Friday, October 29, 2010

Blog Post 10

An open letter to educators

Dan Brown

I also have had similar experiences as Morgan and Dan.  Sitting in a class, jotting down facts that are being spit out at us, and trying to stay awake as we stare at the power point in front of us.  The classes I enjoy the most are the ones where we are allowed to go off on a tangent on one specific idea and talk about it for hours.  The teacher who can carry on a CONVERSATION with the students for hours without the students even realizing that class had already ended.  I've had fact-spitting teachers before, and sure they ensured my passing of the grad exams, but thats because the grad exams, ACT, SAT and all other standardized testing involve straight facts-which is a huge problem in itself.  College professors have much more leeway, but as far as k-12 teachers are concerned, they have no choice but to be fact spitters.  They are graded on how well their students do on standardized MULTIPLE CHOICE tests.  So, teachers may have time to add in a little imagination and critical thinking, but for the most part, k-12 education will remain fact-based until our education system as a whole changes. I really dont understand how everything has evolved in our world except for one of the most important things, education. I doubt that my future employer will give me a multiple choice test before hiring me, so why is our world of education so obsessed with facts? My employers will want to know that I can successfully communicate my ideas and motivate others to question and discuss theories, ideas, etc. This is why I also appreciate my EDM 310 class because it allows me too look behind the useless surface of facts and to analyze the ideas behind the figures. 
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  1. Your post is very agreeable for me. I recently heard that administering standardized tests is preparing our students for vending machine world because only vending machines allow its users to pick A, B, or C to get what they want.

  2. Paige,

    I really like your post. While reading it, I could tell that education is something you are truly passionate about, and that's great. I agree that the multiple-choice days need to end. What a great way to say it, too: "I doubt that my future employer will give me a multiple choice test before hiring me, so why is our world of education so obsessed with facts?" I think it's better to teach the skills necessary to be successful, rather than constantly tell the students what the right answer is.

  3. I love it! And I completely agree with the thoughts about standardized testing. I hate that education has become something with pacing so strict that many forget what school is really about. Teachers are forced to teach with the mentality of "I have to get to chapter __ before the test" because if they don't it looks bad on them, not the student.