November 20, 2007

EDUCATION IN THE U.S.A.

Posted in Education, Messages, Philosophy tagged , , , , at 1:57 am by randallbutisingh

Teacher Randall-2007 By: “Teacher Randall” – 2007

EDUCATION IN THE U.S.A.

It is a pity that billions of dollars is wasted every year on what is called Education in this country. When we look at the product of our schools, in the majority of cases, it does not reflect what is true Education. Students may make straight A’s, but are they truly educated? What is the purpose of Education? Is it for showing academic prowess on the report card.? Surely that is one aspect which is desirable, but there is another aspect which is far more important. That aspect is the one which forms the character of the child.

That is rarely observed in our schools; the student who performs well academically is praised because of his innate ability, but the child who cannot perform so well, but has shown progress through effort and commitment, is not merited deservingly. But, in reality, he is the one who has shown character, the development of which, is the chief purpose of Education. Also, he is the one who will be able to succeed in a complex, competing world. Without character, anyone, no matter how many degrees he has earned, is not educated. He is like uncultivated land which grows only weeds. He can make no valuable contribution to humanity and may be a danger to society.

Unfortunately, character cannot be measured with a yardstick, so those who train our children, look only for that which can be measured and which can make an impression on those who pay them to educate. Also, the very methods used for achievement breeds dishonesty in teachers and pupils. Children resort to cheating and teachers do things, not consistent with honesty, to make an impression. It should be further noted that there are two types of intelligence, basic and effective. Teachers should be able to distinguish between the two. Basic intelligence is the one that will give academic success, and effective intelligence is the one in which the child has some particular kind of manual or technical skill. This needs to be discovered, encouraged and developed.

Teachers look for results, no matter how it is arrived at. In reality, results do not matter; it is the way in which you struggle that matters. It is not what you learn that matters, but how you learn – your attitude towards your work,, your commitment, your zeal and enthusiasm – are worthy traits in the quest for learning. If you look at the handwriting of the majority of the students; it is atrocious. They are not even taught how to hold their pens. The reading lacks good enunciation and pronunciation. Poetry and drama are neglected, especially in the early formative years. These will help the child to read and speak properly.

Most of what is being taught in the name of Education is irrelevant. The purpose of education is to fit the child to live and to live with.Fit to live means the individual must be in good health by observing the laws of hygiene, by eating wholesome foods, by exercising the body, by breathing fresh air, by drinking pure water and by getting adequate rest. He must also be equipped to do the work of his choice, to love what he is doing and be able to earn a decent livelihood. Being fit to live with means that the individual must have moral values and be able to socialize with those he will have to deal with. He will have to realize that he owes his existence to the existence of others; that he is interconnected and interdependent; that his own happiness depends on the happiness of others. He is therefore duty bound to the service of others and should be willing at all times to give a helping hand to any in time of need. Added to this, is his being able to appreciate the beauty of Nature, Art, Music and Poetry. All these qualities could be taught and caught in a good school.

When we look at what is taking place in many of the schools today, what we see is shocking. There are, in many cases, total lack of discipline; pupils have no respect for their teachers; they take guns and other weapons into schools and use them; there is bullying and violence among pupils; and these are the products which will be the leaders of the next generation.. No wonder there is so much corruption among those in authority and so much crime in general. The teacher who should be the role model is not. This is clear proof that our educational system has failed to produce the individual who is “fit to live and to live with”. Amenability to discipline, honesty, integrity, punctuality, and willingness to go the second mile in service are all marks of a good education.

“Teacher Randall” – 2007

 

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2 Comments »

  1. What passes for education today is the result of clinging to old models of education. Sometimes those models are thousands of years old. You would think we’d learn something by now.

    While you refer to teachers are concerned with results, those results relate to book knowledge and test scores. What’s a better model is to teach children how to do things that will help them in life including teaching them how to make a living.

    The traditional way of doing this is to line up a series of courses to fill the time available. Instead it works better to create a path of learning that includes practice and experience and to apply what we know about process improvement to get them through that learning path as fast as possible.

  2. Steve, thanks for visiting my weblog and for your comments. Very appropriate.


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