I want to start off with a disclaimer, I am not a teacher, I am not an education major, I have done no research on anything I am suggesting but I feel a lot of it is common sense or I have seen results first hand.
The thing the education system needs the most is inspiration. This one really goes down to the teachers and school systems and not so much the government (however, more funding wouldn’t hurt.) When kids go to school they need to have the feeling that they are making progress on a way to becoming a better citizen. This comes by having inspiring teachers and an inspiring atmosphere.
When it comes to inspirational teachers, they dont have to be the best teachers or the teacher that knows the most about a subject. It could be a teacher that really cares about his or her students and/or the community, or a teacher that has overcome adversity. If students are inspired by a teacher they are far more likely to succeed. It helps create an interest in the subject area and most importantly in learning itself. My inspirational teacher was my 7th grade history teacher. He knew so much about the subject and taught it really well. He made us enjoy the subject matter which made it easier for him to challenge us.
I feel middle school/junior high is the most important time for children. This is when they start making decisions that will influence the rest of their lives. If students are not reached at this point then high school and college are going to be a lot harder. Despite the huge focus on tests teachers must create discussions in their classes and allow the students to form their own opinions on subjects. Many students just need a teacher that will listen to what they have to say. We have to create an atmosphere where students are forced to think for themselves.
The school environment also needs to seem inspirational. Too many schools are just turning into day prisons. I don’t have too much of a problem with uniforms as I think they can sometimes be necessary. However, schools need color in the halls, paintings done by students should be hanging up on the walls along with other bright colors to help the school not appear so dull. Also every school should have grass. Kids need somewhere to play and release energy and it needs to be outside. A garden can also help create an atmosphere that helps learning occur.
As I said these steps are really down to the teachers and administrators but everyone has a part to play to make sure students are inspired about learning. We need to change our attitudes and become optimistic about the new generation. I am a college student so I like to think I am part of that generation and I am tired of hearing that we are lazy and apathetic. Sure, some of us may be but that is because so many people have given up on us. W Lets be optimistic about the future. The generations that are pessimistic about us have done nothing to fix the problems. It is going to be up to my generation, so you better believe in us!
How do you think we can create inspiration in schools?