Dealing with Ignorance

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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby Athena on July 23rd, 2015, 11:16 am 

CanadysPeak » July 23rd, 2015, 6:19 am wrote:I also think I know what education for technology is, but I believe I see it primarily at the post-secondary level. High schools offer some courses in microprocessors, robotics, etc, but still require the students to take courses in language, history, and government/POD/(whatever they call the course about politics, finance,etc).

To understand the discussion, and I think Athena has lost that understanding by focusing on one small part, one must understand one difference in 1900 between the US industrial system with its large, vertically integrated factories and the German industrial system with its emphasis on small shops fitting together into an industrial complex. German industrial workers were then, and are now, more likely to be satisfied and productive than the American auto worker who spends his life putting left side door latches on mid-sized sedans. But, the handcraft system in Germany required coordinated education curricula and a systemized apprenticeship program.

The focus of the 1958 NDEA was not on this vocational education, but on the sciences, engineering, and math. One might argue that engineering is education for technology, and I would not disagree, but science and math are traditional classical studies. Moreover, NDEA did nothing at all to impede study of literature, arts, or any of the classical studies.

I was a student when NDEA came into being. Prior to the law, I was in a school that had three classes crammed into the cafeteria. There were no science facilities, but there was weekday religious education. Many of the teachers had provisional certificates, meaning they had completed at least one year of college and were still enrolled, probably one class a summer (My cousin was an elementary principal and finally completed her BA after about 30 years of teaching).

Following the passage of NDEA, the biology class got several microscopes, the chemistry course got real sinks and chemicals, and physics got plastic slide rules. Overcrowding was partially alleviated by purchase of "trailers." We still took Latin, still studied geometry, still memorized Shakespeare, and still debated the meaning of the Bill of Rights.

But, we had training for retail, training for business careers (think secretary), and training for agriculture, both before and after NDEA. I took the high road, studied more Latin, more science, and more math than required, completely neglecting the vocational programs. Then, when I graduated and could not afford to attend college (a real possibility in that time), I landed a minimum wage job in a textile mill, all that I was qualified for. But, I could read Latin better than any of my coworkers.


You see me as having too narrow of a mindset, but I think Bill Gates is missing the social importance of education. We have come a long ways from education for citizenship that had nothing to do with vocational training, but was about having a strong and united nation with liberty, to having education for technology for military and industrial purpose. Perhaps we have gone too far.

People now mistake anarchy for liberty. We have rising social problems and rising socialism and this has created some serious economic problems. Today we have reactionary politics just like Germany suffered, and our representatives are lock into power struggles instead of resolving problems. This worries me a lot. We have no argument about the benefits of the National Defense Education Act, but the change in education is not all benefits. And if you can not be respectful of my point of view, based on a study of the history of education and democracy and Germany, because we have imitated Germany, then ignoring me is a good choice.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby zetreque on July 23rd, 2015, 12:36 pm 

Athena,

I suppose I should check to see why CandayPeak thinks he is an authority on education,


AND It would have been much more helpful to address why you thought what Canadyspeak was not correct rather than use that drunk statement. It certainly would have been helpful to me, the reader. Please do so in the future and keep it respectful. We all have different backgrounds giving us different perspectives on the matter. Work toward figuring out why we think what we think before resorting to attacks.

It doesn't mesh with what you keep saying:

I will not tolerate being disrespected, not just because I do not like it, but it is a very bad social behavior and whole of society matters a lot.


With that said, please everyone move on from that mistake and continue discussion.


The thing I don't find appealing about this whole discussion is that it treats people in general like they are below us and should just be told what to do. We are asking how should we educate them? We should instead be asking them how they want to be educated. I feel it's important to introduce children to as much variety of topics as possible in school, but leave it to them to become specialists or not. Of course then we might have everyone wanting to only do art. lol. so there does have to be some sort of forced education to a point.

I think what is behind this discussion is how the government does that "forced" level of education to fill certain fields for the military and for competition against other nations and also fill a need that society has such as solving pollution problems. Eliminate the need for national power/economic competition and the military and we can then all live in utopia and study art if we wanted.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby CanadysPeak on July 23rd, 2015, 12:43 pm 

Athena » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:16 am wrote:
CanadysPeak » July 23rd, 2015, 6:19 am wrote:I also think I know what education for technology is, but I believe I see it primarily at the post-secondary level. High schools offer some courses in microprocessors, robotics, etc, but still require the students to take courses in language, history, and government/POD/(whatever they call the course about politics, finance,etc).

To understand the discussion, and I think Athena has lost that understanding by focusing on one small part, one must understand one difference in 1900 between the US industrial system with its large, vertically integrated factories and the German industrial system with its emphasis on small shops fitting together into an industrial complex. German industrial workers were then, and are now, more likely to be satisfied and productive than the American auto worker who spends his life putting left side door latches on mid-sized sedans. But, the handcraft system in Germany required coordinated education curricula and a systemized apprenticeship program.

The focus of the 1958 NDEA was not on this vocational education, but on the sciences, engineering, and math. One might argue that engineering is education for technology, and I would not disagree, but science and math are traditional classical studies. Moreover, NDEA did nothing at all to impede study of literature, arts, or any of the classical studies.

I was a student when NDEA came into being. Prior to the law, I was in a school that had three classes crammed into the cafeteria. There were no science facilities, but there was weekday religious education. Many of the teachers had provisional certificates, meaning they had completed at least one year of college and were still enrolled, probably one class a summer (My cousin was an elementary principal and finally completed her BA after about 30 years of teaching).

Following the passage of NDEA, the biology class got several microscopes, the chemistry course got real sinks and chemicals, and physics got plastic slide rules. Overcrowding was partially alleviated by purchase of "trailers." We still took Latin, still studied geometry, still memorized Shakespeare, and still debated the meaning of the Bill of Rights.

But, we had training for retail, training for business careers (think secretary), and training for agriculture, both before and after NDEA. I took the high road, studied more Latin, more science, and more math than required, completely neglecting the vocational programs. Then, when I graduated and could not afford to attend college (a real possibility in that time), I landed a minimum wage job in a textile mill, all that I was qualified for. But, I could read Latin better than any of my coworkers.


You see me as having too narrow of a mindset, but I think Bill Gates is missing the social importance of education. We have come a long ways from education for citizenship that had nothing to do with vocational training, but was about having a strong and united nation with liberty, to having education for technology for military and industrial purpose. Perhaps we have gone too far.

People now mistake anarchy for liberty. We have rising social problems and rising socialism and this has created some serious economic problems. Today we have reactionary politics just like Germany suffered, and our representatives are lock into power struggles instead of resolving problems. This worries me a lot. We have no argument about the benefits of the National Defense Education Act, but the change in education is not all benefits. And if you can not be respectful of my point of view, based on a study of the history of education and democracy and Germany, because we have imitated Germany, then ignoring me is a good choice.


I can disagree with you while still respecting you, can't I? We have different perspectives on social issues. For example, you see rising socialism as a problem, while I see it as hopeful. We have other differences, but we should be able to discuss those.

You did ask how long I had been studying education history, and I did not answer. I took my first university course in that subject in 1969. I took my last formal class in that area in 1992, but I still try to follow trends and developments. So, over 40 years. I am more interested in the history of folk education, including vocational training, than I am in classical education. I very much favor the north European systems, in part because I don't think high school or even university should be needed in order to live and function in a democracy. I learned about democracy by listening to my elders, by reading newspapers and books, by watching and listening to news reports, and even by regularly listening to Radio Moscow on the short wave(not to agree with them, but to see what a different interpretation sounded like).

I also disagree with the notion that a citizen needs to know about Martin Luther, the Enlightenment, or any Greek philosophers in order to be a good democrat. The past is past. Cincinnatus could not have possibly anticipated super PACs.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby CanadysPeak on July 23rd, 2015, 12:52 pm 

zetreque » Thu Jul 23, 2015 12:36 pm wrote:Athena,

I suppose I should check to see why CandayPeak thinks he is an authority on education,


AND It would have been much more helpful to address why you thought what Canadyspeak was not correct rather than use that drunk statement. It certainly would have been helpful to me, the reader. Please do so in the future and keep it respectful. We all have different backgrounds giving us different perspectives on the matter. Work toward figuring out why we think what we think before resorting to attacks.

It doesn't mesh with what you keep saying:

I will not tolerate being disrespected, not just because I do not like it, but it is a very bad social behavior and whole of society matters a lot.


With that said, please everyone move on from that mistake and continue discussion.


The thing I don't find appealing about this whole discussion is that it treats people in general like they are below us and should just be told what to do. We are asking how should we educate them? We should instead be asking them how they want to be educated. I feel it's important to introduce children to as much variety of topics as possible in school, but leave it to them to become specialists or not. Of course then we might have everyone wanting to only do art. lol. so there does have to be some sort of forced education to a point.

I think what is behind this discussion is how the government does that "forced" level of education to fill certain fields for the military and for competition against other nations. Eliminate the need for national power/economic competition and the military and we can then all live in utopia and study art if we wanted.


I had the chance not too long ago to speak with the HR director of a large technology company a few hundred miles from where I live. We were talking about adult education because of my interest, and he mentioned that his company, which pays quite well and is located in an area with "good" school systems, has had to set up remedial reading and math courses for all new hires. If we are truly educating for technology, we are doing a very poor job. If you follow any of the popular literature, for example The Smartest Kids in the World, you might come to the same sort of conclusion.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby vivian maxine on July 23rd, 2015, 1:00 pm 

CanadaysPeak, are you saying that you do not think knowing past history helps us in any way to be better citizens in the present? If that is what you are saying, I respectfully disagree. Not only can it help us do better ourselves but it also helps us know better what to allow in our leaders. My opinion for what it may be worth.

P S You are quite right about us doing a poor job but it isn't only in technology. We are doing a poor all-around job in education nowadays but that does indeed want a different thread. Is "education" on the ScienceChat forum?
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby CanadysPeak on July 23rd, 2015, 1:29 pm 

vivian maxine » Thu Jul 23, 2015 1:00 pm wrote:CanadaysPeak, are you saying that you do not think knowing past history helps us in any way to be better citizens in the present? If that is what you are saying, I respectfully disagree. Not only can it help us do better ourselves but it also helps us know better what to allow in our leaders. My opinion for what it may be worth.

P S You are quite right about us doing a poor job but it isn't only in technology. We are doing a poor all-around job in education nowadays but that does indeed want a different thread. Is "education" on the ScienceChat forum?


No, I am saying that knowing past history does not help us be better democrats. It is only when you attach values to the democratic process that classical knowledge becomes important.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby Athena on July 23rd, 2015, 1:56 pm 

zetreque » July 23rd, 2015, 10:36 am wrote:Athena,

I suppose I should check to see why CandayPeak thinks he is an authority on education,


AND It would have been much more helpful to address why you thought what Canadyspeak was not correct rather than use that drunk statement. It certainly would have been helpful to me, the reader. Please do so in the future and keep it respectful. We all have different backgrounds giving us different perspectives on the matter. Work toward figuring out why we think what we think before resorting to attacks.

It doesn't mesh with what you keep saying:

I will not tolerate being disrespected, not just because I do not like it, but it is a very bad social behavior and whole of society matters a lot.


With that said, please everyone move on from that mistake and continue discussion.


The thing I don't find appealing about this whole discussion is that it treats people in general like they are below us and should just be told what to do. We are asking how should we educate them? We should instead be asking them how they want to be educated. I feel it's important to introduce children to as much variety of topics as possible in school, but leave it to them to become specialists or not. Of course then we might have everyone wanting to only do art. lol. so there does have to be some sort of forced education to a point.

I think what is behind this discussion is how the government does that "forced" level of education to fill certain fields for the military and for competition against other nations and also fill a need that society has such as solving pollution problems. Eliminate the need for national power/economic competition and the military and we can then all live in utopia and study art if we wanted.


It would have been nice if CandySpeak had replied to me as he later explained his schooling and reason for having a high opinion of what the National Defense Education Act did, instead of effectively telling me to shut up because I do not know what I am talking about, and he repeats this low opinion of me in a later post. Whatever, considering the difference in how people have responded to CandySpeak and me, I am out of here. This is just too depressing.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby CanadysPeak on July 23rd, 2015, 4:08 pm 

I apologize that I did not state my long term interest in the subject earlier, but I just overlooked that. I also want it clear that I did not want you to shut up. BTW, my name is not CandySpeak; it is CanadysPeak.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby Athena on July 24th, 2015, 12:04 pm 

CanadysPeak » July 23rd, 2015, 2:08 pm wrote:I apologize that I did not state my long term interest in the subject earlier, but I just overlooked that. I also want it clear that I did not want you to shut up. BTW, my name is not CandySpeak; it is CanadysPeak.


What do these words mean to you?

"Athena, for about the umpteenth time, NDEA did NOT provide for education for technology;"

What is the difference between providing the funding for education for technology and making this a very clear directive for education for National Defense reasons, and providing education for technology? The National Defense Education Act was an emergency act in response to Sputnik and the cold war fear of nuclear war. It had a 4 year limited but once it was put in place, it remained in place, and we have since been on a path that is completely different from the path education was on. There are both good and bad ramifications of this. My purpose for writing about it, is not to say one is right and the other is wrong, but raise awareness of what happened, and that we are on a different path, and that this is both good and bad.

I suppose I should not object to this- "I think Athena has lost that understanding by focusing on one small part" considering others have also made wrong assumptions about my position on technology.

Maybe starting a new thread about the benefits of education for technology, would resolve the misunderstanding about lost my "lost understanding" and objection to technology?

In another thread something was about asking questions, and from my point of view, that looks a good way to avoid misunderstandings.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby CanadysPeak on July 24th, 2015, 9:10 pm 

Athena » Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:04 pm wrote:
CanadysPeak » July 23rd, 2015, 2:08 pm wrote:I apologize that I did not state my long term interest in the subject earlier, but I just overlooked that. I also want it clear that I did not want you to shut up. BTW, my name is not CandySpeak; it is CanadysPeak.


What do these words mean to you?

"Athena, for about the umpteenth time, NDEA did NOT provide for education for technology;"

What is the difference between providing the funding for education for technology and making this a very clear directive for education for National Defense reasons, and providing education for technology? The National Defense Education Act was an emergency act in response to Sputnik and the cold war fear of nuclear war. It had a 4 year limited but once it was put in place, it remained in place, and we have since been on a path that is completely different from the path education was on. There are both good and bad ramifications of this. My purpose for writing about it, is not to say one is right and the other is wrong, but raise awareness of what happened, and that we are on a different path, and that this is both good and bad.

I suppose I should not object to this- "I think Athena has lost that understanding by focusing on one small part" considering others have also made wrong assumptions about my position on technology.

Maybe starting a new thread about the benefits of education for technology, would resolve the misunderstanding about lost my "lost understanding" and objection to technology?

In another thread something was about asking questions, and from my point of view, that looks a good way to avoid misunderstandings.


Athena,

I was wrong to allow frustration to sharpen my tongue I stand by all my statements, but I used an overly critical tone; for that I apologize to you and the other contributors to this thread. Moreover, I went off topic, responding to the latest posts rather than the OP. I should like to see a thread on the benefits of education for technology, especially in terms of education for technology providing good preparation for participation in a democracy. I will accede to your suggestion to ask questions, but ask in turn that you respond to those questions when appropriate.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby Athena on July 24th, 2015, 10:07 pm 

Thank you, and I apologize for responding rashly.

A thread on the benefits of education for technology is a challenge and I like a challenge. Should this thread begin Germany 1899, or with the 1917 changes in education and the huge benefit of adding vocational training to education, or with the GI Bill, or the National Defense Education Act? I seriously do have a lot of good things to say, and I guess by approaching with my concerns I mislead everyone?

The second half of "preparation for participation in a democracy" is most exciting, because of the importance of technology in fulfilling the Enlightenment expectations of life getting better, and all the moral/ethical issues that must go with our increasing awareness of global issues and threats, and the importance of being self-governing, which begins with governing self. That is making sure we do not mistake anarchy for liberty!

Yipes, maybe this should start with the Enlightenment? What does it mean to live in such a way that life keeps getting better and we actualize our potential for doing good and not the bad?

Oh I want to say I love questions but I don't have the luxury of reading all the post and replying to everyone. Often I am rushed and thinking about what is happening in my life. I am involved with 3 younger generations of family, plus periodically facilitate workshops for healthy living, I volunteer for the a Boys and Girls Club and the senior center, and give neighbors rides, and work out in a gym and walk my dog a few times a day, and forget to return things to the library! I also forgot to say, I spend a lot of time gardening so I can eat. I write for a newspaper and I have a long to do list! My hair is too long, my toe nails are too long, and I am too busy to go to the salon and resolve these problems. Like often I feel like life is going to run right over me. So if something is important, people need to let me know with a pm. Honestly I am doing my best to keep up, and could use some gentle help in doing that.
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby CanadysPeak on July 25th, 2015, 8:59 am 

I have read your postings carefully, and have also read some similar ones on other fora, and believe I may have misunderstood your meaning. When you say "education for technology," do you mean "education for research," as was emphasized in the German universities at the beginning of the twentieth century?
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Re: Dealing with Ignorance

Postby Cannonball on October 16th, 2015, 10:43 am 

The powerful people in this world want the majority of people to be ignorant, they would much rather people focus their hate on immigrants etc than them.
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