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What Should Children Be Learning At School?

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by seniorjoel95, May 26, 2019.

  1. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    Behaviour in science is generally worse than in other subjects because science lessons are less likely to have carpet in the room, and behavour has been shown to be significantly improved by carpet...students in a science lesson are more likely to be sitting on stools, and again, behaviour has shown to be better on chairs. Science lessons are more likely to involve moving around the room, again, this impacts on behaviour, and science lessons are more likely to have dangers in the room, meaning the teacher has to prioritise safety in one aspect of the lesson over discipline over the whole lesson.

    The reasons for comparatively poor behaviour in science are well known and understood, as are the additional challenges faced by science teachers.

    You will find, once you have had more experience, that when science is taught in a classroom with chairs and carpet, and students remaining in their seats, the behaviour is no worse than in any other lesson in the school.

    You will also find, that if a history lesson is moved into a science lab, with stools, and hard floor, and tables arranged for practical work, their behaviour will deteriorate.

    You may well find science too complicated or boring, that doesn't mean students do.

    Why would anyone ask the temperature of the sun?

    And what would happen if the Earth lost gravity is a bog standard year 7 question that I'm sure most students in the country have answered at some point or other

    I think you will find "the basics" take 11 years or so to learn.
  2. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    There is a problem with this, particularly in London. No experienced teachers will put themselves forward for promotion. The only people standing for heads of depatment, heads of year, 2i/c etc are support staff on NQTs

    So the time you could ignore the NQTs wild ignorant idealism and over confidence in their own judgement, and conviction that they have thought of things no one has ever thought of before, that time is over.

    Thee very very naive, very inexperienced, very very blythly unaware people end up trying to tell the rest of us what to do.
    ParakeetGreen likes this.
  3. A_Million_Posts

    A_Million_Posts Star commenter

  4. gainly

    gainly Lead commenter

    I wondered about that, they're not exactly examples of current literature. My nephew did "To Kill a Mockingbird" for GCSE English nearly 20 years ago. Is it now considered too modern to be allowed under the Gove reforms?
  5. ogover

    ogover New commenter

    I would argue that Macbeth (for example) meets the criteria: fascinating characters, a cracking plot and a lesson on the pitfalls of the lust for power would make it the perfect play for those aspiring to public life. Modern, or recent, should not automatically trump older works on the grounds of "relevance" to today. Arguably, the human experience and emotions: love, grief, rage, ambition, pity is timeless.
  6. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    This is not something I have noticed, although I have only covered Science lessons rather than taught them. In my, far off, days, behaviour in Science was generally better than in most other subjects, despite the proximity of things to misbehave with, probably because practicals gave us a break from being talked at as we were for most of the day.
  7. ParakeetGreen

    ParakeetGreen New commenter

    I don't know. It's a big subject so answers on specific sub-topics could be posed.

    At the beginning, to take only 1 anecdotal or idiosyncratic example: The younger children often Indian or Chinese, seem to have the basics of behaviour developed functionally in their children more successfully. It is noticeable: They can sit quietly yet actively diligent in contributing. the very basics of concentration, focus and attention without which any learning is going to be more challenging.

    Secondly, taking the other end of children's education: The gearing of learning time much closer to the actual job market (referred to in the above quote). An example by contradiction, the university fees to indebt students by £9,000 when they have spent from age 4-5 to age 18 at school already, and often on courses/credentials which don't massively improve their job market skills; then there's a huge gap in the information between this end of education and the job market sector itself. That is also a huge problem. Here the time/money ratio of investment into education hits the sharp end of life and becomes very serious for the new young adult entering society at this level for the first time.

    So taking just 2 ends of the subject is at least a very small start to start useful consideration.
  8. neddyfonk

    neddyfonk Lead commenter

    I also have a vision of what I would like that might benefit the next generation of our digital world dwellers, but the 'system' is not easy to bend. Deviate too far from the well trodden path and someone in the hierarchy will remind you what the accepted/imposed standards are that you should adhering to, and, if necessary invite you to a training course on how they think it should be done. Been there, got the tee shirt !

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