She’s a veteran teacher.
He doesn’t want to go into administration. He wants to stay in the trenches.
No lesson plan survives contact with the enemy.
Why is it that traditional schools are so filled with war metaphors? Might it be because the teacher-student relationship has been warped and transformed into an adversarial relationship?
At Sudbury schools, we recognize the inherent cooperative nature of education. You won’t hear many war metaphors from us.
Grades reduce motivation. Students demonstrate less effort and produce less quality when grades are a factor. They are also less likely to pursue an activity once grades are absent. (Source: Alfie Kohn, Punished by Rewards)
Studies find no correlation between homework and learning outcomes. Students who are assigned homework and students who are not assigned homework demonstrate the same results. (Source: Alfie Kohn, The Homework Myth)
The age at which a person begins an activity has no correlation to that person’s future success in that activity. (Source: Malcolm Gladwell, Late Bloomers)
More than one study has found that students demonstrate greater engagement and better learning outcomes when they have even a little bit of choice in their studies. (Baum, Susan M., Joseph S. Renzulli, and Thomas P. Hébert. “Reversing Underachievement: Stories of Success” Educational Leadership. Nov. 1994. pp. 48-52. / Hartman, Jeanette A., Emily K. DeCicco and Gayle Griffin. “Urban Students Thrive as Independent Researchers.” Educational Leadership. Nov. 1994. pp. 46-47.)
In longitudinal studies, Sudbury students all go on to become successful and productive members of society. (Pursuit of Happiness by Daniel Greenberg)
Bullying is endemic to compulsory schools. It is so rampant, that people blithely assume it’s going to happen. Some even shrug and suggest we need bullying to toughen our children. They come with the assumption that since kids are often bullies in traditional schools, they must be bullies here. But that’s not the case, and there’s a simple reason why.
Bullying is highly correlated with environments that are strongly hierarchical and authoritarian. What is a compulsory school but an authoritarian and punitive environment where everyone is ranked and some people have more power than others? The bullies are simply emulating the system around them!
Yet there are solutions. Bullying experts go into schools to suggest ways to reduce bullying. They talk about more respect, less punitive pressures, and less emphasis on ranking, among other things. In short, they tell them to be more like Sudbury schools.
Liam Marshall-Butler is currently a student at MLSS.