What Does It Mean To Be Well Educated? | Quote 00757

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…what could be worse, for kids who need to make sense of themselves and the world, than to treat them as passive receptacles into which facts are poured? They are made to sit at separate desks while a stream of details about sonnets or binomial equations washes over them. Rather than being invited to pursue projects that seem relevant and engaging, they are required to slog through tedious textbooks, memorizing what they think they will need for the next exam. Rather than coming to understand ideas in depth, they are exposed superficially to a vast amount of material during forty-five- or fifty-minute periods. When students predictably respond to all this by tuning out, or acting out, or dropping out, we promptly blame them for not working hard enough. (As bad as it is, this situation is now becoming coming even worse as high-stakes exams and misguided demands for “accountability” and “tougher standards” squeeze out whatever intellectual exploration had somehow survived.’

Quote ID: 00757


Alfie Kohn


What Does It Mean To Be Well Educated?

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