Should the American public education system be rebuilt from the ground up?

Answer by Richard Haines:

Rebuilt by whom?
This disaster has been funded by taxpayers too long.
"That dog won't hunt."

Should the American public education system be rebuilt from the ground up?

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What are some of the greatest examples of presence of mind?

Answer by Shikhar Sinha:

The Witty Vivekanand

When Swami Vivekanand was studying law at the University College, London, a white professor, whose last name was Peters, disliked him intensely.

One day, Mr. Peters was having lunch at the dining room when Vivekananda came along with his tray and sat next to the professor.

The professor said, "Mr Vivekanand , you do not understand. A pig and a bird do not sit together to eat."

Vivekanandji looked at him as a parent would look to his rude child and calmly replied, "You do not worry professor. I'll fly away," and he went and sat at another table.

Mr. Peters,reddened with rage, decided to take revenge.

The next day in Class he posed the following question: "Mr.Vivekanand , if you were walking down the street and found a package, and within was a bag of wisdom and another bag with money, which one would you take ?"

Without hesitating, Vivekanandji responded, "The one with the money, of course."

Mr. Peters , smiling sarcastically said, "I, in your place, would have taken the wisdom."

Swami Vivekanand shrugged and responded, "Each one takes what he doesn't have."

Mr. Peters, by this time was fit to be tied. So great was his anger that he wrote on Swami Vivekanand's exam sheet the word "idiot" and gave it to Swami Vivekanand.

Vivekanandji took the exam sheet and sat down at his desk trying very hard to remain calm while he contemplated his next move.

A  few  minutes later, Swami Vivekanand got up, went to the professor and told him in a dignified polite tone, "Mr. Peters, you signed the sheet, but you did not give me the grade."!!!

What are some of the greatest examples of presence of mind?

What was the best thing you were told that made a change in your life?

Answer by Archit Gupta:

I read this somewhere on Quora.

Life is a game of three halves. In the first, you worry about what people think of you. In the second, you don't care what people think about you. But in the last third, you realize no one was thinking about you anyway.

What was the best thing you were told that made a change in your life?

What are some common mistakes parents make with raising their children?

Answer by Doug Garnett:

Biggest one I see:  Believing it's the parent's job to shape the child.

Yes, they need us to show them directions, to guide them in understanding right/wrong, discipline so they learn about boundaries, etc…

But eventually, they're not our job – they're their own job. The kids grow up only after they reject all the outside advice and find themselves from inside.

Yet a lot of parents think it's our responsibility to create grit in our kids (by doing some pretty dysfunctional parenting in my experience) or by telling them what's right and wrong (which doesn't matter if THEY don't decide it's right or wrong)…

Also, thinking that the kid we see is their true selves. Truth is, kids can only be known once they're outside our circle. Otherwise, we're only seeing a piece of them – a bit of them.

That's why it's important that we encourage so-called "mentors" (I hate the term – pretty badly abused and mis-leading) that kids will respect in a different way than kids respect us.

And, "telling them" rather than "engaging them in discussion". So many parents dictate to their kids (even quite mature kids) "you will do this…" whether it's in big issues or small issues. Kids learn far more and develop far mare when they are engaged in determining the answer.

They do quite well when we say (in a discipline issue), "here's the problem. How do you think we should fix it? How are you going to do something different next time?" rather than starting with "You will do the following…".

Finally, thinking we know what's right for them. We don't. We have ideas and we should share those ideas to let them know what we see – it makes for far better decisions on their part. But we have to accept we don't know the answers for them – only they can know that.

What are some common mistakes parents make with raising their children?

Given a chance to design Indian Education system, How would you do that?

Answer by Ashutosh Kumar Upadhyay:

Two main changes :
1. "How to teach"
2. Memory based examination pattern.

I think all changes will automatically follow.

How to teach: From class 1, we do "what to teach" and told to children "what to learn". We have never told to children "How to learn". We expect them to be encyclopedia rather than a innovator or thinker. This should be changed. Student centred teaching method should be applied and mandatory for all schools and colleges.…(Ashutosh Kumar Upadhyay's answer to What is the worst thing that can happen in life?)

Memory based examination system: The examination pattern should be changed. Instead of evaluating students, it should increase the creativity and problem solving skills through different ideas. Putting the bookish text, should lead to zero marking – and putting/giving own efforts and ideas should be encouraged by giving full marking. One thing should be cleared- Examination should not for evaluation of memory, but for evolution of ideas. Student should learn that Life is not for short time race with memory based teaching and examination, but it is long time enjoyment with creativity and innovation.

Given a chance to design Indian Education system, How would you do that?

What is the most valuable skill a person can have for their entire life?

Answer by Udita Singla:

Learn to accept that you don't know something.
It won't belittle you. Rather it'll keep you motivated to learn new things from someone or the other. Coz' believe me..here every single person on this earth has got something to teach you that you don't know. Each one has it's own share of experiences and lessons. Grab hold of them as much as you can coz life is short and you have got too much to learn in this journey!

What is the most valuable skill a person can have for their entire life?

What is the most valuable skill a person can have for their entire life?

Answer by Raghu Venkataraman:

The ability to stay curious and be open to change.

That's really two, but the second is a vital corollary to the first.

The first calls for an endless desire to know more about the world in order to make a difference (positive, one hopes!), to the people around you, your community, city, nation or the world.

The second – the need to be open to change, is to be able to absorb the outcomes of your learnings from your curiosity in order to improve on your own foibles and weaknesses, and thereby also to improve your capability to affect changes on the people and environment around you.

When you lose curiosity, you are effectively dead.

As Bernard Shaw put it:

"All progress depends on the unreasonable man."

One man, among many illustrious counterparts, who spent his entire life with endless curiosity, plumbing the secrets of life in the scientific pursuit is Isaac Newton:

“I do not know what I may appear to the world, but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me.”
― Isaac Newton

What is the most valuable skill a person can have for their entire life?