Attacking Sacred Cows or Thoughtful Reflection?

By Foster, Billye | The Agricultural Education Magazine, May/June 2008 | Go to article overview

Attacking Sacred Cows or Thoughtful Reflection?


Foster, Billye, The Agricultural Education Magazine


Problem solving is the process of moving toward a goal when the path to that goal is uncertain (Michael Martinez). John Dewey developed a series of steps that are referred to as the problem-solving sequence.

Appreciative Inquiry is about the co-evolutionary search for the best in people, their organizations, and the relevant world around them. (David Cooperrider and Diana Whitney). Appreciative Inquiry has been referred to as the art and practice of asking questions that strengthen a system 's capacity to apprehend, anticipate, and heighten positive potential.

One of the best things about Agricultural Education is the consistency of our philosophy and the concepts that evolve from the tenets found within said philosophy. One of the most dangerous things about Agricultural Education is the consistency of our philosophy and the concepts that evolve from the tenets found within said philosophy. As much as we believe we have the premiere educational system at hand, it is wise to sometimes take a step back and look at a bigger picture. Perhaps there are other ways of doing that are just as effective-possibly even better in certain situations. Such were the thoughts rolling around in my head when I chose this theme.

Ever notice how things sometimes seem to fall together? Recently I was in Reno, Nevada at the American Association of Agricultural Educator's annual research meeting and conference. The first night there I attended the Barrick Seminar. This is a recent addition to the format of the meeting due to the generousity of Dr. & Mrs. Kirby Barrick. Each year a seminar on or about Agricultural Education is presented by a well respected member of the profession. This year's presentation was by Dr. Robert Warmbrod and his memories and reflections on the infamous "Green Book".

If you are a newcomer to this profession, or perhaps someone just skimming this magazine, you should know that in 1985 a study on agricultural education in the secondary schools was initiated due to concerns about the declining profitability of American agriculture and the declining enrollments in agricultural education programs. …

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