("Tales from the Classroom" is a feature posted occasionally here at this blog. All tales are true and present matters about which I have personal knowledge. The following tale relates the story of an experience that I had in January 1971, when I was taking my first course in education so as to certify as a teacher in secondary school)
A real piece of work.
One could make the case that Dr. Evers was merely senile. Or one could make the case that he was a rabid Leftist.
All students seeking teacher certification at the university had to take this one course from him.
The course itself was quite easy and mainly dealt with the history of public education in the United States. Of course, much emphasis was placed on child centered education as the predominant educational philosophy. Please see 5 essential characteristics of Child Centered Education for the details.
Came the day that Dr. Evers make the following statement during one of his lectures: "You should not make students memorize anything. They'll learn facts when they need to know them."
Many of us enrolled in the class had already garnered some teaching experience, formal or otherwise, and we exchanged incredulous glances.
I couldn't keep my mouth shut. Too much of a non sequitur was involved!
"Dr. Evers," I said, "do you mean that we shouldn't have students learn their math facts?"
He replied in the affirmative.
"Following your logic, sir," I calmly said, "I shouldn't learn what you're teaching in this course. I'll learn that material when I need to know it."
A deafening silence ensued. Dr. Evers glared at me.
I didn't get an A in Foundations of Education. A grade lower than a B was not justified. I got the B and didn't bother appealing to the dean.
We enrolled in Education Foundations had another go-round with Dr. Evers when he made a statement about the oppressiveness of a student dress code. But that is a story for another time.
Note: It seems that Dr. Evers's philosophy of no-facts-allowed education has now taken over our educational system. Please see THIS.