Favorite student story of the day:
I assigned their first writing project today -- a personal literacy narrative because we just finished reading the narrative of Frederick Douglass (our class mantra is “literacy is liberating”). On my rubric/guidelines I wrote, "Don't forget to give your narrative a unique title -- this is the first thing a reader will see!"
This is the conversation that followed:This mindlessness is what the accountability era has wrought.
An honors student: You mean we have to title the paper ourselves?
Me (with a snarky tone): Yes. who else would title it?
All students in unison: The teacher!
Me: Are you serious?
All students: Yes
Me (took a deep breath): If I catch anyone titling their paper "My Literacy Narrative," you will lose points, and I will make you wear a name tag that says, "Hi, my name is boring."
Multiple students began frantically erasing the top of their papers.
Apparently, every paper their freshman year was titled for them. [emphasis added]
If the teacher is the most important factor (or in-school factor) in a student's learning, then the scripted classroom bent on test-prep is guaranteed to produce only one thing: Mindlessly obedient and incapable young people.
That may benefit our two major political parties filled with Clowns and offering us endless Circuses, that may benefit Corporate America seeking a cheap and inter-changeable workforce, but that doesn't serve our hopes of Democracy and Equity...