Episode 12

We learn to solve problems, we solve problems to learn (ft. Yong Zhao, Ph.D.)

In this episode, I speak to Yong Zhao, Foundations Distinguished Professor in the School of Education with an appointment in the School of Business at the University of Kansas. He is also the Global Chair Professor of Education at East China Normal University, a global chair professor at the University of Bath in the U.K., and a Professorial Fellow at the Mitchell Institute for Education Policy at Victoria University, Australia.Yong Zhao has published over 100 articles and 30 books, including Reach for Greatness: Personalizable Education for all Children (2018), Counting What Counts: Reframing Education Outcomes(2016), and Never Send a Human to Do a Machine's Job: Correcting Top 5 Ed Tech Mistakes (2015).

In this episode, we discuss:

  • The need to cultivate every child's uniqueness and define success based on that uniqueness, not some external standard;
  • How to convert our uniqueness into valuable contributions, which doesn't happen in most school systems—contributions go beyond compliance;


  • How Entrepreneurial Product-Oriented Learning is the specificity that that might take PBL farther and deeper.

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About the Podcast

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Coconut Thinking
The Coconut Thinking podcast brings together educational provocateurs who are re-thinking school as a concept and a space.