There are very few “one size fits all” things in life. And even the ones that kind-of work we all know only work so-so. Certainly not as good as a tailored whatever. We accept it then because it doesn’t really matter in that instance or application.
How about humanity? Children? Human development? Yeah, I though so. NOT “one size fits all” – not at all. Not by a long shot! So why do all eight year olds get sent to Room 304? Just because they are eight.
Traditional schools draw a line in the sand (say, September 1st) and if you’re eight before that you go to Room 304. If you’re not yet eight you go to Room 307, one grade below. So, in Room 304 we have all the children who turned eight over the past 12 months: the ones who missed the cuttoff by one day one this side of the line and that side of the line. This means that the oldest “eight year old” is 8 and 364 days, and the youngest just turned eight yesterday. They are all full year apart, in the same classroom. They are supposed to learn the same stuff at the same pace all year long. Not a chance. Well, it’s actually much more complicated than that. They COULD actually learn the same stuff at the same pace… and all the others in between, well, it’s just not likely.
Surely you’ve planted something in your life. Watched someone else’s garden grow? Read a seed package? If not – go to the store (or look online like I just did!) and see for yourself: french green beans germinate anywhere from 8-16 days. What does this tell us? That things don’t grow on a fixed schedule. Your child wasn’t likely born “9 months” to the day, didn’t walk on his 1st birthday or likely do anything just because of her age. So why are all the eight year olds in Room 304? Their age tells us nothing about what they know or are capable of learning. But it our traditional school we’re going to pretend that that’s not the case and move on.
And that is how you “learn” all the good stuff right out of people. Traditional schools are terrible places to learn about living life. They’re great places to learn to follow the rules, do what you’ re told, not ask too many questions (and certainly not challenging ones), put in just enough effort to get “the grade” and no more.
Yes, one size education does not fit all. It doesn’t fit anyone, truth be told.
We need something very different to learn that work is life and that you can love every beautiful minute of it.