Before I offend every school teach out there I want to say, if you’ve been involved in any way in the American education system, you know what I’m about to say is true. And if you’re a teacher, you know better than anyone that our current way of “educating” our children is not working.
The best way to read this post is to stop thinking I’m blaming you for how things are – we are all responsible, now let’s get on to a solution.
I’ve thought a lot about our school system. I went through myself, kindergarten through the 12 grade. I found school to essentially be a day care system. It is set up to babysit children while their parents are at work.
The main teaching points include things like…
-Doing what you’re told
-Never questioning authority and
-Memorizing the right answers
Every child that learns how to do those three main things will get through school just fine, in fact, they’ll probably be on the honor roll.
The problem with graduating with honors is that just means we are adequately trained for the God-awful, dead-end job in a cubicle for the next 40 years with only the promise of “retirement” to look forward to kind of life. I know this because a job and school felt exactly the same to me…a prison sentence.
Not to mention there is no room for individuality.
Think I’m wrong? Think your kid can be themselves and express their own unique personality and perspective? Think again – that teacher, counselor, nurse, principal will have your kid on a prescription drug before you know it.
School staff cannot corral 30+ children into a tiny room for six to eight hours a day with your kid speaking his mind, playing, being rowdy or displaying more intelligence than his teacher in any way, shape or form.
And you know what I hated most about school? It drills into your head that there is only one right answer. That there is only one way to look at things. This kind of thinking in no way prepares kids for “the real world”.
We’ve got to stop measuring our kids by their test scores.
Here’s the thing, only we can fix what’s broke. We can’t expect school administrators to change things. We can’t expect teachers to change things. At this point they are too tangled in this mess. They work for next to nothing while athletes make millions and all they ever wanted to do when they got their degree was make a difference.
We’ve got to start educating our kids. We have to work together. Getting back to a tribal mentality is what’s going to work. It really does take a village and that’s how it’s supposed to be.
It’s going to take us talking to our family and friends and neighbors to create a new way. If everyone tries to do it on their own we’ll be overwhelmed. We’ll have some families that feel like they can’t participate due to work schedules and demands. But if we work together we can find a way.
Let’s not drop our kids off to be dumbed down in the institution we call school. Let’s not teach them life is all about getting good grades and finding a good paying job, just to once again make them programmed slaves of the system.
Let’s teach them how to communicate, how to express themselves, how to play and think and ask questions.
Let’s teach them that work doesn’t have to be a burden.
Let’s teach them that retirement is only for those who didn’t find what they love to do.
Let’s cultivate their unique talents and abilities and help them find ways to share themselves with the world.
Hungry for More, Monique Alvarez p.s. If there are typos, spelling or grammar mistakes in this post don’t worry about. Those are the kinds of things I’ve worried about for FAR too long. It’s time to just get it out and who cares if it’s not perfect, it’s from the heart!
“We grow up thinking that the best answer is in someone else’s brain. Much of our education is an elaborate game of “guess what’s in the teacher’s head?” What the world really needs to know right now is what kind of dreams and ideas are in your head.” ~Dan Zadra