Not Signed-In
Which clippings match 'Exams' keyword pg.1 of 1
17 MARCH 2013

Finland's school system accomplishes some impressive feats: so what makes Finnish students so successful?

"Students get plenty of teacher interaction: Finland and New York City have the same number of teachers. But Finland has nearly half the number of students. Standardized testing is kept to a minimum: before a New York student reaches high school, he or she will have taken 10 standardized tests. Collectively, US students take 100 million standardized tests a year. Finland's only standardized test is taken when students are 16 years old. Kids have more time to be kids: an average us 5th grader has 50 minimum of homework per day. Finnish students rarely do homework until their teens. And while us elementary students average 27 minutes of recess students in Finland get about 75 minutes a day). Finland knows good teachers are essential: teachers in Finland are all required to have a Master's degree (which is fully subsidized by the state)."

(OnlineClasses.org, 21 January 2013)

1

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
02 DECEMBER 2012

Billy Bragg: 'education reforms risk stifling creativity'

"Singer Billy Bragg has warned that the government's education reforms risk stifling creativity and leaving the pop charts the preserve of a well–off public school elite.

Bragg used a lecture in memory of broadcaster John Peel in Salford to criticise education secretary Michael Gove's plans to scrap GCSEs in favour of an English baccalaureate. He also turned his ire on and 'culture–clogging shows' such as Simon Cowell's The X Factor on ITV1.

The singer and leftwing activist said the government's proposed new education system threatened to exclude creative subjects from the core qualifications expected of 16–year–olds.

'At a time of cuts to the education budget, the pressure on schools to dump subjects like music and drama in favour of those that offer high marks in performances tables will only grow,' said Bragg.

He criticised the 'insistence that knowledge is more important than creativity', adding: 'As Albert Einstein said, imagination is more important than knowledge, for knowledge is limited while imagination embraces the whole world'.

Bragg, delivering the second annual John Peel Lecture at the Radio Festival on Monday, said: 'Under the English baccalaureate, with its reliance on a single end of course exam, the child with the creative imagination will always lose out to the child with the ability to recall knowledge learned by rote."

(John Plunkett, 12 November 2012, The Guardian)

Billy Bragg "John Peel Lecture", photograph: Andrew Stuart/Radio Festival/PR.

1

TAGS

2012Albert Einsteinalgorithmic filtersart schools • Billy Bragg • coalition government • core subjects • creative arts • creative imagination • creative professionscreative subjectscreativitycriticism • culture-clogging • DIY ethicdramaeducation budgeteducation reform • education secretary • English Baccalaureateexamsfreedom of expressionGCSEimaginationITV1John Peel • John Peel Lecture • knowledge • learning by rote • leftwing activistMichael Govemusic • new education system • Notts Unsigned • performance tablesperformativitypolicy agenda • public school elite • Radio Festival • reality television • recall knowledge • rote learningSalford • Simon Cowell • singer • skiffle • Spotify • stifling creativity • X Factor

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
06 SEPTEMBER 2010

The entire notion of school 'subjects' needs to be questioned

"In fact, the entire notion of 'subjects' needs to be questioned, [Sir Ken Robinson] says. 'The idea of separate subjects that have nothing in common offends the principle of dynamism. School systems should base their curriculum not on the idea of separate subjects, but on the much more fertile idea of disciplines ... which makes possible a fluid and dynamic curriculum that is interdisciplinary.'

In December, the Rose review, the biggest inquiry into primary schooling in a generation, also recommended moving away from the idea of subjects. Sir Jim Rose said a 'bloated' curriculum was leaving children with shallow knowledge and understanding. The review proposed half a dozen cross–curricular themes instead: understanding English, communication and languages; mathematical understanding; science and technological understanding; human, social and environmental understanding; understanding physical education and wellbeing; and understanding the arts and design.

Robinson believes the curriculum should be much more personalised. 'Learning happens in the minds and souls, not in the databases of multiple–choice tests.' And why are we so fixated by age groups, he asks. Let a 10–year–old learn with their younger and older peers.

We put too high a premium on knowing the 'single right answer', Robinson claims. But he says he is not in principle opposed to standardised tests, such as Sats. Used in the right way, they can provide essential data to support and improve education. The problem comes when these tests become more than simply a tool of education and turn into the focus of it, he argues."

(Jessica Shepherd, 10 February 2009, The Guardian)

1

2

TAGS

creative thinkingcreativitycreativity in the classroom • cross-curricular themes • cross-disciplinarycurriculumdisciplines • dynamic curriculum • educationeducation reformeducation systemexamsinterdisciplinary • Jim Rose • Ken Robinsonlearningpedagogyperformativitypersonalisationpost-disciplinerisk-takingschoolsstudentteachingUK

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
Sign-In

Sign-In to Folksonomy

Can't access your account?

New to Folksonomy?

Sign-Up or learn more.