Another dot in the blogosphere?

Normal? No thanks!

Posted on: November 9, 2020

Not a day goes by when I hear or read about someone wishing that things got back to normal. That is not just wishful thinking, it is also harmful.

We cannot return to the way things were because we cannot travel back in time. We can only move forward. I have a favourite saying about people who look back and see only good and conveniently ignore the bad:

Nostalgia is like grammar. It makes the past perfect and the present tense.

The wish to turn back the clock — like trying to make America great again — is harmful. It ignores current context, the progress we have made, and the problems we still need to solve.

We should not go back to normal if that means wasting time on work commutes, loutish behaviours on public transport, or attending pointless meetings.

We should not go back to normal if that means wasting natural resources, polluting our environment, and not adopting sustainable habits.

As an educator, I certainly do not want to be part of teaching that focuses on what the teacher does, traditional assessments, and putting administrative needs first.

Wishing for the normal of the past ignores what we need to do today and tomorrow. It is a failure to imagine and to be better than we were before.

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