Re: re[2]: DSM: democratic classroom

From: william van horn (wmvh1@excite.com)
Date: Sun Nov 04 2001 - 14:48:27 EST


You're right, they also need to know what they can do about it, the
possibilities for change. But they can't create change when they do not
know something exists. There's a difference between knowing that you do not
like the system, and accepting it, and realizing that the system is unfair,
that this is what you have to work with, and, hopefully, to try to make
changes nonetheless.

I'm living in a fairly conservative district and I see a lot of acceptance
(and even embracement) of the system and its restrictions. I feel that if I
can help the students see creatively and personally just a little better
then there may be a chance for them to, somewhere down the road even, begin
to question what they see and what they are told. Its a small change, and
certainly not the opportunity of a SUdbury school, but should these students
be ignored? Is the only answer for me to create a democratic school? And
barring that, maybe I should just become a dishwasher and leave the students
to the teachers that beleive that passing the SAT is the culmination of a
good education.

-----
> From: "Bruce Smith" <bsmith@coin.org>
> To: <discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org>
> Sent: Friday, November 02, 2001 5:32 AM
> Subject: Re: re[2]: DSM: democratic classroom
>
>
> > William,
> >
> > Here's how I'm interpreting your post: if I and/or others feel that our
> > votes don't count, if American democracy is indeed "a shallow game
> > controlled by a few powerful people," then what's wrong with showing
> > students that? Well, I'll tell you what's wrong with it: that is not
how
> it
> > has to be. Citizens _can_ organize and effect real change. It's often
not
> > easy, but it can and does happen. Besides, I think the point's been
made
> > before that if you want to know how much an individual's vote counts,
you
> > can ask Al Gore.
> >
> > And if I'm wrong, then at least we could do ourselves a favor and stop
> > pretending that it is a democracy.
> >
> > Being cynical and pessismistic about the status quo is yet another
gripe I
> > have about conventional education. "That's just the way things are" is
a
> > sorry excuse for inflicting as much unpleasantness on students as
possible
> > ("well, golly, the real world is full of shit, so we'd better get them
> used
> > to it now"), thereby churning out still more passive graduates who
expect
> > life to suck, and believe themselves powerless to change that.
> >
> > Do you want to just accept that things suck, or do something about it?
Do
> > you want kids to feel empowered, or victims of a corrupt system?
> >
> > Bruce
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > At 9:11 PM 11/1/01, william van horn wrote:
> > >. All I see it preparing
> > >> students for is a life of believing that democracy itself is a
shallow
> > >game
> > >> controlled by a few powerful people.
> > >>
> > >> Bruce Smith
> > >> Alpine Valley School
> > >
> > >Sorta like it usually works in the United States, right? How much do
you
> > >feel that your vote counts?
> > >
> > >William M. Van Horn
> >
> >
> >
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William M. Van Horn
wmvh1@excite.com
http://www.angelfire.com/art/inmystudio

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