Saturday, February 16, 2008

sticky subject.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/20080214/us_time/howtomakegreatteachers

high school for me was difficult. not academically, but because the i didn`t get along with most of my teachers.

there are some who would say that it wasn`t my position to be "getting along", so much as doing the work......but here we are.

it was my feeling then that most teachers were determined to have the students "get" knowledge as a by-product of them merely showing up each day and regurgitating the material. some students seemed to be able to learn by this and so became the ones the teachers responded to.

the teachers i learned from were the ones who took the time to find out who we were as individuals.

i recently went to my high school reunion, and apart from the celebration and re-aquantance with friends and the building it`s self, i was struck by the fact that the feelings i had toward my teachers then were confirmed when i saw them again.

regarding the above article, i`m not even sure that the teachers who taught me 35 years ago were in a union, but the fact they are now complexifies an already sticky issue.


should they be paid on merit?

well, it would even the playing field certainly, and sort out the arrogant pedagogues who minister to the select few of like mind.

9 comments:

BBC said...

It's not the teachers as much as it is the idiot administrators that are telling them how to teach.

dr.alistair said...

that`s suggesting that teachers are innocent, which i don`t buy for a second.

the majority of what passes for teachers today are trough pigs who just wanted a high-paying job with little real skill and who become the hand-maidens of a vast bureaucracy called government. they parrot borg indoctrination to kids induced into a trance through being forced to repeat insultingly easy things over and over, while the "teachers" deliver the memes of the new world order.

school is a training ground for boring, repetitive low-paying jobs.

those who come out of that level one programming and who`s parents have money can go on to university to become part of the bureacrat class it`s self, or failing that a college to train for a technical job in industry or services.

the dregs go get a job in retail or manual labour or doing oil changes......

then there`s welfare or wandering the streets.

or crime.

which is a major part of the economy, without which all of the above would be moot because we would have descended into a civil war a long time ago.

see what happens when you lift up the edge of a rock bill?

BBC said...

By the sixth grade I already had an IQ of 114 and up to that point was pretty much a grade A student.

But after moving back in with family things went to hell and I dropped out of school in the 11th grade.

Since then I've taken many courses and some collage but mostly learned in the classroom of life.

I had interesting trades and developed good skills that got me through life.

Didn't get rich but I have no complaints. I learned a long time ago that no matter how much money (and I made damn good money at times)you have that it all disappears.

Now I do just fine on less than a grand a month, but my property is free and clear so it's not at hard to do.

Dalraida said...

I have to agree. I especially never trust a male high school teacher as they are probably just there to proverbially stay in high school and get the adoration of young girls.

dr.alistair said...

i coach guelph university women`s soccer team and they fall into the "adoration" mode quickly, so you have to realise your role in the game early on or get caught up in it.

i don`t know how male high school or university teachers manage frankly.

it may seem like a feeding frenzy from the outside, but one betrayal of that trust and you are out.

X. Dell said...

How does one determine merit?

That's the real issue with merit pay. After all, there are more ways than one of skinning a cat. I, for one, count some of my most impersonal teachers some of the best as well as those that took time out to know me. Why should they be punished financially for not getting along with students?

The problem is one of affixing blame. In the US we talk about "our failing schools" to the point where we don't even question this assumption. We therefore think that there must be something wrong with teachers if students aren't learning to read.

People who are a bit sharper than their peers might consider the possibility that curricula might be more of a problem than teachers. But I would say that the US has always been an anti-intellectual society that has actively discouraged exceptional scholarship beyond the moderate level necessary to work within industry of some type.

In other words, forget about the individuals who are providing the instruction, for a second. What is it about your society that devalues education?

dr.alistair said...

what is it about our society that devalues education?

is it education that is being devalued, or what emerges from an education?

the true renaissance man is rounded in science, philosophy, games, athleticism, etc. and what emerges form this is a functionality in life and a passion for more of the same.

what is missing in consumer culture is a pure gnosis, or satisfaction. what is left is a dissatisfaction that drives a neuro-chemical desire to buy things....

i am attacked for using "big" words and so on, not because people don`t know the words necessarily, but because of the discomfort some have with an expanded sense of awareness that a shift in semantic awareness brings.

nietzche warns that we don`t become aware of the greater truth of existance too soon, and that we must engage in trivialities instead.

and don`t, whatever you do, read the myth of sisyphus by albert camus.

it will have weak minds running for the cliff.

X. Dell said...

Thanks for warning my weak mind:-)

But what you speak of is precisely my point. Here, education is said to be good if it contains a "focus." As someone who's taught at the university for many years, I can swear that if I'm sent to hell, there will be tons of students asking me, "What good is this degree? What kind of job can I get?" Most of them feel that the degree, or learning for that matter, is a waste of time, and they say so. What's important for them is the sheepskin, not the process, which is the most important part.

This serves the needs of industry very well. Solid two-dimensional thinking is what many well-educated people exhibit in spades, which suits the needs of power to a tee. Three-dimensional thinking, however, presents a problem. So it's helpful to such people that the society has an anti-intellectual bent.

Which brings us back to the quetion not of the values of education, but once again back to the values of the society.

dr.alistair said...

i remember my father asking me when i was quite young what i wanted to be.

as a budding existentialist i thought it a rather peculiar question.

it wasn`t a conscious act on his part, that question. i don`t think he ever realised the way i reacted to it.

i have always taken a dissociated view of the state of being implied by his question.

so for me, the thought of taking on two dimensional learning for any length of time seemed counter to my three dimensional perspective on existance.

the value of our society is commercial.....for a very small group. the rest of us can be of use.....or not.

welcome to a technological feudal dystopia.

orwell was right.

i am listening to holst`s "the planets" right now, and his utopian optimism brings one to tears.

fuck yeah......