There’s a computer game called “Age of Empires.” Well, technically there’s the original and eleven sequels and/or spin-offs. It’s a real-time strategy game, and it sucked me in. I could play that thing for hours, over and over. The premise is that you are the leader of a civilization, and you must advance your people out of the stone age through various eras, such as the bronze age, Medieval, etc.
In real life, we are supposedly in the technological age. I propose we redefine our current era as the “Age of WTF?!”
Why? So glad you asked. You didn’t? Eh, well, I’ll tell you anyway.
Ignoring the inanity of our obsession with movie stars and sports players, and the overall lack of common sense (as noted by the number of videos out there depicting people of all ages doing dumbass stuff), let’s take a look at education.
- In my own little corner of the world less than half of the schools met standards, so they made their own standards, referred to as “adequate yearly progress”.
Translation: We suck, but so that you don’t feel bad about it, we’ll instead show you that we suck a little less than we sucked last year.
- If not for a computer screw-up and Memphis City schools giving up and dumping all of it’s schools in the lap of the county school board, there would be no grades.
- On the radio this morning I heard that a school in Canada was ending the honor roll program. I searched for the news story and found this. The author says just about everything I could, but without the sarcasm I would drip into every word. I’m a parent of three kids, and they are not carbon copies of each other. One is uber smart, but inconsistent. So, sometimes he makes honor roll, and sometimes not. Another has yet to pull all A’s, but she generally succeeds in earning all As and B’s. She’s proud of that, as she deserves to be. Little Miss Drama is a bundle of energy and brains, wrapped in hilarity, and boxed in randomizer….if randomizers existed outside of the internet. She’s smart, but getting all of those neurons to focus on such mundane stuff as spelling can be a task.
Is she or Mr. Smarty-Pants any less of person for NOT making the Honor Roll? Of course not! I very rarely made the A honor roll. I managed now and again, but I was more like Miss Diva. Still, having something to work toward gives them a goal with a tangible reward.
Instead of teaching kids to learn what they are capable of doing, to learn that they can’t be best at everything, so find what they are good at, and rewarding them, no let’s just make them toil for 13 years with no reward. Yep, that will definitely be good for their self-esteem.
- Schools have sucked most of the fun stuff out. No tag, or running, and PE is a joke. Don’t climb on the monkey bars, you might fall and break something. Half the goofing around and antics my friends and I did in school, and note, we were the “good” kids, would now get us suspended or expelled.
Two of my friends favorite way to mess with me was to sneak up behind me and goose me. It didn’t matter how often they did it, my reaction was always a high-pitched screech. Yes, I still have that reaction, much to my son’s amusement. He claims I sound like a pterodactyl.
In today’s school: “ZOMG, he TOUCHED her! File a sexual harassment lawsuit! Put that kid in jail!”
- Teachers get in trouble for the idiocy of other people.
Just yesterday, Mr. Smarty Pants shared with me that his science teacher felt the need to close the door, lest someone hear him teaching science and be offended. It seems in a prior year, when covering “touchy” subjects like evolution, a student berated the teacher for insinuating his ancestors came from Africa. That wasn’t the first time someone had taken exception to his teaching of science, which happened to disagree with their worldview. The poor man has to tip-toe around science. Really?
I’m sure I could go on ad nauseam.
I won’t even touch the insanity of politics.
I think I’ve presented enough evidence to support my theory. What say ye? Shall we henceforth refer to our era as the “Age of WTF”?