If there’s one thing that teachers hate to hear, it’s: “I’m bored.” That’s because teachers have been indoctrinated with the belief that learning must always be fun. If it isn’t, then they must be doing something wrong (“Let Children Get Bored Again,” The New York Times, Feb. 3).
But I submit that learning in the classroom is not that much different from learning in the workplace. Boredom is an inescapable part of both. The role of teachers is not to entertain but to educate. If that sometimes involves boredom, so be it. Yet teachers are often given poor evaluations if students complain that they are bored.
Some of the most valuable education I received in high school and college required sheer memorization. Today, memorization is frowned on because it doesn’t develop critical thinking. But I reject that assertion. Without certain facts, which require memorization, how can students develop critical thinking skills? Is memorization boring? It depends on how it is presented.
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