The expectations on learners today are high. We expect good marks, we expect them to shine, and we expect them to excel………..but these are our expectations and not there’s.
I decided to go back to high school for a day and immerse myself in the experience. I wanted the experience to be as real as possible. I left behind my CEO title, my bag, money, car and food. I had no stationary, no school bag and no text books.
I left home at 6.30 on an empty stomach and took public transport to the school. Two taxis and a 15 minute walk. No school uniform and very uncomfortable shoes.
My experience was both great and horrid. By the end of the day which entailed 7 x 45 minute periods and two short breaks – one of 20 and the other of 30 minutes was tough. Tougher than the hardest and busiest day I have ever experienced – even on the news desk with breaking news.
My head pounded, my feet hurt, I was hungry and then I still had homework and sport to partake in. I now realise that being a pupil in high school is not a walk in the park and neither is being a teacher. I was lucky enough to spend the day in a private school in a nice suburb and can only imagine and empathise with those kids who are in government schools that are under resourced, underfunded and have classrooms (loads without desks, windows, books) with 45 kids in them.
I challenge every adult reading this to take a listen to my 20 minute audio diary of my day and see if you can even concentrate for that long.
Educating our children is not the government’s job, the teacher’s job, but it’s also our jobs. We all need to work together to create a space and place for learning that is constructive, relevant, safe and creative. The future jobs, careers and business world is one where creativity is going to rule, along with key skills like confidence and collaboration and the harassing of technology to use to our advantage and development that are relevant solutions to real world problems. Are we doing this in our school system presently? I invite you to listen to my audio diary and then you tell me.