The Goals of the Current Educational System

The current educational system is constructed around the goals of educators first and students second. Educators want students to know the Pythagorean theorem. So they create a math class and expose students to it. Educators want students to be familiar with Shakespeare. So they create an English class and expose students to him. This method of teaching is the basis of the entire subject-matter organization of schools. Students go to one room for an hour to hear about math. Then they go to another room to hear about English. However, they rarely go to a room organized around some task they care about and then get help with math or English as they need such help to progress with the task. Instead of starting with the things students care about, today's subject-centered system is oriented around the things educators care about, the things the system wants students to learn.

Given that starting point, it is difficult to get students to care in a productive way about the content the system intends to convey. Sure, we can hold the threat of grades and tests over students heads. These threats will cause many students to want to "master" the material for the test. But such mastery will not last long. During the period before students forget the material, it will be inert. Because students have not thought about it in terms of how it helps them solve some problem they face in the real world, it will be difficult for them to access it when they do face such a problem.

Next Story Students Should Learn to Question

Outline Where am I in the content of the book?

Give Me An Example

Give Me Alternatives

What Should Be Avoided

What Can Be Done?

Give Me Background

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