The essay "Dumbing Us Down: Weapons of Mass Instruction" attempts to address issues
in the modern education system that, according to the author, are placing constraints on the minds of
students. The author believes that these constraints discourage students from thinking for themselves
and discovering who they are and presents several possible solutions to the problems. What exactly is
the issue though, and what kind of solutions does the author present?
The author himself is a former New York City teacher of the year who has written several books,
so one can assume that the author has firsthand experience with the very issues he is bringing up. In
fact, the author uses ...view middle of the document...
These, according to the author, are methods students can pursue in order to free their
minds and to discover themselves.
How does this compare with my own personal experience? As a student of a public school
education system (versus the private system the author seems to prefer), I can draw on my own
experiences and viewpoints. To an extent, the author is right regarding the curriculum; oftentimes, it
would seem teachers would teach the material only for the sake of teaching it. Instead of trying to
foster creative thought in students such as myself, the way the teachers presented the material seemed
like it was just a way to pass time until the next class and ultimately until the end of the day. Math
problems were given or pages were assigned to read; we would complete them, then turn them in for a
grade. It wasn't often enough that a teacher would stop to ask our opinions on a Shakespearean sonnet
or what purpose we thought the quadratic equation would serve us later in life. I wouldn't say creative
thought was discouraged or suppressed in the manner that the author describes; while not...