try to find work that is fun for you. One of my friends from college loved playing in the garden and looking at worms. After graduating with a degree in biology and evolution he about to enter graduate school for a masters in science that will lead him into the DNR " what is true is that if your unprepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original" This is Sir Ken Robinson classic line and is found on his webpage. Simply look it up " The Element is the meeting point between natural aptitude and personal passion" Once you are here you will always find happiness. " the real question is not are you intelligent but how intelligent are you? Think what are you really good at? " Finding the right tribe can be essential to finding you element. On the other hand, feeling deep down that with your the wrong one is probably a good sign that you should look somewhere else" Find people that share you passions, they become a great support system. If you don't find them than you are probably in the wrong in area. "Other examples of tribes inspiring individuals to greater heights abound: the sports teams- the 1969 New York Knicks, the "no Name defense" of the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins, the 1991 Minnesota Twins ls " The MN Twins of 1991 get a huge following here in this book and I think it is well deserved. Because they really played as a tribe not as a team. " the Social psychologist Robert Cialdina has term for this. He calls is Basking in Reflected Glory or BIRGing. in the 1970's Ciadlina and others conducted a study about BIRGing and found that students at a number of american universities were much more likely to wear university-related clothing on the Monday after the their school won a football game. " BIRGins is really just a another term for bandwagon fans. My personal opinion is that the Minnesota Market is full of BIRGers because there are four sports teams in one area. rarely do all of the teams do well at the same time. he also adds that you need be a real fan that is with you in the good times and the bad. East Asian Cultures " amore interdependence and individuals spend more time monitoring the environmental and others Westerners focus on individualism and central objects because these cultures tend to be indention and focused more on self than others" Not really much to say here. "The idea of luck is a powerful way of illustrating the importance of our basic attitudes in affecting whetere or not we find out our element" You make you own luck, or the harder you work the luckier you get. Attitude is crucial. Robinson speaking on the podium on the Baseball Cooperstown about when Pee Wee Reese put his arm around him " I had lost my confidence and Pee Wee picked me up with his words of encouragement. He gave me hope when all hope was gone" Another baseball cliche but this shows how important it is to have mentor when you pursue your passion. " for a long time, he couldn't even grasp the difference between net and gross income. One days in exasperation his director of finance took him aside after a Virgin board meeting and said 'Richard, think of it this way;If you go fishing and throw a net into the sea you catch in the net is yours to keep thats your net profit. Everything else is the gross" I finally get this analogy for years as a caddie I was a having difficulty with gross and net scores. Net is what you keep... gross is everything else. " .. the Best way to improve education is not to focus on primarily on the curriculum, nor an assessment, important thought these things are. the most powerful method of improving education is to invent in the improvement of teaching and the status of great teachers" I love to here these because assetment and exams doesn't always predict academic success. I learned in one of my educational psychology teachers that the ACT only predicts college success for two years really. Other than that is doesn't predict a student. Never let an exam predict your knowledge or success. Bottom life you are thinking about pursing something that gives you great happiness in your life. Read this book and develop a plan to pursue. Happiness is there you just need to go out and get it.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Erika RS

    Overall, this was a good read but not a must read. If you watched Ken Robinson's TED talks, and it left you wanting more of the same, then you'll enjoy the book. If those talks were sufficient for you, this doesn't offer much new, just more depth. In the book, the author describes the importance of finding your passion. He doesn't describe -- and doesn't try to describe -- how to find your own passion. Rather, he describes what it feels like and looks like to live a life activated by passion. He Overall, this was a good read but not a must read. If you watched Ken Robinson's TED talks, and it left you wanting more of the same, then you'll enjoy the book. If those talks were sufficient for you, this doesn't offer much new, just more depth. In the book, the author describes the importance of finding your passion. He doesn't describe -- and doesn't try to describe -- how to find your own passion. Rather, he describes what it feels like and looks like to live a life activated by passion. He does this with a mix of personal stories, stories of others, and reference to psychological research. To me, the primary value of this book was the way it conveyed the energy of living a life around your passion. Such a life is not just one where you feel happy -- at times, pursuing your passion may force you to make decisions that can make you deeply unhappy for a time -- but it is a life where you feel driven to do what you do. At a wider level, the value brought by a vision like that in The Element is that everyone's element is different. It's not music in general; it may be a particular type of music or an instrument. It's not just programming, but perhaps it's handling complex interactions or giving users a delightful experience. Because of the varieties of talent we have, the author believes that schools need reform. Schools define intelligence narrowly and demand conformity. He spends the last chapter of the book discussing this. Although the book did not focus on how to find your element, it is possible to extract some tips. Although I used the terms "passion" and "element" interchangeably above, your element is really where your passion and your talents intersect. So looking for those things that both energize you and which you are good at is a part of finding your element. Another key part to building your element is finding your tribe -- the group of people who share your passion. Your tribe can help you develop your skills, provide inspiration, provide role models, and more. Taking advantage of opportunities that arise is also key. Often times, these opportunities will require adding more work to an already busy life, but the energy you get from doing the thing you really love can help you push through that and shape your life to hit the right balance. Sometimes, what you need is not a new idea, but an old idea described well. That is what The Element gives us.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Diana Rothbauer

    The Element is a brilliant book, not the easy read of the Outliers. It speaks of Education systems and how they actually stiffle creativity and out the box thinking. Which is ironic since once out of school the push by employers is to hire people who are creative and willing to think outside of the box. It amazing how he defines the creativity and lack thereof in the context of the school system. The Element discusses the idea of finding what you are good at. Which is a process and not always obvio The Element is a brilliant book, not the easy read of the Outliers. It speaks of Education systems and how they actually stiffle creativity and out the box thinking. Which is ironic since once out of school the push by employers is to hire people who are creative and willing to think outside of the box. It amazing how he defines the creativity and lack thereof in the context of the school system. The Element discusses the idea of finding what you are good at. Which is a process and not always obvious because of outside influences. The Element also discusses the one thing that gives everyone a reason for living, the passion in one's life. Sometimes ones passion is linked with their job and that makes very dynamic. The Element talks about the success of people and how and why certain people are sucessful. Part of this is a matter of chance (which is not really chance) but rather ones personality and our decisions through life trying to find our element. In this book Robinson argues that each of us needs to find our element. “The element is the meeting point between natural aptitude and personal passion.” Throughout this book he presents personal stories of people (some well-known, some not so well-known) who found their element and it made all the difference in their lives. He then applies some of his ideas to our education system and the changes that are to come.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Abigail

    Have maybe two chapters left on this one - tops. Parts I'd like to go back and re-read, but the book is overdue. Doh. Overall, VERY good book. One of the better in the "how to find what you want to do with your life" genre. However, it only barely falls into that category, as it's not one of those growingly more common worksheet type books where you ask yourself a dozen questions, but a brilliant and revealing look at the forces behind the birth and evolution of some of the great minds and spirit Have maybe two chapters left on this one - tops. Parts I'd like to go back and re-read, but the book is overdue. Doh. Overall, VERY good book. One of the better in the "how to find what you want to do with your life" genre. However, it only barely falls into that category, as it's not one of those growingly more common worksheet type books where you ask yourself a dozen questions, but a brilliant and revealing look at the forces behind the birth and evolution of some of the great minds and spirits of the past century. If you are looking for inspiration, and more importantly, understanding on what fuels passion, creativity, and inspiration, if you are looking for a well written discussion on where science supports art and where modern society often times doesn't, if you want to know the difference between being in your element and doing something you enjoy, pick this book up. If you want another self-help book that asks the same questions and doesn't challenge the way you think about how you approach your life and your loves, pick up a different book. The Element provides food for thought, the underlying reasons and science behind creativity, and then subtly challenges you to find the inspiration to do something with what you've just learned.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mona

    I actually listened to this 7 CD book during my commute. It has as much to do about reforming the education system as it does about personally finding your passion. The best part of the book are real life examples of successful people (famous and not so famous) that found personal and usually financial success by being true to their passions. Often these were folks that didn't do well in school, weren't good at conforming or were just bored at school and didn't try. Some of these examples got a I actually listened to this 7 CD book during my commute. It has as much to do about reforming the education system as it does about personally finding your passion. The best part of the book are real life examples of successful people (famous and not so famous) that found personal and usually financial success by being true to their passions. Often these were folks that didn't do well in school, weren't good at conforming or were just bored at school and didn't try. Some of these examples got a little dry after a while. However, there is an interesting discussion about whether the current education system is preparing kids for our current industries and the next economic boom. Should there be more emphasis on innovation and problem solving? Mr. Robinson contends that our education system is rooted in producing factory workers and in its current state won't be able to produce the great thinkers that are needed in the technology and innovation driven economy currently developing. The book is good food for thought and has some interesting points to consider. It is not a simple how-to, self-help book. It does inspire you to think about what makes the difference between mediocrity and greatness -- in your own personal life and in society.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Steve Johnson

    Ken Robinson has some great insights on education and discovering the best path for each individual. I read this book from the perception of a pastor looking for better ideas for discipleship. What I got was more conviction than ever that discipleship (spiritual education) needs to be more about God's bent for the individual and less about mass dissemination of information. I was particularly drawn to the four roles of a mentor: Recognition, Encouragement, Facilitating, and Stretching. A leader Ken Robinson has some great insights on education and discovering the best path for each individual. I read this book from the perception of a pastor looking for better ideas for discipleship. What I got was more conviction than ever that discipleship (spiritual education) needs to be more about God's bent for the individual and less about mass dissemination of information. I was particularly drawn to the four roles of a mentor: Recognition, Encouragement, Facilitating, and Stretching. A leader should recognize the potential of his people, encourage them to act on their individual potential, facilitate an environment that allows people to learn through trial and error, and stretch them to be more than they are every day. I will begin to measure my value as a mentor by these roles. I hope that I can find mentors in my life who play these roles for me. This is an excellent book for church leaders. It is, first and foremost, a book for educators and parents. I would hope that many will read it.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Hawkins

    I bought this book after seeing Robinson's incredibly eloquent, witty and spot-on TED speech on creativity and our schools. I'm not sure what I would have thought of this book without the video preface. I don't generally warm to single-target suggestions about how to fix our world (The Element, The Promise, The Secret, etc., etc.) and my inner skeptic reels at the subtitle ("How finding your passion changes everything.") Minus the speech, I doubt I would have read it. Having been tempted forward, I bought this book after seeing Robinson's incredibly eloquent, witty and spot-on TED speech on creativity and our schools. I'm not sure what I would have thought of this book without the video preface. I don't generally warm to single-target suggestions about how to fix our world (The Element, The Promise, The Secret, etc., etc.) and my inner skeptic reels at the subtitle ("How finding your passion changes everything.") Minus the speech, I doubt I would have read it. Having been tempted forward, I found that the book repeats many of the anecdotes mentioned in the speeches themselves. Robinson is funny and his ideas are compelling, if not a little disjointed from the complex realities of the whole 'education reform' morass. I'm happy to be supporting his ideas by shelling out a few dollars for the book. That said, the speeches themselves resonated with me in a way that the written work did not...I wouldn't be passing around this book like I will the website address (www.Ted.com) ;)

  29. 5 out of 5

    Shivam Agarwal

    One of the best books I have ever read. I would suggest this book to all my friends, who are currently doing job and at any point of time have felt - "What am I doing with life?". I just want to say that this question is not new. People in past have asked same question and the answer to it exists but is different for every individual. Also the answer lies within ourselves. I have friends which have huge potentials but are not listening to their inner self, not finding their element (including me One of the best books I have ever read. I would suggest this book to all my friends, who are currently doing job and at any point of time have felt - "What am I doing with life?". I just want to say that this question is not new. People in past have asked same question and the answer to it exists but is different for every individual. Also the answer lies within ourselves. I have friends which have huge potentials but are not listening to their inner self, not finding their element (including me). What I would suggest is to atleast try to find our interests. I'm eagerly waiting to read the next book in this series by Ken Robinson. My point of view - I don't completely agree with the title of the book. The contents of the book and specially the conclusion is much more than "How finding your passion changes everything".

  30. 5 out of 5

    Sahar Pirmoradian

    Although It's been a few years since I watched Sir Robinson's TED talk and then learned about his book and read it, some of his remarks and ideas in the book still come to me. And I still agree with them, especially as I have observed how my own kid has had her own way of doing things from the very beginning. I believe reading this book has made me a more flexible parent.

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