The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #149313   Message #3474073
Posted By: Lizzie Cornish 1
31-Jan-13 - 06:24 PM
Thread Name: BS: Death Trap Schoolrooms
Subject: RE: BS: Death Trap Schoolrooms
"Has anyone read any of his work? They included 'How Children Learn' and 'How Children Fail'."

Yes, Eliza...both excellent books. John Taylor Gatto is another inspirational man, along with Ken Robinson..both have many videos on yotube...

'Do Schools Kill Creativity?'

To those above:

Yes, I went to school. It was a place where I learnt to distrust adults, for it was there that a teacher hit the back of my hands, very hard, with a ruler, because I had dared to whisper to the person next to me. I realized then, around 9 years old, that some people were truly evil, nasty and deeply unpleasant. He was a man who loved to humiliate, belittle and beat children. His name was Mr. Stonelake and he was a nasty bully.

Nearly ALL the teachers I had were horrid. They shouted, they made you feel so small if you got something wrong, and they hated you wriggling around on your chair.

I wriggled.
I gazed out of windows.
I was utterly bored out of my brain....

The only sweet teacher I can recall was Mrs. Smallworth, who really was like Miss Honey out of Roald Dahl's 'Matilda'. She was kind, liked us, treated us with respect, made us laugh and taught us English in an enjoyable and carefree manner. She also didn't mind if you wriggled, or giggled. Subsequently, she was dearly loved by us all and we learnt from her through choice, not through fear....

My daughter had one lovely teacher too. Mr. Meek. He used to be a Circus Performer and so he knew how to hold his children spellbound with magical stories. He cared about them a great deal and in turn, they cared about him too.

Many teachers, I believe, are on the Asperger part of the Autism Circle. They are pedantically excellent at facts, but hopeless when it comes to showing or understanding emotions and children. They can't cope with wriggly children, nor children who don't 'obey them' in every way. They cannot understand that many people do NOT learn in the same way they do, nor are remotely interested in subjects which they themselves are fascinated by. They don't relate to anxiety in children, just get more frustrated with a child who doesn't understand the subject they are teaching, often losing their short-tempered tempers way too easily.

Being pedantic, little things which mean very little to others, mean THE WORLD to them, so if children get these things wrong, all hell can break loose.

Whilst I fully understand that the Asperger mind is wondrous with facts and figures it often causes much distress to young children and older ones too, due to the inability to relate to the feelings of others.

Of course, I'll now be shouted down by those above, but truly, this is a major problem, I believe..and it's been there for generations..

I had a friend who was studying English at Uni. Her tutor for the Latin part of her course was an American Professor. The woman was very cold at times and actually reduced my friend to tears. She hadn't meant to, of course, it was just sheer exasperation on her part, brought on by my friend's inability to learn in the way her Tutor taught her subject. The tutor finally met privately with my friend, where she told her she had Aspergers, and as such, she knew that sometimes she found it very difficult to understand WHY students struggled with Latin, or with learning in the way she taught it. She suggested they talk it through more deeply, but weeks later the same problems were happening and in desperation, my friend decided to pack her course in, choosing to do an Open University degree instead...

If you have great teachers at school, you are lucky. ALL teachers should inspire their students. Sadly, this is NOT the case and the sooner the Education System owns up to it, the better.

Some teachers are Wondrous...
Far too many are absolute shit and do grave damage to young and very vulnerable minds.....