Street Smarts vs. Book Smarts

Educational Dividends President Carol Timms’ series using NBC’s The Apprentice to highlight the pros and cons of traditional education and project-based/hands-on learning.

Book Smarts -vs- Street Smarts
Round One: Unbelievable Ego
- There’s a lot of buzz about the new season of The Apprentice where “Book Smarts” takes on “Street Smarts.” As a specialist in project-based learning, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to use this network program to highlight the pros and cons of traditional education… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Two: May The Happiest Team Win
- How many motivational speakers does it take to change an attitude? Net Worth should have been walking on sunshine. They won the first contest, dined at 21 and learned from Donald Trump that they had triple the income of their Book Smart competitors. So how… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Three: I Want to be the Thimble
- Life is not a board game. It is messy and unpredictable requiring the flexibility of Gumby and the imagination of Mr. Potato Head. You don’t get to collect $200 each time you pass Go, there are no Get Out of Jail Free cards and buying… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Four: What Are You Afraid Of?
- Some of us are afraid of failure, others of success. In his book “Failing Forward,” John Maxwell explains that failure is not something to fear but to embrace for its ability to teach. Maxwell’s concepts were illustrated on this week’s episode of The Apprentice starring… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Five: Mr. Big Shot, Who Do You Think You Are?
- Did you choose your career or did it choose you? Very few of us follow clearly scripted career paths. Somehow, you’re driving through life headed for a career in medicine when - Bam - a passion for cooking jumps out and collides with your plans.… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Six: The Other Right Questions
- Oh, the humanity! Up until the point she took on the role of leader, Tara was such a great leader. “Tara had been a great team player. She was respectful of her teammates and willing to do whatever it took to get the job done.”… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Seven: Send In the Clowns
- Inspiring quotes and heated debate focus on the role of the teacher. What about the role of the student? What responsibility does the student have for their education? That was the question presented in three acts during this week’s episode of The Apprentice where the… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Eight: Spookular
- “Spookular” was my sister’s word for synchronicity. It seemed especially appropriate as I returned home from Learning Point Associate’s Annual (LPA) Conference on “Reaching High Expectations” just in time to tune into this week’s episode of The Apprentice. We all saw in living color that… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Nine: Assess for Success
- Successful activities include three distinct phases: Planning, Implementation and Assessment. This is true in the boardroom and the classroom. This week The Apprentices were treated to a T.V. time out while the viewers got an inside look at some of the reasons why nine candidates… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Ten: Try To Keep Up With Me Genius!
- Consider the following scenarios: The phone rings and you receive an invitation to “Come by for dinner on Saturday. I’m making spaghetti.” - Or - You receive a beautiful basket from Nic’s Basket Case containing Pasta Sauces (Red and Pesto), Linguine, a red checked tablecloth,… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Eleven: Deliver Us From Evil
- Eight Apprentices began this week’s task. Out of the hundreds of people who apply to be The Apprentice, wouldn’t you expect the final eight to be exemplary? Unfortunately, we saw a typical example of fast-track, stressed out folks who turn into bullies. You Deserve A… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Twelve: I Think I’m Going To Hurl
- “There is no such thing as failure” said The Donald. Perhaps he read Week Four of this column where we discussed failing forward. Failure is tied to powerful emotions. That combination of learning plus emotion (either positive or negative) results in true knowledge. Tana and… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Thirteen: How Do You Define Success?
- A man finds a magic lantern complete with a genie. The genie grants the lucky man one wish. The man wishes to be “irresistible” to women so...the genie turns him into a puppy. Has The Donald carefully defined his goal? What is his definition of… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Fourteen: If I Knew Then What I Know Now
- “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results.” Insanity seems to be a regular companion of our Magna friends. Unfortunately it is also apparent in our education system. Consider the following question: Educators widely accept Howard Gardner’s work describing the… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Fifteen: Hindsight Is 20/20
- Last week Bren was fired for his reluctance to take risks. In the cab on the way out of town, Bren shared his relief that he was heading home to his family. “I came out here for something and realized it was back home, right… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Sixteen: Speed Dating
- To reduce the candidates from three to two, The Donald asked four CEO’s to interview Craig, Kendra and Tana. With no preparation, the candidates were expected to wow the executives. Education is preparation for life. That means it’s not just learning a series of facts… (Read More)
You’re Fired!
Week Seventeen: Congratulations! You’ve Reached Level Three
- The eighteen Apprentice candidates lived and worked together for several months. They must have gotten to know quite a bit about each other and, undoubtedly, friendships formed. It sounds a bit like summer camp. For this final task, Tana and Kendra were each reunited with… (Read More)
You’re Hired!
Week 18: Graduation Day
- Over the past 18 weeks, we’ve had an opportunity to think about education in different ways. Most importantly, we’ve focused on strategies that best serve students and, therefore, our entire society. These strategies have their roots in management best practices. Let’s review what we’ve learned.… (Read More)
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