initial comments on "Education as life itself"

elovejoy's picture

I found many of the arguments in the article, “Education as Life Itself: Freedom, Integration, and Beyond” convincing.  But, I found myself wondering if the idea that “education is not preparation for life; education is life itself” is entirely realistic.  As Brie has mentioned before, scholastic testing poses a threat to emergent teaching.  Somewhat along the same lines, I was thinking about the concept of a curriculum in schools.  Teachers and professors are required to teach certain things in a given year or course, and A must be taught before B.  The idea behind a set curriculum is that students will learn a certain set of facts so that they can excel on standardized tests and then move on to the next level.  I certainly support the ideas of emergent teaching and education as life itself, but a curriculum sets standards for what must be accomplished, and thus makes it so that education is preparation for life.  How can we allow for education to be life itself while having to tackle the issue of a curriculum?  I guess some would say that the best thing to do would be to remove curriculums all together.  But then, wouldn’t there be differences in students’ learning, and how would we know if students were prepared to move on to the next grade level?  These ideas made me wonder when the idea of a curriculum was established and why it was put into practice.  Comments welcome.

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