Only the educated are free - Epictetus
What are the current problems with education and how to fix them.
1. Understanding > Memorisation
Schools focus on getting students to memorise in order to pass an exam. Once passed, you can forget and replace it with the next chunk of info needed for the next exam. How much do you remember from school? This is due to storing so much in your short term memory and not long term.
Instead the focus should be on understanding , but how do we know they understand without testing them? Easy....
2. Projects > Exams
Exams test how much you've memorise, but if we're focusing on understanding we need new ways of testing. I suggest projects.
Projects put your knowledge to use. The more subjects you combine the better. When we link our knowledge we remember it better.
When we put our knowledge to use we remember it better. When we repeat a task we (see I didn't even need to write it. You remembered.)
To use our knowledge we need to have a good understanding of it.
Publish a book - English skills are required to write it. Understanding of another subject for the content. Art for the cover. Marketing for publishing
Short Film - Film/editing skills, Script writing, acting, marketing, fashion design. makeup.
Conversations - I used this when teaching English. I had students ask/answer questions they knew to each other. This reenforced what they knew and also incorporated acting,
Projects are easy - Think 'How is this put to practical use?'. If it can't why's it being taught? If it can set up a project and judge their understanding based on that.
3. Portfolio > Grades
No-one cares about your grades. They care about your skills. Now that we've dropped exams we have a portfolio of skills to show off, when can start adding them to an online portfolio. By the end of school all the student has to do is say 'Heres my skills and this is a link to prove I have them'. Employers will have far more confidence.
Every student has a website dedicated to their projects.
Each project can have the skills and knowledge used tagged with it.
Students can state who gets to see what projects (Only show employees relevant ones).
This continues after school. Once you build the project mindset you'll never stop learning.
4. Why > No Why
When we know why we are doing something we try harder. Students should write a short piece on why they are in this class and what they hope accomplish with their project. This alone will bring meaning to the boring and hard times.
If Blogging was a class (It should be)
I hope to improve my writing skills.. I hope that I will become happier as a result of writing daily. I want to write lists that I can reuse in other places (Substack, YouTube, ect.). When things get tough (Sickness, busy at work ect.) I'll make the task easier in order to continue my streak.
If there's something you want to do write down why and share it. You'll be far more likely to accomplish your goal as a result.
5. Meaning > Grades
Why is their no focus on the one thing we all seek? Teaching philosophy will help us live a meaningful and happy life.
The project for this class will be us. We will write an essay and judge ourselves. If we give ourselves an A+ we get an A+.
Teach how different philosophical and religious groups found happiness and meaning. What makes a good life? Having a set of guidelines will put people on a better path. Look at the life of those with rules they live by vs those that don't. That should be enough reason to implement this.
We'd be tasked to write out our virtues and how we manafest them. What rules we live by and how our philosophy has changed us for the better.