"I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves; and if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power." - Thomas Jefferson 1820

"There is a growing technology of testing that permits us now to do in nanoseconds things that we shouldn't be doing at all." - Dr. Gerald Bracey author of Rotten Apples in Education

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Monday, April 30, 2012

The Good Life does NOT include Common Core Standards

This is a perfect post explaining why common core standards are not in the interest of students.  Common Core standards are to prepare students to promote the global economy; it's not for the education of the student as a person to develop his/her innate talents and gifts.  Remember, students are "capital", not "human beings".

Send this post to your local and State Board of Education:

Saturday, April 28, 2012

The good life

We have never worked harder and have never enjoyed work more, because, with rare exceptions, the work was significant, self-directed, constructive and therefore interesting. 
Helen and Scott Nearing  
Grown by a student in B362.
Our children are not working for themselves. They are working for the global economy, for corporations, for efficiency, for tests scores.

This is not an idle thought. Our Secretary of Education has stated that the purpose of art in school is to promote the global economy.

Money is indeed a powerful thing. In our culture money gets you food without dirt, water without lifting, a roof without hammering.Science and art are pushed by Mr. Duncan because they contribute to the global economy.

If I'm a kid, this is what I am hearing: the only kind of work that matters is the kind that makes money, usually more for someone else than yourself. We're asking them to do things in school so that they can "compete" in a "global economy"--what does that even mean?

You know what my students are most proud of in school? The kind of pride that has a kid come to me before class and say "Look at this!"?
  • A shirt designed, cut, and sewn by her own hands.
  • A cookie mixed and cooked by his.
  • A silly riff on a ukelele composed while meandering between classes.
  • A simple paper certificate for winning a drama competition.
  • A carrot grown in class.
 Significant. Self-directed. Constructive.

My students are younger than the idea of a global economy. They're still genetically human, and they behave, for the moment, as humans have for thousands of years.

Learning about levers back in '75

How much longer will we keep trying to tear the human out of them?
Do you remember our posting on the young girl being tutored on her math facts and the last sentence she uttered in the youtube video?  Does she say this because she wants to be "globally competitive"  or is it because she feels competent and proud?  Is she exhibiting pride because she wants to be a cog in the economy or because of her human emotion of accomplishment?

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