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In the introduction, I think it will be appropriately to mention that the main topic of the writing is Classical education and its benefits to students. Detailed overview can allow getting the main ideas, advantages and disadvantages of a big amount of thoughts, facts and arguments. In conclusion, the inference let us summarize and sum up all the information we are going to discuss. Our core focus will be on the determining main standpoints of different important questions, which I am going to answer through the paper. In order to explain this theme better, I may reflect on myself as a learner: foe example, consider the practices, conditions and opportunities under which I feel learning has been most effective for me. This essay however will not be the completely descriptive of theory, or just practice, but I will try to demonstrate the inextricable links between theory and practice. The aim of the writing is to decide and prove if there are benefits from classical education and if it is needed to students (to make them learn better). I believe detailed discussion of basic points will help people to understand the topic completely and decide what place does it occur in their lives. So let me start to explain.
The main problems in the sphere of education
Every system has its mistakes, problems and defects, weakness and of course advantages. This part of the work is dedicated to the main problems of the educational system. I think Jonathan Kozol did his best when wrote the book "The shame of the nation", where readers found a well argumentative text about problems in the system of education. Jonathan Kozol is the writer, educator and simply active person. His books are based on his own practice, experience and opinion. He has worked as a teacher first in a freedom school and later in a public elementary school. Kozol has visited 60 schools, in 30 school districts, in 11 states, before writing of "The shame of the nation". It is good, because the problem of the system of education in the USA cannot be solved only by theoretical aspects. He exposes hypocrisy of our educational policy. As we know, when our country has become independent, our position was "separate but equal". Is it actually today? What is really happening now? Kozol describes in his book, that acceptance of schools is separate but unequal, unfortunately. In the introduction, he notices: "No matter how complex the reasons that have brought us to the point at which we stand, we have, it seems, been traveling a long way to a place of ultimate surrender that does not look very different from the place where some of us began" (1995, pg 1).
The main problems in the sphere of education are segregation, separation in the urban schools from his point of view. In his book, we can find many forms and examples of segregation. It is said to be as if you have been put in a garage where, if they do not have room for something but are not sure if they should throw it out, they put it there where they do not need to think of it again. Kozol has specified the reasons, which resulted to this negative situation in these schools. One of them is insufficient financial support of urban schools and their students (mainly from a poor families and national minorities) in comparison with suburban schools, where material and technical base is developed and the parents of their students are more well-to-do. However, in urban schools the classrooms need repair, educational apartments are overcrowded. It is obvious, there are 20 students in classrooms is normal for the study of school programs.
Another serious problem, describing in "The shame of the nation", is that the increasing emphasis on testing renders negative influence on the level of education in the schools for the poor and minorities. In these schools, they spend much trouble on preparation to the tests in mathematics and another mathematical disciplines and that is why such disciplines as history, geography, biology and another natural sciences are studied in a speed-up rate. I have many questions after reading this book. What is it? "Qui prodest"? It suddenly occurred to me, it is a racism hiding after the backs of our students. Why Afro-Americans, students from poor families, minorities must go to work in factory, become hairdressers, workers, seamstressesâ€¦, only because they have no money or they have another color of the skin? Our state, government and people must give them a chance, they don't need something more. Nowadays, the shame of the nation is hypocritical policy of education and especially the people, who have a great influence in the sphere of education. My point of view is that who can change this unfair system - does not want, who wants - has no possibility. In conclusion, I would like saying that our educational system is in need of change. Consequently, tests are convenient, but it is not an index of student's knowledge.
Classical education and its benefits
Talking about the way of learning students (or the education as a whole) people should be careful and accurate, especially when choosing the methods and aims. The level of education in the country is too important factor of success not to pay to it attention. Therefore, I believe government should take in account the type of education in the country in order to make country's general level higher. According to the one source, classical education rests on the concept of the trivium - grammar, logic and rhetoric - not as subjects, although these subjects are studied, but as the structure of every subject and discipline:
Grammar is the foundation of a subject;
Logic is the organization of these parts into a whole and an understanding of the relationships among the parts;
Rhetoric is the ability to apply the foundational knowledge and logical understanding of a subject purposefully and creatively to solve a problem, express an opinion with clarity or create something new (2010, <http://www.illinoisloop.org/classical.html>).
Strictly talking, contemporary schools do not study the classical-medieval studies' organisation (it is known as trivium). Definitely, even in the ancient times people knew that every age of a student should filled with different information (different levels of it) according to the age. The youngest people must start with the beginning - the grammar that is a basis of future education. It includes learning to write, to read, to use the words' parts. Students learn grammar of their language (the language they are talking on), word usage and spelling. The trivium part of learning contains learning about the history events, people, places, and number sense, then music, singing and playing different musical instruments, at last, listening different music genres. Planets, galaxy, physical universe are usually learned in this part of education. Memory is a thing that is relied by this education. Next is the "logic" stage of education. A student becomes an adolescent that gained information about grammar and next he must argument it. Thus, this stage is also called "argumentative". On this stage student gain new information about different disciplines, as he did on the previous stage, but in the contrast to it, student (having the intellectual capacity) calls those facts into various questions. Students learn how to wrestle facts they have gained with the questions, to analyze and argument facts.
The last stage is needed to be considered by high schools. It is the last part of trivium - the "rhetorical" part. According to Moore, having the facts at their disposal and being able to wrestle with them, students will now be able to express themselves with increasing grace and at considerable length, both in speech and in writing. They will learn to make coherent literary, historical, mathematical, and scientific arguments. They are ready to tackle difficult readings and problems (Moore, "The Classical Trivium Remains the Best Course of Learning", 2003, pg 1, <http://www.ashbrook.org/publicat/oped/moore/03/trivium.html>). It is obvious that in our country people wait that college can challenge students, numbing students' minds with worksheets.
Talking about quadrivium, I must mention that Rasmussen stated the quadrivium was the basis of advanced education: Arithmetic taught the science of number; Geometry, of form; Music, of sound (and of "harmony" in the most general sense of the word -- "number in motion", as it was often put); Astronomy, of time (of "form in motion"). Moreover, from the very beginning, whether openly acknowledged or carefully alluded to, each of the Quadrivial sciences was accompanied by its complementary metaphysical art (1996, pg 1, <http://www.oldenwilde.org/oldenwilde/members/diu/quadriv.html>). However, this way is not total classical one, because it is rather a 12th-13th centuries' development, definitely including classical elements. I believe students need to have an education according to the classical system. Otherwise, how can we make them ready to face with the injustice and real world, to make them ready for decision - making and solving problems, reaching their aims?
Public schools will only have benefits from the classical system of education. Hinrichs has stated that the study of the great books has been the backbone of good education for centuries. These books were required of most pupils until the rise of Dewey and the democratization of education through the public school system. The public school system saw these books as elitist, not easily comprehensible by the masses, and therefore not appropriate for public education (pg 1, <http://www.gbt.org/clasced.html>. In the conclusion, I must admit that the benefits, which classical education brings to students, are important and significant in our life. Otherwise, will young people learn how to deal with world and life?
Motivation for learning
The intent of the writing is to be pragmatic in focus. However, the educational system (even classical one) will work only when there is a motivation for learning in students' minds. I believe these paragraphs are needed to make all topic understandable. Talking about motivation for learning we ought to learn a lot of conformed to this theme literature in order to understand all the difficulties. The definition of this term can sound like this: the internal drive directing behavior towards some end. Motivation helps individuals overcome inertia, which can be defined as a property of matter by which it remains at rest or even in uniform motion in the common straight line unless acted upon by any external force.
Frith has found that there are components of the motivation to learn, they are such: "curiosity, self-efficacy, attitude, need, competence, external motivators" ("Motivation to learn", 2008, pg 3). Competence is an intrinsic motive for learning that is highly related to self-efficacy. An understanding of some skill you are learning is a way to be success in it, with out understanding your chance to learn it will be doomed to lose. It is the intrinsic motivation factor. That is understood. Last elements are external motivators, which can be explained in this way: in intrinsic motivation, the "doing" is the main reason for finishing an activity. As I understand, students need some confidence to be proud of their success; it can be also provided rather a self-reward for accomplishing aim they have set. Otherwise, can a student learn something when he does not be motivated and will to do it? I am sure he cannot.
Frith argued, "Success in a subject for some students is not enough. For students who lack a sense of efficacy teachers must not only provide situations where success occurs but also give students opportunities to undertake challenging tasks on their own to prove to themselves that they can achieve" ("Motivation to learn", 2008, pg 5). Intrinsic motivated students believe that they can rich the aim or a goal, that their knowledge and skills are need to do the work, when the work is interested to the student, rather than simply learning of rote in order to achieve good grades, at last, when the learning assists the learner in obtaining valued accomplishments. Talking about the extrinsic motivation it can be explained as a motivation, which comes from outside of the performer. Obviously, money is the most precise example; however, coercion and threat of punishment are as obvious example as previous. What force and factors can encourage human to win and reach the aim, in spite of interests of others, who are trying to set the same goal as a human? It can be a competitive character of a process.
In conclusion, classical education is very important theme in nowadays life. It can generally be said that talking about classical education, we should mention that it is paramount to student success if to use it. In this paper, we have shown that there are serious problems with some ways of wrong understandings of teaching, because these theories, which we have discussed in writing, are mainly just theories. However, I am sure, in the future, we will take in account all our fails and problems, and make educational system better, than nowadays. Hence, learning is the process of altering prototypical minds to accommodate new experiences. New approaches in learning children, I believe, will give advantages and privileges in the whole system, and will help children to be adapted to the grown up life better, than now. In addition, I believe classical education is something our country and our area of education need to be successful.