As I write this, I’m on a flight from Los Angeles to London. I have been asked to give the opening presentation to an international network gathered to explore the potential of video games to advance creativity and musical expression in kids. The participants are part of a multi-disciplinary team of experts put together by our research partners in the UK. This will be our first non-virtual meeting, and I’m looking forward to meeting everyone in person. I’m also looking forward to sharing more with you as the experience unfolds.
The timing is serendipitous in that we have just finish releasing a series of videos from another event I had the honor of curating and hosting, along with Pepperdine’s Craig Detweiler and the Center for Media and Entertainment. For that event, Education: Disrupted, I was joined by group of incredible human beings high atop a mountain overlooking the Malibu coast.
The theme was Education: Disrupted – Enhancing Learning and Creativity through Music, Media and Technology. I chose the participants from across a variety of disciplines based on them each having two key qualities:
- They were an expert in their field with a notable level of mastery.
- They shared a worldview and agreed that we were all working to make the world a better place for the next generation.
I was blessed to share the room with global game changers like Esteban Moctezuma Barragán. As director of Ricardo Salina’s foundation, Esperanza Azteca, Esteban has helped launch over 60 youth orchestra programs in just four short years. The next one is opening shortly in East Los Angeles where, just as it has in locations across Mexico and Central America, it will help transform a highly underserved community.
I was inspired by each of the thought leaders on the mountaintop that day, all dedicating themselves to come up with new paradigms to fix a severely broken education system. Included among them were education specialist Erik Gregory, who is leading the social emotional learning movement at the world’s largest publishing house, Pearson Education; Atari Founder Nolan Bushnell, who is gamifying the online learning environment; Fullbright Scholar and head of the Learning Games Network, Jennifer Groff, who is leading cutting edge research at MIT Media Labs; and video game producer, Chris Nicholls, who is preparing to launch the next evolution of the 75 year old Fantasia: an Xbox Kinect game that could change the way millions of kids experience music.
Disruption in education and media has opened up the opportunity for countless people to come forth with new ideas and potential solutions. This is very exciting time to working in the areas of creativity, learning and technology, especially when I get to collaborate with such brilliant and caring minds from around the globe.
View excerpts from Education: Disrupted below: