Archive for the ‘learning’ Category

Begging the Universe for Something (it ain’t that easy)

March 3, 2007

There’s a lot of get rich schemes out there.

Actually it’s not just get rich. It’s get beautiful, get smart, get healthy. Take a pill. Hand over your cash. We’ve got the secret.

It’s all too easy.

Unfortunately, nothing makes up for hard work and discipline.

Think you can buy your way into being a pianist? A champion runner? A sprinter elite? I don’t think so.

Practice and hard work. Plus a dose of talent.

There’s no gimmicks. You can’t fake it. You can’t buy it. These guys are just out to make a buck.

Should History be Compulsory?

January 27, 2007

Once people pass out of the school system, everyone forms an opinion on what kids “should learn”. It’s like politics, it gets heated, and people get angry, but just like politics has a real world effect, so too does our schooling system.

So-called curriculum and the various ways of measuring it (A levels, SAT, outcome-based education) are real, because our kids are subjected to six years of it. So much of schooling is about peers and socialisation, but there is all this time spent in classrooms too.

So what makes a good foundation? The three R’s (reading, writing, ‘rithmetic) are taught at lower levels, and I take as a given. The latter two years of high school give students a choice in what they focus on, so there is personal discretion there. What of the middle years?

I wonder if history should be given a greater emphasis. Not the dates, but a broad grasp of civilisation and different cultures. Seeing all the mistakes and wrong turns taken, where positive steps have been made, how slavery was ended, how the vote was won. This “informing” of the mind to know where we came from to understand the world of today.

And this historical learning doesn’t go out-of-date (pardon the pun). It gives individuals tools for thinking about the world, and analysing events. Learning history seems to be empowering.

Of course, there are those who argue that history is highly subjective, and always filtered to present a particular point of view. There is some merit in that. But ignorance, and only studying “objective” sciences is no answer either. Better to be have an open system that allows people to question and redress any biases that may exist.

I can coming to the view that learning History may be a a very positive thing for young people (and slightly older ones too).

Doing what already has been done

January 5, 2007

There’s no worse feeling for an individual than to be stuck in a rut. It’s all the worse because the person usually knows it too. It might be a smoking addiction, a depressive phase, a too repetitve job, whatever, but when you are asked to do what has already been done, the question is, why?

That’s the little seed of humanity speaking up. We all know as human beings from an early age that the point of life is to grow. To learn new things, to try zany experiences, to connect, to be a bigger individual. Some things take practice to learn, and that’s fine. We all respect that.

The issue is, doing things that no longer help us grow. These are the things that have already been done, and quite rightly, we say no!, I don’t want to do that. I want to try something new. I want to be better individual.