There are many lists going around concerning what the next decade will bring in K-12 education, especially focusing on those things that will become obsolete. Well, I decided to create my own list of 5 things that should become obsolete in K-12 education by 2025.
SAT and ACT tests do not carry the weight they use to for college admission. All standardized testing associated with the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) is pretty much worthless, only good for politicians and determining a student’s ability to pass a test on a given day.
Standardized testing and NCLB have transformed many schools into testing machines that take the inquisitiveness out science and math by turning our children into bored, underachieving test taking robots. This is a sad thing, I really love my new graphing calculator.
The United States continues to fall behind most Asian and some European countries in science and math (Third International Science and Math Study, 2007).One interesting fact that jumps out about these countries is that they continually outscore the United States – while requiring little or no homework.Homework is a staple in this country.
Because of this parents often think their children’s teachers are not very good unless they send home a regular amount of homework. The biggest problem concerning homework — students who do not understand in school, will still not understand at home.
Also, parents are forced into the position of teaching their child something that they themselves may know little about – especially in science and math. For the record — My definition of homework is repetitious math problems and memorization of science terms, along with the rote memorization of math and science facts.
This is one of the biggest wastes of technology resources in schools today. Computers belong in the classroom! I have been in schools where computers are connected to sewing machines. The purpose is to allow students touse computerized patterns for sewing.
On the positive side — I have also been in schools that have three or four computer labs, with one set of 4 or 5 computers for teachers to check out for their classrooms. Computers belong in science and math classrooms for students to use in science lab investigations and math problem solving situations.
Computers support the best approaches for teaching science and math — project-based learning investigations, case studies, and problem-based learning situations.
Treating Teachers as Non-Professionals
Teachers are professionals, just like other adults who require a college degree and certification for their career field. This starts in house, where teachers are given the respect they deserve by administrators and central IT gurus, who belief that only they should have the ability to load instructional software on computers. This also means letting teachers have the ability to access online programs and websites that support teaching science and math, without begging for permission.
Anyone who has viewed current science or math textbook understands that most are monumental wastes of money. The need for textbooks is perpetuated by two things – parents who think they are needed and publishing companies that need to make a buck. School systems spend enormous amounts of their budget yearly purchasing textbooks that are out of date the moment they are printed.
Schools typically keep science textbooks for six years or more and scientific knowledge changes every day. Also, these textbooks are overrun with colorful, useless information that only serves to distract and confuse students. Math textbooks are only designed for rote memorization of facts and repetitiously boring math problems.
Just like science textbooks, they are plastered with colorful useless information that only serves to distract and confuse students. Now it is your opportunity to add things you would like to see phased out of science and math education by 2025.