• karanchitnis

Does our education system really prepare you for real life?

Welcome ladies-gentlemen, boys & girls to another one of my rants. Feel free to agree or disagree. How many times do we jokingly, amongst peers or friends, or even in daily situations crack jokes about how a certain person we meet is a blithering idiot and you can’t believe he’s qualified with a so-and-so degree? Too many times, if you ask me. There could be an argument made that not everyone who’s trained in a certain discipline will have knowledge about any other field per-se. A counter-argument could be made that a generally educated person should at least have the basic ability to process & integrate new information, if not know everything by heart.

Which brings me to the topic at hand. Ask yourself, really ask yourself. Is your education really preparing you for the wilderness that is real life? Is it really giving you the tools that are needed to get through in today’s everchanging and ever-evolving world? The point of being educated is to be a well-rounded individual not an automaton that just learns random facts & figures and vomits them on paper to be awarded grades based on that single ability to remember stuff. How to change a flat tyre or how to unclog a toilet will be more handy for you in your life than “Mitochondria is the powerhouse of the cell’.

Don’t get me wrong, my point isn’t that education or specialised knowledge is useless. Nor is this rant about integrating sports & extra-curriculars in the school curriculum. My point is completely about the basic life skills that need to be included in our education system as another thing the kiddies need to integrate in their life. Stuff like knowing how to tie a tie, basic finances, cooking a simple meal, learn to read for fun, being handy around the house, how to write a cheque, how to deal with animals, basic first aid, all these are vitally important skills which are usually ignored. The best part is, it doesn’t even need to be just teachers teaching the students. Parents who are handy with stuff like this could volunteer and come in and show the kids how to do this. Teachers could learn along with students in this scenario. I’ve seen my dad fix a washing machine at home and I can’t believe this man doesn’t understand how to reply to WhatsApp messages. Not only is this opening up a more collaborative and fun environment for kids, it could also help parents bond and relate to their kids in so many more ways.

The onus of this change is completely at the parents end because I firmly believe that the education industry, and let’s face it, it is an industry, caters to the clientele. Look at all the coaching institutes that start training kids for entrance exams from the 8th grade and you’ll see what I mean. Please parents, take a stand and put and effort to turn our future generations into well-rounded individuals and not mindless, heartless drones with degrees. Let us start this conversation at least and see where it takes us.

To the people who are interested in learning some basic life skills and have either nobody to teach them or too shy to ask for help, please check out the ‘Dad, How Do I?’ channel on YouTube. The guy grew up without a father and when became one, he decided to start a channel teaching basic life-skills to everyone who needs to & wants to learn. Go check him out and learn away!

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