Actually I love history.
But, in education we are too stuck in the past.
I saw this article today, “Could Our Obsession With Exams Lead to Long Term Failure.” In it the author references Sir Ken Robinson “who argues that schools cannot meet the needs of the future by just refining what we have done in the past.”
I have to be honest. There are moments when I feel like we are simply adding a bow to long-held educational practices. We attempt to fit what we have always done into a newer model of education. We say “I did it this way and I learned” or “when I was in school” or “I have been teaching this way since…” Those statements make me wince. Some things are meant to remain in the past. We do our students a disservice when we don’t consider they are different and when we don’t let go of those sentiments.
We can’t allow the past to creep into our classrooms.
Here’s the best thing about history: we learn from it. So when we take the leap into teaching to the future we aren’t ignoring all that we have learned in the past. We aren’t throwing out our experiences. We are doing what historians do. We are analyzing and gaining perspective, looking for connections and patterns. But, through the lens of the present.
So, how do you feel about being the teacher who practices history by giving up the past?