Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Standards ((learning,standards))

I read two articles in the last 24 hours taking very strong stand against national education standards. What make them interesting is that they offer essentially the same argument from wildly different world views. I love the common argument.

Both argue that a child is a unique individual, and that standards, national standards no less, will make for almost no chance that a child's truth discovery in life will intersect at all with what they do in school. This will be a colossal waste of their time and our money as a society. No less my time as an educator.

I spent a lifetime hearing Proverbs 22:6, "Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it." and thinking I and my parents knew where God wanted me to go. It wan not until my faith matured that I realized that God had a plan for me. Training a child has little to do with where I think the child should go. It has everything to do with what God has built for that child to do. My job as an physics teacher is to put as much physics stuff around the learners so that the parts of each student that need to know physics interact with the truth of physics. That way God will reveal the way each learner in the class (including me) should go. 

From a Christian perspective, God tells us that we are each unique and have a gift to use in the Kingdom of God. That Kingdom is now and real. Standards reduce the chance that a learner will interact with a subject on any level but fact. From a humanistic perspective truth is built and sought by the learner. Standards eliminate any possibility that learners will find anything but the most watered down trivialized truths of the subject that has been standardized. This does not bring out their passions, turns them off to school (and may be learning along with it) and does not make them who they are suposed to be.

Posted via email from Jim's posterous

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