Thursday, February 04, 2016

Knowledge, Good.

I get so tired of the "just look up the knowledge someone else already learned" canard:
The Knowledge Matters campaign is lobbying for schools to teach a broad curriculum including history, science, geography, art and music — especially to “those least likely to gain such knowledge outside school.”

You’d think there’d be no need to ask schools to teach knowledge, but it’s being pushed aside by drill in reading skills and by the belief that kids don’t need to know anything because they can just look everything up.
Can I get an "amen!"?


Janet Lee said...

You gotta wonder how many of the "just look it up" crowd would be happy being under the knife of a surgeon who had to run to Google every thirty seconds!

Pseudotsuga said...

There is a difference between substantive knowledge and trivia. To be considered "educated," there is likely a vast body of substantive knowledge that you know (names, dates, places, mathematical formulas, etc.) The classic Liberal Arts education was meant to transmit this.
Then there is also trivia, which nobody needs to know by heart since it's not important in real-world situations outside of Trivial Pursuit games (such as what's David Bowie's real name? Where was Bruce Jenner born? Who won Super Bowl II?)
There is also very specific knowledge which specialists and experts shouldn't need to look up, yet most people will have to.
Apparently some educational faddists believe knowing how to look things up is the same thing as knowing them. Apparently these folks believe that there are many things not worth knowing -- they must be progressives, since nothing old and established is worth knowing to them (that's what Wikipedia is for!).
You got an Amen here, brother Darren.

jmathteach said...