RIP School Survival Forums
August 2001 - June 2017

The School Survival Forums are permanently retired. If you need help with quitting school, unsupportive parents or anything else, there is a list of resources on the Help Page.

If you want to write about your experiences in school, you can write on our blog.

To everyone who joined these forums at some point, and got discouraged by the negativity and left after a while (or even got literally scared off): I'm sorry.

I wasn't good enough at encouraging people to be kinder, and removing people who refuse to be kind. Encouraging people is hard, and removing people creates conflict, and I hate conflict... so that's why I wasn't better at it.

I was a very, very sensitive teen. The atmosphere of this forum as it is now, if it had existed in 1996, would probably have upset me far more than it would have helped.

I can handle quite a lot of negativity and even abuse now, but that isn't the point. I want to help people. I want to help the people who need it the most, and I want to help people like the 1996 version of me.

I'm still figuring out the best way to do that, but as it is now, these forums are doing more harm than good, and I can't keep running them.

Thank you to the few people who have tried to understand my point of view so far. I really, really appreciate you guys. You are beautiful people.

Everyone else: If after everything I've said so far, you still don't understand my motivations, I think it's unlikely that you will. We're just too different. Maybe someday in the future it might make sense, but until then, there's no point in arguing about it. I don't have the time or the energy for arguing anymore. I will focus my time and energy on people who support me, and those who need help.

-SoulRiser

The forums are mostly read-only and are in a maintenance/testing phase, before being permanently archived. Please use this time to get the contact details of people you'd like to keep in touch with. My contact details are here.

Please do not make a mirror copy of the forums in their current state - things will still change, and some people have requested to be able to edit or delete some of their personal info.


Post Reply 
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
"Learning" syntax
Author Message
chained to desk Offline
Renegade

Posts: 78
Joined: Dec 2013
Thanks: 13
Given 88 thank(s) in 34 post(s)
Post: #1
"Learning" syntax

In school we really just learn the format. In french we learn the vocabulary and the verbs and the conjugation rules and such. We don't learn about how conversations go in France, what French people talk about, what interests them, etc. In math we learn about quadratic equations, but not what they are used for, what the purpose of formulas is, what people use matrices for, origin of mathematical theories, etc. In history we learn what some rulers did and what wars happened when and who was king when, but not about what life was really like. I don't have a clue what life was like for a serf in the 1200's or what people in Athens in the BC's lived with every day. In English in middle school and elementary school we learned verbs, essay format, rubrics and such but not things like"What is the purpose of an essay?".
In chemistry we learn chemical equations and constants and how to balance them, but not things like "What makes chemical bonds bond?".

Basically my point is in school students are taught the format and syntax of things, but not anything that is really important or interesting. It's a hollow view of all the subjects where we just learn the little details instead of what the core of the idea is. I had to discover on my own what essays are really for, in that they allow a quick way to tell tons of people your thoughts about something at once. We never learned it that way, an essay was really just a form of submission, as it would only be read by one person, the teacher, and they would only really read it to see if it fit certain rubric requirements, not to actually read it for understanding of what the student is trying to say.Just like how in chemistry we never get to see chemical reactions except for rare authority structured "labs" which are really just procedures. And teachers and parents wonder why students turn in formulaic essays, do sloppy work on labs, etc.
12-31-2013 01:18 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
 Thanks given by: vonunov , James Comey , xcriteria , l1qu1d
James Comey Away
Banished Oldfaf in Exile

Posts: 6,500
Joined: Aug 2013
Thanks: 1078
Given 2293 thank(s) in 1517 post(s)
Post: #2
RE: "Learning" syntax

I agree. It seems schools just try to give you a vague understanding of the idea rather than the core idea itself. This is especially noticeable in history. I mean, all the school cares about is if I can regurgitate the factoids on a test, they don't care if I have an accurate understanding.

RIP GWEDIN
RIP URITIYOGI
RIP NIGHT
RIP VONUNOV
RIP WES/THEWAKE
RIP USERNAME

[Image: Nas-One-Love.jpg]

Stop jerking off to porn and whining and do something about it

Make School Survival Great Again - MSSGA

Hidden stuff:

[Image: BallsofSteel2.png]
[Image: mg_michelle_2020.png]
12-31-2013 06:41 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Gwedin Offline
dumb shithead

Posts: 2,361
Joined: May 2013
Thanks: 217
Given 559 thank(s) in 410 post(s)
Post: #3
RE: "Learning" syntax

SYNTAX ERROR: Please fix that bug in the education system that is stopping the program from compiling properly.

Line 42: Function "use_proper_teaching" is not defined!
Line 109: Includes reference to undefined variable "human_rights"!

Sincerely, your IDE.
12-31-2013 07:14 PM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
 Thanks given by: xcriteria
vonunov Offline
Badgrr

Posts: 564
Joined: Feb 2008
Thanks: 344
Given 186 thank(s) in 126 post(s)
Post: #4
RE: "Learning" syntax

DROP TABLE paradigm;
01-01-2014 01:46 AM
Visit this user's website Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
 Thanks given by: xcriteria
timf Offline
Revolutionary

Posts: 125
Joined: Dec 2012
Thanks: 0
Given 152 thank(s) in 65 post(s)
Post: #5
RE: "Learning" syntax

For the history of the world until a couple hundred years ago all learning was accomplished by apprenticeship, usually father to son. When people were collectivized to be components in a global machine, their children were taken from them and they were told that their children would be "educated" and thus be able to move up to higher places in the new utopian world collective.

For those few who can "look behind the curtain" or "take the red pill", the magnitude of this fraud is begun to be appreciated.

There are several paths that lay before the person who begins to perceive truth.

1. Return to the comfort of slumber.
2. Rage against the machine.
3. Consciously join the machine and try to gain as much for yourself as possible.
4. Change your view so that the machine looks beneficial.
5. Live on the fringe of the machine and keep seeking truth.
01-01-2014 02:56 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
xcriteria Offline
Fanatic

Posts: 3,090
Joined: Oct 2005
Thanks: 814
Given 930 thank(s) in 612 post(s)
Post: #6
RE: "Learning" syntax

chained, you raise a good set of points... I agree. Not to mention, all the subjects school doesn't even try to cover, like psychology and how the minds work, how to have conversations over high-stakes, emotionally charged topics, and so on.

it's worth noting that some teachers do teach differently. Justin Schwamm teaches Latin, for example and tries to get people thinking about what life was like during that time, including through the stories on his Tres Columnae platform. But, teachers who make these extra efforts are relatively rare, and even people who do have some classes with more depth, they tend to co-exist with a bunch of classes like the ones you described.

One thing that's making the problem of "memorize and spit out" even worse is the push toward high-stakes standardized tests as a key means of evaluating whether learning takes place. However, I think it's also possible to use standards in a way that allows for more flexible learning. Shawn Cornally, another teacher who takes issue with school-as-usual, has a system based on that called BlueHarvest, and he's co-founded an alternative, student-centric, project-based approach to school called Big Ideas Group (see a longer article explaining how it works.)

So, some people are taking steps to find better ways to do things. Yet another example is called Big Picture Schools, founded by Dennis Littky. (See that link for a good summary of how school should really be.)

But, these approaches remain unknown and inaccessible to a lot of educators, parents, and learners. I'm interested in how steps could be taken to actually do learning differently, show that it works, and ask why things can't change... including with conversations with parents, teachers, and learners.

In short, to see the kind of change many of us would like to see, I think the roles of teachers need to be redefined, as do to roles of learners and even the structure of school. But, fortunately it's possible to take steps to learn and build new ways of learning and interacting outside of school. And conversations like this are an example of doing that already.

Peter Gray & allies launching the Alliance for Self-directed Education

ASDE Newsletters: #1 Announcement | #2 History of ASDE | #6 Education Liberation


School Survival & Catalyst Learning Network featured on AlternativestoSchool's blog
“Mom, Dad, can I stop going to school?”

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking when the Stakes are High

Hidden stuff:
01-01-2014 05:22 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
xcriteria Offline
Fanatic

Posts: 3,090
Joined: Oct 2005
Thanks: 814
Given 930 thank(s) in 612 post(s)
Post: #7
RE: "Learning" syntax

(01-01-2014 02:56 AM)timf Wrote:  For the history of the world until a couple hundred years ago all learning was accomplished by apprenticeship, usually father to son. When people were collectivized to be components in a global machine, their children were taken from them and they were told that their children would be "educated" and thus be able to move up to higher places in the new utopian world collective.

I think public education has resulted in quite a few benefits to society. Being locked into learning only from your parents isn't necessarily the best thing in the world (it depends on your parents, and if their professions even suit you...)

Fortunately, these days, much of the world has not only the benefits of basic level education (reading and writing, basic math, some knowledge about the world), and the benefits of the printing press, books, and radio that were around earlier in the century (if you could find your way to the material.)

Now, many people on the planet have access the Internet, which is opens up all kinds of doors, especially as so many educational institutions and simply experts in various topics are making content available for free, or for pay in an "unbundled" manner, where you aren't locked into 12 or 4 years from a single paradigm, but you can shop around.

So, I don't think the basic idea of school is a sinister plot against the ideal world of learning only from your parents -- there are benefits of learning from new teachers and being around new people -- but there are so many more ways to do that than just within factory-model schools. And even more these days.

Peter Gray & allies launching the Alliance for Self-directed Education

ASDE Newsletters: #1 Announcement | #2 History of ASDE | #6 Education Liberation


School Survival & Catalyst Learning Network featured on AlternativestoSchool's blog
“Mom, Dad, can I stop going to school?”

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking when the Stakes are High

Hidden stuff:
(This post was last modified: 01-01-2014 05:41 AM by xcriteria.)
01-01-2014 05:41 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
xcriteria Offline
Fanatic

Posts: 3,090
Joined: Oct 2005
Thanks: 814
Given 930 thank(s) in 612 post(s)
Post: #8
RE: "Learning" syntax

(01-01-2014 02:56 AM)timf Wrote:  For those few who can "look behind the curtain" or "take the red pill", the magnitude of this fraud is begun to be appreciated.

There are several paths that lay before the person who begins to perceive truth.

1. Return to the comfort of slumber.
2. Rage against the machine.
3. Consciously join the machine and try to gain as much for yourself as possible.
4. Change your view so that the machine looks beneficial.
5. Live on the fringe of the machine and keep seeking truth.

Taking steps out of the allegorical [url=]Platonic Cave[/url], or, that symbol for choosing the path to adventure vs. not, Red Pill, Blue Pill, do indeed leave people with several paths.

I think there are more than just the ones in that list, though... and the "machine" isn't one unified, monolothic entity, even if it may seem like it.

One related article to read on this topic is The Plight of the Parent Education Advocate by David Bernstein. This talks about the complex mental balancing act of parents who have kids in school, but who also see all the problems with it.

One could ask, why have them in school? But, a lot of parents who understand what's wrong with factory-model schools, for various reasons, still ask their kids to go. Fortunately, though, more and more people are talking about the problems, and asking about possible ways to do things differently.

But, there isn't just one "machine." Although, this guy in the 1976 film Network argues otherwise, in this iconic Grand Inquisitor Scene-style speech [4m]:



Watch on YouTube

When it comes to education, there are so many factors in play, but also so many ways to begin to do things differently. The first step is seeking to learn outside of school, as well as whatever might be picked up in school (if that's the particular machine you're locked into for now.)

Peter Gray & allies launching the Alliance for Self-directed Education

ASDE Newsletters: #1 Announcement | #2 History of ASDE | #6 Education Liberation


School Survival & Catalyst Learning Network featured on AlternativestoSchool's blog
“Mom, Dad, can I stop going to school?”

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking when the Stakes are High

Hidden stuff:
01-01-2014 05:41 AM
Find all posts by this user Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply 


Forum Jump:


User(s) browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)

Contact Us | School Survival | Return to Top | Return to Content | Mobile Version | RSS Syndication