Wednesday, 8 April 2015

The British Education System Confuses Me

This post is going to consist of two points where the British Education System has completely lost me in terms of effectiveness, which is probably going to turn into a rant. So if you'd rather not hear about why I wish we students could have a say, feel free to close this tab, because this may take a while.
The first thing that confuses me is exams. All it does is test your memory, not how you apply what you've learned or anything.
I have a Spanish speaking exam next Monday, which I will be cramming for for the next week, but all it is is remembering a few paragraphs worth of a foreign language and reciting it (says the girl with a sieve-like memory when under pressure). 
To me, that doesn't at all test our knowledge of Spanish, it tests our memories, and how much our head can hold of some foreign words. That is not going to help us if we ever, I don't know, want to use Spanish as a language. 
We can't go up to someone in a street and go 'Si, claro, puedo ayudarle?' because I have no clue what that translates to (yeah, right, I can help, according to google). Exams just don't test anything of worth to me. 
It's been 4 years since my Year 6 SATS, and all I can remember from that is 'divide by the number on the bottom of the fraction', as well as a year since my statistics GCSE, and I can barely remember how to calculate a line, and we were learning that 3 weeks ago.
Also, why the hell are exams so close? I'm dreading the idea of having two major exams within the same week, which do I revise for? I barely revise to start off with, why is this my responsibility, I can't even sign forms for myself yet, why must I do this?
The second thing that annoys me is something kind of close to my heart. If you didn't see, yesterday, I uploaded a post entitled, Dear Jane, which was about a close family friend who recently died after a long fight with cancer.
Here's the thing that confuses me: why are we taught the causes of cancer, but not how to spot cancer? I can name the entirety of the electromagnetic spectrum, I can talk your ear off about the workings of a heart attack, and yet I couldn't tell you the difference between a regular mole and a malignant one.
If we were taught stuff like this, it could easily save our lives. As an internet hobo, I have of course seen the reminders to check my breasts, with instructions on how to do so (usually they aren't that in-depth). It just makes me wonder why this sort of thing is left up to the internet to teach me, when I spend two hours a week in biology learning about Darwin and evolution.
This could not only benefit girls, but boys as well, it's not just girls who suffer from breast cancer. Even just learning how to tell the difference could potentially save a life, especially if you realise in the early stages.
Much like taxes and how to buy a house, this is something I believe we should be taught in school, so that we learn from an early age something that could be used for the rest of our lives.
This kind of turned into another rant post, but at least I have something to replace this week's Writing Wednesday, as I ave done absolutely nothing towards that. NaNoWriMo-wise, I'm at 1088 words, and I haven't touched it since day 4, so I may get something done on that if I don't fancy tackling the homework I've been conveniently ignoring.
Bye everyone, Eve <3


  1. I feel like we are tested more on our memory than our actual intelligence, which is sad, because I would say that I'm fairly clever though I'm not great at memorising things. Sure, our memory will help us in later life (e.g. actors have to learn lines, in businesses you will have to memorise statistics or whatever) but there are also many other important qualities we should have that should be taught to us by our education system. I feel like without these qualities, we will be ill-equipped in the real world.

    I've heard that men can also suffer from breast cancer, but I think I learnt that from the internet. I believe that this is a key piece of information should be taught in schools, as it is not a well-known fact and lots of people will just assume that only women can suffer from this.

    Great post :)
    Lucy <3

    1. Exactly Lucy! I can retain the most random of facts and figures, but actually remembering full paragraphs of stuff for exams, and equations. Memory may be good, but they just expect us to be able to remember things!
      That's the thing that gets me, we learn things like this from the internet, but shouldn't they be things taught in schools?
      Thank you,
      Eve <3

  2. To add to your part about Spanish, I don't see why they are making me do 5 resits and not offering any help. They could of probably seen by my third attempt that I'm not doing so good remembering it all and maybe they should ask me if I would like extra help with it. But what do they give me, a fucking speaking exam to remember along with my 5th re sit of my writing. I can see that they want us to do good but they take it too far. I know what would get me good grades. Helping me out and not giving me two exams to revise for for the same thing.

    To me is seems like school value memory more than learning because if they cared more about the learning you would be marked on your school books and how well you do in lessons. Like in maths, I'm fine with a lot of the work we do and that is shown in my book. When it comes to doing them exam papers I never understand the way the questions are worded, I know we are 14/15/16 years old but them questions really need dumbing down with the way they are worded.

    Im sorry to hear abut your family friend and I hope you're feeling okay xx (I'm sending all the hugs)

    Good luck with your spanish and like my mother says 'I did French for 7 years and all I can remember is Guten Tag'

  3. Even here in India, the education system is totally theory-based. Only a small percentage of what we learn can be applied in our day-to-day scenario.
    Schools are supposed to be teaching us how to live our lives. Instead, they are places which test our memory to reproduce what we've been learning.
    Damn, the other day, when I was quizzing my eight-year-old cousin for her science exam, I was shocked to realize that I'd forgotten a huge chunk of what I'd learned in third grade! I couldn't even remember what condensation was!
    That's the thing about education, these days, Eve. It tests what they tell you, not what you ought to ACTUALLY use in life.
    Like taxes, for instance. I came to know the concept of taxes when I was in eleventh grade! :O
    I honestly want to get our education system revamped. Seriously.

  4. I agree TOTALLY with everything you have to say! Have you seen that albert einstein quote that says "Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree it will spend it's whole life believing it's stupid."? I feel like this is also really true for our education system here in the UK. We are taught all this stuff and tested on it, however only the really academic people excel. I know so many people in my year that have incredible talents (which could take them very far in life) that our education system completely ignores.

    I also really don't think that our current curriculum sets us up properly for life. Take Political Education for instance, we need more of it in school. We have a general election coming up in two weeks and less than five 14 year olds in my class knew what the difference between the parties / their policies / what they stand for etc. IT'S RIDICULOUS. We should all start like a campaign or something to improve our education system because at the moment it just isn't doing it for me.

  5. School is a very biased educational institution. I agree completely- most of the syllabus taught isn't even used in real life. I think it's great, teaching a wide variety of subjects so you can get a feel of everything before choosing your career, but that doesn't mean you should sit down to memorize the periodic table, the laws of motion, the theory of evolution, spanish, english, or whatever other things you have to give an exam for.
    And yes, necessary classes like health awareness and world issues should definitely exist. It's not right for society to shun these kinds of things and then get worked up when we find out from other mediums like youtube or word of mouth xD

  6. hey. same here. people say tge indian education is best. but we too face problems.

    but you see, the thing is, if we carry on with patience, it seems like benefitting. the system is made by man right...not God anyway ryt...!:D
    all we can do is adjust...

    and i read ur bio. we r in the same niche.