Monday, January 12, 2009

Our English Syllabus

Our English Syllabus is C.S. Lewis’s views on learning and educational training. Throughout his essay, he describes the difference between education and learning. His main focus is to teach college students how to learn and gain knowledge. Lewis writes that a good education’s purpose is to create a good man. We are to learn for the sake of learning, and by doing this we will enjoy it.

Many people go to college in hope of getting a good degree so that they can get a well-paying career. Others go to college and work extremely hard to get good grades so they can get accepted into med-school. Others may even go to college to find a spouse. Although these things are important, they are not the main reason that we should attend college. College is a place to pursue knowledge, rather than just being taught and going through the motions. We must not ask ourselves, “What will do me most good?” But rather we must ask, “What do I want to know?” We ought to study what fits are interests and what we are good at.

When I choose my major, nursing, I did not base it on what kind of job I wanted to have when I got out of high school. Rather I chose nursing because I wanted to learn more about health, science, diseases, the human body, and how to interact with adults and children. I looked at what my strengths were in choosing this major. Because I am interested in these subjects, I will learn for the sake of learning. When I find something interesting in one of my textbooks, I read it to learn more about it, even if it is not included in the assigned readings.

Learning is a personal choice that often declines in the life of a high school or college student. Part of the decline is because students are forced to take classes that they are not interested in, and teachers write a syllabus that tells the student exactly what he needs to do, which makes less room for creativity. Calvin College is a liberal arts school, which means we take classes in all areas. Right now we may not see how all these classes are helping us, but later on we will realize that this liberal arts education is a great benefit to our learning.

Young children explore new things and are free to learn everything through their play. As a young adult, I can also learn better this way. For example, in biology and chemistry labs, we are allowed to experiment with different things to learn the solution by trying new things. Also, in college and grad school, students often get the opportunity to do research with the professors. By doing this kind of research, the student has to think and explore by himself, without being told exactly what to do. Knowledge is exploration and challenging one’s mind to gain a better understanding of the world around him.

No comments:

Post a Comment