Tuesday, September 13, 2011
A new Vision for Schooling
Every teacher should read Guy Claxton's book, 'What's the Point of School?' and ask themselves the same question. This will be change from wrestling with how to accommodate the current government's backward looking National Standards.
Claxton writes that the 'purpose of education is to prepare young people for the future. Schools should help young people to develop the capabilities they will need to thrive. What they need and want , is the confidence to talk to strangers, to try things out, to handle tricky situations, to stand up for themselves, to ask for help, to think new thoughts.'
Simple enough but, according to Claxton , 'they are not getting it...education has lost the plot'.
The questions teachers need to ask are, he Says, 'are what capabilities and attitudes towards knowing and learning do we want to help today's young people cultivate?' Certainly they need to be stimulated to ask their own questions and be skilled to explore them .
Claxton makes it clear, in his early chapters, that current provisions are just not working for enough students. Teachers (and politicians) need 'imagination , and a modicum of courage.. to rediscover.. ( educations) .. heart and soul.'
In our current schools to many students are losing their 'learning power' - it is developing this 'learning power' which is Claxton's main push ); the key comptencies in our NZ Curriculum.