Wicked Solutions Matter

The idea of wicked problems has been addressed in previous posts on this blog:

In my definition of wicked problems, I pointed out that “Every Solution Matters,” specifically I wrote:

Wicked problems are social, so when planners design and implement a solution, it affects the experience of individuals and groups exposed to it in permanent ways. For example, educators who implement an instructional plan in mathematics will affect how students understand mathematics. The instruction may improve their ability to solve problems and learn more advanced mathematics later, or the instruction may inhibit their abilities.

The last sentence is key to the realization that teaching is a wicked problem. What we do in classrooms cannot be taken back. When we give our students an experience, it cannot be taken back. Engineers have the advantage of being able to test, test, and retest until they are convinced their system will operate as expected. Educators do not have that option. What we do is irrevocable. We have a moral obligation to do what is best for our students everyday.