1. Ice Swimmer says

    That is one of the most radical videos I’ve ever watched. Not radical as in violent extremism, but advocating the need for very deep (but possibly not very visible) reforms in society.

    I’m not really knowledgeable about philosophy and I’ve never read Marx, but I think what she talks about as the negative effects of behaviourism, extrinsic motivation and detrimental effects of rewards and punishments are basically aspects of what Marx called alienation (Entfremdung). I think neither the Capitalist, nor the Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist systems were able to do away with alienation, even if the leaders in both have promised it for at least a part of the society.

  2. jrkrideau says

    I only watched some of it but she seems to be making a lot of sense. A fair bit of what I saw seems to be based on standard intrinsic--extrinsic motivation theory and makes a lot of sense. Schools have, apparently, long since combined performance feedback with extrinsic reward — a great way to screw up a person’s education.

  3. says

    I’ll have to watch it step by step, so I’ll probably comment on it step by step.
    Let’s start with the example of Maria. Most teachers I know and experienced like Maria. I was probably a Maria, my kids are Marias. And you like them, because they show genuine interest in the world. After all, that’s what you became a teacher for? And for me and many of my colleagues, the lessons where you can just go where the kids take you, without any objective or goal, without any grades, are some of the most rewarding lessons and fun lessons you can have.
    Only sometimes Maria doesn’t have any consideration for other students’ needs. Because while Maria is asking you a thousand interesting questions about the world, Jamal is strugling. Jamal has difficulties keeping up, he’s naturally quiet, and now all the teacher’s attention is on Maria. Maria also has a tendency to shout out all the answers, which she usually knows, before Jamal even has had the opportunity to think about the question.

    Now, from what I hear, American schools tend to be a lot worse when it comes to inflicting discipline and crushing curiosity, and lots of the problems really could be solved with some radical overhaul of the school system (especially hiring more teachers, because occasionally I will just grab all my “Marias” and have a fun lesson with them while the others truly enjoy having some space in class), yet I’m wondering a bit how much experience Zoe Bee does have in the actual classroom.

    As for grades: In education we all learn that they are very subjective, can only be used to compare levels within a class, but not beyond, that they only measure how well you performed in that test, not whether you actually understood the matter, and then we start teaching and we pretend that grades really tell you some objective truths. Because they’re easy. For my pupils with learning difficulties I have to write down what they can actually do at what level, and that is a much more accurate feedback, but it also takes a huge amount of time, like two weeks of afternoons before every report, talking about 15-20 kids…

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