More on Curriculum…

In an attempt to help schools provide a quality education, reformers mistakenly believe that covering as much material as possible is the way to go. But this approach is counterproductive. It overloads teachers by designing a curriculum that emphasizes breadth over depth.

This is where the greatest atrocity is happening in most classrooms. Most people outside of the profession don’t know a great deal about curriculum, or the actual discipline to be taught. Furthermore, I believe that today’s students are at an overwhelming disadvantage given the amount of options they are confronted with and the priorities they assign such priorities. Again this is where parenting gets dramatically essential pursuant to priorities.

Here is an example of what I am referring too, as told to me by a professor of statistics. As Dr. Spacoli entered the room, his penetrating eyes moving side to side, with wizard white hair long and looking like he’d just been hit by lightening…he paused, and the very first question he asked was, “Who won the Civil War? Oh! do they still call it that? Or is it the War between the States for political correctness?”

Moving on whilst jumping onto a waist-high desk, he stated, “Bet that got your attention..! At my age I am the only one who can jump that high vertically…” Of course I whispered, ‘the key: at my age’ under my voice when Splat! his feet hitting the ground as he said: “Exactly! Good to see someone is listening tonight!”

“But my main point is ‘who won the Civil War’? I mean, to this day I could not tell a soul, truthfully, who won that war, or World War I or WW II, or even the Korean War, humm, I don’t think they even teach about the Korean War in school anymore, do they?”

And that was precisely his point. In a weird yet effective way he managed to capture attention, hold attention, demonstrate humor, whilst making the point that when he went to school, year-to-year they never finished these critical points in history. Who knew over 40 million people died, murdered, or somehow killed in China during the Chinese Cultural Revolution starting in 1968?

Essentially my point is in our ‘convenience oriented society’ where we can have first rate films buzzed through our modems and Viola! I’m watching a newly released film on my home pc, or family television. Sure we will have time, I’ll just whip-up this ‘Lean Cuisine’ in four minutes or less, then I’ll microwave the popcorn so we can have popcorn and a movie.

Unfortunately this very phenomenon has infiltrated our public school system. Do you realize that our national average of graduating seniors from high school is 70 percent? The other 30% receive certificates stating they completed high school (just that they did not pass enough courses to fully graduate).

Sorry folks…their will never be a ‘convenience oriented education’. Why? Because learning takes time and sometimes less is better, just ask any bass player.

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