Monthly Archives: December 2020

Micro-Management: The Case of Education

There are three bases to an institutional effort; educational, commercial and welfare. An educational institution is formal arrangements of educators, children, and parents to create an effective learning environment for children. The educational environment aims to target all aspects of learning; knowledge dissemination, morale improvement, character building, and like. In this paper, we will discuss, briefly, the meaning, source and effects of micro-management on educational institutes. It is our hope that readers will be focused more towards quality way of teaching after perusing this humble effort.

Micro-management in teaching is managing or controlling learners with excessive attention to minor details and providing rapid criticism on mistakes, over and over. Micro-management kills intrinsic motivation of learners; consequently, self-motivated, self-regulated, and self-directed learners are a missing phenomenon of micro-driven setup, unfortunately. Micro-management disregards the significance of cooperation dimension during learning; as a result, the teamwork aspect is dilapidated, eventually. Micro-management fails to respect the self-esteem of every learner of the institute; subsequently, frustration becomes commonplace among students. Last but not the least, micro-management fails to recognize latent talents of learners and focuses on goals only, disregarding means; and so, it fails to address learners’ passion and discipline, properly.

Curiosity and creativity are essential elements of any excellence in human life. The two elements find their groundwork at the individual’s dominant area of thinking or intelligence, for example, some minds excel in logical reasoning, some in emotional/artistic depiction, etc. Generally, every individual is curious and creative by nature. Education is the name of providing knowledge, imparting wisdom and preparing students for practical life. Curiosity is inquisitiveness for knowledge and understanding while creativity is the birthplace of wisdom and innovation. Educational institutions play the role of motivating curiosity and encouraging creativity in students considering their respective intelligence. Presence of micro-management in the system overlooks curiosity of learners, gradually, and suppresses their creativity, ultimately.

The miscarriage in the outcome of expectations of a system can provoke micro-management in the administration or teachers. Failing to discover where the problem truly lies, the supervising bodies begin to reproach students for poor performance and, as a result, find refuge in rigid approach to teaching, such as micro-management. As far as the letdown is concerned, the issue might be in the scheme and structure, and not inside learners. Sometimes, teachers express micro-management, unknowingly, simply due to ignorance of quality education. Either way, it is noteworthy, micro-management can direct, slowly but surely, the system towards corrupt-management – the worst type of management. It is destructive for all; affiliated public, learners and economy.

It is a prerequisite for developing a fruitful environment in class that educators are aware of the true meaning of education and proper way of teaching. Assimilating the path of micro-management leads to alternative or conventional teaching methods. These methods or techniques are not productive, even unfavorable, in the long-run. For instance, knowledge of books is given excessive attention such that concomitant objectives of learning, such as capacity building, physical education, intelligence, and insight are overlooked or postponed. Consequently, students, who are adaptive of their elders’ way of discernment, can disregard the importance of such objectives and activities. Sometimes, rote learning is massively imparted to gain quick results. The incentive to teach in order to gain appreciation from management/parents on account of outstanding class result doesn’t entirely serve the purpose of education. A true teacher understands this and prepares the learners not only for the annual evaluation to come, but also for their practical life.

The disciplinary counselling of students may require, sometimes, timely and comprehensive consulting by teachers/parents, but other missions of an educational institute demand, without exception, absence of micro-management altogether and implementation of quality education. Quality education or teaching aims for the inner gusto of learners, so more and more self-motivated students emanate, undoubtedly. Quality teaching recognizes the importance of cooperation and pays special attention to synergistic learning, now and again. Quality teaching never fails to respect each and every knowledge-seeker and addresses their issues in a timely manner. Lastly, quality teaching approves of the cause-effect duality and focuses on both – goals and means – for proper coaching of learners’ discipline and ambitions. It is noteworthy, the self-regulated, self-directed learners, later on, are likely to become leaders/entrepreneurs of the next generation. Therefore, the success of educational institutes, which is possible by quality way of teaching, is precursor of emergence of innovation and good leadership in any society.

The Purpose of Education – Creating Responsible, Productive Citizens

“The whole art of teaching is only the art of awakening the natural curiosity of young minds for the purpose of satisfying it afterwards”. – Anatole France

The purpose of education is to create responsible, productive and socially contributing citizens – people who can provide for their own families as well as contribute to their communities. As Toffler says, education in the 21st century should allow people to learn, unlearn and relearn. But I am not sure our schools and colleges are committed to this.

Education is one of the most unscientific human endeavors. You do well in school to get into a good college and earn a good degree. A good degree is supposed to be a passport to a good job. Based on your educational qualifications, you can climb to a reasonably high position without having to demonstrate any exceptional ability.

Beyond that, however, you may have problems. There is no established link between your performance in school and your performance in a job. Even more importantly, there is no link between your performance on the job and your performance in life.

To be true to purpose, education should support a child develop three fundamental capabilities:

1. Discover, develop and continually evolve a vision to become a useful member of society:

Many of us have an advantage – our parents envision our future for us, driving us to work towards achieving this vision. However, this is not as common among the poor. The education system has to step in to help everyone create this vision, and to build even the poor child’s confidence to pursue the vision.

Balaji Sampath, who runs Eureka Child – an NGO committed to improving literacy and math ability in government schools, told us a touching story in this context. Coming back from the US to do something meaningful in education, he immersed himself in local issues by spending a few months in a village. He was in a village classroom when a child asked the teacher whether it was possible to travel to the moon. “You and I cannot fly to the moon,” the teacher answered. “But scientists in the U.S. can…” We must stop robbing our children of goals and dreams.

2. Understand that questions are more important than answers:

Our education system places undue emphasis on providing answers – often to questions that children do not have. In other words, too often we teach children concepts without context; we need to show them why learning is important. We need to focus on awakening kids’ natural curiosity and teaching them to love learning. A good way to do this is to place children in natural experiences or in games where they can ask questions. In these settings, learning is immediate and strong. Learning can be a structured discovery process, offering students varied learning outcomes – just as our situations and decisions later in life offering different outcomes.

For example, an NGO in Mumbai went to schools with an experiment to teach students about water conservation. The pupils measured the amount of water consumed while brushing their teeth with the tap open, and then again with the tap off. Imagine, if we all learn this type of lesson in school, how we can apply the principles to so many other aspects of our home and work later in life.

3. Learning to Learn:

The world is evolving too fast for schools and colleges to keep up. What is being taught is inadequate and outdated, or will be soon. It is important that children are encouraged to discover answers on their own – through the Internet, through experimenting and by having access to experts on the cutting edge of every field.

It is important that students learn the scientific method –

(a) creating a hypothesis based on observations,

(b) designing and conducting experiments to prove or disprove these hypotheses and

(c) arriving at conclusions while recognizing that the conclusions could change with additional information.

With the level of knowledge available in the world today, it is also important to exercise judgment what to learn, and how and when you need to learn it. We need to teach kids when to rely on their own judgments,, and when to rely on the expertise of others. Our children must learn that even when you outsource the effort, you retain responsibility over the result.

What do you think? Do you agree with these ideas about the critical capabilities that our children need? Is our educational system addressing this? Do share your thoughts and experiences with all of us.

Is Education Really the Key to Success?

“Education is the Key to Success” – Well, I TOTALLY DISAGREE. In fact, I see education as an authoritative conditioning tool which tried to lead me into economic enslavement. And mind you, I always did well in school, but finally had to leave as it was dummying me down as my business was taking off. I should have left HS my sophomore year and GED’d (General Education Development test instead of finishing HS) out, went straight to business school classes for two years and left. I’d have been way Ahead, but I was told by so many do-gooders to stay in school and be involved.

Great, and yes as Senior Class Pres, 4-year varsity, most likely to succeed, I excelled at the game, but so what, that’s HS, and it was just a prison for us 3000 kids for 4-years. Education is NOT the key to success at all. Recently I went to speak at a HS, I was blown away, as nothing had changed since the 80s, same ridiculous rows of desks, and time-wasting, brain numbing crap. I am sorry, but I will NOT parrot the party-line. We are making our little humans stupid and the longer they stay, the more they owe in student loans, and the less they can think.

Seriously – dare to challenge your naïve notion and belief system? Chicken. Go ahead; keep telling everyone the importance of our education system, but it is BS, you can learn more watching lectures online and doing things in the real world. Why has it gotten so bad you ask? Well, how about; Teachers Unions, Bureaucracy, In-fighting, top-heavy administration, wasting taxpayer’s money, status quo stodgy crap. “Education the key to success?” Nonsense, especially what people pass off as education these days. Admit it, we are producing brain-dead morons.

“But, Lance education and schooling are not the same thing,” I was then told. Well, to that I say, thanks for clarifying that. However, the public equates “Education” with school + college. I wouldn’t say “I think” the system sucks, more like “I know” what I’ve observed and there is no excuse for it. That is NOT an opinion you see, rather that is an observation which is duplicable across this great nation. If we de-couple the words; “Education” with “School” and “College” then I will accept your view of the debate at hand. But how can you de-couple real world definitions?

We can’t, that’s what education is in the minds of the people, thus the statement; “Education is the Key to Success” is invalid. Now then, if we want to say; “experience, education, observation, and the ability to think and adapt” are the keys to success, okay, I can go for that. But, as it stands now, our school system is a disgusting excuse for anything worthy of being called; education.

Why Is Hunter Education Important?

Hunter education began in the late 1950’s with a very narrow focus on basic safety. It concentrated on topics related to conservation, knowledge of firearms, safety, ethics, and responsibilities. Since its inception, over ¾ of a million youth and adults have completed the course. Initially, it was voluntary, but in 1979 it became a requirement that all first time hunters successfully complete the course in order to purchase a license. This requirement exists in 49 states and all provinces in Canada. Presentation of a valid Hunter Education Card from one state will allow the purchase of a license or permit in other states, however, there may be additional educational requirements for hunting with archery, a handgun, or muzzle-loading equipment.

This course and other conservation activities are paid for by sportsmen. The Pittman-Robertson Act, also called the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act, was signed into law in 1937. The act provided funds for states to acquire hunting land, conduct research, manage wildlife populations and pay for hunter education programs by placing an excise tax on firearms and ammunition.

The course curriculum includes firearm safety which includes shotguns, rifles and handguns. It emphasizes the four primary safety rules that apply to all arms: (1) Always keep the muzzle pointed in a safe direction, (2) Treat every gun as if it is loaded, (3) Always be sure of your target and beyond, and (4) Keep your finger off the trigger until you are ready to fire. The course also places a strong emphasis on being a responsible hunter and on wildlife conservation.

These educational programs have made hunting one of the safest of all the outdoor recreational activities. In Ohio, in a typical year, fewer than 7/100,000 of 1% of Ohio hunters are injured with a gun or bow while actively hunting. In fact, you are at greater risk while traveling in your vehicle to and from your hunting location.

There are several ways in which the sport of hunting benefits our society. First, the license fees, self-imposed taxes, and hunting permits and stamps finance many wildlife management activities. Second, wildlife has benefitted from regulated hunting and habitat protection, resulting in more species of wildlife than ever before. And finally, there are the benefits to the hunter himself. For some, it is the solitude or the appreciation of nature, while for others it may be time shared with family or friends. Others may enjoy the challenge presented in outwitting a particular species.

As shown in this article, the Hunter Education Course not only provides instruction leading to safe hunting practices, it also funds wildlife protection, habitat, and management. It provides new hunters with the knowledge to challenge the great outdoors and the skills to do it safely.

Education Without Exams

The question is this: would education without exams be better for students? Why should exams be taken? what does an exam do? Many people believe it is a way, which can help the students to improve their skills or just a mechanism that makes student progress for their successful future. For a student, exams are an inescapable part of his or her school time. Since there is the presence of an education system, exams can be used as a means of study assessment.

However, nowadays, more and more people have come to the decision that exams are not the only means of study assessment, they believe that education without exams would be better for the student. Most students cannot master technology, what have they got? What first needs to be done by students is to understand the aims of studying, is it to improve skills or pass exams. We do not need to be an educationist to answer this question, to improve a skill is the reason why most people study. Taking this idea into account, the exam has many disadvantages and deficiencies for the student.

Firstly, formal exams cannot appear to reflect a student’s ability accurately; it can be unfair in several ways. For example, the whole career of a student depends upon what he or she does on a certain day and hours of an exam. if the student is ill, or if he or she has had some emotional trauma, these factors could have a negative effect on the student’s exam results. Some students do not perform well under pressure and require a longer time to reach useful conclusions.

The final marks need to be decided by all items including assessment work, attendance, presentation, group work and examinations. All these can really reflect student’s ability after their subject not only exam. If someone did not have a good revision or did some mistake in the examination, he or she definitely can fail him or her examination, but he or she still have done efforts in his or her study, so now the other item will be used to consider student’s marks.

In different countries, there are different educational system, but they affirm having the same final process which is an examination. So the argument is coming from the final examination whether can identify student’s efforts and abilities. Though formal exams have been used in the past, they should no longer be used as the only means of assessment because they can be an unfair indication of the student’s overall ability, exams are important but to test in other ways as well are better for the students, which can be easy to test student’s abilities.

WHAT DO WE WANT FROM EXAM ASSESSMENT?

Good assessment programs aim to provide a balanced, fair evaluation of each student. It can be achieved in two ways. First, the use of a variety of strategies and tasks which gives the students multiple opportunities, in varying contexts, to demonstrate what they know and can do. It also enables teachers to be confident in the accuracy of their judgments about each student.

Second, tasks must be fit for purpose. Let assume a subject has a number of goals (knowledge to learn, skills to acquire), each task should be appropriate to the specific goal or goals it is assessing. This means that a task assessing base knowledge will look different to one assessing creativity. Rather than abolishing exams, we should instead be asking what mix of assessment task is most appropriate for each subject.

EXAMS FOCUS ON THE BREADTH

In most disciplines, there are specific bodies of knowledge that students are expected to learn. Physics students might learn about thermodynamics, while history students might learn about cold war. Thus, exams enable us to accurately test student’s breadth of understanding of these topics.

Critics of exams often instead promote deep, rich, and authentic assessment tasks. These are typically project-based tasks that draw on student’s creativity and interest. For example, history students might be asked to choose and research historical character in depth. Business studies might be asked to design the pitch for a new business seeking venture capital.

These tasks develop several important higher order thinking skills, such as analysis and decision -making. However, they are not alternatives to exams. They do different things. And this is exactly what we want: multiple, different tasks to maximize student’s opportunities to demonstrate what they know and can do.

Finally, we also want fit-for-purpose, where the breadth of knowledge is important, we want assessment tasks that target this breath. We want our future doctors to know of the entire human body. We want our future teachers to know a full repertoire of teaching and learning approaches.