Motivation in schools

When I was in high school I saw many of the students disregard school. Some believed that it was a waste of time and therefore skipped school every chance they got; others completely dropped out by getting suspended every chance they got, or even being expelled by all three high schools in the city. I always thought that if they put the same amount of effort into their school work as they did in their efforts to be expelled, they would have passed with flying colours. I thought they were ignorant in their decisions and they would live to regret them. I never asked why, why I and other students could see the benefits of school and they could not. What was the cause of their lack of motivation?

In the Ted Talk “How to Escape Education’s Death Valley” done by Ken Robinson an author and educator. He speaks of the No child left behind act in America, though it is the United States, I believe what he says is also relevant in Canada. He starts with saying that many children are left behind in America, and no one seems to be fixing it. He goes on to say that “human beings are naturally different and diverse,” and what he means by this in regards to education is that you can not only use one system for a large amount of students who learn differently. If this is done, then many children are left behind.

Another thing Ken Robinson points out is that students, when told to sit at a desk and write, or listen to a teacher may “start to fidget.” Teachers get frustrated when a person is always talking in class or people are not quietly doing their work. But they may fail to realize that after three hours of class with only five minute breaks in between feels like a long time to sit down, shut up, and write. Especially for active kids who are used to moving around, or talking while they work, or even listening to music. Kids learn differently and when they are forced to learn a certain way with no one to take them into consideration, they give up on the school system. Hence all of the children who skip school, or drop out. So ignorance, laziness, and down right stupidity may be a few reasons students disregard the importance of school, but there are too many of them for that to be the main reason. Ken Robinson may be on the right track and I hope others who can make a difference realize that as well.

Works Cited: Robinson, Ken. "How to Escape Education's Death Valley." TED. N.p., Apr. 2013. Web. < https://www.ted.com/talks/kenrobinsonhowtoescapeeducationsdeathvalley