If individuals anywhere in the world, increasingly, can find any bit of information in an instant what then is the primary purpose of a teacher or even a school? This is a stupid question (or at least the answer should be obvious to everyone) but I am concerned that various governments – and hence schools – seem to see it as their job to push facts into the heads of students and then test them to see whether or not they can remember them. Given what machines are getting good at this seems like a recipe for oblivion.

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2 Responses to Education

  1. Or, at the very least, obsolescence. I completely agree. Given that it’s now projected 87% of the world will have smartphones in 5 years, I think this is going to become increasingly relevant.

  2. niiiiiko says:

    Not necessarily and as you said the answer can be obvious. But also complex…

    It’s not only facts that schools ‘push’ into the heads of students but they also teach you how to ask questions, how to learn from your mistakes, how to interact with others, perhaps some mannerism (maybe not any more) and the skills of arguing/discussing various topics, etc… While I haven’t got any children so not fully aware how teaching’s changed in the last decade I know that the teaching styles have been changing, i.e. becoming more practical, less test driven (we used to be called out to the blackboard to recite our homework and be graded on it each day. if not it was a written test without being notified – and these things are disappearing) and there is an increasing number of alternative teaching methods. It is perhaps like the creatures on our mother Earth – constantly adapting to the changes in their environment/nature.

    It is definitely far too early to write off schools and their ‘fact-hammering’; how is anyone going to look up any facts if she/he doesn’t know how to read or write or how is anyone going to look up a fact when she/he doesn’t even know that that fact is a fact or that fact or not fact even exist. Also no one would question anything – this is already happening with the screenagers (perfect name you invented btw) believing most of the stuff they read on social sites instead of ever questioning anything. This is really very scary as the media is gaining an even bigger power than ever (at least that’s how it feels). Ah this is moving onto a different topic…

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