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10+ Reasons Why I Dislike Conventional Education

  1. Age segregation: Modern schools separate children from adult life and group them by age. In most traditional societies, children live and work alongside adults, and they play and learn in mixed-age groups of children. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  2. Hierarchical ranking and competition: In modern schools, students compete to be the best, and are ranked by their performance. Many traditional cultures are more egalitarian, and consider overt competition or ranking to be bad manners. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  3. Hierarchical control: Modern education is normally organized in hierarchical authority structures, where the teacher controls the child, the district and state control the teacher, and increasingly, systems of national standards and funding control the state. Traditional learning is often non-coerced, and the child is frequently free from direct control of her moment-to-moment choices and activities. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  4. Separation from nature: Modern schools usually require children to be indoors for most of the day. Children in traditional societies typically spend much of their time outdoors in the natural world, and develop an intimate knowledge of their local ecosystems through their daily activities. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  5. Restricted physical activity: Modern schools usually require children to be sedentary and quiet for many hours each day. Children in traditional societies are generally free to move about, talk, laugh, etc., and are physically active both in work and in play. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  6. Text-based rather than experience-based learning: Most learning in schools is based on de-contextualized knowledge encoded in written form. In most traditional cultures, children learn most of what they know through hands-on experience and participation in community life. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  7. Direct instruction: School learning relies heavily on lecture and direct teacher-controlled instruction. Learning in traditional societies is more often initiated by the child through observation, experiment, play, and voluntary community sharing of information, story, song, and ritual. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)
  8. Age-based “standards” and the invention of “failure”: Modern schooling creates standards of learning based on chronological age and then talks in terms of failure or disability when children do not meet those standards. Traditional societies generally have a more flexible approach to child development, assuming that a child will learn when she is ready, and that variations in the timing of learning have little importance. (Carol Black, posted 7 April 2014, accessed 9 October 2017)


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