"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Sunday, July 17, 2011

What school is all about

Sent to the Los Angeles Times, July 17, 2011

In addition to influencing the medical literature (LA Times, July 16), J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter has a great deal to say about current educational policy.

In "Harry Potter: The Order of the Phoenix" (2007), villain Dolores Umbridge ("You know, I really hate children.") informs Hogwarts students that their course on Defense Against the Dark Arts will be "carefully structured" and all theoretical, with no actual use of the spells. When students complain, Umbridge says " … a theoretical knowledge will be sufficient to get you through your examinations, which after all, is what school is all about." The next lines say it all:

Harry Potter: And how is theory supposed to prepare us for what's out there?
Dolores Umbridge: There is nothing out there, dear!

Umbridge would have strongly approved of the US Department of Education Common Core Standards and National Tests based on the standards.

Stephen Krashen

LA Times article: http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-harry-potter-medical-research-20110716,0,5574115.story

No comments:

Post a Comment