The reading this week entitled, “Doing History,” is easily the most enjoyable and interesting read I have done this year as I look forward into progressing my educational career. The reading this week was divided up into many different sections that explored the different areas of history and addressed the many problems this subject faces in today’s school system in the United States. The reading really focuses on the theory of disciplined inquiry for history and to be honest I have never been much of a fan on reading upon theory. Theory has always come across to me as very boring and just useless in my opinion, but this article convinced me that I was wrong. Theory does have a place in the education field and I strongly believe that with a right blend and mix between theory and experience we can have very effective teachers in our schools around the country.
The section that I really appealed to me personally and had me think this week was the section on how teaching and learning must have a purpose. One problem the article talks about is how a majority and good deal of knowledge that is acquired from history classes quickly fades from the students (14). I liked how this point was included because I see this problem every day with the students that I have worked with, my peers, and even myself. I do strongly believe this is a major problem at the core of all social science courses. I have forgotten so much information because I was simply just taught it and tested over it. There was no purpose for my learning of this information and once I passed the test we never revisited the information. I want to learn this information for understanding so I could become an effective teacher when I taught this same information to my students one day. An example of this that I experienced of this last year is for my Nebraska Geography class. I was tasked on remembering Nebraska county numbers and tested over them. I struggled with this because I did not see the purpose and learning this information and as soon as I was tested over it the information was never revisited and now I have forgotten all that I had learned.
In conclusion, I am a very strong believer that teaching, and learning must have a purpose. Without purpose the system is set up to fail at the start and that is the last thing we want.