Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Trends #7: Dangerous Education

It's long been a truism that our education system kills curiosity.  It certainly is shown that the number of questions students ask diminish as they progress through the K-12 grades.  Given the challenging subjects and dynamic state of knowledge, they should be increasing.  In a recent Forbes magazine article (see http://www.forbes.com/sites/jessicahagy/2012/05/02/nine-dangerous-things-you-were-taught-in-school/2/), called "Nine Dangerous Things You Were Taught in School," it suggests some reasons.  Many of these relate to our discussions of Find & Learn.  The following are key misleading and untrue lessons that we absorb while in school.  I have chosen the ones I see as most important; they are:

#1 The people in charge have all the answers -- we do listen to voices of authority.  But we must concern ourselves that the authority has been achieved legitimately and that it is the voice of wisdom.  We need to confirm the conclusions of anyone.
#2 Learning ends when you leave the classroom -- now more than ever this is not true.  While employed in the Bell System, I earned CEU credits worth about another degree (BA in Marketing), since I had to learn so much about market research, product management, and marketing principles to be effective in my role as market analyst.
#9 The purpose of your education is your future career -- again, this couldn't be further from the truth.  It would see that in an economic downturn, you would need to focus this way.  But thinking skills, writing skills and a generalist background will get you much further in life.

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