Progressive Education's War On Knowledge

An educational futurist, in a video on Edutopia, objects to the teaching of data and information. That's the sort of thing, he sniffs, that Google can find. The futurist wants a high-tech classroom where students work only on sophisticated projects, such as "Is there life on Mars?" The futurist scorns traditional ways of teaching. For one thing, teachers wasted a lot of time on trivial stuff. His voice almost shakes with incredulity: "Teaching kids that 'In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue' -- why on earth waste time presenting that?" The reasoning runs like this. Anything you want is on Google, so why bother learning anything? I worry that this is a destructive little sophistry. Let's think about it. When I was a kid, all knowledge, for all practical purposes, was in the encyclopedias we had in our den or the school library. Did that mean I didn't need to learn anything? Quite the contrary. Just thumbing through the pages of those encyclopedias was confusing and...(Read Full Article)

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