Any person that begins their presentation with “high school stinks” will grab anyone’s attention, including mine.
Wow. That’s literally all I can think of after watching Chris Lehmann’s presentation on TEDtalks. He hits every point in education that I have been so against for the longest time. How many times as students have we said, “why do I need to learn this,” and “when will I ever use this?” I remember my own teachers telling me I need to learn this because it will be on the SOLs. Um…what? So I just need to learn it until I can pass a state test? After that, am I free to just forget it?
That is what Chris Lehmann speaks on in his TEDtalk. High school doesn’t have to suck if students connect education to their own world. The point of education isn’t to instruct, but rather teach students to learn and guide to be critical thinkers. Teachers have to teach these kids to live. Learning about indentity and finding out their own answers is essential for giving students their own purpose in school.
Personally high school felt very confined for me. I felt this way because of the exact same reason Chris Lehmann points out: classes lose their purpose. They lose their purpose because teachers are teaching the child what they are told. Students are being told they have to learn something for the sake of learning something. Lehmann compares high school to an old industrial factory in which students serve as the conveyor belt, going class to class in auto pilot, so to speak. Instead, schools should focus on the individual child’s interests and build on that. It is much more effective for the student and makes high school much more bearable.