The world through the lens of a college English teacher

September 9, 2011 | By | Reply More

At Orion Magazine, college English Instructor Erik Reece has written an excellent essay exploring the role of schools in modern society. The conversation is expansive (covering such things as John Gatto, Citizens United and the trashing of the environment), yet the bases of his essay are his personal interactions with thousands of English students.

Here’s the launching point for Reece’s essay.   He asked his college freshmen English students to write an essay on the following topic: “Evaluate the education you received over the last four years.”   Here is his summary of types of responses he received:

  • Many teachers show no passion for their subjects.
  • Many teachers don’t seem to know their subjects very well.
  • Teachers often have very low expectations for their students and very lax standards (late work is rarely penalized).
  • Many teachers are afraid to engage students in real critical thinking or actual dialogue; they simply rely on handouts and lectures.
  • Assignments don’t seem relevant to students’ “real” lives.
  • Many teachers only “teach to the test.”
  • The majority of the work is far too easy and leads to boredom.
  • Students express an overwhelming feeling that only their attendance and test scores are important to teachers and administrators.

Again, this is the starting point for a highly worthwhile piece of writing.   I invite you to take a look.

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Category: Corporatocracy, Education

About the Author ()

Erich Vieth is an attorney focusing on consumer law litigation and appellate practice. He is also a working musician and a writer, having founded Dangerous Intersection in 2006. Erich lives in the Shaw Neighborhood of St. Louis, Missouri, where he lives half-time with his two extraordinary daughters.

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