So, recently I watched a video about how inadequate education is for today’s society. Apparently, we were supposed to learn how to do taxes, how to help a friend with a mental disorder or how to vote, instead of studying abstract math or how rocks form or whatever we are being taught in school. I don’t usually take these things too seriously, but somehow this video ignited a spark in me. Chances are the video’s owner had a very different school experience from mine, but I’ll try to explain my own beliefs towards education.
As with every other person, I spent most of the time in class hearing someone asking the teacher the purpose of the things we were learning that day. How is the quadratic formula going to help me in my future job? Why do I need to know how insects breathe? I asked myself these same questions, but was never quite sure of the answer. Now, with high school behind my back, I think I have a somewhat clearer answer.
I have a natural passion for Sciences, so I never complained about Physics, Chemistry or Biology, but Philosophy and History were a little bit more difficult for me to enjoy. But now, I have absolutely no regrets about studying them. They opened doors to some mysteries of the world I didn’t know existed. I had a terrific Philosophy’s teacher and we always turned our classes into ardent debates about all sorts of questions. Nowadays, I probably can’t even tell you what Karl Popper said or believed in, but the ability to discuss and show my point of view stuck with me until this day.
Geology has sort of the same story. At first, I couldn’t be more bothered to learn how a igneous rock is different from a metamorphic one. But, years later, I remind myself of seismology whenever a see an ultrasonography. Whenever a pregnant woman has to do an ‘ultrasound’, sound waves propagate through her belly, the machine collects data from the echoes made by the waves and voilà you can suddenly see a precious little baby. We sort of make a similar thing with Earth, so that we are able to see its core and inner structure. Weird how these things are related, right? That’s one of the main advantages of having an education and studying all sorts of things. You will eventually learn much more than you expected and you will be able to establish connections between seemingly unrelated things.
School feels like the perfect opportunity to learn some of the Universe’s mysteries. Not only does it provide you some answers to those mysteries, but it will also give you the necessary tools to find answers no one was ever able to find before. Education allows you to see much more than what meets the eye and, to me, that is something to cherish.