Our temples of knowledge are lost opportunities

Robert Fried says…

We have opted not to create schools as places where children’s curiosity, sensory awareness, power, and communication can flourish, but rather to erect temples of knowledge where we sit them down, tell them a lot of stuff we think is important, try to control their restless curiosity, and test them to see how well they’ve listened to us. [The Game of School, pp. 58–59]

7 Responses to “Our temples of knowledge are lost opportunities”

  1. High stakes testing is a problem.

    However, we need to press the afterschool to make those matters more to what we desire.

    Furthermore, the I.B. educational program should be more for curiosity and communications. Yes?

  2. After that quote I’m going to buy the book.

  3. Standards and student-centered constructivism constructivism movements can be polar opposites at times. Which will “win” out? Or better yet, how will the two mesh in the future?

  4. Alright, alright, enough with the teasers everyday. I’m buying the book, k? :-)

  5. Alright I’m intrigued and I’ve bought the book.

  6. Fried raises multiple aspects of teaching and learning that I have been thinking about lately.

    1. Curiosity and power (empowerment?) flourish when teachers know when to shift the cognitive demands for learning gradually over to the students.

    2. Through the gradual release of control from teacher (who already has a thorough handle on the content he/she is pushing) to student (many classes in which there are 25 or more who benefit from instruction that is differentiated), the balance of power changes. Power is not synonymous with control.

    3. Students who interact with content that is first anchored in key concepts, and then provided with the structure to collaboratively create new meanings, co-create or assemble a common knowledge base, and participate in conversations that enable each to bring their own backgrounds and perspectives develop with greater satisfaction a landscape of learning that is inherently more interdisciplinary, enriching and engaging.

    Fried, I think, gets it right. When we provide classroom that resemble the above, the potential energy stored in restless curiosity become kinetic. These are the classrooms where student learning is ignited.

  7. How many of us went into teaching after 12 years of school and 4 years of college? Many of us have never experienced ANYTHING but traditional schools and classrooms. Hard to envision what you have never experienced. Just a random thought late at night when I should be in bed, but instead am catching up on my reading and professional development (can I get staff development hours for this? :) )

    Beth

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