Snow, Disasters and Boredom

Dear readers,

Sitting here as the snow comes down, feeling a bit disappointed that we’re not getting as much snow as predicted. It is the child-like side of me that comes out every time there is a natural disaster, a hang-over from childhood when I bore no responsibility for getting things done. I imagined floods as a chance to dive out of my window into the water, etc.

Disasters always seemed exciting, and for some foolish reasons, not threatening. (Probably a sign of a very lucky life—although I still experience a panic when the phone rings at an unreasonable time of day or night.)

I suspect many young people share this. especially when they are in school. Disasters augur a break in the boredom! Do most get over it, unlike me? As John Goodlad noted many years ago—the primary problem facing our schools is BOREDOM. Kids aren’t kidding when they say, “It’s bo-or-ing!” And, adults who sit in K-12 classes, concur.

It leads me to my number one criteria for judging a school. Is it an interesting place for the teachers and the students and every other person who must spend 5-8 hours a day there. If it is, productive learning will take care of itself—or, at least, have a fighting chance. Otherwise, forget it.

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3 Responses

  1. productive learning will take care of itself—or, at least, have a fighting chance. Otherwise, forget it.

  2. My post was goofed up, what I meant to write was that in the rhetoric of school measurement, assessment and accountability I would love to know which schools have the highest percentage of student and teacher engagement and start from there talking about the rest

    • Of course that leads to the problem of how “engagement” is measured. In most research I know student engagement is measured as time spent doing what they are told to do by the teacher.

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