Is Your Education Relevant?

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These are a series of quotes from grade 12 English students working towards their university academic English credit:

The current method of teaching lacks in interest and creativity, which is what a lot of adolescents want in their lives. Every class is the same thing throughout the day: sit down in a desk, listen to a lesson taught by your teacher, and then do questions and assignments that relate to the material just taught.

Classrooms need to incorporate the other methods of teaching (Kinesthetic and visual). Kinesthetic (Physical) almost does not exist, except for in tech classes, and visual seems to disappear after elementary school.

One of the most frustrating things as a student is to watch a teacher talk and not be able to listen (whether through concentration or otherwise). As a student with an adolescent brain there is nothing I dislike more than sitting in class bored and struggling to pay attention to learn something.

Students can only learn so much sitting at a desk for one hundred and ninety-five days a year, five days a week, and six and a half hours a day. 

Classes should not be restricted to a blackboard, pencil, and paper. It is simply just boring.

In order for students to reach their full potential, they must be intrigued with what they are learning. In my opinion, nothing is worse than trying to understand and memorize something that I have absolutely no enthusiasm or care for. Teachers should try and make lessons and assignments exciting and relevant to adolescents by utilizing tools such as YouTube videos, Smart Boards, power points, group work, class discussions, and even just going outside on a nice day. The more relaxed, interested, and happy adolescents are, the more open to learning their minds will be.

Schools should have programs in place to enhance self-esteem, self-awareness and social interaction. There should be a way for students to take risks academically to push them beyond what they have done before in a relatively safe way.

It would be wonderful if students could have input as to which classes that could  be created, and if enough students want to take that class ‒ and a teacher could share the knowledge to eager adolescent brains wanting to learn the material.

What do you think?

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53 thoughts on “Is Your Education Relevant?

  1. With everyone else in the comments, I agree. The last quote in this article stood out to me though. “It would be wonderful if students could have input as to which classes that could be created, and if enough students want to take that class ‒ and a teacher could share the knowledge to eager adolescent brains wanting to learn the material”. I remember during my grade 10 applied math class, the only thing I ever thought about in that class is how is learning how to find ‘x’ going to help me in my life. I would have been happy learning how to do taxes or take out a loan. But I didn’t learn that until I took grade 11 locally developed math. I know how to do taxes, take out a loan, deal with debt and credit cards. That was the best course I ever took. If I could create a course like the quote said I would make a M or O Math for everyday life class, that goes over all of these things that we will need to know when we get out of high school or university. I know about student loans and the best ways to get out of them but because I learnt this in a locally developed class, there’s a good chance I wont need the information because of it.

  2. I agree to a certain point with what this article is saying about education. Yes, there are many people who have went very far in life and have made a great deal of money without going very far in education. I also agree that putting yourself in a higher education will cost a lot of money and at the end you will most likely put yourself in a great deal of debt, but can that compare to how much knowledge and experience you would have gained through all your years of education? The many hours that you would have spent on all your classwork would be worth it if you are doing something that you love to do after your schooling. If you want to further your education in something you have a passion for, it will not feel like work. These are reason why I feel that education is important to life, as well as I understand what this article is saying about education.

  3. I’m indifferent with this article. On one hand, I understand that ” Classrooms need to incorporate the other methods of teaching ” Such as working with your hands or showing you how to do the lesson first WILL help student grasp the material and maybe enjoy the class room activity instead of dreading to attended class. However some teachers try very hard and do make an effort to make material exciting as possible. Students ( including myself ) will look at the negative aspect of a class instead of a more positive approach. This makes the work feel terrible but in fact you’re just making the experience difficult for you. Also, students can give suggestions on how the material can be produce to them. For example: if John wanted to follow the notes the teacher just taking, John could’ve photocopy them, get them off the internet, ask friend etc. There are many options.

    At the end of the day, students are responsible for there education and there outlook on school. Can school be boring or maybe even pointless? To a certain degree, Yes. Is it you’re responsibility that you didn’t do well in the class. Absolutely! Work hard everyone. It will payoff.

  4. I agree to a certain extent with the arguments laid out in this article. Throughout middle school, as well as high school, I have seen an over emphasis on memorization time and time again. This gives people with a naturally good memory a huge advantage over people with memories which aren’t up to par. I believe this is a plague to our education as it allows people with photographic memory to ace certain courses. It leaves students who might be the hardest working, most creative, and most adaptable in the ditch, even though in real world situations the latter of the two students might be more well suited to a job.

    I think we as a society should petition for change in our education system in two main ways. I think throughout school (from kindergarten to grade 12) there should be either courses or occasional workshops to allow students to develop and interest for something they really enjoy and are successful at. The second thing I think we should do is give students who have an interest in a certain field see what the real world applications and functions of someone in that field might be. If we did this early on in EVERY single course, I believe we would have much less students taking one year of a course in university or college and dropping out, realizing that they aren’t actually interested in that field.

    The one thing I disagree with is the bashing of teachers who have to stand in front of the class repeatedly and do lessons. As much as I believe hands on, visual, and other ways of learning would be wholly beneficial to the student body, as well as society as a whole, I realize that in fact, things like efficiency, cost, and repeat-ability of lessons need to be taken into account. With that in mind, it would be nearly impossible to entirely change our learning system to become vastly more reliant on skills other than memorization.

    If I had the power to change our education system here in Canada, I would make it a half way point between our current education system, and the system which many procrastinating (like myself) and school loathing students dream of. It would probably be cut into 80% of learning through text books and lessons with teachers, etc, and the remaining 20% would be reserved for hands on, creativity testing, on your feet, real world situations.

  5. I completely agree with what this article is saying! When i am sitting in class and there is a lesson going on it is usually so boring. Its the same for almost every class, sit down look at the smart board/chalkboard and take notes. It is so hard to focus when all a teacher is doing is reading off the a screen. It is very boring and makes concentrating that much harder, as well as the actual information we take in is much less than it should be. Learning should be interactive and fun in ways of which we can be working in groups and discussing what is being learned rather than just sitting there bored out of our minds. For example, I bring my math homework home most nights, and when i need help i ask my mom. Rather than her just telling me what to do we sit and brainstorm ideas of how to solve the problem, trail and error. This method can be used in so many classes, the best part is that the information will stick! When we have the ability to work with others and solve problems in creative ways we will retain our knowledge much, much better.

  6. Upon reading this article I can agree with the statements that are being made as I can relate to these issues. As a student I feel that different types of learning styles impact each individual differently. When the article mentions that teaching should not just be “a blackboard, pencil, and paper. It is simply just boring” this accurately represents how I feel about the education system. I believe a better learning environment involves more interaction between teachers and students to keep them involved and engaged with what they are learning. If students begin losing interest then this can cause short-term to long-term issues in the way they learn as they start to lack interest and focus.

  7. I completely agree with this article and its message. Students are unable to reach their full potential and learn due to the stencil cut process of learning and the idea of their only being one right answer. Constantly teaching an individual through the same “typical” methods (i.e. methods which lack creativity and hands on participation) leads to people considering education as a chore. Through the incorporation of practical tasks and unique learning techniques student’s perception on education can completely change. Students start to consider school as a stepping stone to enhance their knowledge rather than a routine task to complete exams and get good grades. Routine teaching can also be considered boring and difficult to grasp. Students must be encouraged to input as much as they can, through creative methods in order to increase in their knowledge. Overall for students to ultimately benefit from the education they are receiving they must learn through innovative methods as well as learn practical and beneficial information.

  8. I agree with this article 100%. Students need something to keep them interested. Many courses have no hands on activity included…only book work. Being a student myself, I hate having to sit in a class reading the posters around the wall trying to pay attention. If there was something to help me concentrate, I know I would enjoy the course a lot more.

  9. I agree with this article. Students are losing interest in learning. For education to be meaningful it must be flexible, enjoyable and everlasting. There should be a motivation for students to explore experiment and extrapolate. I also think that making stronger connections between education and career/later life in general would be helpful. Learning by rote and confining learning to books and desks can give students the sense that education is just a series of hoops to jump through, exams to pass, rather than something that should help them explore their abilities and get ready for an adult working life. Things like work experience, learning by doing ( connecting learning to practical tasks), and hands-on learning can help students find out what their skills are and make them feel connected to their own education. I think understanding with real facts are more important than just reading and swallowing the words. Education must be interactive both for the teacher and the kids. That way it’s easier for kids to learn. I also agree that “the more relaxed, interested and happy adolescences are, the more open to learning their minds will be.” I agree with this statement because I have been put into this situation. I have shown up to classes that I have been stressing over and these are the classes where I know I will struggle and not be as successful as I would like to be. I think that fun components of learning should be incorporated more often in the curriculum because it makes it helpful and easier to learn for students.

    1. I strongly agree with this article. Being a high school student I experience this first hand. Students need to be motivated to complete their work and assignments, however if they are interested and get creative with their assignments they would motivate them selves to complete their work to their full potential. From my experience as student I had teachers who would just stand front a projector and teach their lesson reading off a powerpoint all semester and other students and I felt that we haven’t learned anything in that course by the end of the semester came around. Despite all the teachers who kept class very basic and not intriguing, I have had many teachers who’s style of teaching have kept very engaged in the lesson and i feel because of that my work is much better due to the fact of my interest in the given subject. I am more of a hands on, creative learner and I find more and more students are becoming a hands on learner because most students find frustrating and awfully hard to pay attention to a teacher when they’re just reading off a powerpoint talking instead of getting the students involved doing something. To conclude, education must be interactive both for the teacher and the students. I think this because, it is more beneficial for the students and make learning easier.

  10. I agree with this article 100%! There are many ways to teach a student the content of information of a class, but many teachers only cater to the most popular ways. I do not enjoy writing down lengthy notes word for word off a chalkboard. I also find that all teachers teach the same way and do not change their teaching when a student is confused in how they are presenting the information. I have found that the best teachers lye within the Arts because they know that every student is different. Personally I would much rather create brief notes that would hold all information but in short bullets that I understand. Teachers need to integrate different ways to teach, test the knowledge of students because many students will spend hours before a quiz or test just memorizing answers and definitions, and will not retain the information after the course has finished. In conclusion I believe that the curriculum needs to be altered to reach out to the students that don’t respond to lectures, and notes as well as others.

  11. I agree with this article 100%. From personal experiences I can agree that it is not only frustrating but extremely hard to pay attention to a teacher when they are just standing at the front of the room speaking. I believe that if teachers incorporated different learning styles into their lessons they would get through to a lot more students then they are currently. When I am in class listening to the teacher, most things are tough for me to comprehend, and by the end of the class I am completely zoned out and don’t bother asking the teacher for extra help. If I were to take another approach at learning the same material I believe I would be able to understand the concepts a lot better.

  12. I agree with this article on the education system. There are many different methods of teaching (spatial, kinesthetic and auditory), which are not equally utilized for various types of learners. I personally enjoy taking notes as opposed to class discussions or watching videos because I find them to be very useful study tools for tests. I am not one who is able to soak up information easily, but writing it down and being able to refer back to it helps me learn and understand concepts. I know many people who do not enjoy taking notes, and can be very distant or distracted during lessons. As a result their marks suffer not because they are incapable but because they prefer a different teaching method. Teachers need to integrate different styles of teaching on a regular basis. This will enable students to express and challenge themselves, reach their full potential, and no longer have to conform to one uniform teaching style. I also think that allowing students to have some input on what is in the curriculum and the types of projects assigned in the various courses would make them more engaged and interested, resulting in more creativity and a greater desire to learn.

  13. In my opinion, these grade twelve students raise a very good point. Although I believe some the quotes are slightly over exaggerated, several statements made throughout the article lead me to believe that the students’ passion for change is strong and that they are generally concerned about the education system. The overall argument found within this article is that learning should be more interactive and less lesson/book based. I fully agree with this statement as I am someone who is able to gain more knowledge from hands on activities rather than textbook work. Interactive learning allows students to engage themselves in the lesson and feel much more involved in the classroom. Within this article, some of the students state solutions to this issue which is very important. They suggest that interactive learning can be incorporated through tools such as kinaesthetic and visual lessons, YouTube videos, Smart Boards, Power Points, group work, class discussions, and even just going outside on a nice day. In my opinion, these are fantastic ideas and I strongly suggest this article be reviewed by all teachers apart of the school board today. An adjustment to the current curriculum towards a more interactive learning environment would change student’s opinion and will ultimately enhance the quality of learning for the adolescent.

  14. I can completely agree with the statements being made here. Everyone that succeeds at a certain trait or course is encouraged to further their education in the future, whether that be college or university. Of course many students want secondary education because it is what is needed to have a proper job. But if students cannot simply listen in class because what the teacher is teaching does not hinder any interest in the students, they will get nothing out of the class.
    Generations over the years has changed incredibly with different learning methods and technology used in the classroom. If teachers truly want their students to be successful, they should do everything in their power to make their students comfortable and excited to learn. I remember I had a teacher all the way back in middle school that always included an activity with the lessons we were learning. I remember specifically when we were learning about negatives in math class, that he taught by means of golf. That was incredible to me, and I still remember the illustrations and examples he used — because he intrigued the class to listen to a pretty boring subject by spicing it up.
    Professors and teachers today should go back and pretend they’re elementary school teachers. Not by means of teaching the same content; but by teaching in the same way. Use videos, songs, activities, anything that will get the students interested in what the topic is. That’s the way students will learn.

  15. There are many different types of learners. Some people respond well to visual lessons, while others prefer oral or tactile teaching methods. Because everyone is unique in their learning preferences, there is no one supreme teaching style that will suit all students, therefore teachers should try to vary their style so it encompasses many different activities such as YouTube videos, group work, PowerPoint presentations, and lectures.
    Personally, I excel with the most common and “boring” teaching method of listening to my teacher and copying down notes. With this method, I absorb information visually, orally, and kinaesthetically. I hear the information, I read the information, and then I copy down the information. Because there are the three methods of absorbing information, I believe that the standard note-copying lesson utilized by many teachers for many years is the best and most efficient teaching style. The one issue is that it can be boring so if students are not engaged and paying attention to the lesson, they will not absorb the information. This is why different activities must be incorporated into lesson such as YouTube videos, so that the students will stay engaged and not become bored and “zone-out”. In the end, no matter how good a teachers is or what teaching method are utilized in the classroom, some students will always find reasons to complain and there is no way to make them happy unless school is cancelled.

  16. Like everyone else, I agree with the article. Being in grade 12 is supposed to be the best year of our lives as it is the last year of our high school lives. However, as we actually begin our grade 12 year, it becomes frustrating and overwhelming as we are given assignments and culminatings that very much effect our future as universities have these high expectations for us. From grade 9 to 11, it is mandatory for us to take the main three courses which are english, math, and science. As the semesters go by, the work load piles up and we are then forced to stay up late and get less than 7 hours of sleep.
    In grade 11, the courses I choose to take were english, biology, chemistry, functions, french, visual art, accounting, and foods & nutrition. From these experiences, I hated anything related to science, french, and accounting. Aside from the mandatory classes (english and functions), I randomly choose what courses to take. Guidance counsellors were little to no help. All my teachers taught me the same way. They stood up infront of the class and talked for most of the class period and gave homework and assignments. I was able to get high 70’s and low 80’s seven of my classes. The only class I got a high 90 in was visual arts. If teachers were more interactive with students instead of just blabbing on about the class work, then students would understand better and would not complain to teachers.

  17. I personally agree with this article. If students were given more options and variety to the classes they are able to take, they would be more eager to learn and would most likely do better in their classes. I have personally been in high school for almost four years and I have noticed that we are all put under the same standards and everybody learns differently. Some students are able to pick up information just from lessons but on the other hand, there are students that are rather “hands on” and “visual learners”. The school board does not give enough options for those kinds of learners .We are put under so much stress to have good grades in order to get into our university/college of choice that we don’t even take in the information we are learning and just puke it up on an exam or a test in order to get a good grade. Many students aren’t actually interested in the courses that they have to take in order to get into their program of choice, the high school courses are completely irrelevant to what they want to do in the future. Students should be able to have more variety.

  18. Based on my own experiences with today’s education system, to the extent that I know about it, is that the issue on whether or not the way we are taught is relevant to today’s student population has its good sides and its bad sides. Many of times I see fellow students falling asleep in class and require teacher intervention in order to (attempt to) grasp the students attention, I am also guilty of this but the fact is that there is little to no reason for students to be falling asleep I the middle of lessons. This is a clear indicator that something is not happening the way it should be. Students minds should be constantly kept engaged in class and be passionate enough about what their learning to at least stay awake or else what is the point in going to class? Of course there are those who learn perfectly fine by watching someone explain a concept and then repeating it several times until they get the hang of it but there are many others in which that doesn’t work for. There needs to be some modern kick to today’s lessons in order to keep today’s student’s attention. Anything from the implication of videos, hands on tasks, or group activities can enhance a student’s learning experience and allow them to keep their attention.

  19. As a high school student I have had a chance to think about this topic throughout the duration of my time at school. There are benefits and fall backs to the current type of education delivery currently. Some people need the lesson and then practice in order to understand the concepts and be able to know when to apply them. These students are the ones who are able to excel in the class, but then you also have the students who are visual and hands-on learners who are not able to grasp the concepts with only a lesson and questions. Yet everyone is held to the same standard and marking scheme. The people who aren’t able to express their understanding of the material struggle and aren’t able to get the marks because they weren’t taught in a way that was helpful for them. Of course thinking about this you can look at it from either perspective, the students that are able to learn that way and the ones that aren’t, but why should someone be restricted to expanding their knowledge because the teacher isn’t teaching in a way that is helpful to each student. Obviously it is not reasonable to expect teachers to have a different learning plan for each student and a different way to mark each one of them but incorporating diverse learning techniques can allow for a wider population of students to understand the material. It also can give everyone a different perspective on how to go about situations which they can use in the future outside of school. In addition, it gives the students who are more of a creative thinker or kinesthetic learner a chance to really understand the topics they are learning about.

  20. I would like to start off by saying that I 100% agree with the above article. It grabbed my attention because I can relate to the fact that school is just plain…boring. Yes, there is the odd time that something exciting happens where everyone can participate, learn, and have fun all at once. However, for the most part you do just sit there with “a blackboard, pencil, and paper.” and expect to learn and remember everything from one lesson. I remember when there was a time in elementary school when science was my all time passion. I was so intrigued by experiments and figuring out the science behind it, that I didn’t even realize I was actually learning something. Just recently I took grade 11 chemistry and was so stressed out because I was forced to attend many lessons, do multiple assignments, take tests weekly, and memorize all the course material in order to pass the final exam and finish on time. I was so rushed and didn’t have anytime to enjoy and actually take in all the things I was learning. To this day I don’t have any recollection of the course material.

    Teachers must think that if they teach a unit once, the students will remember it forever. Now I am in no way implying that the teachers are the bad guys. In fact, I sympathize for them because they have to teach the same material over, and over. Year, after year. I can see how they just want to say it once to the new class of the semester, and get it over with; because with time, it gets boring for the teachers too. Some teachers don’t care about the education of students at all and just read the lessons from previous years off a piece of paper, not to mention that some can’t even answer the more “mentally demanding” questions that cause the teachers to think of new solutions to problems that students haven’t come across in their past classes.

    I’m in grade 12, and I am just coming up to the end of my high school career; and I can’t say that the learning part of school was enjoyable and something I want to remember. Students are just glad they finish with decent marks. “Decent” meaning they were great averages, but after exams all their final marks went down…and not by just a few measly points. It’s so useless to have so many students fail and not get into the university or college of their choice just because of the fact that they couldn’t pass one exam that contained all of the course material they learned in five months, and complete it confidently in two very stressful hours. It is also scientifically proven that the high school students of today have the same anxiety levels as those of the patients in mental hospitals of the 1930’s.

    In conclusion, the students AND teachers both need to enjoy their time in a learning environment. Schools are places for coming up with ideas, and discovering new things. How does the school board expect the current students to create inventions and uncover the worlds greatest secrets during our future professions if we don’t have the opportunity to do it now?

  21. I strongly agree with the article above. As a grade 12 student who has endured four years of high school I know exactly what it is like to be completely disinterested in a class and have your marks suffer because of it. As the years progress you are entitled from freedom and are able to choose more classes that interest you, but there are always those required classes that you must take. For me personally, ever since grade ten I have wanted to be a nurse. With this, the classes I would have liked to been taking are more along the lines of science, nutrition, anatomy, and study of behaviour. Unfortunately, the school board makes you partake in classes like history, art, music, drama, geography, and math. There is nothing that interests me in a geography classes like a science class would. I think if schools had more options for classes, that were more particular to the certain activities/jobs that people are interested in, people would be a lot more enthused to attend school everyday. As well I believe that the way these classes and lessons are taught to us drastically affect our overall ability to grasp the understanding of these courses. Not everyone is accustomed to learning the same way. I feel that if teachers put more time and effort into coming up with interactive and meaningful lessons they would see an extreme change in student performance.

  22. In this article, the author takes their own academic struggles, and blames them on the education system.
    It is the student’s job to make sure that they can learn in class. They are the ones who must work for their educations. Paying attention in class can be difficult, it is a life-long skill that today’s youth lacks.

    Teachers can incorporate new activities and utilize the internet to make learning easier for students, but they take away from they what are teaching. My school posts its PowerPoint presentations online, and that is a very helpful studying tool. Of course, students do not give their full attention to the in-class lessons when they have full access to them online.

    In the second video, students acknowledge spending class time on Facebook. If they were taking notes during presentations instead of liking statuses, they would learn better. Students say that they cannot concentrate, waste time online, and blame the teachers for not being fun enough. Instead, students must learn to focus on school during school.

    Teachers have to change their lesson plans and course material to incorporate kinetic activates. They should not. The uninterested students should grow up and realize that their future employers are not going to change their workload to make it more fun.

  23. I agree completely. I think that throughout our school careers, the teaching style changes. When we
    were in elementary school, the teachers used objects to explain things to us. In math we were given connecting blocks to help us understand numbers and addition. In English or literacy class, we read stories but instead of the teacher reading it was a puppet, and to kids that is really exciting and cool. This made kids interested in what they were doing because there was a hands on approach or the teacher made it more entertaining. Even though we don’t need counting blocks and puppets anymore, it doesn’t mean that learning or teaching has to be any less engaging. I think that the author is right and that there needs to be more visual teaching in high school and that teaching lacks interest and creativity. In high school, teachers have more than one class and it makes it harder for the teachers to get to know each student, whereas in elementary school the teacher only had one class for a whole year. I think that because of this, teachers make up a simple or generic (and to students quite boring) lesson that they can teach to their multiple classes. It makes it easier for teacher but ineffective for students sometimes. Each class is different. Maybe one class is good with the simple chalk board lesson, but maybe the other class is better by watching a video or seeing how something works or understanding the logic behind an idea. There are many different learning and teaching styles which can make it hard for both the teacher and student which in turn can make it difficult for a student to learn from their teacher. I think that everybody would benefit from a little bit of creativity.

  24. I liked that everything thats important in todays teaching was mentioned here. the learning style teachers have today can get boring to us students today which is why including smart boards and other interactive solutions to teaching have helped

    Another good point that you made was that self esteem, self awareness and social skills are especially important in today’s society and students aren’t really being taught this. With each generation changing the style in which we are taught should a little bit too but it hasn’t really. If students aren’t taught these fundamental skills how are they supposed to be able to hold conversations when they are adults or even be successful in any situation where these skills are necessary like a job interview.

  25. I understand the point that the author is trying to make, however I must say, I disagree with the majority of arguments made in this passage. To begin, I disagree with the idea that, “Classrooms need to incorporate the other methods of teaching (Kinesthetic and visual)”. I feel that this is an invalid argument because kinesthetic and visual learning environments are already available for these identified learners. The rooms built for kinesthetic and visual learners are, indeed typically art and gym classes, however, changing the attitude of traditional academic classes such as English would be unsuccessful. I’m sure all conventionally oriented student would agree with me, specifically those interested in English, History, humanity and social science related career paths when I express this. Additionally, students that are not interested in these courses are, predictably, looking at different career paths, meaning they do not need to take traditional courses as electives. Visual, kinesthetic, spatial, and tactile learners are only obligated to take about 5/32 (4 English courses and one history) interpersonally, and linguistically dedicate courses in their high school years. It would be quite inconsiderate if these 5 courses were altered for visual and kinesthetic learners. I believe that if students are unhappy with the way classes are taught, they should change the classes they’re taking to their personal liking. For example, if I took an art course that I struggled in, I could simply switch the course to something that would better fit my individual learning style, as oppose to changing the teaching method of the art class. Could you imagine what art would be like if all paintbrushes were replaced with a digital paintbrush icon on an iPad? No talent would be required for artists to succeed in that case. This is the same with English classes. If all paper and pencil was eliminated, we would be creating an illiterate future for our children.

  26. I agree with this article in saying that school needs more physical interaction. Sitting at a desk and getting a long lesson everyday makes students start to get bored and stop listening. I believe that physical interaction on occasions in a class would not only wake the students up but improve the marks within. The one quote that made me stop and re-read it was “Students can only learn so much sitting at a desk for one hundred and ninety-five days a year, five days a week, and six and a half hours a day” it’s very true and straight to the point. I know for me knowing that when I get to class I am going to be told to sit down take out some paper and start copying I start to get sick of it. If I know that even once a week I would be going to class to do something physical and hands on I wouldn’t be so upset about the seated work. The classes nowadays are 75 minutes long, that’s an hour and 15 minutes. How can a student’s age 15 to 18 sit still for that long? After they have been sitting for about 45 minutes there ready to get up and move. Throwing in at least 20 minutes of physical learning it would make them able to focus a little better the rest of the class. My opinion is the writer has very good points that need to be taken into consideration.

  27. I strongly agree with the points this article is making. I believe that the more physical interaction within a classroom would greatly improve marks in secondary schools. This article stresses the message that the more students are engaged with what they are doing the more attentive the students become and therefore marks in the classroom will increase. I can relate to this message because I often feel bored and disconnected with the material in classes such as mathematics. I found courses in which you can react physically to the subject matter to be much more beneficial to my learning. An example of a course that I enjoyed because of the physical interaction in the class room include physics and chemistry. I feel in courses that are more physically involved with a variety of labs grab a hold of the students attention and make the lessons more memorable and therefore easier to study for tests. Overall, I agree with this article and classes should have more students interacting with the subject matter they are studying and how what they are studying applies to the real world.

  28. I do agree with various statements made in this forum, however, the one catching my eye is “Students can only learn so much sitting at a desk for one hundred and ninety-five days a year, five days a week, and six and a half hours a day”. I believe that every student has a different way of learning, whether it’s by listening, by having it written down or by watching it, either way teachers should have an understanding of this as they have been in the exact same position. You wonder if they could have possibly decided to take the role of a professor or teacher to reformat the way of teaching. Teachers should create lesson plans that encourage students to engage more and get involved. Sitting in a desk for so long copying down a brand new note every day is tiring; it is actually restricting and discouraging. It is ironic how in many classes a portion of your grade is participation involvement, but just how are you supposed to participate in such boring lessons that sometimes aren’t even significantly useful for everyday life. You don’t have to be sitting in your desk all day; it’s not difficult to schedule a trip that relates to a less interesting subject, giving the opportunity for all types of different learners to better understand things. I also believe that student and teacher relationships should be stronger in the sense that you should not only know “18% of your teachers”, you should feel confident enough to approach them when need be. The main portion of classes we take is the teachers, not the curriculum; they should be responsible for making it more interactive.

  29. I strongly agree with the points this article is making. I believe that the more physical interaction within a classroom would greatly improve marks in secondary schools. This article stresses the message that the more students are engaged with what they are doing the more attentive the students become and therefore marks in the classroom will increase. I can relate to this message because I often feel bored and disconnected with the material in classes such as mathematics. I found course in which you can react physically to the subject matter to be much more beneficial to my learning. Example of course that I enjoyed because of the physical interaction in the class room include physics and chemistry. I feel in course that are more physically involved with a variety of labs grab a hold of the students attention and make the lessons more memorable and therefore easier to study for tests. Overall, I agree with this article and classes should have more students interacting with the subject matter they are studying and how what they are studying applies to the real world.

  30. I do agree that “Students can only learn so much sitting at a desk”. Every student learns in different ways and may prefer one method over the other. Personally if i am not interested in a topic such as Canadian history and First Nations, then i can easily sit in class on my phone and ignore the entire topic. But when a teacher can create and make the class more visual with presentations, videos and organizing a trip into the First Nations residential school, you can feel what happened and feel the history that took place… you can easily become interested and at least learn something from the course.I believe the main factor depending on your learning education is the teacher! In grade 9 math i got %69..my teacher tried to be funny and used the smart board however just her teaching ability and interaction with the class ( actually talking to us, and listening to what we have to say) was limited. Grade 10 and 11 i had a new teacher! She was great, no technology was used but .. she talked to us. She listened to us , we went on walks outside and walked around the track sometimes. Actual face to face interaction is what counts. Then again iv taken 4 online courses including English, math and physics and iv progressed in all of them because i like to work alone and i emailed the teachers daily with questions and just talking about the assignments. In a way the face to face interaction was still there, but there were just key boards in-front of us.
    Overall, I think all schools should consider how they teach the curriculum to the students, to encourage an active learning session that’s enjoyable and effective to learning. More class trips, more hands on learning!

  31. When We think of school we think about sitting in a classroom bored out of our minds listening to a teacher talk. No one wants that. Every student learns a different way. Wether it be visual learning, hands on learning, linguistic learners, nature smart learners, body smart learners or musical learners. Not everyone learns the same way and classes should be formatted to incorporate all types of learning.

    Students who have difficulty learning are usually not paying attention or don’t understand what they are being taught because of how they are being taught. If teachers learned how different students worked and used specific learning methods with their class, many students would learn more and actually enjoy what they are doing.

    When school is fun and creative and students are engaged it makes learning a whole lot easier and a whole lot more enjoyable. Students also become more self confident and want to be there.

  32. I completely agree with the writer’s views on this topic. In my opinion, I have not had many bad experiences when it comes to my learning because I am fortunate enough to have teachers that like to make learning more exciting. Whenever I have lessons at my school for any of my courses, there is always a powerpoint and we do utilize the smartboards and other resources a lot. Because I do have most of these options, I can vouch for the fact that it does make learning more exciting and successful. I can only imagine being stuck in a desk staring at a blackboard for over an hour everyday and how difficult and boring it can be. I remember when I was younger and had to deal with this type of environment and I would end up staring into space and not even being able to recall what I just “learned.” Some students need more motivation to get work done and by doing more class discussions and things they can get involved with, I believe it will make their learning experience much better because that is what happened with me when I got into high school.

  33. I would have to agree with the author. Yes some people learn very well by sitting there reading it out of text or reading it off a black board but as technology increases so should the learning techniqes used by teachers. There are going to be more people who do not attend class or just don’t care because they are bored and have no interest in sitting there. There should be more interactive lessons and well things that will make it more enjoyable and fun. There needs to be interesting games played to teach students and make them learn or even interesting powerpoints. Every class should have no reason to make their lessons completely boring there is always something fun they could do. Just think back to when you were in school, did youi have fun in the lesson or were you bored just sitting there with the teacher talking about things or reading it out of an out dated book.

  34. I agree with what the author is expressing. In high school students are looking to their teachers for inspiration, on what they want to do the rest of their life. The enjoyment of the class determines the success that students will achieve. If lessons are boring no one will be interested and therefore will not want to learn, they will only feel forced. I believe by assigning group work, the students would be able to communicate their ideas with their peers, and learn new things, because let’s face it, there is nothing that students love more than talking in class! If students can stay focussed and talk, it would be a win-win situation! Another bonus for students to work in groups is that they can help each other understand the concepts of the lesson. Another great point made by the author is using power points and YouTube in lessons to help the teacher demonstrate what he/she are trying to teach. YouTube is a tool used by many teens, it is something we are very familiar with, by using it in a lesson, it will capture the young audience’s attention, and allow them to watch what is being taught rather than sitting down and copying down note, after note. Power points are another great tool because they allow the teacher to add pictures and decorations to make the lesson more appealing to the eyes of teens. From personal experience I learn much better when the teacher engages us students and shows enthusiasm is what they are teaching!

  35. I agree with this article completely. I think that there is a lot of interesting comments that teachers should taking into consideration when planning their class outlines in the future. I feel that the quote that said “Students can only learn so much sitting at a desk for one hundred and ninety-five days a year, five days a week, and six and a half hours a day,” is an important point to be made. I know that there is a lot of topic that need to be taught and the easiest way to explain it is to have all the students sitting and the teacher at the front of the class explaining the concepts. But I think that the teachers really have to try their best to at least once a week try to get the students out of their seats and have then use what they have learned in a more creative or active way.

    I believe that students would learn better if class where not all the same. I mean by this that teachers should try to do things to make the lessons more interesting and creative kind of like what the first quote. I believe that teachers should be creative in their lesson to include and encourage all of the students because in most classes there are a few students that seem to carry the class. I think that this happens because either those students really enjoy the content of the course or they really like the way that the teacher teaches.

    I think that it is very important for teachers to take into consideration that students learn in different ways and that most students cannot just listen to a teacher talk and then understand what it is the teacher is trying to teach.

  36. I agree that all classes are taught in the same mundane manner. But, I believe that is the most effective way to get all the material across the fastest. My opinion may be biased because I am an auditory learner, so for me the way teachers teach now is the most effective. Furthermore, if you have chosen to take a university level class you are preparing to go to university, and they teach in the same manner that most people don’t enjoy. In my opinion the education system is set up in a way that accounts for everyone. I think college level classes account for visual learners and work place classes account for kinesthetic learners. It is not practical to have kinesthetic and visual aids in university classes because of the limited time and large amounts of material to cover. On the subject of class material being boring, I think it is more about all the information that we will never need to know. For example, knowing a bonds polarity in chemistry is never going to be useful again. So, I think the curriculum should only include relevant information. Lastly, I strongly dislike when teachers use YouTube videos, Smart Boards, PowerPoints, group work, class discussion, and going outside on a nice day. I think YouTube videos, and smart boards are a teachers way of trying to make the class more interesting, but in reality they are just as boring as a lecture and in most cases they are followed by a lecture anyways. When teachers force students into groups I feel that one person does all the work, which doesn’t benefit anyone. For class discussion and going outside, that is a personal decision and I chose not to like those things. All in all, I think this article has many strong points, but I don’t agree with this opinion.

  37. I found this video and these posts very relatable. When I am sitting in class I regularly find myself watching and “listening”, but in my head I’ll be thinking about something completely different. I often ask myself how come I can sit through hours of movies, or video games without a slight waiver of my focus, but I can’t sit through a 20 minute lesson without thinking about what’s for lunch or falling asleep halfway through. I have come to the conclusion that it comes down to interest and passion. I love to play video games, they ignite my natural competitive drive. Whereas sitting through lessons and doing school work often does not appeal to me in the slightest. I find that setting goals helps me with this problem because like video games it ignites that competitiveness within me and gives me a target to aim for. Some might suggest that, this is the entire point of movies and video games is to captivate and entertain the viewer. This is completely true, but why can’t class lessons be the same way? They don’t have to be written on that dull blackboard, with that dull white chalk, and no graphics for entertainment. They can be educational and entertaining at the same time. I think that teachers should try to incorporate entertainment into their lessons as it will result in better focus and comprehension from students like me.

  38. I think that there were many good points. It’s true that a students can only pay attention for so long. It is hard for student to take in and understand everything a teacher is saying for an entire class. I think one of the best points in the essay was, “Classes should not be restricted to a blackboard, pencil, and paper. It is simply just boring.”

    Also a think a large part of how enjoyable the class is, is the teacher. Of course, there are subjects that are just more enjoyable than others, but I think if the teacher really sets the mood of the class. I’ve had subjects that are considered to be the more boring classes, but with a great teacher, they have been some of the most enjoyable classes.

    A teacher that engages the students, makes the class a lot more interacting. Like in the article, I agree that using technology like Youtube, Smart boards, Power Points etc. make the class better.

    But also this article makes all high school classes seem very dull. Sure, there are the boring class that everyone dreads going to. But there are also many classes that are really fun and interactive.

    Overall, I think high schools should consider how they teach the curriculum to the students, in an effective but enjoyable way that makes the students want to learn.

  39. I agree with most of the points that the author is making. I know that I like the technology courses at my school not necessarily because of the course material itself, but because it is an opportunity to do some hands on work. As a result of doing hands on work instead of just sitting in a classroom listening to a teacher talk, my technology marks were in the high 90s. I also agree that making lessons for subjects such as sciences or maths more interactive will cause students to learn the material better. For example in grade 9 and 10, my math teacher had all of their lessons on a smart board and they were very interesting and as a result i got marks in the 80s and 90s. However in grade 11 math, my teacher just did lessons on a chalkboard and didnt really interact with the class at all, and as a result nobody in the class paid attention to the material and the class average was only a 62. As a whole i agree with the opinion of the author that teachers should try and make their lessons more interactive and interesting, because it has proven in the past to get students to understand the material better by doing hands on work, instead of just taking notes.

  40. I absolutely agree with this article as well as the video above for a number of reasons. As a visual and naturalistic learner it is tiring to stare at a teacher only to watch as his or her mouth moves while more than half of what is being said goes in one ear and out the other. There should be more to look at to keep students intrigued during a classroom discussion. As a few visual aids, such as pictures or videos, would certainly gain a student’s eyes, but it may not demand their full attention, perhaps a new perspective could achieve that? Teaching a class outside allows for students to relax and lose that feeling of confinement within a classroom filled of other people. If a lesson outside isn’t an option why not try a different room? If a student’s surroundings have changed, their ability to listen and focus may change as well. Schools can be filled with negative energy as there is always a routine for students to follow, the repetition can end with more interaction and a change in perspective.

  41. I strongly agree with this article. As a student who is more of a kinesthetic and visual learner than anything else, it is hard for me to sit still listening to the teacher talk or read through a power point or something similar. It becomes hard to focus and simply gets boring, and I find myself quickly losing interest in the subject. More than I’d like to, I find myself sitting at my desk, bored and yet even though I can hear every word the teacher is saying, nothing ever seems to process. I feel that if the routine was to be switched up or we had a change of scenery, (the idea of having a class taught outside appeals to me), more of us would be inclined to try and learn something new, opposed to the same old boring and predictable routine we have all gotten used to over the years. I feel that mostly in today’s class rooms, students who are more visual learners and those of us who learn by experimenting with new things are not given as great a chance as those who are more mathematical or logical thinkers. I feel that school and learning would become more enjoyable to each and every individual if it became more interactive and flexible to the needs of all types of students.

  42. I completely agree with this article and the video above. I am currently a grade 12 student and I go to school and sit in a class listen to my teacher speak not really understanding what they are saying later finding out that I am going to receive an assignment based on what we just learned. The class rooms need to be more hands on so that kids can learn. Students can only process so much written work before they get bored or just lose interest. I attend class everyday yet somethings the teacher says i might not understand because close to the end of class I lose interest in what the teacher is saying. Also not everybody is not interested in every class that they have doesn’t mean they should be criticized because they do not like a course or something they are learning in school. The video stated people that are very successful even though they did not attend Post secondary school or if they did they dropped out

  43. A comment was made that the teacher of the class greatly influences a student’s perspective of the course. Personally, my opinion of the teacher in the room greatly influences the attitude I have towards that course. The attitude in turn affects the motivation to succeed and therefore, the outcome of how much I learn and how well I do in that course.
    One important aspect of attending school is to learn vital interaction and social skills, along with etiquette and proper display of behaviour. Social interactions are one of the biggest parts of self-discovery as a student. Programs enhancing self-esteem, self-awareness, and social interactions in schools would help students find how they can learn best and possibly increase the enjoyment of being in school for some students.
    Elementary schools, in general, explore many learning techniques to help younger children succeed in learning, but as students move into high school, we are all streamed into the same learning style every day. Students must sit through teacher lessons and take notes, read textbooks and study to prepare for tests. There are select few students who function well in this environment, and are able to excel in school. However, for the most part, students get easily bored with the decrease of interactive learning. Schools need to be directed towards multiple learning styles to incorporate all students and allow them to have the best education possible. Each individual has a different way of learning and perceiving, and should not be placed in the same pathway as other students and expected to excel and learn at the same pace as other students. Education unfortunately is not directed to students in this way. The most effective way of education would be to allow each student to discover their own learning needs and adapt that course or learning material to their requirements
    Interaction and immersion into a subject of learning is one of the best ways to grasp a concept. For myself, I have taken French throughout school, learning enough to get by with a few key sentences and basic grammar. This past spring my learning was tested when I went to live in Switzerland speaking French 24/7 and realized how unprepared I was from sitting in a class, learning off books and blackboards. After studying, hearing, and speaking the language all day every day I learned so much more than I could have ever learned through textbooks and teacher lessons in school. Being placed into the subject and experiencing it in real life creates the best habits for learning, but unfortunately classrooms have taken this aspect away from education.
    Overall, education is one of the greatest strengths one can attain; therefore we should do our best to promote it. School has become the way of educating students, but has taken a turn to be a negative aspect in some student’s eyes. Schools need to become more interactive and overall more enjoyable to individuals in every way possible.

  44. I do believe with what the writer is trying to say in this article. Students nowadays can’t sit still for 75 minutes listening to a teacher talk and go on about the same subject with the same voice. The student will zone out and thats where you start to find the students going on to their cell phones, doodling, passing notes, playing games and doing other things then listening to their teacher.
    If a student takes a class and enjoys the teacher because of his/her teaching methods and how interesting their class actually was, they will recommend that teacher to all of his/her friends and more students will want to have that teacher. A student picks a course for a reason, because their interested in the information that they will be learning about. However, if a teacher is rude, mean, boring, has a monotone voice or doesn’t try to make the lesson fun then that student who wanted to be in that class so badly and hear what the teacher had to say about that subject is horrible. They will switch out of that class and say horrible things about the teacher… which no body wants!
    Teachers need to put themselves in the students position, think about what they would want when they were younger.. to have fun at school. So why not make it fun still? Add an activity into the lesson, go outside, add photos, add music or even pass out props! Anything to get a student intrigued in what they are learning about.

  45. In my opinion, I think school should not be limited to the classroom, to keep all the majority of the students interested, I say majority since “you can’t please everyone” , Teachers should provide the opportunities to the students to extend they reach past the clouds and to be able to experiment with what works for them. If it helps a student with an assignment if he/she can act it out, than the student should have that option, if a student is not able to absorb a concept by just hearing about it, and need to actually attempt the concept hands on, than they should have the option. School has been pain for all of us at some point, some more than others, so having options for students to ease the pain whilst completing the same assignment as others just in a different fashion/unique. It is also good for the teachers as well since I’m sure they can get bored by reading the same format over and over again. If you are working while having fun it will never be work again.

  46. The article written for the topic “Is Your Education Relevant?” is very relatable to the minds of many secondary-school students.
    Right from the beginning of the article, I had a connection with the author. I completely agree that current teaching methods lack interest and creativity. A lot of the time while in class, I find myself distracted by the simplest things because I am bored of what is being taught. I feel like a robot who is forced to participate in a boring life full of the same routine daily.
    I personally am a Kinesthetic learner, I enjoy doing hands on work; but in 90 % of the classes I am required to take I am forced to sit at a desk and listen to a teacher speak. I’ve had one teacher in my school who was willing to allow classmates and myself get outside and have fun, and physically do an activity. I found that I learned those concepts a lot better than I have recently in my other courses. I think that it would be beneficial to teachers and students to incorporate more “hands on” activities and lessons.
    I also agree that “the more relaxed, interested and happy adolescences are, the more open to learning their minds will be.” I agree with this statement because I have been put into this situation. I have shown up to classes that I have been stressing over, losing sleep over, and becoming frustrated over; these are the classes where I have failures. I think that fun components of learning should be incorporated more often in the curriculum. I have actually noticed of the past couple of years, that if I have a following a phys.ed course, I will have more success in it. Since I am able to relieve stress in physical activity, I show up to the next class relaxed and ready to learn.
    Although I do agree that many classes can by dry and boring, they are not all like this. Last semester I had Biology, which I thought would be difficult and boring, but I actually enjoyed it so much that it has become my favourite course. I honestly think that how boring a class is depends on the teacher. My teacher for biology was: energetic, understanding, helpful and made our class fun by incorporating things like smart-boards and movies; just as suggested in the article.
    School can definitely be boring at times, but if you have the right teacher, and the right attitude you can really learn to enjoy it.

  47. I feel that somewhere down the line we have lost sight of what is really important to teach our kids. By the time a highschool student finally saunters out into the real world they have been filled to the brim with information; important information in today’s society, but utterly useless in practice. I am not saying that we must abolish these less practical teachings, knowledge is power these days! We must certainly equip our youth with this power. My point is that back in the day, parents used to teach their children everything they knew. Things like farming and cooking of course, but also things like how to throw a punch or let a remark slide and how to spend and to save as well. It is no secret that parents have changed and Google has taken over as master and commander of all things to be learned, but I believe this must change again. Students must be taught how to manage themselves in the world. Life is getting easier in Canada, but now, with so much free time to think, people find themselves in extreme emotional distress, not to mention financial crisis (what teenage girl can possibly resist the cosmetic isle?) this is all topped off by underlying pressure to find spiritual peace in a world which demands a choice between dozens of major exclusive and jealous gods. Evidently it’s a jungle out there, I think it is about time we throw our students some spears so that they can put their knowledge of hunting in that great jungle to good use.
    -Judith Desterke

  48. I believe the writer poses great points throughout this article. It’s easy to agree with what the writer is saying because its simply the truth, teaching methods have not adapted to the evolution of our current generation. In a certain era i do believe that the simple blackboard, pencil, and paper method would be highly effective, but as for our generation it just doesn’t keep the students interested. School is becoming to repetitive and the only way to spruce up a regular school day would be for the teachers to take advantage of the amazing opportunity of our advanced technology and incorporate it into our lessons, instead of disallowing it from lessons and classrooms. In contrast to the great points the writer made I don’t agree with the generalization, that ALL classes are the same. There are schools/teachers that have took significants steps forward in improving there courses/lessons in efforts to maximize the potential of their students. The way the schools have done this is by introducing new and improved courses that involve the course to have technology incorporated throughout the course to better grab the attention of students such as youtube videos, smart boards, online courses such as the one I’m currently taking and others that the writer has also stated. Therefore I wouldn’t say all classes are boring but there are the traditional teachers, who have been in the profession for many years who simply wouldn’t think twice about changing there teaching methods. Overall I think this is a great article and with students education being so relevant to the future of all students, schools should really find ways to maximize students potential even if it means they have to change their teaching styles.

  49. I agree with most of the points the writer makes. Many of the courses I have taken in high school do lack interest and creativity. Personally, I find that the amount of interest I have in a course is directly dependent upon what the course is, and who is teaching it. The writer, on the other hand, seems to paint all courses in high school as boring, which they are not. More interaction with the subject matter being taught would definitely keep my interest for some subjects, such as chemistry where one can see chemical reactions occurring and appreciate the science behind it. Using technology, such as computers, to submit assignments adds nothing for my interest level in a course. It is merely another step. Linking assignments with relevant media forms and with other students and the instructor to allow discussion is a positive use of new technology. Like the writer, I agree that YouTube videos, smartboards and class discussions encourage my learning. Overall, this article is very relevant and very true. Schools should take these points into consideration when determining school curriculum in order to engage and teach students.

  50. I agree with most of the points the writer makes. Many of the courses I have taken in high school do lack interest and creativity. Personally, I find that the amount of interest I have in a course is directly dependent upon what the course is, and who is teaching it. The writer, on the other hand, seems to paint all courses in high school as boring, which they are not. More interaction with the subject matter being taught would definitely keep my interest for some subjects, such as chemistry where one can see chemical reactions occurring and appreciate the science behind it. Using technology, such as computers, to submit assignments adds nothing for my interest level in a course. It is merely another step. Linking assignments with relevant media forms and with other students and the instructor to allow discussion is a positive use of new technology. Like the writer, I agree that YouTube videos, smartboards and class discussions encourage my learning.

  51. I really like how you mention how teaching should not just be “a blackboard, pencil, and paper. It is simply just boring”. This is very true as kids attention span can only last so long, which is why the implementation of smart boards and interactive materials like that have allowed kids to be more intrigued towards lessons instead of falling asleep.

    Also another major point I think you hit right on target is that programs enhancing self-esteem, self-awareness and social skills are specific traits that are needed for someone to be successful and are not always emphasized in high-school. With times changing and the newer generation taking over it is very necessary for kids in highschool to be informed on how to engage with others, because many things in life deal with social skills and engaging with others, and if kids do not gain the skills needed to be able to carry on a conversation with someone else how will things get done?

    Self-esteem I personally thing is a huge problem that we see in kids today as kids do not believe in themselves and feel even minor tasks are merely impossible because their confidence and self-esteem levels are low. High schools need to have workshops that talk to kids how having a great self-esteem and having self-confidence can lead to better marks, a better overall person and a better lookout on life.

    I use the following motto for everything and preach it to everyone that “Confidence Is The Key To Success”.

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