American Education

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Agnapostate
 
Reply Mon 20 Oct, 2008 11:20 pm
@SantaMonica1369,
My personal feeling is that the American educational system is fundamentally flawed because it is based on the establishment of hierarchical forms of authoritarianism. It is particularly illuminating to consider the fact that the American education model is based on the Prussian model which made it possible for authoritarian regimes to rise in Germany time and time again.
 
averroes
 
Reply Mon 8 Dec, 2008 07:26 am
@SantaMonica1369,
It's great for the brilliant, yet it is terrible for the average. Programs like AP's and Governor's School are excellent programs, meanwhile the average programs give nothing. what we need is a filter, separating those who want to learn and those who are just there because they have to be.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Wed 10 Dec, 2008 08:18 pm
@averroes,
averroes wrote:
It's great for the brilliant, yet it is terrible for the average. Programs like AP's and Governor's School are excellent programs, meanwhile the average programs give nothing. what we need is a filter, separating those who want to learn and those who are just there because they have to be.


I'm less interested in separating those who want to learn from those who show up because they have to and far more interested in addressing the reasons why some students are uninterested in learning.
 
Khethil
 
Reply Sat 13 Dec, 2008 04:34 am
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
I'm less interested in separating those who want to learn from those who show up because they have to and far more interested in addressing the reasons why some students are uninterested in learning.


Yes, completely. This is what needs addressing.

There's a mindset that believes that knowledge and understanding can bestowed much like pouring water into a pitcher - the kid who shows up without his clutch engaged learns nothing and gains nothing. From what I've seen, attitude can compensate for a litany of ills.

Thanks
 
averroes
 
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2008 06:33 pm
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
I'm less interested in separating those who want to learn from those who show up because they have to and far more interested in addressing the reasons why some students are uninterested in learning.

Your point is valid, but no matter what you do, you will find those who will drive their heels into the dirt when it comes to education. Creating a suitable educational environment for the uninterested would reqquire a reform of the educational system. this is not necesarily a bad thing, but it will take large amounts of time and money, in no ways creating an immediate solution. Student filtration only requires that we look at past records of students, have them fill out a questionaire form and, if still in a grey area, do the occasional interview. Currently, niether of our problems are being adressed, allowing those with high potential to be dragged behind by those who are disruptive and plan on dropping out of school as soon as they possiblty can.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2008 07:10 pm
@averroes,
Student filtration also means that we remove examples of academic achievement from the classroom. Student filtration, as you suggest, would leave the students with less drive to achieve all alone. This filtration system would reinforce the apathy of these students, only making the problem worse.

I understand the intent - but the problem is that this sort of filtration only benefits those who already want academic success. What about the rest? Should we leave the masses behind for the sake of the few? I do not think we should.

Yes, I understand that addressing our education problems will be expensive and time consuming, but it's certainly better to address the problems facing us than to exacerbate the problems.
 
averroes
 
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2008 10:21 pm
@SantaMonica1369,
1. In my opinion, there would be more drive. When there is intelectual competion in the classroom, we will work harder to achieve. If we are the top of the classroom, we stagnate, losing drive and attention to the topic.

2. Shall we forsake those who do not want to achieve or shall we forsake everyone? For those in the non-achiever areas, do you believe that they will just take this? No! This would be the slap to the face that they need to shape up and do something with themselves. If we give them the same treatment as those who strive to achieve on a silver platter, what will they accomplish? Nothing.

3. Did I ever claim that we should not create a superior educational environment? No. I simply said that we cannot just wait for the change to come in a few years. we need to act for immediate improvement as well.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Tue 16 Dec, 2008 11:24 pm
@averroes,
Averroes, you speak of "we" so often... you are not the only one on this forum who has become bored with high school classes.

averroes wrote:
1. In my opinion, there would be more drive. When there is intelectual competion in the classroom, we will work harder to achieve. If we are the top of the classroom, we stagnate, losing drive and attention to the topic.


The problem is that this evaluation focuses on the top of the class. What of the others? Without the positive influences, without that competition, the others also "stagnate", but I fear that what they lose is more devastating than what the top of the class lose. If the top of the class are bored, they should pick up another book. Meanwhile, they should be included among the masses, for their own sake (socially) and for the sake of the rest (intellectually).

averroes wrote:
2. Shall we forsake those who do not want to achieve or shall we forsake everyone? For those in the non-achiever areas, do you believe that they will just take this? No! This would be the slap to the face that they need to shape up and do something with themselves. If we give them the same treatment as those who strive to achieve on a silver platter, what will they accomplish? Nothing.


Totally lost as to your point. Forsake those who do not achieve or forsake everyone?

averroes wrote:
3. Did I ever claim that we should not create a superior educational environment? No. I simply said that we cannot just wait for the change to come in a few years. we need to act for immediate improvement as well.


I'm all for immediate improvement, but my problem is that what you suggest is only immediate improvement for the minority, while being harmful to the majority.
 
averroes
 
Reply Wed 17 Dec, 2008 12:45 pm
@SantaMonica1369,
1. I say "we" as the American people
2. You seem to mistake filtering out those who don't even try as leaving everyone but the geniuses behind. If students are actually putting effort into their education, then they deserve better opportunity.
3. As to my "forsake some or forsake all," I mean that opportunities are going to be limited if there are disruptive people trying to get negative attention.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Wed 17 Dec, 2008 04:08 pm
@averroes,
averroes wrote:

2. You seem to mistake filtering out those who don't even try as leaving everyone but the geniuses behind. If students are actually putting effort into their education, then they deserve better opportunity.


Was that a mistake of mine? You do not explain how.

Students who work hard deserve better opportunities and will have them due to their hard work. But in order for this to happen, we are not compelled to leave behind the rest of the student body.

Again, taking the best examples out of the classroom removes something vital: the power of example. This further stifles the underachieving student.

Taking the high achievers out of the masses also stifles these students because you remove them from important social situations.

averroes wrote:
3. As to my "forsake some or forsake all," I mean that opportunities are going to be limited if there are disruptive people trying to get negative attention.


I do not think this is true. Do disruptive people prevent others from picking up a book? From getting into a good school with well earned grades? From getting a job? Not in the least.

What you suggests is detrimental to the under achievers, harmful to the high achievers, and doesn't solve a single problem in the education system. Remember, our education system isn't in crisis because the high achievers sit in class with under achievers, our education system is in crisis because we have a plethora of under achievers, in adequate facilities and inadequate teachers. Giving the high achievers a slight academic boost which they do not need will not solve the problems facing our system.

It would be far better to burden the high achievers - make them tutor the under achievers. At least that would do some good.
 
averroes
 
Reply Wed 17 Dec, 2008 08:34 pm
@SantaMonica1369,
:brickwall:Again, I am not talking about the under-achievers! I am talking about the people who aren't even going to read the books, take the test, the ones who willingly allow themselves to fail! If a student is not even trying and is holding the intentions of dropping out, it won't matter if you put him in with those who actually put some effort into thier studies, he or she will still not try!
As for the detriment to non-triers, they need a stimulus in order to work. Being told that they are failures hasn't seemed to work. If they are treated like failures, then maybe some sense will be drilled into thier heads.
And as for social detriment to the achievers, I am not suggesting that we make an intelectual hierarchy, putting the smartest in one class, the less inteligent in another class. There should be a mix. I acknowledge that students helping each other to understand the content is highly positive for the learning process. I just don't want those attempting to learn lose valuable time to some jackass in the back row hitting on the teacher for fun. have I made myself completely and fully clear?
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Thu 18 Dec, 2008 03:32 pm
@averroes,
averroes wrote:
:brickwall:Again, I am not talking about the under-achievers! I am talking about the people who aren't even going to read the books, take the test, the ones who willingly allow themselves to fail! If a student is not even trying and is holding the intentions of dropping out, it won't matter if you put him in with those who actually put some effort into thier studies, he or she will still not try!


Yes, I am including these people when I use the term under achiever.

averroes wrote:
As for the detriment to non-triers, they need a stimulus in order to work. Being told that they are failures hasn't seemed to work. If they are treated like failures, then maybe some sense will be drilled into thier heads.


You know better. If you are treated poorly by others, chance are you will begin to think of yourself in poor terms. You cannot beat people into submission. Physically or intellectually.

averroes wrote:
And as for social detriment to the achievers, I am not suggesting that we make an intelectual hierarchy, putting the smartest in one class, the less inteligent in another class. There should be a mix. I acknowledge that students helping each other to understand the content is highly positive for the learning process. I just don't want those attempting to learn lose valuable time to some jackass in the back row hitting on the teacher for fun. have I made myself completely and fully clear?


You are completely clear. And I think what you suggest is dangerous and harmful. It's not personal, it's just a disagreement.

I do not think the high achiever will lose "valuable time" because of some "jackass" who disrupts class. The high achiever can still pick up a book, right? Good, then if they waste time, it's their own fault.
 
Theaetetus
 
Reply Thu 18 Dec, 2008 03:45 pm
@averroes,
averroes wrote:

And as for social detriment to the achievers, I am not suggesting that we make an intelectual hierarchy, putting the smartest in one class, the less inteligent in another class. There should be a mix. I acknowledge that students helping each other to understand the content is highly positive for the learning process. I just don't want those attempting to learn lose valuable time to some jackass in the back row hitting on the teacher for fun. have I made myself completely and fully clear?


But by implementing what you say, an intellectual hierarchy would be formed. There would be the knowledgeable and the unknowledgeable just like now there is a rich and poor. It would take major laws and unhappiness for the two groups to hold together as a cohesive unit.
 
averroes
 
Reply Fri 19 Dec, 2008 07:23 pm
@SantaMonica1369,
As for Thomas's ever-present "they can always pick up a book" clause, what if the student cannot understand what the book is trying to say? That situation has been mine countless times over. Books should be a supplement to the class, not the cornerstone of it.
"You know better. If you are treated poorly by others, chance are you will begin to think of yourself in poor terms. You cannot beat people into submission. Physically or intellectually."
I am sure Einstein and Edison thought that after doing poorly in primary school. I'm sure that Walt Disney just stopped trying after Mortimer Mouse was ridiculed by every reporter that came in contact with it. Sure, some would lose hope, but the spiral that they go down would be the same if their potential was allowed to stagnate, it would just be faster. Yet there would be those who would pull themselves up and make something out of thier lives. McDonald's workers and drug dealers cannot make that big a percentile of American jobs.

And if it has seemed like I have been taking things personal, I apologize, it was unintentional. I just have some passion towards the topic.
 
averroes
 
Reply Fri 19 Dec, 2008 07:25 pm
@Theaetetus,
Theaetetus wrote:
But by implementing what you say, an intellectual hierarchy would be formed. There would be the knowledgeable and the unknowledgeable just like now there is a rich and poor. It would take major laws and unhappiness for the two groups to hold together as a cohesive unit.

When I said "intellectual hierarchy" I was talking about the A students in this group, the B students in that group, the D students in that group". Sorry if that was a misconception.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Sat 20 Dec, 2008 06:39 pm
@averroes,
Books are the cornerstone of all modern education. Books are not supplements, they are the bedrock of learning. If a student cannot understand the book, the student should go back and read a more basic text, they should keep studying. It's odd, but you do have to study to learn. We have all been in the situation where we do not understand some text, or at least a part of some text. That's why we study.

Not sure what your point is regarding Edison et al.
 
averroes
 
Reply Sat 20 Dec, 2008 09:10 pm
@Didymos Thomas,
Didymos Thomas wrote:
Books are the cornerstone of all modern education. Books are not supplements, they are the bedrock of learning. If a student cannot understand the book, the student should go back and read a more basic text, they should keep studying. It's odd, but you do have to study to learn. We have all been in the situation where we do not understand some text, or at least a part of some text. That's why we study.

Not sure what your point is regarding Edison et al.


What is more capable of making a student understand a topic? Hours of reading a dull, monotonous textbook or a varied and insightful live class where the student is engaged in the topic? I am making my judgment off of personal experience. I could read about the quadratic formula for an hour, crutenizing every step of the example problem for sense, and yet I would still be confused. After ten minutes or so of explanation and paraphrasing by my math teacher I clearly understood the material

What I was trying to state about Einstein and Edison was that both were told up-front by their teachers that they were not smart and that they had no scientific future. Now, what would the world be like today if they had chosen to take everything that they were told and gave up? You don't know because they didn't. They instead pushed thmselves towards success and became two of the greatest minds of the milenia.
 
Didymos Thomas
 
Reply Sat 20 Dec, 2008 10:45 pm
@averroes,
averroes wrote:
What is more capable of making a student understand a topic? Hours of reading a dull, monotonous textbook or a varied and insightful live class where the student is engaged in the topic? I am making my judgment off of personal experience. I could read about the quadratic formula for an hour, crutenizing every step of the example problem for sense, and yet I would still be confused. After ten minutes or so of explanation and paraphrasing by my math teacher I clearly understood the material


So, because some students do not have the perfect education, all other students must suffer?

averroes wrote:
What I was trying to state about Einstein and Edison was that both were told up-front by their teachers that they were not smart and that they had no scientific future. Now, what would the world be like today if they had chosen to take everything that they were told and gave up? You don't know because they didn't. They instead pushed thmselves towards success and became two of the greatest minds of the milenia.


Right, they pushed themselves. They did not need the sort of reorganization of education you suggest, instead, they needed their own determination. Such are good students. They strive because they care. The students who do not strive need these positive examples. The power of moral example is not to be taken lightly.
 
nameless
 
Reply Sun 21 Dec, 2008 02:31 am
@SantaMonica1369,
Public education;
I behooves those in power to keep the mooing masses incapable of critical thought. They are then easily manipulated as seen by the support of about anything comming from the power structure, whether war or relinquishing rights for 'wrongs' or 'learning' for whom to vote. All easily manipulable. What is learned? How to get out of bed and get to the 'job' on time. To do as instructed. To eliminate 'waste' on a time schedule. To eat lunch in 15 minutes. To do your over and above homework. To dress properly and how to get along with fellow workers during... To do as instructed and not to ask questions beyond the 'pale' or to question authority. No boat rocking. Yes, the common public school is a slave mill for the corporate elite who go to and are trained and groomed for leadership at the 'ivy league' schools, for a government by and for the rich, supported by the 'wage slaves'.
It also keeps the kids out of our hair while we deal with 'real life'.
Yeah, public school has been working fine, unfortunately/fortunately, the G Bush nightmare has pointed out (the truths that I illuminate) the dead end of democracy as we know it. The dead end of capitalism/materialism led democracy...
Look at the 'schools' in the context in which you find them. 'Schools' (in isolation) cannot be clearly 'examined' without 'context' factored into the equation.
 
Joe
 
Reply Sun 21 Dec, 2008 05:20 am
@averroes,
averroes wrote:
It's great for the brilliant, yet it is terrible for the average. Programs like AP's and Governor's School are excellent programs, meanwhile the average programs give nothing. what we need is a filter, separating those who want to learn and those who are just there because they have to be.


That is a very solid point. Any Establishments, should express their field with no editing and complete focus. On average, i would say that curriculum has become more about the means, instead of the wisdom and the relations too everything.
 
 

 
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