Kid Takes MIT Courses Online Starting At Five

I can only imagine what the education system would have done to this kid.

http://news.mit.edu/2015/ahaan-rungta-mit-opencourseware-mitx-1116
We have an education system that has valued conformity and fit  over individual initiative and growth for as long as I can remember. In many ways it’s worse than no education system at all, especially for kids in depressed and stressed neighborhoods where the whole goal of the union protected teachers is all too frequently to pass the kids through the system as fast as possible and leave them incompetent in the all too world they will be dumped into.

This kid was at least able to leverage his intelligence and the hugely powerful educational skill to essentially home school himself outside the system. And he had parents that had the flexibility to get him in the right places at the right time. Many other kids are not so lucky.

http://www.cato.org/blog/theres-no-such-thing-public-school

That case mentioned in the link?  That happened here in Norwalk. It’s sad that the system is willing to jail parents trying get their kids out of a system that wants to chew them up and turn them into indoctrinated drones for the new state.

 

Top Down Stupidity

Somehow I’ve never understood the progressive tendency to believe that you can just spend some money and wave your hands and shazam!!! magic happens.  Here’s a case in point.

The White House announced Obama’s new Computer Science for All initiative in a blog post recently. The president has allotted $4 billion in funding for states to ensure that every student between kindergarten and 12th grade receives sufficient computer science education. Of that $4 billion, $100 million will go directly to school districts, and $135 million will be made available this year.

As technology advances, more and more jobs require employees to have computer science skills. However, not everyone has access to that kind of education. Though more than 90% of parents say they want their children to have a computer science curriculum, only about 25% of schools offer quality programs. In 22 states, computer science classes don’t even count toward graduation credit. In 2015, about 600,000 high-paying tech jobs in the U.S. went unfilled, and in the next two years over half of all STEM jobs are expected to be related to computer science.

Obama Is Putting $4 Billion into Computer Science Education

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See What Homeschooling Can DO

The government schools, with their emphasis on the lowest common denominator and constant experimentation with factory education, even when the factories themselves are long gone, have a problem with the bright and odd.

http://news.mit.edu/2015/ahaan-rungta-mit-opencourseware-mitx-1116

Of course the purpose of government education isn’t to produce remarkable individuals, it’s to produce mind numbed robot servants for the corporate utopian state.  That’s been the goal of Progressives since Dewey’s time and Progressives have been creating the education nightmare ever since.

Playing With Toys

 

Machine Design recently had sort of a contest for the best toy for STEM. Spoiler: Lego won, but it was a hard fight with some good stuff.  Which is good for the 10-12 crowd. The problem is that Lego, while great, it pretty limited.  This is true with all the toys, which I played with when I was young. They basically guide you down a making track.

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DIY Education Used To Be The Norm In The 19th Century

From The NY Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/12/opinion/sunday/diy-education-before-youtube.html?smid=pl-share&_r=4

Actually correspondence schools such as International Correspondence Schools have been doing DIY education since the late 19th Century.  Frankly, from what I’ve seen of their textbooks, they Did a very good job of getting the core of what people needed to know without the romantic  extras.  We’ve forgotten that skills are what matter in our credential driven society. Here’s a list of some of the stuff that was available.

http://onlinebooks.library.upenn.edu/webbin/book/lookupname?key=International%20Correspondence%20Schools

As Danny Choo says, you can do far worse than google sensei and youtube sensei.