The conventional rote method of learning is often considered to be so dull as to discourage full development of young people’s innate abilities. This essay agrees with the view that the current pedagogy is outdated, and will consider an alternative to traditional education.
While ordinarily, children are expected to retain pre approved information dictated by a teacher, a self-directed approach can be more beneficial. Holding all children to the same standard will necessarily have a divisive result, with some children believing themselves to be intellectually superior, and others feeling inadequate, perhaps for life. In systems in which achievement is relative, such as in Finland for example, young people graduate from education each feeling as if they have completed their own unique path, and knowing deeply and without prejudice their own capabilities, reducing or even eliminating the feelings of inequality that conventional education creates.
Furthermore, under the current system, students who lack aptitude in core subjects such as mathematics and the sciences are seen as having less intrinsic value to society. These children spend their lives believing that they are inadequate, but many may have valuable talents that were never explored. It is in this way that conventional education does the most harm, by ignoring niche abilities in favour of skills with more mass appeal. Comparing traditional education with the Finnish system of self-direction, we can see that the former is certainly causing harm to a significant number of pupils.
To conclude, changes are urgently required in education systems around the world. We should focus more on a child’s interests and innate abilities in order to maintain their engagement, and allow them to direct their own learning to achieve the best outcomes.
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