This is an alarming sight, posted by Gord Holden.
Many parents are dealing with the problem of curriculum pressure, which turns all to easily into media fuelled anxiety about the success of children. Society is less empathetic towards others than it used to be ten or twenty years ago — according to numerous studies around the word.
The culture-wars being waged by politicians to separate the ‘goodies’ from the ‘baddies’ includes families and therefore children. We want our children to be ‘goodies’ and we want to help them. We’re in a strange place where to do that, we’re prepared to put children though all sorts of trials like this one. The child obviously wants to please the parent and school teacher — but clearly is feeling like a ‘baddie’ here.
In education, I reject the ‘hyper individualism’ being touted in so called ‘must attend’ conferences which promote technological solutions to these kinds of culture problems.
They appear to me as a collection of individuals who in some way present a ‘representation’ of consensus and wisdom. Their core message is that to succeed, institutions must
buy provide technologically enhanced courses. I reject it on two main points. Firstly, the same people speak on the same topics — for money. Secondly, hyper-individualism is killing what’s left of empathy towards others. To me, there is a growing culture gap between experts and audiences which corrupts and glosses over reality.
Look again at the photo. This is the pressure cooker that parents are under — and for the most part actively participate in. No wonder parents and kids are stressed out. On one hand, the ‘basics’ in society (literacy and numeracy) continue to decline and on the other — education’s technological lust is at epidemic proportions.
Empathy is a vital component of a child’s development. It’s are the core of the people they will become. It’s disgusting to think that a parent has been put in a position where they have set empathy aside and watch a little girl cry over homework. Parenting is a minefield for parents who continue to be less trusting of society in general, and under constant pressure to find a ‘consumer fix’.