posted on Mar, 25 2009 @ 06:37 AM
Now whilst I'm against the 'dumbing-down' of education generally, but I've a few problems regarding your post when compared to the The Grauniad's
Firstly, it's concerning a rethink of primary school education. Now it's 30 years ago since I left primary school, but I'm pretty sure
topics such as 'World War II' were dealt with very superficially at best at my primary school. It wasn't a bad school either as many of I was one
of many that went on to grammar school.
Secondly, as the story itself points out, this is partly because there's an element of redundancy involved. Why teach WWII at primary school when
it's going to covered again, in far more detail, a couple of years later at either grammar school/secondary school?
On the face of it, topics like Wikipedia and Twitter seem very superficial and meaningless but both typify quite important core issues. Whilst Wiki
isn't without faults by any means, it's a useful starting point for information. Encouraging children to access and utilise information is
Perhaps, we've got to be realistic and accept that generations of people are now growing up without access to decent 'dead tree' libraries and that
there's not a lot we can do about it as libraries are closing down left, right and centre and are often reliant on being used as IT centres to bring
a lot of service users through the door. Any means to encourage young people to be able to access information (and not everything on Wiki is useless
by any means and people seem to have this weird idea that all books in libraries are good books should be encouraged. If books are no longer a
preferred medium then we have no choice but to look elsewhere.
Similarly, Twitter and other forms of on-line messaging are what lies ahead for most of us, whether we like it or not. It doesn't have to be a bad
prognosis as, ultimately, it's nothing more than a tool. It's pointless to somehow privilege other forms of communication as, in a similar sense to
thinking that all books are better than all Wikipedia pages, not all verbal or face-to-face communication will have any kind of intrinsic
Also, from a prospective Luddite point of view, there's some good points too, surely? There's a move to wean children off calculators; something
that's been railed against for years. At my school it was logarithm table books and pen and paper!