Do politicians realize they are pushing mediocrity? In a mis guided quest to get rid of bad teachers, it is the people who really teach and educate who are leaving the teaching profession, leaving only the mediocre and bad teachers. Who thinks preparing a kid for a multiple choice test is the ultimate goal? Is that really the measure of a quality education?
What do we as a society really want from our students? Should students (and teachers) be stressed out?
Here is an interesting article that shows what Singapore values in education is a Zest for life! http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/singapores_surprising_desired_education_outcomes_including_a_zest_for_life/2011/04/27/AFRxld5E_blog.html?wprss=rss_education
I value students being able to apply what they know and use it. Why ask them to learn something they can Google (I do not entirely believe that)? I want to know what they can build and create? I want to encourage outside the box, creative thinking and solutions! I played a math version of dungeons and dragons with my students one year. The students had to come up with a fictional alter ego with a super power. My favorite and most memorable response from a student was that her character has the power of awkwardness! (They would stand awkwardly by the bad buy and he would feel uncomfortable and leave). A multiple choice test does not reward creative solutions. I was frustrated when I had taught my students the proof of the quadratic formula by completing the square (I teach the heck out of this thing, I love it and I make it fun and interesting!!!). I knew my students would nail it when they took the test. To my despair I saw the test question showed an alternate method to completing the square. My method was not wrong! However, I felt like I had done something wrong when I saw that another algebraically valid method was used. My students knew it cold… and were unnecessarily frustrated and confused. We are teaching students this is only one right way to do things and there is always a right answer… even in math this is not necessarily true!