If you controlled education, what it would be like? - Where kids actually learn real things

_giantmeteor2024_

kiwifarms.net
I would abolish it.

I was homeschooled as a kid. My "math class" was my parents giving me an algebra 2/trigonometry/etc. book and telling me to read it and take each chapter test, and then take the cumulative test at the end. This obviously worked because I was able to take a calculus class at the local community College while still in highschool and get an A. I also did very well on my SATs and was accepted into university with no problems. And the amount of effort it took was, literally, about 1% of the effort I would have spent in a conventional math class.

"Education" by definition is something somebody else does. But learning basic math/science/etc. at the level schools teach is something kids could do on their own. It should be like doing chores, like it was for me. Your parents say "do this chapter and prove you learned it before you play video games or whatever."
You were probably lucky in that your parents didn't go for those bizarre dumbed-down homeschool programs, and that you are probably already intelligent enough if you were able to teach yourself that well.

My parents would have been completely neglectful had I been homeschooled. My mother would have palpitations at the sight of long division. Even then, some kids really require socialization with other children on some level, although I disagree with the modern "huge district school" set up.

Homeschool is impossible for everyone, as people have to work to survive. Can't work and teach kids at the same time.If some kind of school wasn't available, guarantee you children would be forced into the labor market (child labor, prostitution) in one way or another.

Even the Amish and Mennonites have some kind of school, although I think some of them might homeschool depending on their location. They have a small "schoolhouse" where the neighborhood kids learn (mixed ages), and usually the teacher is a girl in her late teens.

All commercial /corporate interests should be banned from influencing school curriculum-- including textbook publishers. Honestly, some of the best "textbooks" I've had were written by the professors/teachers themselves.

I agree with OP. Home economics should be a major topic that is year-long, as should "shop class"-- learning how to use tools with one's hands that are useful in daily life and that help increase the possibility of personal survival if living conditions deteriorate quickly. Both subjects should be taught to all students. Too many younger people don't know how to cook or do basic repairs on anything. I frequently have to look basic basic shit up because no one bothered to teach me, and I hate it.

Call me weird, but I also find it sad they no longer offer typing in high schools. I had to learn to type on one of those old-school typewriters, and we were taught not to look at the keyboard. As absurd as it sounds, it was one of the most useful classes I took in high school. Consider how much technology is dependent on entering information via keyboard.

Speaking of math, I think kids should be taught the basics of math before progressing onto more complicated math topics. What good is knowing how to do algebra with a. calculator if you can't add basic figures in your head? Math should also be used to help teach kids basic finances, since that's often the main function adults use math for.

I don't think all classes should be automated, and that's the trend that's being pushed on the public. Kids need exposure to human beings in a real life setting, they have enough "screen time" as it is. I also don't think kids are as motivated when they're doing online school, as many parents can attest to right now with the Covid thing going on.
 
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Make Anime Illegal

CONFISCATE their waifus
kiwifarms.net
Homeschool is impossible for everyone, as people have to work to survive.
Both of my parents had extremely busy. careers. The point is learning the stuff doesn't take a large amount of time, and kids can do almost all of it on their own. People think learning math is hard because their school did a poor job teaching it and passed them anyway. Eventually they wind up learning trig when they don't really understand prealgebra and conclude that math is just too hard to learn by yourself.

Keep in mind learning this way is a skill that you can improve through practice.
 

Xarpho

You crack me up, clown.
kiwifarms.net
So things no two historians can agree on?
History should be about cold hard facts first.
In the case of Hitler, unadulterated passages of Mein Kampf should be mandatory, to really get into why he thought Germany was fucked. Whether you agree or not with him should be left up to the student, but students should need to know where that's coming from.

Take out the "special needs" kids, especially the ones too disabled to learn much anyways.
I always wondered what was the point of the really disabled kids being in school...not the archetypical tard that was a physically imposing size, went to your P.E. class, and made fodder for greentext stories, but the kids in wheelchairs with weird proportions, usually with a bib or a forehead strap, and couldn't even talk.
 

Smaug's Smokey Hole

Sweeney did nothing wrong.
kiwifarms.net
First class is squats. Second class is on the other side of a lake so they have to swim across it or run around it. Then there's lunch, 45 minutes to go out into the forest and forage. Third class is applied agriculture. By the end of the semester every student will have started a secret farm out in the forest that they tend to during lunch. By the end of fourth grade some will hunt or trap wild animals and trade the meat for wheat that they share with a kid that built a primitive oven to make bread. This is where hamburgers comes from.

Fourth class is proletarian literature.
 

TheMagician

Just lost The Game
kiwifarms.net
For starters, when teaching about why communism is bad, actually go in-depth instead of "people were hungry and the government killed some dudes and uh they made war with us so they were the bad guys". Talk about how the revolutions usually start out with young idealistic workers and when they take power they get fucked by opportunist big guys who suppress, imprison, or even kill them and take over from there, stomping all over everything they said they were fighting for. Very few exceptions. Or how the "anti-imperialist" Soviet Union or People's Republic of China were invading their neighbors left and right. Better yet, get into the principles of communism itself so they can't say "well that's because the leaders were bad guys, not necessarily because it was communism..."
If the government's in charge of distributing shared resources instead of people being able to just get things themselves, it becomes a logistical clusterfuck. The government would have to be massive to even begin to properly attempt handling feeding every single person in the entire countrt. One person missing from the documents because of error could be sentencing them to starvation. Actually getting the food out would be a problem too, everyone's heard of the old lines for bread...
Also, teach about all of the horrible shit the US did during the cold war. There's a lot of it, they're gonna find out anyways, and if they think we're hiding it from them then they're gonna assume everything we've ever told them is garbage and throw it all out.

For history in general, start with World War 2 and a bit of the cold war, then work backwards from World War 1. It's a hugely significant event, and also a good reference point because "germany and italy vs UK France and Russia" can be connected to names and countries they already know from today (not to mention it's done the most to shape our world today) compared to fucking "Hapsburgs vs Ottomans", they won't know what the fuck that is, how it connects to today, and certainly won't remember enough for it to make sense once they do get the context later. Focus more on getting them to understand the narratives and what was going on... as opposed to tediously memorizing dates and numbers, hammering them into their mind to outlive memories of what the fuck "treaty of fuckwad mountain 1867" was even about.

In general, focus more on stuff that will come up in daily life. As someone else in this thread said, math should focus more on stuff like personal finances than how to find the missing length of the long side of a wonky triangle or some shit. Teach them about laws and regulations likely to come up in their daily life before you test them about the "Anti-Witchcraft Act of 1927" or whatever.

Finally, vet the teachers harder, hold them to stricter standards, and don't be afraid to fire them if they're being a cunt to their students. Sure, kids can be cruel bastards, but so can teachers. Many teachers have the same mindset as a power-tripping internet forum moderator, and the difference between them and the students is they get away with it.
 

serious n00b

Autism talks: Everything else walks
kiwifarms.net
I always wondered what was the point of the really disabled kids being in school...not the archetypical tard that was a physically imposing size, went to your P.E. class, and made fodder for greentext stories, but the kids in wheelchairs with weird proportions, usually with a bib or a forehead strap, and couldn't even talk.
To get babysat.
 

Kiwi Lime Pie

Simply tasteful. 🥝🥧🐈
kiwifarms.net
The biggest things I would do would make a class that teaches home economics mandatory, which includes everything from basic sewing skills (a button on a shirt) to automotive (change a tire) to cooking.
While I don't think all the topics could be covered in one course, I do think life skills that were once taught in one or more courses need to be brought back. My high school at one point had the following classes:
  • Basic/Personal Foods that emphasized proper nutrition and meal planning.
  • Survey of the Social World that (when taught correctly) taught personal finance topics such as loans and their interest/repayment terms, consumer protection laws, and the advantages and disadvantages of banks vs. credit unions.
  • An introductory automotive course that allowed students the chance to learn simple DIY skills and prepare them for vocational auto classes if they were interested in further study or becoming a mechanic.
  • Adult Living which discussed both the good and bad aspects of living on one's own and the fact that adult decisions almost always have consequences or ramifications.

Second thing I would do is rework the history class entirely, with an emphasis on "why things are the way that they are" that set up current economic and social situations today.
My high school had a history class that went beyond mere dates, facts, and happening, and would use primary sources to show what people actually experienced and thought as various historical events happened. It helps to know what people thought as they experienced history to better know why things ended up the way they did.

In other words just roll back the curriculum 50 years?
Not necessarily. The emphasis on STEM has almost become overkill. Not everyone is interested in those subjects and some people simply don't have the aptitude for them. Pushing them into STEM is counterproductive, more-so when they lack alternatives better suited to their interests.

What would be better is the return of different tracks (course selections) based on a student's post-high school plans. In addition to the recommended courses to take for someone interested in STEM, there should also be similar lists of recommended courses for: someone who prefers the more traditional college prep curriculum, someone interested in a two-year vocational program during the junior and senior years (such as auto repair or culinary arts), and someone that might be undecided that still needs to be prepared for the adult/working world upon graduation.

-Especially as kids get older, physical education should focus less on team sports/group coordination and more on finding students a physical outlet they will continue to do as adults (with an obvious exception for the kids in organized sports). Things like running, cycling, climbing, swimming, weightlifting if that's what they're into, etc.
One of the PE electives my high school offered was titled something like "Modern lifetime sports/fitness" that focused on physical activities that could be enjoyed by one or a few people without a team aspect. This sounds like the kind of thing you mentioned in terms of having a physical outlet as an adult. I don't think the district offers this or other related PE electives any more, which is unfortunate because it makes it appear that PE is little more than team sports, swimming, standardized fitness testing, and health education even though there's far more to healthy wellness than those.
 
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Pitere pit

Has man gone insane?
kiwifarms.net
I would put relevant stuff on the curriculum like cooking, budgeting and gardening classes, important things that kids will aply later on their lives.
Also, more focus on internships on the real world, ala german model.
And ED kids should study separated from normal children with teachers trained to handle them. You can't expect an autistic kid to get by on a normal class and then become normal, the best case they end is Chris Chan and the worst is a degenerate.
 

Banditotron

What's the ugliest part of your body?
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Learn by doing, worry less about rote memorization. Give kids and parents more room in the options on what classes to take instead of the only opportunity for optional classes being electives. Reopen actually useful classes like home-ec and woodshop. Open new classes that teach practical skills. One idea is a Gardening class that would teach stupid suburban and urban children that French fries come from potatoes and that there are many useful plants that are cultivated for more than just food, like for medicine or for aesthetic beauty. Another idea for a practical class is something like Local ecology. Some people seem to live their entire lives in one place and have no idea what animals live there. The class would need many, many field trips in order to bring students out to survey macroinvertebrate life, go bird watching, go fishing, and visit any nearby experts in biological fields.
Also, another practical class would be to teach high school seniors how to pay taxes and manage expenses.
I'm greatly disappointed in the state of public education in America. I think every child deserves access to good education, and just as importantly, no child should be held back in their intellectual pursuits by their slower classmates. If a kid is bored to tears in a class too slow for him, dont pump him full of Adderall. Put him somewhere harder and see if he fares better, and put him somewhere easier and see if he fares better. Match children to the difficulty and speed of classes. "No child left behind" unfortunately seems to have actually caused "smart children held behind".
 

lurk_moar

Certified Lab Tech and Fatphobe
kiwifarms.net
I would say to teach kids methods on how to actually learn information, critical thinking, and problem solving skills not blind obedience and memorization.

My biggest gripe is history class. History class is basically the History of Western Civilization Written in the Anglo-Saxon Perceptive with Brief Mentions of Other Civilizations. I want to learn human history, not Anglo-Saxon history.
 
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