The freedom to fail

I love this video because it shows the importance of failure. I just wonder at the direction that education is currently taking with the overemphasis on testing and examination success.

We need to consider the fact that the key skills that industry and commerce look for are innovation, the ability to take risks and be creative. There is an awareness when a project is started that it may  well go wrong. We cannot expect perfection in just one hit… there will be ups and downs and indeed there will be much frustration… but in the end the process can lead to success.

The present situation is leading to many students who are frightened to fail and this is not a good thing. As I have stated in past blogs countries like China are now changing their school system to reflect a more creative, risk taking culture.

On top of this  they are  promoting the idea of collaboration and teamwork. We work as a group and we bounce ideas off of each other. We often fail but we learn from our mistakes.

Does this really reflect the individualised exam success seeking student that the schools are promoting at present? I do not think so.

Unusually for me I am putting in a second video in this blog.  It is the famous quote from Michael Jordan about how he had to fail in order to succeed. We need to let our children know the importance of this process for their futures… and ours.


About malbell

I am a retired Teaching and Learning Consultant. Previously I was a Primary school headteacher and deputy headteacher. I enjoy reading, doing MOOCs and learning new things.
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3 Responses to The freedom to fail

  1. Joe bower says:

    Nice selection of videos and great post. Have you read Yong Zhao’s book Catching Up or Leading the Way? Seeing the flavor of this post, I know you would love it.


    • malbell says:

      Hi Joe,

      Thanks for the link to Yong Zhao’s book. I wil certainly be reading it. I am a great fan and supporter of Professor Zhao and have obviously been influenced by him as you noticed in my post. Thanks for taking the trouble and time to comment it is much appreciated.


  2. Hi Malcolm,

    I saw your recent post on how failure is a necessary step to success. As the editor for, a resource website for K-12 educators, I’d love to republish your post with your permission and a link to your blog. Would that be okay?

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Annie Condron


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