Kaneland Krier

School teaching wrong lessons

%22Everybody+is+a+genius.+BUt+if+you+judge+a+fish+by+its+ability+to+climb+a+tree%2C+it+will+live+its+whole+life+believing+that+it+is+stupid.%22+-Albert+Einstein
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School teaching wrong lessons

"Everybody is a genius. BUt if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." -Albert Einstein

Photo by Cartoon by Kristin Staub

"Everybody is a genius. BUt if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." -Albert Einstein

Photo by Cartoon by Kristin Staub

Photo by Cartoon by Kristin Staub

"Everybody is a genius. BUt if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid." -Albert Einstein

By: Kristin Staub, Executive editor

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  All throughout high school, it is embellished in our minds that the skills we are taught will prepare us for the rest of our adult lives. Sure, turning in assignments on time and  having to maintain a GPA teaches us responsibility, but our future depends on much more than our ability to complete assignments on a deadline. And when I say “deadline,” I use the term loosely.

  If an employee neglects to complete a task on time, they aren’t just going to receive a late grade. The consequences of the adult world are much more drastic than that.

   You’re not going to get a one hour detention to reflect on your actions by showing up late to work.  True, we can’t get “fired” from high school, but this method of discipline teaches us that our actions have very minor consequences.

  Our lives don’t depend on how quickly we can find “x,” nor our ability to identify rocks.  Completing proofs won’t teach us how to find a job, or what to look for when buying a house.

   The education we receive tends to focus on specific subjects that most likely will not ever be used again, rather than on important skills that you may be needed later on in life. This includes the knowledge necessary to buy a car or a house, get a job, or make long term financial plans.

  The classes that are required to graduate do very little to equip us with the skills we need.

Its not so much that what we are learning is invaluable, it’s that we’re taught to know it without being taught why we need to. Our curriculum is not made to fit with the way our world works today. It’s centered around content, not context.

   Because so much of our schedules are consumed by required classes, we are left with little room to take the classes we’d like; the classes that actually apply to what we’d like to do with our future. We have a small window of opportunity to explore the different areas of study available because we are forced to take multiple years of the same class, only more advanced.

   The general required classes are very basic skills that we have been taught throughout our entire educational career. But to thrive in the world, we need more knowledge than math, science, english and social studies.

   Though having all of these skills do prove useful in the future, by the time we reach high school it becomes increasingly clear that some come easier than others. This leaves many students in distress over the condition of their grades and GPA, when it’s truly not their fault.

   We sit through lectures and 40 minute long powerpoints that only feed us the knowledge we could gain in thirty seconds, courtesy of Google. Very rarely is this content even absorbed; most of it is simply memorized, spat out on a test or essay, then quickly neglected. Not because we want to, but because we need mental space for the next string of information that’s sitting in front of us the following day.

   While high school does expose us to exploring careers, education and trade, it does nothing to help us cope with life outside of school. All of our decisions are made for us with very little consideration for what we’d like.

   Besides maybe a couple of our classes. Along with this, the work and tests we’re expected to complete often only has one correct answer; something completely unrealistic to the life that awaits us. This embeds a fear of failure in our minds that will stick with us for the years to follow.

   In reality, the important decisions we make cannot be chosen with four rigid options: a, b, c, or d. It takes consideration and time to weigh the alternatives, as well as deciding for yourself what those alternatives may be.

   High school and the current education system are not entirely to blame though. As young adults, it is our responsibility to prepare for our own future. Everything isn’t going to be handed to us on a silver platter; we have to make it happen for ourselves.

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School teaching wrong lessons