Wednesday, August 12, 2009

School's In!

The thing is, what passes for education today is not education at all. It takes no account whatever of the person; it makes no effort to capitalize on the student's strength or to strengthen the student's weakness. Instead, it insists on treating everyone "equally," meaning, for example, that a group of 5-year-olds will all be "taught" the alphabet, even though some of them already know how to read, while others haven't learned the shapes and colors yet. This results in a great deal of frustration to a significant number of children on both ends of the spectrum.

Rather than actually teaching, mentoring, or discipling by word and example, "educators" today very much prefer to stand themselves up in front of a group to tell and lecture, but there is a disconnect between the lecture and the lives of those in the audience, and while the lecturer may be willing to answer questions, woe betide the student who questions the answers. This is not education. This is brainwashing.

Rather than pose problems requiring thinking and discussion and discernment, it is far, far easier to set up a "test" of true/false, or multiple choice questions: Little to no effort required from either the teacher or the student beyond the memorization of a head full of trivia.

This has come about because in America today , the goal of "education" is no longer the development of mind and character. Instead, its object is for all students to come out looking like the same piece of bologna; it is preparation and conditioning for young people to take their places as cogs and robots in a mindless socialistic society and economy where they will be plugged in, interchangeably, at the will of the state.

Yes, there are some wonderful teachers out there, but even the best are hogtied by the rules and regulations of the bureaucracy under which they must operate. And yes, there are those students who come out of the public schools and excel, but I suggest that these succeed in spite of the system through which they are forced.

I don't mean to be facetious, but the detractors of homeschooling are almost always people who don't have a clue about homeschooling, or even education really. They generally labor under the misconception that going through the motions somehow assures learning, and that learning happens only in the classroom. I admit that learning can happen in the classroom, but I submit that more of it happens outside the classroom, in real life.

After a day spent learning to tie her shoes, my then 4yo daughter once said to me, "Now you just have to teach me how to read, and then I'll know everything." What wisdom from a child. If you nurture your child's curiosity and make sure he has the tools to learn ~ reading, 'riting, and 'rithmetic ~ he may not know everything, but he can indeed learn anything.

Sadly, there is no longer any place in "education" for the creativity or imagination or inventiveness which once served as the foundation of the grandest, noblest of all social experiments: America.

2 comments:

Just Say No to Cardinals said...

I would agree with you, but be glad to know that at the most public institution in America, true education is alive and well. It's quite nice.

Marytoo said...

YES!!!! GO, WEST POINT!