School Survival

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School is a Pointless Waste of Time

Let's be real for a moment. School is a soul-sucking, mind-numbing, pointless waste of time. For twelve long years, we're expected to spend six or more hours a day sitting in classrooms, forced to memorize useless facts and regurgitate them on command. And for what? Supposedly to prepare us for the "real world," but in reality, all it does is crush our spirits and kill our curiosity.

Total Time Spent in School: A Lifetime Lost

Let's do the math, shall we? Six or more hours a day, five days a week, for twelve years – that's a staggering amount of time spent trapped within the walls of school.

If we break it down, it looks something like this:

6 hours/day * 5 days/week = 30 hours/week

30 hours/week * 40 weeks/year (accounting for vacations and holidays) = 1200 hours/year

1200 hours/year * 12 years = 14,400 hours

That's right. Fourteen thousand, four hundred hours of our precious, fleeting youth spent in classrooms, listening to lectures, and filling out worksheets. It's enough to make you want to scream.

But what could we have done with all that time if we weren't stuck in school? Let's brainstorm:

1. Travel: Imagine all the places we could explore, the cultures we could immerse ourselves in, and the experiences we could have.
2. Learn a new language: With all those hours, we could become fluent in multiple languages, opening up a world of opportunities.
3. Start a business: Instead of learning about entrepreneurship in theory, we could actually start our own businesses and learn through real-world experience.
4. Volunteer: We could dedicate our time to helping others in need, making a positive impact on our communities and the world.
5. Pursue hobbies: Whether it's painting, playing an instrument, or woodworking, we could hone our skills and unleash our creativity.
6. Read: We could devour books on topics that truly interest us, expanding our knowledge and perspective.
7. Exercise: Physical health is just as important as mental health. We could spend more time staying active and taking care of our bodies.
8. Internships: We could gain valuable work experience and explore potential career paths through internships and apprenticeships.
9. Spend time with loved ones: We could nurture relationships with family and friends, creating memories that would last a lifetime.
10. Reflect and introspect: We could take the time to truly get to know ourselves, our passions, and our purpose in life.

Here are more possibilities.

The possibilities are endless. But instead, we're stuck in a system that robs us of our time, our freedom, and our potential. It's time to break free and reclaim our lives.

John Taylor Gatto, a renowned educator, saw through the façade of the education system. He argued that the true purpose of schools is not to educate, but to indoctrinate. They're designed to produce obedient workers, not free thinkers. Gatto exposed the factory model of education for what it is – a system designed to churn out compliant cogs in the machine of society.

But it doesn't have to be this way. Peter Gray, a psychologist and advocate for self-directed education, reminds us of the importance of play in learning. He believes that children learn best when they're given the freedom to explore and pursue their interests. Yet, in our rigid school system, play is often dismissed as frivolous and unproductive.

Laurie A. Couture echoes this sentiment, emphasizing the crucial role parents play in nurturing their children's natural curiosity and creativity. Instead of pressuring them to conform to the school's standards, parents should encourage exploration and self-discovery.

So, why do we continue to subject ourselves to this soul-crushing ordeal? Because we're told there are no alternatives. But that's simply not true. Self-directed education, online schools, homeschooling – these are just a few of the alternatives available to us. We have the power to take control of our own learning and break free from the chains of the traditional education system.

If you're reading this and feeling like school is slowly sucking the life out of you, know that your feelings are valid. You're not alone in your struggle, and there's nothing wrong with you. It's the system that's broken, not you. So, take heart and know that there is a way out. At least, in theory. If your parents will let you, basically.

Alright, let's address the elephant in the room – you may feel like you're boxed in by the system, lacking the legal power or autonomy to break free. But there is  power that you do have. In a world that can be harsh and unforgiving, showing yourself compassion and understanding is the first step toward empowerment. Acknowledge your struggles, honor your emotions, and treat yourself with the same level of care and respect that you would offer to a dear friend.

Next up, it's time to stand tall and assert yourself as much as you can within the confines of your circumstances. While you may not have the ability to rewrite the rules or make sweeping changes, you can still advocate for your needs and assert your autonomy. Whether it's having a heartfelt conversation with a teacher or seeking support from trusted mentors, there are ways to assert your power and reclaim your voice.

And let's not forget about the power of resourcefulness. While you may feel limited by the options available to you, there are always alternative paths to explore. Whether it's seeking out online resources, connecting with supportive communities, or pursuing self-directed learning opportunities, there are avenues for growth and empowerment waiting to be discovered.

So, my friend, remember this – while you may not have control over external circumstances, you possess an inner power that is far greater than any obstacle you may face. Embrace your strength, practice self-compassion, and take inspired action to create the life you desire. You have the power within you to overcome any challenge and achieve your dreams.

Where to next? Pick one!

Posted in: Blog on April 23, 2024 @ 4:40 PM

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