Sunday, October 4, 2009

A Place For Wonder

On Friday, I got home from school and this package was sitting on my counter! "I wonder what they have sent me now?"
I opened the package and found this book inside! Georgia Heard, yes, Georgia Heard, my poet hero has a new book about creating an environment for primary children to read and write nonfiction!!!!! AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!! I am so excited to begin devouring these pages. I have read the acknowledgements, and the introduction and man do I love this book already! In the introduction she says this:
"such values as a silent class instead of students engaged in meaningful conversation, learning to take a test instead of discovering and asking questions, sitting silently at a desk all day preparing for a test." (Can I get an amen?)
Later she says,
"What's happened to education in which our youngest students are forced to practice for a test at the exclusion of play, curiosity, and exploration? Tests can't measure the esssential habits and understadings of young children that will make them lifelong learners." (Again, with the amen!)

I haven't gotten much further but my husband and I discussed at length that that is where public education is, "knowledge factories." What I don't understand is why can't we seem to get this knowledge to the people who are making the choices for us? Why can't we seem to get the research that is showing that we are raising a whole generation of children who can not think for themselves because there is really only one answer to the problems on the test? When will they see that we are just opening up brains and dumping knowledge in whether they are ready or not? When will they discover this and a real change will occur in the world of education? Who do I need to speak to, because I've had enough?!?!?!?!