Teach, don’t preach, in the classroom
Published: Sunday, February 13, 2011
Updated: Sunday, February 13, 2011 13:02
It has recently come to my attention that most high school biology teachers don't endorse evolution. What!? I find this completely absurd.
In light of the whole "evolution v. creationism" argument that will no doubt plague our public school system for many years to come, the Washington Post ran an article that stated "the central theory of biology is evolution, yet a new study shows that most high school biology teachers are reluctant to endorse it in class."
How can an educator, someone who dedicates their lives to developing the minds of our youth, not endorse evolution!?
This just further solidifies the already horrific stereotype that K-12 teachers are 20-something-year-old, single, church-going prudes.
According to the Washington Post these teachers are trying avoid controversy.
There seems to be a fine line between avoiding controversy and impeding the education of children you have been previously deemed fit to educate.
I am an education minor and am currently taking a class which deals with teaching ethics.
My take on this issue is, once again, to leave the church out of the schools. It should be a parent's/ religious organization's responsibility to teach children their ideas about how the earth was made.
It is the job of our teachers to stick to what they know and what they have been trained to do. Teach the facts.
Some people argue that evolution is simply a scientific theory and has yet to be proven. It's more than a theory, but not quite a fact either.
Evolution runs directly counter to most major world religions, which teach that a god created the world in some form or another. Teachers have lost their jobs for teaching only creationism, rather than teaching both theories.
I understand this point of view. However, evolution is the best explanation we have of where our species came from and how it got to this point.
With the negligence of our teachers comes the ignorance of our students. According to the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress, only 34 percent of fourth-graders and 30 percent of eighth-graders were deemed proficient or better in science.
Denying our students the right to learn what is necessary is hindering them as a whole. For a lot of students, biology is the only science class they'll take while they're in high school.
What happens when they get to college? They're supposed to know about evolution by the time they get to where we are. If they don't, they fall behind, get discouraged and do poorly on exams.
It all boils down to teachers doing what they're supposed to do. Teach, don't preach.
If I had been in a science class in which my teacher started saying something to the tune of "... and on the seventh day," I would have walked out.
I've never been a very religious person, maybe because my parents weren't.
But the fact remains, if a teacher is going to teach biology in a public school, they should teach biology. They shouldn't go off on tangents that have nothing to do with the science they're presenting. Be scientific, not religious. It's their job to leave that at home and do it on their own time.