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Tinaa
2003-Nov-29, 05:28 PM
I work in the public education system in an above average size school in a state that ranks way below average. I know most teachers do the best they can.
Some students are not college material. They want to get out of school and work. Many others want to go to college. Now, in our schools, these students are forced to follow, pretty much, the same curriculum. I agree that many subjects teach critical thinking, even if the student may not need it in real life. I would like to know how and what other countries teach their youth. I'm becoming a bit disgusted with some of the 'bright ideas' my gov't has decided to put in effect. However, if I'm going to complain, I need to have some better ideas under my belt to offer. Not that I can change a time-honored, though ineffective, system, but change has to start somewhere. It's obvious, reading comparisons of the countries, that we (USA) are not doing the best by our children. How are the schools set up in Australia, England, Canada, and all the other places represented here?

DippyHippy
2003-Nov-30, 01:31 AM
Oh boy... you should *really* try teaching in England... don't forget your bullet-proof vest :D

Tinaa
2003-Nov-30, 03:20 AM
I work at a 5A school, the biggest classsification they've got. We must have a really safe school. Other than the rare fist fight, there is no violence. The kids are a lot mouthier than we would have ever thought to be. Of course, my parents would have killed me for talking like some of the students do today. The main problem is the parents aren't around like my parents were. Kids are raising themselves.

Graceless
2003-Dec-02, 02:05 AM
What kind of programs or "initiatives" (buzz word for "less spending, more man hours") has your state government implemented?

A great number of my friends are teachers, from elementary to university, and all of them have some sort of great disillusion about their job. It's terrible. The most thankless job on the planet. You're only teaching and furthering our tomorrow.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-02, 03:48 AM
The mandated knowledge and skills test are probably the worst part. The teachers are blamed for the kids that fail. Now there are teachers that are not well suited for their jobs. They teach one way and if the kids don't "get it," oh well, they fail. Most teachers are doing their best. When I was in school, we were taught so that we knew the answers to a test. Now they are spending a lot of time teaching the kids test taking skills. Drives me nuts.

I alos hate Bush's No Child Let Behind program. It is a joke. Like I wrote previously, all children are forced to take the same curriculum, be they college bound or vocationally interested. Our students are required to have 4 yrs English, 4 yrs History (Wolrd, US, Gov't, Economics and World Geography), 3 yrs math, 3 yrs science, health, PE or Athletics and 2 Fine Arts and other stuff. Not that I'm against these classes, but our vocational students would probably better served by teaching them things like balancing a check book rather than making them take a course that revolves around learning how to use a graphing calculator. It is like the admin wants to prepare every kid for college but they forget that many students are not prepared for the real world. One of the first things that always get cut are the vocational programs. We have some great programs, if the funding were there. It always comes down to money or the lacj there of!

Graceless
2003-Dec-02, 08:14 AM
I completely understand. Not everyone is college material, and it sounds like he's got the impression that everyone "could" be. While very ambitious, completely unrealistic (like most of his decisions/policies).

In Alberta, there is a class called CALM, Career and Life Management. It's a half a year class worth only 3 credits (most full year classes are worth 5), but it is required in order to pass. Students are taught the things like how to write a cheque, how to calculate the best prices in a grocery store, how to write out a resume...that sort of thing. Most students find it a complete gimme class, but it's valuable information. It's amazing how one little program can aid so much in development skills.

Josh
2003-Dec-02, 10:06 AM
I have no idea how to write a cheque. I should not be in college/university.

Chook
2003-Dec-03, 11:42 PM
I've got two schoolteacher children so I'll get them to respond. From what I hear, the lack of discipline and respect for the teacher, and authority in general, is the worst problem.

And if they don't get the grade - the dole is the safety-net.

Sad!

kashi
2003-Dec-04, 02:21 AM
Originally posted by Tinaa@Dec 2 2003, 03:48 AM
When I was in school, we were taught so that we knew the answers to a test. Now they are spending a lot of time teaching the kids test taking skills. Drives me nuts.
I think you've hit the nail on the head here. I just finished my final year of high school last year, and I can totally relate to this statement. I came dux of my school, yet I did no study for my maths or chemistry exams. People used to get annoyed with me when I'd ask question in class that were outside the course. I say study and intelligence are only part of the equation. The old saying "10% inspiration 90% perspiration" is inaccurate in my mind. Inspiration makes perspiration easier. Many students only WANT to know what's going to be on the exam. The problem is that often students don't want to learn for the sake of learning, they only want to learn what they need to in order to get by. I didn't need to study planet formation theory after reading Stephen Hawking! This has nothing to do with inteligence, it's about extending yourself. Learn material harder than what's on the course and the course will seem easier.

zephyr46
2003-Dec-04, 02:42 AM
My Mums a teacher, in remote aboriginal commuinties, with hearing impared. She used to work with ESL (english as a second langauge). One of the biggest challenges is maintaining Aboriginal culture, of which Langauge is a huge part. But the expectation that children from 5 up be expected to learn 2 or 3 local languages and english when very few of them may succeed in an overtly racist country as Australia, well it is a big ask. I am white and I still struggle. The high school I went to was a social experiment, of mixing government private and public housing, so your neighbours were, for want of a better word, diverse. Living in canberra now (I'm from Darwin) I see Aboriginies being absorbed into the wider community, at the bottum, Drugs, crime and violence. The school system I left was coming to grips with concepts like, Lifelong learning, a child will change there occupation more than three times in their lives the best that teachers could hope to acheive was teaching children to teach themselves. That was written on a head masters door in a school i used to clean, where my mother worked.

Chook, are you bagging the Dole? For all of the redneck and ignorant ways in Australia, we are one of the very few counties who care enough to feed medicate and house all, regardless of race religion class or political beleifs. Yes the dole is a safety net, but it is nothing to live on, you exisit on it. I have, on the dole or the lesser payments of Ausstudy, where you get paid less trying to do more. But as critical of Australia as I can be, the dole is one of the human things we do for ourselves that sets us apart from countries like America. Sure, we may not have benn to the moon, we may not have pride in our country for it's treatment of refugees but we still love it. With The government now aiming to exclude more of those "Battlers" he claims to care so much for from higher education.

Education should be free, taxed when you get employment. An educated population is good for all, when we moved from free education in this country we got left with the likes of Tony Abbet, paid zip for his degree, and prepared to charge the children in this country for theirs. Teachers need to be well paid and supported, and they are often not. I'm about to break into anti capitalist marxist rhetoric, of which, I'd rather not.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-04, 03:42 AM
Working in the Special Ed. dept., I deal with the "uglier" end of society. I have found that kids know when the teacher cares about them. I am authentic in the way I deal with my students. They respect me because I treat them how I want to be treated. Kids respond to honesty. If I don't know an answer, we look it up as a class. If I mess up, I admit it and correct it. I hope I am teaching these kids to be responsible for their own actions. I've had really good results, even with kids with ODD, ADHD and several other behavior problems. Behavior is a big problem, but I think a lot of the problems are because the kids are bored! They need classes that deal with what life has in store for them after high school. I feel we are doing the future leaders a great disservice.

Chook
2003-Dec-05, 08:45 AM
Sorry Zephyr46 if I gave you the impression I was "bagging the dole".
It IS an excellent safety net, and I agree with all your observations.
I guess that I just get sick of the dole being abused by people not wanting to work; or kids leaving home because they don't want to continue accepting the authority and (good) discipline and training of their parents.

major_eh
2003-Dec-06, 10:31 AM
The high school I went to had some very good vocational courses like mechanics, culinary arts, hairdressing and was one of the first places with computer science courses.(with these I even got college credits but what I learned then is useless now!!) I don't know that our system is different so much, I'm from British Columbia BTW, but when I graduated the school was still fairly unique. To graduate you would need your core credits, Math and English et al, but there were these other courses where you could become quite capable in a particular vocation. This is a great head start.
Now there are schools that sort of lean towards different areas of expertise. If a child going into high school is certain of the direction they'd like to head in, they may choose a school that carries classes in that field. This makes a lot of sense to me. Of course all the regular classes have to be taken and passed as well.
Just to get my two cents in I think life studies should be required to grad as well. I have heard of some brilliant people who have no concept of balancing a chequebook or budgeting.
For another couple of cents I have the utmost respect and amiration for teachers. I can't think of a more essential service.

Oh yeah, and about only learning what you need to pass a test. That goes on here too unfortunately. It does seem like one is guided, almost, to remember the correct answers as opposed to understanding the problem.
If you tell me, I'll forget,
If you show me, I'll remember,
If you teach me, I'll understand.

damienpaul
2003-Dec-16, 04:12 AM
Being a teacher in Alice Springs, Australia...I have found similar problems and their solutions as i did working for the Coptic Orthodox community in Melbourne and the state system in Victoria, Australia. Mainly they are:

Lack of respect, motivation and interest

Also I found that some, certainly not all teachers try to 'hide' behind technology and other fancy add ons - this seems to facilitate one thing - the lacking i mention above.

Something my grandmother (primary school teacher 1942-1977) told me when i started my career 4 years ago - the technology and the fancy toys don't teach the students, the teacher teaches the student.

Damo

Josh
2003-Dec-16, 10:25 AM
There are so many problems with education that I don't know where to begin harping ...

The first point ... There is too great an emphasis on "getting marks to get to uni" or similar as opposed to learning.

Kids have to be taught to think and learn and be taught to be the best they can be and do anything they like. And that they can. This is severly lacking in most schools as well as in a lot of teachers. Teachers are rediculously underpaid for the responsibility they have. There should be a bigger incentive to be a teacher but at the same time it should be harder to get into. Too many people (I've heard of) become teachers because they weren't able to do something else. Now seriously, is that the kind of person we want moulding the minds of the future? I don't think so. Of all the teachers I had that i can recall I would say that 3 were good teachers. Teaching because they loved seeing kids inspired and grow.

Another problem is the attitude of kids today (which I don't separate myself from even though I'm a little older now). Kids nowadays are most likely the same they've always been. The only problem with that is that the world is different. Gangs, computer games, boredom etc etc ... I think there should be a government move to make some time of extra curricular activity compulsory. Whether it be learning another language, playing a sprt, art classes, martial arts. Whatever.

Okay ... i'll leave it there. I will begin to ramble. You thought that was rambling? no way...

kashi
2003-Dec-16, 10:52 AM
Mobile phone games should be banned! I say let us read books on the train!

damienpaul
2003-Dec-16, 01:20 PM
I concur wholeheartedly with everyone! fortunately the school I am at does have an extensive extracurricular program, this is where the next dilemma comes in - apathy and closely related from what I have seen sheer laziness.

I work for up to 110 hours a week for a 40 hour a week pay (overtime simply does not exist in teaching), averaging 70-80 hours a week, often without a lunch break and as for the holidays, the only real ones are the end of year ones, the others are consumed by preparation and an ever increasing amount of professional development and preparation. By the way, i am a Maths, Physics and Special Education Science teacher.

All this for what? I get slammed in the classroom (as expected), slammed by the higher ups, called lazy and arrogant by the public and shafted (like so many) by the government! You are right there seems to be little incentive to teach...however, i received a yearbook from a school i taught at 2 years ago, many of the students listed me as an influential teacher, several emailed me today to say thank you - that is part of why i will never leave teaching. Also as you said, the joy of watching them grow and succeed in any way is indescribable.

How many teachers are in here?

Tinaa
2003-Dec-17, 01:23 AM
We do have two years required for foreign languages. We have required PE, fine arts, etc. We do have some pretty "tough" kids in our school. I've found they responf to honesty more than anything. I tell these kids that school is like a job, when the job is finished at graduation, they'll be free to pursue whatever they perceive as happiness. My job is to see that they are as prepared as I can make them. We have many vocational programs here too. I feel to darned pressured by these state (federal) mandated tests that prove nothing. Some mant of the students just fill in the little circles and never even read the questions. Whose fault is it that they fail? Why, the teacher didn't teach them anything. Never mind the fact the parents are not home to ensure homework assignments are done. Lots of kids want to sleep through classes becasue they were up most of the night before partying. As you can tell I am quite frustrated right now. At least I lnow I am not alone.

damienpaul
2003-Dec-17, 03:47 AM
Something strange has happened - someone just nominated me as a teacher of teh year....eeek :o , or maybe cause teachers' self esteems are perpetually low or non-existent taht we do not see why.

Josh
2003-Dec-17, 12:32 PM
firstly, congrats damien... or paul.

secondly, I'm talking about after school hours. things to keep kids off the streets and interested in learning (even and probably more importantly) when they don't realise they're learning.

A while ago I was set upon by a gang and well and truely beaten up. Martial arts doesn't help when there are 11 guys hell bent on turning your head into a soccer ball. The reason they attacked me is because I told them to stop beating up another kid ... 200 people there and little old me was the only one to pipe up and tell them to stop. I found out who these people were and saw what their lives were like and came to the conclusions I've stated here. Kids need to be more active, engaging their minds. sure there'll be fights and stuff - I'm not claiming to have the answers to everything (I'm working on that). But the number of kids hanging around shopping centres or gate crashing parties just looking for a fight would go down down down.

PS I came out of that little scuffle with a few stitches to the head, bruised kidneys and some rib damage. The other kid who was being beaten up I saw in hospital. He had NO teeth left, broken ribs and arms, one ear had been ripped off and a compacted eye. fun fun fun. and for what? because some kids were bored.

damienpaul
2003-Dec-17, 03:47 PM
That sounds terrible, what happened to you Josh. I can relate to it though, I was set upon by 6 youths with baseball bats and crowbars abd no, martial arts is pretty useless for the most part (i had a broken wrist, cracked eye socket, concussion and 6 broken ribs).

But thank you for your kind words, I am but one of many who extend the teaching service well after hours and involve our families too - this year I have been involved in a science club, helped with junior and senior cricket, junior football, soccer and free homework help. Often these take up my lunch break and recess as well, but i do not mind. In fact i find it enriching.

One kid in particular, he failed every subject except maths, where he earned an A-, guess who his teacher was? He was so rapt on getting the A- that next semester he passed every subject with an average of an A- with an A+ in maths!!! I was so proud of his efforts! (as were his parents, other teachers, house master etc). It was that family that nominated me for the award!!!! But isaid then and still maintain that it was that boy who made the effort, and by his efforts and determination he achieved extremely high grades! If any award was to be given out, it ought to have gone to him - which it did at the awards night. :D :D :D

Well 2 years on and he is now a management trainee in a bakery and i received a Christmas card from him just to say thanks...and a bakery voucher for $30 -i am rapt!

I can say also, many kids are not university material by circumstance and by choice....I have identified many of them and have managed 32 jobs for 32 such kids.

But like I said, I am but one of many, and as a team member, i will pass on the congrats to my team, Thank you again.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-17, 10:13 PM
Sounds like it is time to outlaw baseball bats and fists. No really, if someone is hell bent on violence, anything can be a weapon. I will say Josh, it is the parents of these kids that are letting them down. I think parents ought to have to take parenting classes before they are even allowed to get pregnant. Teaching is frustrating but the rewards are worth it.

damienpaul
2003-Dec-18, 01:10 AM
I concur a googol-plex% with you tinaa

Chook
2003-Dec-24, 02:53 AM
I've got three school-teacher kids (2 Primary, 1 high) and, although they have had the odd disruptive child, none of them has experienced violence like Josh and Alice have experienced - thank God!

Maybe because they teach in Christian schools??? What do you think?

(I mean - kids will be kids no matter what type of school they go to - but maybe kids, whose parents have lashed out to pay for private education, may be better motivated to behave because of the influence of their parents.)

<_<

damienpaul
2003-Dec-24, 03:19 AM
I do teach at a Christian school and did when the attack occurred

Chook
2003-Dec-24, 05:11 AM
MY GOSH&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33; :blink:

Fraser
2003-Dec-24, 05:28 AM
My wife and I have had a chat about this, and we&#39;re agreed that it&#39;s our responsibility to compensate for any shortcomings that Chloe and Logan experience in the Canadian school system.

I think a lot of parents consider school to be a form of babysitting; a place they can drop their kids off while they work or get a break from being a parent. But the reality is that school is just one aspect of giving your children a well-rounded education. Parents need to take a real interest in what their children are being taught and then take an active role to help them get the most of it.

I can&#39;t believe how poorly teachers are treated in our country. These people are responsible for ensuring future generations are given a proper education, which will help the future of our planet. They should be held to a higher standard, but also given the respect and resources they require to do their job.

damienpaul
2003-Dec-24, 06:37 AM
I fully agree with you Fraser and wish there were more parents like you and your better half. I honestly cannot remember how many times i have been abused both physically and verbally as it is daily, I have even been run down from a parent (I caused more damage to the car than it did to me - blessed be Newton&#33;).

However I do remember all my students and remember 3 factors that keep me in the job:

1. to see them mature, graduate, mature some more and reach their dreams or at the very least have a happy fulfilling life.
2. I remember the details of the thanks etc and not the abuse
3. and working together with parents/guardians/social workers makes it a team effort

Its not easy and yes i do have scars externally and internally but i cannot see myself doing anything else.

Josh
2003-Dec-24, 09:18 AM
Well boys and girls. we can start up a space program AND a school system. I&#39;m down with that.

kashi
2003-Dec-24, 10:40 AM
I think that teachers are undervalued in many western countries. If you look at places like Japan and Korea on the other hand, teaching is among the most highly respected and most highly paid professions. I think that we could learn much from that system.

Chook
2003-Dec-24, 12:15 PM
I don&#39;t know other countries; but in Australia teachers become very stressed by their inability to adequately "discipline" a wayward child because of "the Rights" that children know they have (and exploit).

I understand what Fraser is saying, about many parents using the school system to "babysit" their children. But the reality is that in the great majority of cases, newly-married couples need around &#036;500,000 to purchase any sort of a house; then furnish it; then the two cars - and it goes on.

The result is that parents have a huge debt around their necks and both have to work in order to service their considerable monthly debt-repayments. So in their priorities their children come somewhere after their need to earn money.

Consequently the kids, and teachers, suffer. And I see no end to it.

kashi
2003-Dec-24, 12:29 PM
Let&#39;s not forget University Education, and how from 2005 in Australia, students will be slugged 30% more HECS fees (must be careful not to yell and scream at certain individuals in federal politics as that is against forum rules).

Josh
2003-Dec-24, 02:57 PM
University should be free. Making a system that allows the rich to continue their educations and the poor to not .. is ... well... stuffed right up. And in line with Kashi I won&#39;t berate the liberals for their catering-to-the-rich tactics.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-24, 04:44 PM
Here in the US we have many grant programs that provide grants for the poor students. It is the middle class students that get the screws put to them. I know the tuition here is out of sight and still going up. I&#39;ve been saving for my kids college. I keep telling them to get good grades so a scholarship may be available. Start saving now Fraser, I would hate to even try to imagine what college will cost when your kids are old enough. Thanks everybody for the nice thoughts about teachers. It&#39;s not really the lousy pay that makes me crazy, it is the parents who refuse to take responsibility for their own children&#39;s future. We can only do so much in the 7 hours we get them. It would be great to include more space science in a curriculum, but without parents to encourage their kids to reach higher, we teachers are just talking to the proverbial brick wall. And paying teachers more may not be the answer. This is truely a calling, not just a career. I don&#39;t want someone teaching my kid just because it pays well. A good teacher is there because they love the kids, not for the money&#33;

damienpaul
2003-Dec-25, 05:41 AM
exactly truly exactly Tinaa&#33; many parents in the college that i teach are thankfully supportive and many even volunteer in the classroom too - which at first was wierd but they are great in there as volunteer teacher-aides&#33;

I agree there needs to be more of an incentive to encourage more enthusiastic teachers such as yourself.

Alos, I would like to second Tinaa&#39;s thanks for the kind words about teachers, it is appreciated.

Chook
2003-Dec-25, 05:45 AM
She&#39;s kissing herself (rightly so&#33;) <_<

damienpaul
2003-Dec-25, 05:48 AM
all teachers should&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33; right after everyone else kisses our feet..:lol:

Faulkner
2003-Dec-27, 08:21 AM
School sucked/sucks.

It teaches you nothing but COMFORM&#33;

Kids should be free to live. When they grow up to be adults, they should have the choice to educate themselves (for free).

If it wasn&#39;t for schools etc there would be not much crime/disgust/disgruntlement from the youth.

High school was terrible for me&#33; I&#39;m not afraid to say it&#33; Teachers sucked, totally irresponsible *******s, the whole point of school was teaching DISCIPLINE, not education. I learnt NOTHING in school. Only AFTERWARDS did I find physics/astronomy/etc fascinating & pursue it.

I remember a mate who dropped out of high school very early, loved his drink & etc, who explained to me the doppler effect (before I knew anything about it). Just goes to show, don&#39;t it?

To summarize: The education system today STILL SUCKS&#33;

(PS: I pulled out of a Grad Dip course 1 day late (years ago). I copped a &#036;600 HECS fee. Now (apparently) it&#39;s a few thousand dollars&#33; Ha&#33; Like all stupid debts, I just ignore it&#33;).

Faulkner
2003-Dec-27, 09:22 AM
Let&#39;s not forget that free post-secondary education used to be a reality here in Australia&#33;

BRING IT BACK&#33;&#33;&#33;

kashi
2003-Dec-27, 10:59 AM
Amen to that Faulkner&#33;&#33;&#33; From 2005 I&#39;m paying an extra &#036;800 / year or something, and the funding to my course has just been cut by 53% and the university are expected to compensate for it&#33;&#33; It&#39;s so screwed&#33;

I actually had some very good teachers in high school (altough there were bad ones too). I had a scholarship to go to a private school, so I don&#39;t know what it&#39;s like in the public system.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-27, 05:39 PM
Yes Faulkner, let&#39;s have a bunch of ignorant, drunk 15 year olds deciding what schooling they want&#33; Who is going to support them while they find themselves? Don&#39;t ask my tax dollars to do it&#33;

I know here in the US many college students have to take remedial classes in math just so they are able to pass a college math course. Shameful. Blame the teachers? Maybe, some of them, but mostly blame the students and their parents. I keep hearing "too much homework," "I stayed out too late last night," "why do I need to learn this," "this stuff sucks&#33;" The kids that want to learn, do learn. Their parents see that they do their homework. Take the free tutoring that offered every morning at school if they don&#39;t understand something. I can only teach as fast as the slowest or laziest kid will learn because I cannot allow that lazy kid to "feel" bad. I have to drag that kid, kicking and screaming through, so that at least s/he can fill out an application for a job and read the electric bill when s/he becomes an adult.

I agree about conformity. Kids learn a lot of that via peer pressure and that to which they conform is not always good.

I feel school is supposed to expose kids to many different ideas and teach them critical thinking. If you will read why I started this thread, you will see that I am not exactly happy with the state of education either. But telling me it sucks doesn&#39;t do anything either&#33; Exactly WHAT needs to change. What can a teacher do to fix it?

Chook
2003-Dec-27, 07:02 PM
Amen Tinaa&#33; What more can be added to that&#33;

Loved your lines -
"Yes Faulkner, let&#39;s have a bunch of ignorant, drunk 15 year olds deciding what schooling they want&#33; Who is going to support them while they find themselves? Don&#39;t ask my tax dollars to do it&#33; "

If it wasn&#39;t so serious it&#39;d be hillariously funny. But we all know that Faulkner&#39;s a born Stirrer :D .

The only thought I would like to add is that I believe that "freedom" must be rather narrowly channelled within limits. Harsh restriction results in rebellion; whilst restricted freedom results in intelligent initiative.

There was a case here where a single male parent was having terrible trouble with his little 6-year old girl - so he turned to a child-psychogist for assistance.

It turned out that he was offering his little darling too many choices. As an example - he opened up her whole wardrobe of dresses and asked her which one she wanted to wear - resulting in half-an-hour of argument. So the expert suggested that he offer her a choice of three - problem solved. Breakfast was not a choice between six, but two. And so on. Their problem was solved through drawing a line in the sand. I&#39;ll ask daughter Belinda to comment - she&#39;s here for Christmas

Fraser
2003-Dec-27, 07:42 PM
Well, if you can give your students the ability to think critically for themselves, that&#39;s probably one of the best preparations you can give them for life. I know I&#39;m going to be teaching that to Chloe and Logan as soon as their little minds can comprehend what I&#39;m trying to explain to them. I want to immunize them against advertising, scams, and peer pressure as soon as possible, and keep them questioning the world around them.

I&#39;ve learned a lot about questioning authority in my life, and plan to get them doing the same. Of course... they&#39;d better not question my authority&#33; ;-)

Tinaa
2003-Dec-27, 09:17 PM
That is the tough part Fraser&#33; I&#39;ve tried to teach my kids to think for themselves and not be a part of the group mentality. Being the teenagers they are, now they want to question everything&#33; I think I have created monsters&#33; "Because I said so" doesn&#39;t work with my kids. Like you, I want them to question all authority except mine. I&#39;ll warn you now Fraser, it don&#39;t work that way. :D

Chook
2003-Dec-27, 10:41 PM
Hi I&#39;m "daughter Belinda". I teach primary and High school Phys ed in Australia. It has been interesting reading your conversations about education. In response to Tinna&#39;s original enquiry, in Australia there are often two different streams students can choose from. At about 14/15yrs old the student and teachers decide whether the student should take the stream in senior high that will prepare them for university entry or the vocational stream that will prepare them for a trade or TAFE course. If they take the vocational stream often they can do certificates that will be recognised by other organisations or they can start apprenticeships while they are still at school. This allows them to gain a high school graduation certificate and qualifications that can save them time off a course or apprenticeship.
In relation to behaviour i definately think students work best when they have boundaries set by teachers that are enforced. Behaviour problems often stem from students not coping with the work being set or they maybe bored with the work. Children spend a lot of their leisure time in front of computers, video games, TV etc....Therefore I think that students often relate well to lessons that involve multi media. The school i currently teach at offer subjects like robotics and multi media studies and these seem to be very popular subjects.
I don&#39;t think the Education system will ever cater for every individual child, it is a very hard task. I think the government often come up with new ideas that they think will improve the system but often don&#39;t give teachers adequate resources or time to implement new policies. Therefore a lot of teachers become frustrated and negative.
I have taught PE for 5 years now and i enjoy my job. Most importantly i enjoy being a part of a child&#39;s development and obviously their sporting development. Every job has it&#39;s bad points, but on the whole teaching is very worthwhile.
Belinda

kashi
2003-Dec-27, 11:29 PM
I wish people would stop generating stereotypes here. I am a teenage student and I am very passionate about what I do. I know many people my age that have a fairly clear vision of themselves in the future (and some that don&#39;t). I&#39;m not saying there&#39;s not a problem, but you can&#39;t make rash generalisations&#33;

I for one, at least partly blame the media for creating an atmosphere that is "dumbing down" the population (not just youth...I know many adults that lack direction too). Take one look at what&#39;s shown on television on a day to day basis&#33; With regards to current teenagers, we&#39;re talking about a generation that was raised by MTV, a money-driven Hollywood and news services filled with propaganda. We’re also talking about a generation of parents that let their kids watch this mind numbing crap&#33; People are a product of genetics and their environment. Obviously this is not a hereditary problem, so the issue lies somewhere in the environment that children are raised in&#33;

I blame the media and technology. I know how impatient I get when waiting to receive an SMS. 30 years ago there weren’t any answering machines and nobody complained (at least there is no record of them complaining…ho ho ho). Technology makes people impatient and lazy. I tutor several high school students in mathematics and I think TV is the No. 1 problem.

Let’s keep the stereotypes to a minimum please&#33;

Chook
2003-Dec-27, 11:52 PM
In a discussion like this you have to generalize.

kashi
2003-Dec-28, 05:40 AM
That itself is a ridiculous generalisation. Perhaps you are trying to be funny/clever?

Faulkner
2003-Dec-28, 06:47 AM
Once again Kashi comes through with the factoids.

I am surprised at how young Kashi is - still a teenager&#33;

I myself am an old man. Just goes to show, don&#39;t it, WATCH OUT TEACHERS&#33; The kids are smarter than YOU these days&#33;

HA HA&#33;

Josh
2003-Dec-28, 07:10 AM
I&#39;m with Chook on this one. In these types of discussions you can only talk abgout the mainstream problem and that is the one that is defined by a generalisation by it&#39;s very nature. There are always going to be people who are outside the stereotype but that doesn&#39;t change the fact that the problem is there and noticable even if it&#39;s not a problem for everyone.

Generalise away.

Faulkner
2003-Dec-28, 07:14 AM
Ha, depends what you interpret "mainstream"&#33;&#33;&#33;

Faulkner
2003-Dec-28, 07:46 AM
I mean, it&#39;s kinda obvious that Josh & Chook & Tinaa have got something going on on the side... Go guys&#33; Ha ha... Good to see this forum getting used properly&#33; Ha ha...(I&#39;d like to discuss ratio&#39;s, tho&#39;&#33;)...

Chook
2003-Dec-28, 09:10 AM
Quote Faulkner:
"The kids are smarter than YOU these days&#33;"

Thinks they-are/he-is :rolleyes:

jimmy
2003-Dec-28, 09:39 AM
Many thanks to Chook&#39;s daughter Belinda for the input&#33; It&#39;s nice to have outside/inside help&#33;

kashi
2003-Dec-28, 11:47 AM
The two streamed system Belinder refered to does not occur in Victoria or New South Wales (where the majority of Australia&#39;s population resides) to my knowledge.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-28, 04:55 PM
I&#39;ve been waiting to hear from you Kashi. You ARE an exceptionally bright teenager. But, you are a musician. How much do you think music helped you? (Studies show participating in some kind of music making increases kids abilities in other subjects.) You and the few like you are the exception to the rule&#33; As a teacher, there is nothing better than being challeged by a student. Makes me get my own brain going.

I like the idea of splitting the kids from voc and college bound. (Thanks Belinda) I am tutoring kids in upper level maths that have no plans for post-secondary education. One kid is going to be a professional bull rider (rodeo). We all know the guy probably can&#39;t do that forever, but you can&#39;t tell him that. If a student or anybody, has no desire to learn, they will not learn.

Most everyone on this forum may be considered outside the "norm." Actively trying to learn something new that isn&#39;t required for the job.

Yes Faulkner, it is wonderful that there are some students smarter than me&#33; Where would this world be without the Einsteins, Newtons and Hawkings? :P

Chook
2003-Dec-28, 07:37 PM
Belinda teaches in a Christian school (that&#39;ll stirr up Kashi) in Fremantile, Western Australia. :)

Chook
2003-Dec-28, 08:01 PM
Quote Tinaa:
"Studies show participating in some kind of music making increases kids abilities in other subjects."

Sorry - I&#39;m going to brag here - all our four kids grew up with music and playing something. Eldest daughter, Laura, (Captain of both Primary and High Schools) sings, plays the flute and teaches in a Christian school in Townsville (eat your heart out Kashi&#33;). Son Oliver, an officer in the military SAS (served in Afghanistan and Iraq) plays a brilliant trombone and guitar; and the two youngest girls, who sing and dance, have both done diplomas.

Boast boast boast ...

So - I agree with Tinaa.

PS Belinda is Oliver&#39;s wife.

kashi
2003-Dec-28, 10:42 PM
About the music thing I couldn&#39;t agree more.

There are advantages and disadvantages in streaming kids I think. I was all for it in high school because it sped up the classes that I was in (sometimes I wasn&#39;t the most tolerant of human beings when it came to other peoples&#39; learning). I think some people "bloom" late in life though. I guess it&#39;s just too bad if their future is predetermined in high school&#33; Last year I started tutoring students in final year maths and I agree that there is nothing more frustrating that teaching people who don&#39;t want to learn.

I&#39;m still inexperienced and naive when it comes to teaching students, but I&#39;d like to think that everyone is capable of being inspired (whether it be about atronomy, music or rodeo). A teacher of mine used to say "10 percent inspiration 90 percent perspiration". What this ratio fails to take into account is that for every bit of inspiration, the perspiration part happens a lot easier. I think that the 10 and 90 should be switched. I try to do things like show some of my students pictures of Hubble Deep Field so that they will appreciate just how amazing the Universe is. Some respond and some don&#39;t. That we live in an age where we can view thousands of galaxies millions of light years away, listen to great recordings of a Brahms Piano Concerto and Louis Armstrong&#39;s Hot Five...it&#39;s a gift to be treasured.

I think that that primal urges have greater importance than intellectual ones for most human beings (in adults too). While I don&#39;t understand this lack of enthusiasm for learning I think that it explains why so many people enjoy the constant pulse and thumping bass of pop music rather than the subtle interpretive stylings of the classical or jazz musician. It&#39;s about how we evolved to be driven by procreation and not by gazing in awe at the night sky.

I want everyone here to go out and buy a recording of the Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2. This is the best one I&#39;ve found so far:
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00...3065763-0140129 (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B000001GQY/qid=1072651104/sr=2-1/ref=sr_2_1/102-3065763-0140129). It&#39;s a double CD that&#39;s very affordably priced. If you don&#39;t cry during the 2nd movement in particular then there&#39;s something physically wrong with you :)

Tinaa
2003-Dec-29, 12:06 AM
If you are "split off" in high school, why can&#39;t you go back later in life? I&#39;m forty :o years old and back in college. You are never too old to learn. I&#39;m even planning on taking a few more astronomy classes just because I can. Though they may also go for getting certified to teach science. I only need a couple more classes. Price is a problem (thank goodness for student loans :D ) I&#39;ll be paying back for awhile, but the interest is extremely low and I think worth the cost. Are student loans offered anywhere else? One of the reasons I am against totally free post-secondary education is that I know what goes on a colleges, here anyway. I really don&#39;t want to pay for students going away to party for a few years. If you have to pay for it, you will appreciate it more. It also weeds out the students going for the &#39;fun&#39; of it. If you play your cards right and fill out a short form on the internet here in the US, the government will help. Most students can get either grants (no repayment) or low interest student loans. And there are all kinds of scholarships available that never get used for lack of applications.

kashi
2003-Dec-29, 12:39 AM
There are lots of student loans in Australia. Our University education system is built around HECS (Higher Education Contribution Scheme). The government pays for most of your course, and students pay a percentage of it. You can defer your HECS payment and pay it off later in life once you earn over a certain amount. This "loan" is indexed with CPI so it is effectively zero interest. The trend in Australia seems to be towards paying more for tertiary education, which I am utterly opposed to, especially for courses like mine (as artists aren&#39;t really able to earn huge amounts of money easily, but they still have something valuable to contribute to society).

There are a shortage of scholarships in Australian Universities in my opinion.

Matthew
2003-Dec-30, 03:17 AM
There are a shortage of scholarships in Australian Universities in my opinion.

Though there are some which are worth quite a bit, I read in the newspaper (Herald Sun) that the students who got a VCE ENTER score of 99.95 (the highest possible) will get a scholarship to Melbourne University worth, I think, &#036;100000.

Josh
2003-Dec-30, 03:58 AM
Well Matthew, as was said before, that is out of the ordinary. Getting a ENTER of 99.95 means you are in the top 0.05% of the population and by definition that is a rarity&#33;&#33; Any scholarship for &#036;100G would be over a four year period at least. Postgard degree scholarships are only in the vicinity of &#036;20G (tax free).

Matthew
2003-Dec-30, 04:16 AM
I admit that is a rarity, but any scholarship is a bonus, today tertiary education here, in Melbourne and Australia, is extremely expensive.

kashi
2003-Dec-30, 05:05 AM
My cousin got 99.90 and did not get a scholarship for Law and Melbourne uni. Scholarship availability is so scarce it is ridiculous.

Josh
2003-Dec-30, 06:50 AM
The point is there shouldn&#39;t be a need for a scholarship&#33; Tertiary education should just be free.

kashi
2003-Dec-30, 09:14 AM
I&#39;m inclined to agree with you.

Faulkner
2003-Dec-30, 01:23 PM
Hellalulya&#33;

Sheesh, the patronizing attitudes from some of these TEACHERS in this forum towards the youth of today is shocking&#33; "Give them the cane, or else they&#39;ll be out drinking and partying&#33;"...what a load of rot&#33; EDUCATION before discipline.

By "Education", I don&#39;t mean memorizing dates, names, formulae, etc, and then regurgitating it all down on some stupid one-off exam paper...

I mean, painting a picture in children&#39;s minds, so they can actually UNDERSTAND. Examinations are ridiculous. "Oh, I got 99.99999% in my test&#33;" Congratulations. But do you understand the principles behind the learning, how it applies to reality? Most kids think maths was totally irrelevant. (So did I back then). Now I wished I had&#39;ve got into it more, I can see it&#39;s relevance. But in high school, maths and physics were different subjects. Everything is dissected. Kids don&#39;t make the connections, they throw it all away in disgust.

Teach a kid how we&#39;ve measured the speed of light. Go through the experiments with the whole class. Then teach them that velocity equals distance divided by time...etc...etc...Until they&#39;ve got relativity in their heads, clear as day.

I&#39;m rambling on a bit here because some of my "critics" wanted me to expand on my comment that "SCHOOL SUCKS"&#33; (But could be a lot better)...

Tinaa
2003-Dec-30, 05:35 PM
Faulkner sounds like you need to be a teacher. I dare you&#33; Become a teacher and change all that you see is wrong. You were wronged as a child, now it is time for payback. It is time for you to stand up and show those lousy teachers that of which you are made. Thousands of teachers around the world need you to set them straight. Show the correct way to capture the students&#39; imagination and stimulate the intellect.

Now while you are doing that, remember, these same students must pass the state mandated tests that ask about dates, names, formulae or the students cannot graduate high school. These students also cannot pass the SAT, ACT or the TASP tests required to get into a university.

Also, ignore the student that comes in late everyday because the truant officer had to chase him down. The kid is 18 years old, but his probation officer says he must be in school everyday. This student decides that if he is going to be miserable, so is everyone around him, especially the teacher. In fact, every kid, until they are 18, must attend school everyday. That is how the school gets its money. By how many students attend each day. Got to keep those numbersup&#33;

Oh, and cancel that experiment, the equipment you ordered, is not coming in today or ever. You see, the people are tired of their tax dollars paying for schools that do not teach. They want more state mandated tests to prove the students are learning the names, dates and formulae that they had to learn.

I admit, many of these problems may just be related to the education problems we are facing inthe US. But, the challenge still holds.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-30, 05:56 PM
Oh, I forgot to mention the LD, ED, and other physically and mentally disabled kids. These students must be mainstreamed into as many classes as possible. It doesn&#39;t matter that one child is paranoid schizophrenic and runs out of the class screaming every time she see a balloon. She also constantly mutters curse words through out the lesson/experiment/lunch. Then there is the boy who has ODD (oppositional defiant disorder). The teacher cannot say anything to the child because it becomes a battle of wills. The teacher must say "Johnny please sit down and quit breaking the beakers," "Please do not light all the bunsen burners," etc. If the teacher does not speak kindly to the child, the school will be sued, because the student has all the rights. I can go on and on. Every child has a right to a free and appropriate education (FAPE)*. If a child is under the "special education umbrella," (IDEA)* he has even more rights. What about the boy with cerebral palsy, extremely bright, but needs lots of special equipment, like the blind boy and the autistic girl. Every lesson must be taught so that no student is left behind (NCLB)*. So, forget any experiments that may allow Johnny near a fire, because he can&#39;t be left out, even thought he may decide to catch his lab partner on fire&#33; No lasers either.

* the are all laws passed by the Congress of the US

By the way, these are just like the kids I work with everyday. I love them.

Josh
2003-Dec-30, 11:00 PM
So that system tries to produce kids only as smart and knowledgable as the dumbest or least knowledgable or least educationable kid in the class?

Tinaa
2003-Dec-31, 12:57 AM
If, big if, a student wants more, more is offered. There are dual credit courses, credits that count for both high school and college credit, advanced classes, and several other options for the student that seeks more. But, the run of the mill average student is more or less &#39;held back.&#39; It is against the law to discriminate against people with disablities. Now, a mentally retarded student with an IQ of 30 will not be in a British Lit class, however, that student will be included in a class studying horticulture. For a student interested in an Ag. degree, it is a huge problem. It is called inclusion. Unfortunely, it seems to hinder the general ed students rather than help the spec. ed. student. But, such is the law. And, people wonder what is wrong with the schools. You tell me. Should such a very small minority of people dictate what happens to the rest?

Do students in Australia, or anywhere else, have to pass tests to graduate or get into college?

Josh
2003-Dec-31, 01:28 AM
Well, Tinaa, that&#39;s stuffed&#33;

In australia you have to sit exams and test etc to graduate. The final year of school here in Victoria is called VCE (vic cert of education). It is essentially a year of tests, exams and projects. There is a set standard and everyone is held to it. The standard isn&#39;t that of the lowest common denominator. There is a lot of leighway though for "special consideration". But essentially, if you want to get into a university degree or a TAFE degree or whatever, you have to pass to a certain level (depending on what you want to do). University entrance is mostly based on VCE scores and subject choices. When trying to get into some course you may have to sit extra exams to show aptitude or have an interview or similar. If you want to do engineering for eg then if you&#39;ve done Specialist Maths and Physics you get bonus points basically for having done those subjects that the university see as applicable to that degree. Any Language will also give you bonus points regardless of what course you intend on doing.

Also noteworthy (and a little aside) here is (as I&#39;m sure you&#39;re aware) that the systems in Australia and the USA are markedly different. Here undergraduate courses are entered into directly from school while in the USA you do a whole bunch of subjects and then go on to your chosen field. A family friend of mine and a professor at my university is an american. He&#39;s has taught in Australia, the USA, worked for NASA and the US Air force. He and i had a conversation about the diff systems once and he was adamant that undergrad here is far and away better than the american system and we are prepared much better for the "real world" while postgrad in the USA is leaps and bounds ahead of the aussie system because of the amount of money that can be thrown into research over there compared to here.

Tinaa
2003-Dec-31, 04:59 AM
I don&#39;t doubt you at all. The first two years of a four year degree is spent reviewing the basics that should have been learned in high school. <_< One can take CLEP tests. These are tests that prove one has the knowledge that those classes were supposed to impart. It is possible to CLEP out as many "core" classes as you can. They are fairly cheap and can save a lot of money. A foreign language is required in high school, at least two years of it. It does sound like it is more difficult to get into a college there. Do y&#39;all have community or junior colleges? These colleges usually offer either a two year Associate&#39;s degree in a vocational area or one can complete the "core" subjects before heading off to a university. They are much cheaper than universities and many times the classes are much smaller and students receive better instruction. There is a policy here in Texas that if you graduate in the top ten percent of your class, you are automatically accepted into the college of your choice in the state.

Josh
2003-Dec-31, 05:13 AM
The demand for such colleges isn&#39;t there. Everyone who wants to go to university has to have completed VCE. If you haven&#39;t done that then you can go and complete VCE at a TAFE (technical college). It may sound more difficult to get into uni here, i don&#39;t know. I do know that a lot of kids find it the most challenging year they&#39;ve ever had. a lot of tears and late nights. i personally found it rather fun. My sister spent the year in tears.

Planetwatcher
2003-Dec-31, 08:14 AM
Boy Tinaa, some of your comments really bring back memories, of both my own experiences, and now watching my daughter who is just starting out as a sub.

The city in which I live is (supposivly) one of the best in the country, but if my spelling and punctuation is any kind of example, then we must be in real trouble.

I can remember the level based &#39;reading groups&#39; and that stigma&#39;s that went with them.
The system of course just moves you on to the next grade, because being held back is the most humiliating thing that can happen to a student.
The very few which that happened to would endure unbearable teasing, and were the very first ones to drop out of school.

The special ed classes are just about as bad, but again, it&#39;s not the teachers fault, their hands are tied. Of coarse as children we didn&#39;t know that, nor would we have been able to understand it.

But mostly the bullies are given free reign to do what they want to who ever they want, and nothing is ever done about it. Unless you defend yourself.
That is when I got into the most trouble, and was also the one time Gina ever got into trouble herself.
She was otherwise a consistant top honor student.
One day, one of the boys teased Gina about being fat and hit her with a violin case.
She finally snapped after 4 years of this boy&#39;s teasing. She tore into him, grabed his head, and began bashing his face into the top of a table, breaking his nose, fractuing his jaw, and knocking out a couple teeth.
Both were expelled from that school, and both had to enroll in a different school, the same school at that. But that boy never teased Gina again, and became a subject of teasing himself for allowing a girl to beat him up.

And how completly out of touch the district was about my son with Downs Syndrome. His teachers told us he would never learn to count, or read, or tie his shoes, or ride a bicycle. That he could not even be taught even basic information
of his address, and phone number. They would compain about lack of funding, and lack of staffing help. And the best we could expect was for him to go with a group into a fast food restruant, order based on the pictures on the menu, sit down, eat, and not act in a manner to cause others embarrassment.

So we pulled him out and home schooled him. With no end of harrassment from the district, even though they were nothing but babysitters since they didn&#39;t teach him anything. They even took us to court and accused us of abuse, neglect, and child endangerment.
We showed the judge the documentation his teachers provided us of how uneducatable he is, and that it should make no difference to the district since they weren&#39;t teaching him anyway. The districts counter arguement was socialization and that was all they had. Since the school he was to attend was the same one his older sister got kicked out of, we had her testify concerning the socialization going on in that school, and especially among those in special ed.

Donna and I were representing ourselves without an attorney to courts discouragement until Donna called our son to the stand.
They of course objected on the grounds that the boy was not compentent to testify.
The judge overruled until the boy&#39;s actions proved that alligation.
Then Donna got out the flash cards and quized him. And one of his reading books, and had him read from it. She borrowed the judges pen and paper from the court recorder and had him sign his name. Finally she asked him to count to ten. He went to twenty five before his first mistake. Then it was my turn. I asked him to identify different denomenations of money. I showed pictures of ten United States Presidents for him to name. I had him demonstrate tying his shoes, and asked him to identify four cestrial bodies from pictures.

We ended with Donna showing a short video of him riding his bike with special training wheels, then a clip from recently of him riding his bike after I took off the training wheels.
The judgement favored us, and we never heard from the district about him ever again.

Now Gina is a sub-teacher. One of her assignments was at the very school she was expelled from 11 years ago. Too bad that principle has retired.
She is frequently requested at schools she subbed at before.

And she tells us some of the same things you do.

Our school systems need to stop patching with bandaids and begin a major overhawl, starting with increasing pay, and empowerment.
But those changes will only come if and when we replace our President and Congress.

Chook
2003-Dec-31, 10:14 AM
Quote Faulkner:
"Sheesh, the patronizing attitudes from some of these TEACHERS in this forum towards the youth of today is shocking&#33; "Give them the cane, or else they&#39;ll be out drinking and partying&#33;"...what a load of rot&#33; EDUCATION before discipline."

Geez Faulkner - what do you do for a living? Ever heard of Objective Management? You identify a goal - and go for it&#33; In a race, or a (football) game, you don&#39;t argue with the umpire - you get on with the job as hard as you can. Can you imagine an active soldier disagreeing with his platoon commander? What&#39;s so different with a student and his/her teacher?

Surely the "objective" is to get your degree. A (medical) doctor friend of mine had to send his kid to do Medicine in Adelaide, South Australia, because he wasn&#39;t accepted locally (in New South Wales). The kid&#39;ll get through because, even though he hasn&#39;t an IQ of 120, he&#39;ll finally get through because he&#39;s a worker and has the right attitude. So - as a student competing with all other kids in your state - go for it and do your best. No more can be reasonably expected.

I don&#39;t think the cane did any harm to the previous generation of students - ask them&#33; They&#39;ll tell you some hilarious stories about getting caught doing something or other and, by and large, they respected their "Mr. Chips" and worked for them (and themselves).

Of course there are good and bad teachers (as in any profession); but I suggest that every resource should be provided teachers to educate the kids (young men and women) under their charge and absolutely minimise the crap that they have to put up with these days.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-01, 12:10 AM
Hey Chook, I don&#39;t think making the analogy between "student/teacher" and "soldier/platoon commander" is doing your case much justice&#33; ;)

Anyhow...Each to their own.

(PS: FYI, Chook, I&#39;m a screenprinter for a DVD company&#33;)

Chook
2004-Jan-01, 02:08 AM
Quote Faulkner:
"Hey Chook, I don&#39;t think making the analogy between "student/teacher" and "soldier/platoon commander" is doing your case much justice&#33;"

I know, pal, but what do you expect after celebrations & 4 hours&#39; sleep (on 1/1/2004).

Anyway, in retrospect, the point I was trying to make is that in both cases there are objectives to be achieved; that the teachers/platoon-commanders both have the responsibility of achieving those objectives; and that the chances of success are greatly facilitated by the positive co-operation of their charges.

Quote Faulkner:
"(PS: FYI, Chook, I&#39;m a screenprinter for a DVD company&#33;)"

And a very knowledgable one … <_<
But you must have had hell at school.
(OK OK - you&#39;re just a stirrer&#33;)
:D

damienpaul
2004-Jan-02, 11:44 AM
all teachers are trained as stirrers&#33;&#33;&#33;

Tinaa
2004-Jan-02, 09:19 PM
I wouldn&#39;t call myself a stirrer...but I am teaching my kids (both my students and my own children) question everything. In my corner of the world, drugs, especially pot, is big thing on and in many of my students minds. They always try to startle me with asking me why pot is illegal. I respond that if they feel it should be legalized, they need to do something about instead of complaining. They must register to vote, begin a letter writing campaign, educate the public on the benefits of legalizing pot, etc. Most people don&#39;t care enough to do anything about anything. If this is the only way to get some students interested in government, I&#39;ll do it.

I am re-reading Hawking&#39;s book "A Brief History of Time" hoping to gleen a bit more knowledge. My daughter came and asked what I was reading. It was the part about the spin of a quark 0, 1, 2, and 1/2. I tried explaining what I was reading, but she still doesn&#39;t have the basic chemistry/physics knowledge to understand (I&#39;m beginning to wonder if I do :blink: ).

Anyway to answer Faulkner about doing an experiment on the speed of light...first the students must have a fundamental knowledge of waves, frequency, etc. Teaching my daughter about a quark&#39;s spin does nothing unless she understands atoms first.

Chook
2004-Jan-02, 09:27 PM
Ah.... for the Olde Days of Readin&#39;, Ritin&#39; and Rithmatic&#33; :(

Many scientific hot-shots carnt spel theez dayz.

Sigh ... <_<

Josh
2004-Jan-03, 01:25 AM
You know .. one of the best things I like about the Australian democracy is that voting is compulsory. You tend to be more informed when you are forced to do something like pick the next government.

Chook
2004-Jan-03, 01:57 AM
Norty Josh - no polatics ;)

damienpaul
2004-Jan-03, 06:57 AM
by stirring, i meant to be able to stir the students into action for themselves. I do not see any justification for me beinbg treated like a piece of dirt for trying to help the students as well as doing as &#39;i am told&#39;

Faulkner
2004-Jan-04, 12:18 AM
one of the best things I like about the Australian democracy is that voting is compulsory.

Josh, 2-party politics sure ain&#39;t my idea of "democracy"&#33; That&#39;s why I refuse to vote, and throw my fines in the bin&#33; Ha&#33;

Whoops, sorry, back to the subject.


Anyway to answer Faulkner about doing an experiment on the speed of light...first the students must have a fundamental knowledge of waves, frequency, etc. Teaching my daughter about a quark&#39;s spin does nothing unless she understands atoms first.

Agreed&#33; (Gee, Tinaa, do you believe it?). :blink: YES, a child must be taught these fundamental things. Not simply forced to "memorize", but to "visualize" in a holistic/lateral/whatever way.

All I&#39;m *****ing about in this post is the entire Western education system. It sucks. Forcing kids through the farcical TEE examination system (or whatever it&#39;s called these days) is shocking. A stupid test paper should not be a criteria for future success in life.

I have a B.A. and I work a menial blue-collar job. Maybe I wasn&#39;t born with that "competitive edge", that "go get &#39;em" approach to job interviews/life? Maybe it&#39;s because I find suits & ties ridiculous? Maybe I&#39;m just totally divorced from this pathetic yuppie-conservo world I was handballed? ("Thanks a lot, God&#33;")...

By the way, Tinaa, getting your students vocal in the honorable "pro-pot" crusade is nice, but you don&#39;t want police busting down their doors, do you? I think that&#39;s why a lot of potheads hide their precious "vice"...they&#39;re basically scared of getting busted&#33; Ridiculous...it&#39;s just a beautiful plant&#33;?

Tinaa
2004-Jan-04, 12:34 AM
I think the drug war here is a joke, more wasted money. (Who really cares if anyone smokes pot? There are a lot worse things in my opinion.) I wasn&#39;t really trying to get my students to go vocal about pot, just get them to thinking about how they can try to change the laws. I&#39;m trying to find ways to change the school system so it does work. That is why I started this thread. I&#39;m seriously looking for ideas. If I am going to start complaining, I need to offer viable solutions. I know there are more people from around the world on this forum. Please let me know how your part of the world handles school and if it is working&#33;

damienpaul
2004-Jan-06, 02:53 PM
in my limited experience, i have found that getting trades people and other professionals to come in not to give a lecture but to view the students&#39; work, it has worked with the 62 students who I have helped find work/traineeships/apprenticeships - but the work ethic and independence needs to be instilled in them - as it seems that you are doing Tinaa.

Chook
2004-Jan-06, 07:52 PM
Quote Tinaa:
"Not that I can change a time-honored, though ineffective, system, but change has to start somewhere."

Surely the object of "education" is to develop an individual&#39;s productiveness for the benefit of themselves and the community.

How?

1. Ascertain their mental and physical capacity through (wait for it …) competition. Same young people are Late Bloomers - so this process may take up to teenage years to fully complete.
2. Educate them according to their capacity - this is where division into profession/trades happen.
3. Let the system be flexible enough for change-overs to occur.
4. Every adult must know certain basic facts of life- so teaching of arithmatic and geometry, science, IT, language, history, biology and sport is essential. "No ifs and buts&#33;"

Isn&#39;t this what happens now?

It seems as if Faukner doesn&#39;t approve of competition.
Competition is absolutely essential part of life - games of all sorts, children in the home, adults in the workplace, wars. How do you know kids potential without competitian? The result of competition is excellence.

Isn&#39;t this what happens now?

Be specific, you guys - basically, isn&#39;t the existing system OK?
(Anything can be improved in the local context.)

damienpaul
2004-Jan-06, 10:32 PM
overall it is not too bad...but i&#39;d like to see more&#33;

Tinaa
2004-Jan-07, 01:40 AM
I don&#39;t know Chook. From what I have read, the US spends more money per child yet has very mediocre results. Granted, we require the students to be "well rounded." They must take (at least in Texas) at least two years of a foreign language, computer classes, fine arts, PE or athletics, speech/communications along with the core subjects, which include 4 years English/Language Arts/Literature, 3 years math, 3 years science, and 4 years history/civics/gov&#39;t on the minimum graduation plan. There are many other subjects offered for those seeking more technical skills (microsoft certification, health occupations, culinary arts, electronics repair, building trades, drafting, horticulture, small engine repair, etc.). Perhaps we should just teach the basics until the students graduate high school. Students here attend school for thirteen years. Kindergarten through fifth grade is elementary school, six through eight is middle school, then nine through twelve is high school. Maybe we are trying to do too much. But we are losing too many kids through the cracks. Our prisons are full of these kids.

damienpaul
2004-Jan-07, 01:47 AM
it is fast becoming the same in australia

eggplant
2004-Jan-07, 01:54 AM
About schools in other countries, I used to work with exchange students and learned this...
In Germany there are three tracks starting after "elementary level" Low middle and high... high being the university track. There is NO music nor school sports, Norway is simular to this.
In Brasil they only go a half a day, the second half of the day they either go to "private" prepatory or sports schools or go home and work...
In Korea they have 10 hour school days 6 or seven days a week with no summer.

I to have worked with the DD and ADHD ADD NRBQ crowds and respect all of you for what I know you are trying to do. I wish I had something more helpful to add. All the exchange students I knew were great students who loved learning... Therefore a pleasure to deal with...

damienpaul
2004-Jan-07, 01:59 AM
as i have found from students from india, south africa, tanzania and romania

Chook
2004-Jan-07, 09:59 AM
I&#39;m Laura, Chooks daughter (He likes a bit of a brag doesn&#39;t he&#33;&#33;&#33;). I have just finished my first year of teaching at a Christian school in Queensland - Australia. It has been very interesting to read all your comments. When I first started teaching, I was very idealistic. I had the idea in my head that I was going to change all my students for the better, because I was going to be the perfect teacher (choke, choke&#33;). It didn&#39;t take me long to figure out that this was a long shot, and that a change as small as a student understanding a small step in maths was a miracle&#33;&#33; :D

Something that has hit me as a starting out teacher is something that you have mentioned Tinaa, and a few of you others: "I am teaching my kids (both my students and my own children) to question everything". This was what we were taught at Uni - Teach the kids to be critical thinkers and help them to be lifelong learners blah blah. Yes, our students are critical thinkers, and yes they are questioning theories, BUT they are also questioning authority. Kids no longer do something just because you said so, they have to have a reason for everything. The lack of respect is astounding. It is very difficult to teach students to question everything but authority.

I taught grade 7 - 29 of them. I had about 6 kids with behaviour management problems, 3 kids in learning support and one kid with ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder). Having such a big class with so many behaviour problems was very challenging. This year in our school we are moving away from normal (for want of a better word?) classes (same age in the same class), and moving on to levelling classes (same ability level in the same class). I am not exactly sure how this is going to work, but it shound be very interesting. Some kids learn in leaps and bounds and will surge ahead, while it will be embarrassing for the students that are in the same class for a few years. Does anyone know about this kind of schooling? The boy in my class that had ADD did very little work during the year. I struggled with this to start with, because I thought I was failing. I later learned from his paediatrician that he had improved out of sight and that he was a much happier child - what a thrill for me. This taught me not to base success on how much content the kids learn. Anyway, my concern with the new system is that kids like this get kept back and lose any self worth they had.

Thanks for all your interesting comments. I would say more about the Queesnland system of teaching if I knew more. I&#39;m also sick of staring at the computer screen (don&#39;t sound like a chooky do I&#33;). :ph34r:

Chook
2004-Jan-09, 03:42 AM
Tinaa: (This is my concluding comment.)

I suggest that it is the attitude of the student that counts above all - in a good, or bad education system.

To give you an example - we&#39;ve had a friend stay with us for a few days whose husband abandoned her years ago.

With NO money - her daughter, Heidi, worked hard to get her HSC (matriculation), joined the police force, studied Law, and is now a young up-and-coming Police Prosecutor. We all know other cases like this - and it CAN be done - whether you are disadvantaged by being an affluent spoiled brat, or from a working class minority group.

Somebody said that you can&#39;t legislat for morality. I would suggest that the same goes for student attitude. Throwing money at schools (or minority groups) won&#39;t change their attitude (sorry).

Mr. Chips MAY.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-15, 11:26 PM
<personal attack on another user...removed by Kashi>

Chook
2004-Jan-16, 08:24 AM
Sincere thanks Kashi.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-16, 07:30 PM
Sorry, next time I&#39;ll generalise. Just can&#39;t stand brainless conservatism, that&#39;s all&#33;

"THE WORKING CLASS IS REVOLTING&#33;&#33;&#33;"

ha ha...

Chook
2004-Jan-16, 09:56 PM
Quote Faulkner:
"Just can&#39;t stand brainless conservatism".
Most people would agree with you.

"THE WORKING CLASS IS REVOLTING&#33;&#33;&#33;"
Why?

A "Capitalist" farmer can be sitting on a &#036;5 million property or business and not earn enough to feed himself and his family because of the clinate or other unavoidable reasons. (NO Solical Benefits for them - their assets are too high&#33;)

At the same time a "Working Class" voluntarily-unemployed person can be sitting on his bottom, quite contented, because of his Social Benefits coming in fortnight-by-fortnight. Even get rent-assistance. And the Salvation Army can pay for their electricity and phone bills.

Who of us aren&#39;t WORKING CLASS Faulkner? Just because you wear a white shirt and tie doesn&#39;t make you non-Working Class.

I can&#39;t work out what you are angry and cynical about - sorry. :(

Faulkner
2004-Jan-17, 07:27 AM
Jesus, I can&#39;t seem to let this silly thread go&#33; Ha...


At the same time a "Working Class" voluntarily-unemployed person can be sitting on his bottom, quite contented, because of his Social Benefits coming in fortnight-by-fortnight. Even get rent-assistance. And the Salvation Army can pay for their electricity and phone bills.


This is the kind of "brainless conservatism" I was referring to&#33;

That, and the reference to "working class minority groups"&#33;


Just because you wear a white shirt and tie doesn&#39;t make you non-Working Class.


Yes it does. It makes one a "yuppie" (=opposite to "yobbo").

B)

damienpaul
2004-Jan-17, 07:32 AM
hmm, i am intrigued, what does that make us school teachers?

Faulkner
2004-Jan-17, 09:22 AM
Um, yuppies?

damienpaul
2004-Jan-17, 09:47 AM
I can assure that I am NOT a yuppie, not a yobbo - i am an educator and a consultant geologist. If you wish to put a label on me - maybe a &#39;fieldie&#39; as i sepend a lot of my time in and out of school doing manual labour of one sort or another.

Chook
2004-Jan-17, 10:56 AM
I&#39;m out of my depth here.

I don&#39;t understand the terms "yuppie" or Yobbo".

Could somebody please explain. :blink:

I&#39;m not sure where this fits in - but I have the highest admiration for ANYBODY who works in any way- white or blue collar; deep sympathy for anybody who want to work - but can&#39;t find a job; and sorrow for capable persons who could work but doesn&#39;t want to.

Simple as that&#33;

And if Faulkner wants to argue with that - go ahead boy&#33;

Ha ...

damienpaul
2004-Jan-17, 04:04 PM
I could not imagine not working, I have always done paid and volunteer work since I was a kid - so far: Volunteer for the Red Cross, Emergency Services, Salvation Army, Amnesty International and have worked as a gardener, cleaner, labourer, bouncer, security guard, geologist, surveyor, counsellor, teacher and tutor....But I am sure that is the same with many out there.

Chook
2004-Jan-17, 07:56 PM
Hey Alice - you didn&#39;t explain to me what a "yobbo" or "Yuppie" was. Honestly, mate - I&#39;ve occasionally heard the words but "me no understand" (with an IQ of 87).

damienpaul
2004-Jan-17, 08:03 PM
I jave heard so many definitions of them that I have no idea anymore, ask Faulkner, i believe he used them in a context of a previous posting.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-17, 08:48 PM
What&#39;s up with you conservatives? WORK SUCKS&#33;&#33;&#33; EVERYBODY knows that&#33; But it&#39;s a necessary evil in our lives. Everybody I know or have even briefly talked to hates their job&#33; Why pretend otherwise? I really don&#39;t understand you yuppies&#33; If you enjoy your job, well you are bloody lucky & an exception to the rule. Most people are slaves to ****ty 9-to5&#39;s, overworked, underpaid, ******* bosses, etc. Don&#39;t go speaking nonsense about work being our "social obligation". We work, somebody else gets rich. If you disagree, you&#39;re naive&#33;

Here&#39;s a suggestion: In this age of computerized & automated technology, why do we still work? Surely we should be "working" towards FREEING human beings from labour/slavery? SURELY this should be our primary aim??? What a wonderful life it would be, no work, just leisure & pleasure&#33;

But alas, as Sartre once said, "People are terrified of freedom".

Chook
2004-Jan-17, 09:49 PM
REALLY Faulkner - I just can&#39;t believe you are serious. You&#39;ve GOT to be stirring&#33;

Have you ever read the detailed biographies of the IDLE rich - with no/little work and LOTS of time? They go from party to party, from bed to bed, from debauchery to debauchery. from one stimulant to another until it is only the the most extreme dope that can brings them back to anything like normality, with periods of black depressions in between. What sort of hell is that&#33;

Do you know which group of people suffer the greatest incidence of suicide?
The young idle/unemployed.

Being BUSY, and having a goal in life, is fantastic - you haven&#39;t got time to get into trouble.

If you are unhappy at work - that&#39;s OK - find another job where you can get some satisfaction from what you are doing.

And the HAPPIEST people in this whole wide world are those who don&#39;t have time to winge - because they are BUSY helping others in their community.

Try it for a change.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-17, 10:30 PM
from party to party, from bed to bed, from debauchery to debauchery. from one stimulant to another

Sounds like fun&#33;&#33;&#33;

REALLY Chook, do you honestly believe we should all be DISTRACTED from ourselves? What kind of false living is that??

Nothing wrong with being idle, mate. I feel sorry for you guys who have to fill every second of your day with something, it just reveals your insecurity, your fear of having time to think deeply. Yes, life is bad & the universe is monstrous, and death looms menacingly...best to hide, right?

Faulkner
2004-Jan-17, 11:00 PM
And ANOTHER thing, Chook...&#33;


Do you know which group of people suffer the greatest incidence of suicide?
The young idle/unemployed.

Are you saying not having a job is a motivation for suicide?

YOU MUST BE JOKING&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33; :o

(Isn&#39;t it the exact opposite?)

Tinaa
2004-Jan-17, 11:41 PM
I love my job. Of course, all days aren&#39;t wonderful. Faulkner if you are so bitterly unhappy, get a different job. Or quit your job and go live off the land.

Tiny
2004-Jan-17, 11:43 PM
Living with Nature hmm sounds good....LOL

Chook
2004-Jan-18, 12:14 AM
Quote Tiny:
"Living with Nature hmm sounds good...."

If you can live with insects, weeds, lack of rain, isolation, lack of accepted conveniences - well, OK.

Don&#39;t go too extreme though.

Cheers

Faulkner
2004-Jan-18, 12:47 AM
What I can&#39;t understand is, why isn&#39;t anyone supporting me here? Are my opinions so outlandish?


Faulkner if you are so bitterly unhappy, get a different job. Or quit your job and go live off the land.

What makes you think I&#39;m bitterly unhappy, Tinaa?

But I like your sugestion - "quit my job"&#33; Maybe I&#39;ll do that, go apply for the dole, and get drunk every day&#33; Ahhh, BLISS&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33;

Chook
2004-Jan-18, 01:09 AM
Tinaa,
After 8 pages of various opinions, have you received the information you were originally seeking?

(There is a lot of material in these 8 pages to chew over.)

My own short summing up is - if the parents can successfully motivate the child, it can overcome all sorts of disadvantages in order to achieve personal and educational goals.

Tinaa
2004-Jan-18, 04:05 AM
I would say it has been educational. ;) It seems that we are facing the same challenges our parents did with us. You know, "that music is a bad influence," "these kids just don&#39;t appreciate anything," "money doesn&#39;t grow on trees." There are times I swear I heard my mom&#39;s voice coming out of my
mouth. :o From working with teenagers, I know most of them are really pretty good kids. After Faulkner&#39;s tirade, I realize how terribly lucky I am to get paid to do what I love. I will continue to encourage my students to follow their dream, no matter what obstacles they may face. I have taken two kids to mentor at my school. They are "at risk" kids (given only a 50% chance of finishing high school without intervention) who have lost confidence in themselves. I guess I love what I do so much, I&#39;m willing to do it for free. :)

damienpaul
2004-Jan-18, 04:21 AM
Yep, i am with you Tinaa, and I do willingingly put in the extra hours in the school to which i work at. Note the extra hours and effort are of my own free will.

I am very fortunate that I have worked in several careers that i have enjoyed and i have to agree with Chook, I have seen so many disenchated youth - its not a pretty sight.

I love my job, i am NOT a yuppie nor yobbo, i am NOT deluded and i am not a &#39;slave&#39;.

Chook
2004-Jan-18, 04:56 AM
What a GREAT couple of people&#33;

The kids are lucky having you as their educators (and friend). :D

Faulkner
2004-Jan-18, 06:59 AM
God help the youth of today&#33;

damienpaul
2004-Jan-18, 07:02 AM
That is precisely what we are doing here on earth as mere mortals.... absolutely no student of mine is unemployed and i am very proud of that and so are they.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-18, 07:08 AM
So is employment a sign of "success"? <text removed by Josh>

Josh
2004-Jan-18, 07:17 AM
Faulkner .. I think you&#39;ve been warned before. There&#39;s no need to make personal attacks. If you have a question then ask it, but don&#39;t go over the line and make judgements about people or try to antagonise them. Please don&#39;t do it again

damienpaul
2004-Jan-18, 07:36 AM
So is employment a sign of "success"?

Thats a good question, a question that has be debated for ages all over the place.

The only conclusion that i could make based on my experiences as a teacher (note: this is just my opinion, I would be very happy to read of others&#39; opinions), is that employment can be considered as one of the signs of educational success - I dealk with many students who often say &#39; i WANT to be a carpenter&#39; or &#39;i WANT to be a doctor&#39;- these are their desires, so to help them employed into these fields would be considered a success in my book.

Also, the bigger issue of unemployment by the mass of people who would like something, anything to help them earn some money or be able to do something constructive, also implies that employment is a sign o success.

I have seen so many of my former students become beyond happy in the workplace, an example is a Year 9 boy who was failing badly and was literally depressed, so we sat him down and looked at his options, basically asked him what would he like to be doing - from his mouth he said he likes cooking - so we found him a traineeship in a bakery, which he loved - now he is an assistant manager (he is still in contact i am happy to say).

I have found that when asked what would they like to be doing right now (i.e. on a weekday) a good 95% of students indicated some form of employment. So I think it would be very remiss of educators to deny these students such opportunities - so, like so many teachers, i help them towards their goals.

Yes,, and these kids like to learn - but in their own way in their own interest topics but many i have also found are willing to extend their knowledge and experiences in fields outside their own interests - once again it would be downright wrong for a teacher to deny the students these experiences.

This is just my opinion based on my observations. I think Tinaa best sums it up:


I will continue to encourage my students to follow their dream, no matter what obstacles they may face. I have taken two kids to mentor at my school. They are "at risk" kids (given only a 50% chance of finishing high school without intervention) who have lost confidence in themselves. I guess I love what I do so much, I&#39;m willing to do it for free.

Tinaa
2004-Jan-18, 05:09 PM
I don&#39;t know about you Faulkner (since I am one of the sucky working class) but I like paying my light bill every month, buying my kids the lastest CDs (that I can barely stand to listen to), and mowing my yard with a riding mower (have to fight the kids because they want to mow). Yes, employment allows me to enjoy things I wouldn&#39;t if I were not employed. I suppose a better definition of true success would be to be doing what you love... and getting paid for it.

jimmy
2004-Jan-18, 06:56 PM
It sounds like Tinaa and Damienpaul are like my 10th grade biology teacher.
He was so passionate about biology that we couldn&#39;t wait for next class to learn more.
He wasn&#39;t saying " You need to learn this or else ", rather " There is a lot of neat stuff out there and I can introduce you to some of it."
I wish there were more like you&#33;

Chook
2004-Jan-18, 07:20 PM
Shades of "Goodbye, Mr. Chips."

Did anybody see that wondeful, inspiring film. I&#39;ve never forgotten it.

Kootenaistar
2004-Jan-19, 05:38 AM
Chook, I taped that "Goodbye Mr. Chips" as soon as I could, and still love it&#33;
Now, my two cents worth in all this mess. Yes, education programs differ in countries and states and cities and schools in the same city. Teachers differ all over. Regardless of government involvement, these things will not change. Also, students and parents and their interest and involvement will always differ, even students from the same family may even differ greatly. The greatest difficulty I have ever found in trying to teach a child is generally involved in one form or another of the word RESPONSIBILITY&#33;&#33;&#33; Once that word takes root, then the rest of the pieces of the educational puzzle start to fall into place far easier. There may be difficulties in some form or other at some point or other in any child&#39;s education, but once a child understands that THEY are responsible for their OWN LIFE and how THEY are to live it, it more or less greases the skids on the machinery for an easier dealing with the school system, home-life, peer pressure, etc. that might otherwise make their schooling difficult and not worth much. The best teachers I ever had kept this idea at the forefront and showed their own love of the subjects they taught. . . .(Hmmm, my two cents worth has grown to be more like a handful of pocket change. Sorry&#33; I love kids too, and my friends will tell you "Just don&#39;t get topic started&#33; Your ears are in danger&#33;&#33;) :P :D

Chook
2004-Jan-19, 10:06 AM
It just restores faith in human nature reading guys like you and Tina and Alice (aka damianpaul).

When I think of one of my early teachers - "Crab" Murray - so-called because of his complexion (probably because of his blood-pressure, on reflexion) I always associate him with benevalent discipline.

Crab was a disciplinarian - and we kids knew exactly how far you could push Crab - which was not very far. Crab taught History and he brought it to life - and we learned through a combination of his making it interesting, and because we didn&#39;t muck-up, couldn&#39;t muck-up.

I think that it is very important for kids to know where the line is drawn in the sand. Kids will go right up to it - but it is up to the teacher/parent where to put the line because THEY decide where to make the line.

I&#39;ll NEVER forget asking my eldest girl, Laura, how she was getting on with Science at school - and I&#39;ll never forget her reply ... "Terrible dad&#33; Mr. Brain lets us do whatever we want to so we aren&#39;t learning anything. It&#39;s terrible in class" And this is despite her liking the subject.

So I am convinced that children want, and need, a "line drawn in the sand" and, certainly with our kids, appreciate discipline in the class and respect for the teacher.

Faulkner
2004-Jan-19, 10:47 AM
I am convinced that children...appreciate discipline in the class and respect for the teacher.

Man oh man, you&#39;re a comedian, Chook&#33;
:lol:

damienpaul
2004-Jan-19, 11:03 AM
I have to agree with Chook, I have found by experience as a student , which wasn&#39;t all that long ago (i am only 27) and as a teacher. There is a lot more respect for the teacher who is strict and fair. I can remember the names of my sttrict, yet great teachers - all of which have had an influence on my life. My current students often have far less than complementary words to say for non-strict teachers.

I believe that at the schools that i have taught at - a mixture of public, private and religeous - in rural and city areas - in &#39;poor&#39; and &#39;rich&#39; areas, that from what i have seen and have witnessed is that around 98% of my students work or are pursuing further study by their own choice - to which they ought to be congratulated for.

And like Tinaa, I am HAPPY to be working, I would and could not be able to not work - I am fortunate, i work in a job that I enjoy immensely. And i found that I have been nominated again for a teacher of the year award....very nice but not necessary as i already am rewarded.

I have not seen goodbye Mr Chips in ages, but i did see Mr. Hollands Opus recently - what a great film&#33;

Faulkner
2004-Jan-19, 11:35 AM
Look guys, you must admit there&#39;s 2 sides to the coin. Some people are happy to live the "mould", so to speak, and bide by all the rules & regulations. In fact, some people have no choice, because they were never taught alternatives. But there are OTHERS (however much some of you may not like to admit it) who abhor any kind of discipline from somebody else. For them, those who impose their discipline & moral strictures on others are simply "control freaks". A child&#39;s life is institutionalized from Day One ("family", school, work...). I disagree with the opinion that this is necessary (otherwise the child will "run amok"). It is my opinion (for what it&#39;s worth) that a child only "runs amok" as a REACTION to excessive discipline & control. A kid doesn&#39;t "rebel" for rebellion&#39;s sake. A kid rebels against something, and that something is the world he or she has unwillingly inherited from their parent generation - a world, I might add, that is certainly no picnic. I would also add that rebellion is a natural tendency of a child. It is his or her personality exploding out into the world. It should be encouraged & considered healthy.

Anyhow, as I said at the start, some people can live (if "live" is the right word here) within artificial comformity. For others, the fact that the pressure to conform exists so strongly in society, is justification for a lot of disillusionment and (yes, Tinaa) even bitterness.

I&#39;m afraid I&#39;m not offering some utopian "anarcho" alternative. I don&#39;t have much faith in human nature. But if we can only coexist with a heavy bombardment of rules & regulations & moral censorships etc, then I say it&#39;s a pitiful life here on Planet Earth&#33;&#33;&#33;

Book me on that one-way ticket to Mars, will you?

jimmy
2004-Jan-19, 12:31 PM
I think the key words here are " excessive discipline and control ". Let&#39;s find some common ground here.

damienpaul
2004-Jan-19, 01:28 PM
exactly jimmy, i assure you there is no &#39;excessive&#39; discipline just the required amount to ensure everyone does have a chance and that no one sets the place on fire ;)

Anyways, I think we have to agree to disagree Faulkner, although i do see your point and hope you can see mine.

Tinaa
2004-Jan-19, 04:08 PM
You are correct Faulkner. I was, and still am, a bit of a rebel. I do not react well to authority, nor do I have an easy time playing by all the rules, especially where I work. I made good grades in high school, but I led a sit-in at school my senior year, I was :o suspended for drinking on the school bus, and I was in constant trouble for questioning the rules I thought were stupid. Luckily, the assistant principle had patience with me, as I do with my students. If we are to have a civilization, there are certain rules we must follow. I think one of the biggest ideas I push, is respect for each other. When a student is "going off" on me or someone else (remember, I work with ED kids) I calmly ask if this is the way they want to be treated. Believe it or not, the student, 99 times out of 100, settles down because they discipline themselves, which is the ultimate goal anyway. If a child refuses to do his work, I tell him it is his choice, but it is a poor choice, and I give the reasons why. I show passion for my work and that is what the kids respond to. Most of these kids just want someone to care about them. It is sad.

damienpaul
2004-Jan-19, 04:23 PM
I have found that too, tinaa, that most kids need someone to care about them as well as caring for them in a way. There is often a "Mr. Igoe (me) fan club" following me when on yard duty and they spo called "nerds" to so called "rough nuts". I get great solace from being the one they turn to, but many do discipline themselves as Tinaa mentioned.

And yes, I can &#39;boast&#39; that i was in detention for almost 3 years (off and on of course) and that a major family tragedy turned me even more defiant (by the way that tragedy was so bad it still has an effect on me now 10 years on).

Finally - I reckon Tina ought to be teacher of the year&#33;

Tinaa
2004-Jan-19, 04:55 PM
No way&#33; I really don&#39;t want any "atta boys". There are many teachers out there better than me&#33; Thanks though (blush)

Faulkner
2004-Jan-19, 11:07 PM
I was, and still am, a bit of a rebel.

Tinaa, you excite me. Pity you&#39;re married&#33; B)

OK guys, I&#39;m gonna concede some middle ground here. I reacted strongly to the word "discipline" (which implies "punishment"). I totally disagree with that method. It&#39;s supposedly used to tame a child, but strangely when that child grows up into an adult, the discipline & punishment still continues?&#33; So that excuse doesn&#39;t hold. Stupid, stupid society we&#39;ve inherited (and perpetuate), if you ask me&#33;&#33;&#33;

But I think some of you aren&#39;t even really talking about "discipline" in that sense. I think what you mean is teaching kids an awareness of their responsibility (for themselves, and others). That&#39;s fine. A teacher rationally explaining things to students is fine. A teacher irrationally lashing out at students is WRONG, it&#39;s an abuse of his/her authority & has the reverse effect of teaching kids how to HATE adult authority. No student "respects" a teacher who growls at them. That was my point. Kids should NOT be growled at, let alone spanked/caned/etc... I know Chook would disagree here...but I think in these changing times, his traditionalist approach to education is definitely a "minority" approach.

The important thing I think is that teachers must earn respect, not demand it. Tinaa, Damienpaul...if that sounds like you, then keep it up&#33; I still think the education system STINKS, but perhaps it can be changed from within? At the moment it&#39;s still just a dehumanizing/anti-individualist factory churning out brainwashed sheep. It is a machine factory, producing "cogs" that fit neatly into the big, nasty societal machine.

Anyhow, I&#39;m getting sick of this thread&#33; :P Just couldn&#39;t let all this talk about pro-discipline/pro-work/pro-conformity/etc be the last word on matters&#33; ;) But I think perhaps not ALL teachers are scumbags...&#33;? So there you go, I&#39;m conceding&#33;&#33;&#33;

(Tinaa, you work with handicapped kids, right? I actually did some volunteer work like this a few years ago. Great, great kids. You wouldn&#39;t even DREAM of trying to discipline or punish kids like this&#33; It&#39;s all about having fun with &#39;em, having them laugh. This should not be the exception to the "rule" (pardon the pun). Just remember, in the animal kingdom babies learn through play. Just look at kittens&#33;)

Anyhow, enough rambling, I&#39;m outta here&#33;&#33;-----

Chook
2004-Jan-19, 11:56 PM
Faulkner&#39;s a funny fella. I think that, at the end of the day, we all more-or-less agree.

You are right, Faulkner - I learned to be a "disciplinarian" from my father, who I hated for more years than I care to remember because of it. Although, I must say, he was extreme - of Scottish origin.

With him NOTHING was ever good enough - you always had to go the extra mile and excel. No love was shown - just work, and do the "right" thing.

I couldn&#39;t leave home quickly enough and, like Tinaa and Alice, I went through a rebellious stage and finished up serving 22 days in Parramatta gaol (paying off civil fines).

As a result of the negativeness at home I developed a determination to "show the old *******" what I can do and, for a long period, lived for work and promotion with a fierce drive - working for a few years in London, then ultimately earning a middle-management position with the International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, Austria, where I served for a period of twelve years. I met and married a beautiful Spanish lady there and returned to Australia to have our kids as Australian.

Why I am telling you all this crap is because dad&#39;s discipline and negativeness spurred me on to prove myself (although it could have broken another kid). And after the initial revelling in the "newly-found Freedom", and its penalties, I soon realised that the enforced respect for authority at home was the proper training for later life in the community.

Another thing I realised was that, because of dad&#39;s model, my discipline for our son and three girls was too tough - and I had to learn from my wife that LOVE is a greater teacher than discipline.

As I said - I don&#39;t think that we are all that much apart here.

I think the only thing I disagree with Faulkner is his attitude to work. Unfortunately his attitude seems only too common these days.

When I was a kid two workmen would be digging a drain - and they would race oneanother to see who could finish first. A wonderful work ethic.

Nowdays they connive in order to work as inneficiently as they possibly can to get overtime. Where have the full-blooded Aussies gone, with a pepper up their tail&#33;?

Faulkner
2004-Jan-20, 05:53 AM
Where have the full-blooded Aussies gone, with a pepper up their tail&#33;?


They all had massive coronaries from over-exertion.

OK, now I&#39;m REALLY outta here&#33;&#33;&#33;

kashi
2004-Jan-20, 01:24 PM
This topic is indeed grinding to a halt. I don&#39;t think it should stay open for much longer...

Tinaa
2004-Jan-20, 02:06 PM
I keep thinking it is going to die any day now.

damienpaul
2004-Jan-20, 03:00 PM
I think we have exhausted the great topic for now, I must say it has been interesting to read others&#39; experiences and views. We all must admit that.

Chook
2004-Jan-20, 07:26 PM
OK

Chook
2004-Jan-21, 09:24 AM
Sorry about that...
It was not meant to be The Secret Confessions of Chook; or Dear Dorothy Dix.
I was trying to make a point about the relationship between early home training/discipline and its possible effect later in life - something we had not touched on.

No more - I promise you.

jimmy
2004-Jan-21, 06:49 PM
I kind of like the EVOLUTION of this topic. I think it all very EDUCATIONAL.

damienpaul
2004-Jan-31, 02:29 AM
Sorry to bring this topic up again folks, Just this past week I have gone back to work, once again teaching my students (122 of them).

There were the usual things to do, such as locker allocation etc, but unfortunately us teachers had the never easy task of informing the students that a classmate had suddenly tragically passed away during the summer break. This is the 3rd time in my 4 and a bit year teaching career that I have had to do this painful duty and it never gets easier, but it is something that we can never be trained for and never ignore.

This is another aspect of the career that i still love with a passion.

thank you for reading this

Chook
2004-Jan-31, 03:23 AM
Geez Alice - that&#39;s a tough thing to have to do.

I know that there is a lot of petrol sniffing over your way amongst the "locals". Was this the problem?

Red Rooster

damienpaul
2004-Jan-31, 03:29 AM
nah,rooster, unfortunately it was a car accident

eggplant
2004-Feb-01, 05:57 AM
I couldn&#39;t stand to read everything after my last reply but in scanning the conversation I noticed one lacking, (unless I missed it) answer
yuppie=
Y-oung
U-rban
P-roffesional
py-suffix,
Refers to Coke headed, suit wearing, self indulgent, 80&#39;s, BMW drivin&#39; junk bond sales types, none of us are that...
The other one is new to me but I am sure it is simular in nature refering to a stereotype of popular moneymakers....

Faulkner
2004-Feb-02, 06:46 AM
That&#39;s the old "official" dictionary definition. Nowadays it has a more broader, all-encompassing meaning, describing any straight, "normal" type of person...someone who votes at council (ie non-compulsory) elections...someone who believes in TV classification...someone who, basically, swallows the whole society nonsense hook, line & sinker&#33;

The main difference between a "yuppie" and a "yobbo" is: a yobbo eats meat pies & drinks beer. A yuppie eats bagels & drinks bottled wine&#33;&#33;

HA HA HA&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33;&#33; :lol:

damienpaul
2004-Feb-03, 12:20 PM
so the fellow teachers where I work are somewhere in between....beer drinking, pie eating swallowers of societal nonsense...:lol:

Are we yoppies or yubbos?

Faulkner
2004-Feb-03, 01:24 PM
The Yubbo from Dubbo&#33; :lol:

As for TV classifications, if it don&#39;t have the full alphabet there (eg "This program is classified A, B, C, D, E....") then it&#39;s probably not worth watching&#33;&#33; :lol:

I&#39;m not knocking wine coz I drink copious amounts of cheap 4-litre Stanley...&#33; Ha ha...&#33;

damienpaul
2004-Feb-04, 09:36 AM
Well, actually i am in Alice Springs, cause one can see it in my signature somewhere and cause Chook, that eastern rooster, calls me Alice

galaxygirl
2004-Feb-25, 10:01 PM
As a 9th grader, I can definately agree with what everyone is saying about teenagers (not all, but some) being too wild these days. Just today, a group of people in my grade showed up to school drunk, two others were caught smoking pot in the bathroom, and a kid was pushed out of a window (the fourth time this happened since sepetember). I believe that people my age do these things because they simply dont care. I&#39;ve noticed that people who have goals for their future are willing to work hard to accomplish them, therefore they tend to do better. People who are not motivated go around beating up kids fo fun, because they dont care if they get in trouble. I think that if schools offered a wide range of courses, students can be exposed to the "real world" and find something they enjoy doing.

Another thing is that students know when a teacher cares about them, or if they&#39;re just teaching because they couldn&#39;t do anything else. In order for students to do well they need support from teachers who care. I&#39;ve had my dad, as well as some teachers who told me that I can never become an astronaut because I was a girl and I wasnt smart enough. This not only made me angry, but my grades also dropped for a while (but I&#39;m way over it now). But from what I&#39;ve read so far, damienpaul, Tinaa, as well as the other teachers dont have a problem with this- you all seem like excellent teachers. :)

galaxygirl
2004-Feb-27, 10:23 PM
To solve the students&#39; boredom problem: Hands on activities are fun, opposed to listening to someone giving a lecture (unless you&#39;re me, where I find lectures interesting). I had this one teacher where instead of normally going over information for a test (to review), he would have us play jeopardy in two teams. He would ask us questions on stuff related to the upcoming test, and whichever team won got "Murch money." Once you saved up enough Murch money, you could "buy" things like candy or a homework pass. That got everyone motivated and intrested... and it was very fun.