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Education for the PEOPLE, not for SOCIETY

Page history last edited by sheena 13 years, 4 months ago

by Sheena

     It has become a law that children in the US have to maintain a certain amount of hours in education. The same educational basis is processed and conditioned to all children of all different sorts. BUT, we're all still individual beings? We all learn and perceive in different ways, even as young children. We all have different talents that contribute to our society. Each person's brain is created in a unique way. So why are we all conditioned to go through the same learning process through our educational system? Maybe because of society's control over the people? If so, is this hurting or helping our society? If all of these children are growing up to learn and perceive the way society wants us to be, how can we all maintain our individuality? Is our original individuality being twisted by society's educational conditioning? This idea was sparked by the field of neurodiversity. "People with conditions like ADHD, dyslexia and mood disorders are routinely labeled "disabled". But differences among brains are as enriching—and essential—as differences among plants and animals" (Neurodiveristy). Our society has now claimed one fourth of the people to being "mentally disabled". BUT who's to say what is disabled and what is not? What is the normal brain based off of? If we're all individual beings, genetically unique in the make up of our brains, why are some labeled "disabled"?


     These people labeled "mentally disabled" just have a different way of learning and perceiving from what society has claimed "normal". "The lessons we have learned about biodiversity and cultural and racial diversity need to be applied to the human brain. We need a new field of neurodiversity that regards human brains as the biological entities they are, and appreciates the vast natural differences that exist from one brain to another regarding sociability, learning, attention, mood and other important mental functions" (Neurodiversity). Our society has created the perfect image, or what they think is "perfect", as a guide to follow and contribute to the society which has been created by authorities. The most valuable are the beings who are of the most literate, and who can make the most money. So, that's what is the image for our current United States society. Let's take a step back and broaden our view to other cultures, such as indigenous cultures. The most valuable of ancient indigenous, or even current tribal people's around the world, were the ones who held the religious rituals. These ones who held these rituals may have been the schizophrenics who heard the voices of the gods, or the obsessive compulsives who carried our the precise rituals. "Even in today’s world, being in the right place at the right time seems to be critical in terms of defining whether you will be regarded as gifted or disabled" (Neurodiversity).


[this is a good transition]


     Now that I have found the issue that intrigues me the most, the next question is, how do we fix it? What can we put this grant toward that will help our society become more united and less segregated? I thought of putting the grant toward educational settings or medical settings. Placing the grant in the hands of an organization such as a school or a hospital will have more visible changes that we will be able to see within the next year. But is that most important? Do we need to see the difference we have made? I have recently talked to a previous LLS student about where the last group of students decided to put the grant toward. Her answer had caused me to spark up thoughts of where I think would be most important to make a contribution to. She had shared that the last year's students had decided to put the grant toward a homeless shelter that helps with getting the homeless back on their feet. The organization had helped the homeless find jobs and get themselves clean. Homelessness is a great problem in our community, as well as all over the US. When I had asked her why they had chosen this organization, the answer somewhat shocked me. She had explained that they had chosen this organization, because that is where they would see the fastest results. She had told me that they thought of putting the grant toward the environment, but would not be able to see a direct change, that five grand would not do much to help out the environmental problems, because it is too great of a problem. This sounded to me like a cop out, and somewhat selfish, in terms of wanting to see the change in their time. Yes, this was a great way to help our society, but just one very small part of our society. I would like to take a step back at looking at all the small issues, and take a broadened look at the big issue at hand. The issue of human segregation, and not just racial and cultural segregation. There is segregation that takes part within races and cultures. I want to tackle the issue of our society not being united and living peacefully as one. 


     John Lennon and his revolution for peace in the 60's and 70's was on the right track to peace, yet was fired down by society. So how do we overcome society? How do we make our civilization for the PEOPLE, not for SOCIETY? One subject that has proven society wrong with factual responses is science. Science is defined as the resulting body of reliable knowledge that can logically and convincingly be explained (wikipedia). Science has come a long way, and proven to be credible in its discoveries. Science has changed the way many think of the world's mechanics. Yet science has not always been a strong influence on our society. Science has slowly crept up on the hierarchy of respect and acceptance of its facts. If scientific research has started a trickle of change in the way our society thinks of the earth's mechanics, then don't you think science will be able to start a trickle of change in human mechanics? Neuroscience, the study of the human brain, and psychology, the study of the mental life of humans, are growing studies that will be able to impact the unity and peace of the people. Once there is a better understanding of how our minds function and how we learn and perceive, there will be a more open minded view of all of us as a united society. I know the topic was to focus on our specific community of the St. Petersburg area, but we need to look at the bigger picture if we want to be true leaders


     The deep mechanics of our minds, how we perceive and learn, has been categorized as only a philosophy for now.  Philosophy, the way of life dedicated to such knowledge, was closely related to science since Classical Anitquity times up to modern times in the English language (wikipedia). Past philosophies have now become science facts, such as Newton's law of motion. So, who's to say our current day philosophies won't be solved scientifically? Science is divided into two major groups. One being natural science, which study natural phenomena, such as biological life. The other being social sciences, which study human behaviors and societies (wikipedia). There needs to be a convergence of the two to fully understand human mechanics, and how we can learn and live in a united society. A study of social science, the educational diverse way of thoughts and capabilities, can be solved by the founding of the biological aspect of our learning capabilities and educational needs to strengthen each individual's talent. To strengthen each individual's talent, there needs to be an understanding of emotional intelligence. No matter how smart one could be or how high of an IQ one could have, their emotional intelligence defines one's success in their life. Usually people naturally develop emotional intelligence through their guardians, the media, or religion. Some are steered to establish emotional intelligence using themselves alone. There needs to be a study conducted through the field of neuroscience and psychology of the proper way to become emotionally knowledgeable of others and more emotionally intelligent within one's self.


     Emotional intelligence determines how well we communicate with ourselves and others. To better communicate with ourselves and others, one must first open up their ears before speaking. To listen is to perceive and engage others in a wisely manner. The beginning of the educational conditioning is to speak before listening. This structure of learning is absurd in terms of educational needs of a neurodiverse culture. It would be of more importance to learn to listen before we are able to speak. If we are able to listen and gather information before throwing out random nonsense that has not been thoroughly processed and found knowledgeable, this would result in more open minded and wiser thoughts and ideas thrown out into our society's world of knowledge and opinions. We do have two ears and only one mouth. The action of listening seems to be a little more important than the action of speaking for wiser beings, and a more understanding society. This idea needs to be found scientifically through research of neuroscience and psychology to be applied to our education system. 


     Another idea formulated by Ken Robinson's speech about the educational systems, is that schools are killing creativity. In a neurodiverse culture creativity should be as important as literacy. Creativity is created through trial and error, seeing the positive and negative. Children are naturally frightened of being wrong. Our educational system is conditioning these children to believe mistakes are the worst one can make. Adults are now frightened of being wrong, instead of being aware of our mistakes. If children are not prepared to be wrong, they will never come up with anything individual. These children will just follow the conditioning, the path laid down by society for our people to follow. "Education minds our minds to strip our minds" (Ken Robinson). Education is driving people to grow out of creativity. Education is steering our society to become a norm, created by our authorities, instead of embracing the neurodiverse culture, each individual in the make up of our brains, that we are. The education system we have today was first formed for the Industrial Revolution. The public education winner's success is measured by those who do everything they are supposed to do. Universities design the system in their own image. The ones who follow this image are the ones who come out on top. Many have caught a hold of this educational path and are driving down this path just as society has marked. In fact, there are so many people that a degree's value is diminishing. In the next thirty years more people will be graduating worldwide than the accumulation of graduates throughout history (Ken Robinson).


     This concludes that the educational system now days is formed for the society, not for each individual person. Our educational system is not getting the best out of people. We are being conditioned to become good workers, rather than creative thinkers (Ken Robinson). To make any impact on our higher authorities, our solution needs to be proven with hard facts. The facts need to be shown in front of their eyes, to make them believers, to make a change. Even with many scholars speaking of this educational philosophy, that is not enough to change the minds of our authorities to change our educational system. Without hard facts through science, any philosophy could be believed to be wrong by our authorities. Our grant should go toward a neuroscience or psychology lab, to scholars dedicating their lives to find a better solution to human mechanics. Once our society is educating our children for the PEOPLE, not for SOCIETY, then every other small issue will fall into place with the unity of our people. This unity and peace of the people may not occur in our lifetime, but we have to start the ripple of change for the future of our generations and this earth.



Comments (5)

Boda said

at 11:39 am on Sep 7, 2010

Initial thoughts reading your first paragraph:

Your comments remind me of an old saying - you're a unique snowflake, just like everyone else.

I completely get what you're saying. Nothing you say is wrong. But what's the alternative? Home schooling? Is that practical? How do we create commonaliites in educating the masses so we move forward as a society, yet address the distinctive learning abilities of millions of people?

My answer is to include critical thinking skills into education. One size does not fit all. But if we go in realizing that, we can adjust when we realize there is common ground in our differences.

David Stern said

at 11:39 am on Sep 7, 2010

Education is shown to be very important. The question of "is this hurting our society" is the exact topic that should be asked to the audience. The question asked mid paragraph is perfect for who you are talking to.

sheena said

at 12:05 pm on Sep 7, 2010

The problem is addressed, the solution is something which we can all contribute to, for not just one person can solve such a problem as this.

A friend once told me, "we are taught to speek before we listen, shouldn't we learn to listen before we speak?"

kms said

at 2:36 am on Sep 8, 2010

My page Thinking About Course Focus now has a link to this page (via 'personality').

kms said

at 11:21 pm on Sep 10, 2010

Ah, yes - listen then think before speaking. We do have two ears and one mouth. I'm just sayin'.

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