Everyone in education is an expert! Of course this is not news to anyone in education, as we already know better than everyone else! I find it interesting what educators, learned people of reason and science, argue about. We cite data suggestions, teaching fads, as well as the latest in thesis, and doctoral statements, and we run with it like a coked up werewolf with the thigh of a Yak in it’s mouth! These arguments can get pretty brutal sometimes too! We insult one another’s schools of education and throw shade at each other’s classroom management. What’s funny is that the subjects of these arguments are completely stupid. In my “expert” opinion, these are dumbest things educators argue about:
This is quite possibly the dumbest issue educators fight about.The argument is that homework is no longer necessary and actually causes more harm to students and families. Parents and students cite “lack of family time or arguments” about homework. Some educational “experts,” claim that homework is simply just busy work with no purpose. Others claim that practice is needed outside of the classroom in order to obtain mastery and project future learning. Here is why the argument is stupid. First of all, the claim that students are in class for 8 hours a day and should not have 8 hours of homework is ludicrous! What teacher in their right mind wants to grade eight hours of homework??? Secondly,kids do not learn for eight straight hours. The family time argument? Really, how does sitting in front of the computer playing solitaire for four hours while you force your kids to watch TV considered family time? A little honesty here please! Does anyone else find it ironic that people conducted research, “homework,” in order to prove that homework is not beneficial to students? Irony can be pretty ironic sometimes.
TEACHING TO THE TEST AND TEACHING THE TEST:
Educators like to go off on a tangent about how we should not be “teaching to the test.” In my opinion, this is stupid. Assessment should always drive instruction. You create a test, then you teach what the students need to know in order to be successful on that test. Therefore, we teach to the test even if we don’t think that we do. Then there is “teaching the test,” another endless pit of semantic nonsense that I have found myself engaged. I agree that you cannot teach the exact questions that are on the test. However, I am one who believes in a, shall we say, loose construction of rules and regulations. I see nothing wrong in creating study materials that tell them what they need to know. I am not spelling out the exact questions or answers and they still need to prepare for the test. These semantic arguments absolutely serve no purpose other than to stroke the egos of holier than thou’s who rant and rave about eroding vertical alignment of standards across grade levels. Spare me the Riverdale melodrama! No one gives a rats ass! Our students forget most of what we teach anyway. If anything, teaching them how to take tests is probably more beneficial in the long run. By the way, if you teach the learning standards, then YOU ARE TEACHING THE TEST!
THE 30 MINUTE DUTY FREE LUNCH:
I have lost track of the amount of times I have heard teachers martyr themselves over their 30 minute duty free lunch. Yes, we all know, how Dewey and his disciples sacrificed themselves on the cross so that the rest of us can complain about parents, students, teachers, Donald Trump and an assortment of other chastisingly worthy issues for thirty minutes without students. Meanwhile, outside of fantasy land, the kids are causing all kinds of problems and administrators need assistance to ensure student safety. That’s okay if little Timmy gets curb stomped by a fifteen year old eighth gradert your 30 minute duty free lunch. And with that said, all union teachers have now stopped reading my blog. Seriously, there could be an active shooter in the building and instead of trying to get children to safety they would cry about their “30 minute duty free lunch.” Tell that to the judge…
THE TEXTBOOK ARGUMENT:
The anti-textbook crowd baffles me! Some in public education seriously frown upon the practice of even reading from textbooks. I can only assume that they want to add more breadth, depth, and complexity to classroom instruction. One teacher scolded me, “teaching from the textbook was as egregious a sin as blaspheme of the holy spirit!” Some of my best lesson plans are inspired by some of the lessons found in teachers editions. Textbooks are often lacking in depth and complexity.The textbook is often a political agenda device as well. For instance, a certain state that loves to brag about itself, wanted to change textbooks to add biblical Moses as a founding father, and issued a map of Triangular Trade that labeled African slaves as “unpaid internships” (I wish I was kidding.) Seriously, in U.S. History alone, there is over five-hundred years of history that must be crunched into a textbook and sold for less than $100.00 dollars per book. Depth is what the teacher should be providing. But for foundation,I think it is stupid not to use a source, vetted by the district as well as numerous experts in their educational content, to have children practice reading and learning how to interact with expository text. Ever wonder why kids don’t know how to read textbooks?
Think I am wrong? Let me know about it with a comment. Check me out on Twitter, as well as Facebook! As always, thank you for reading Tales From the Red Pen, don’t forget to share with friends! Until next week, I bid you, Adieu!