Public education has changed in the last 5 years.
Government has done a good (please feel free to replace good with poor, less than adequate, terrible, dreadful, completely appalling, or pathetic) job at dictating what curriculum schools must teach.
I believe that educators need guidelines in the area of curriculum, but there is something that we should be mandated to teach; yet it continues to be overlooked.
English, math, and science are important areas for students to master. But isn’t common sense an even more important skill to learn before graduates head off into the world?
I believe that most people think you are either born with common sense or you are not. You have the gift or you don’t. It is not something that can be learned.
I think it is time that schools recognize the importance of teaching this skill. We must do a better job of preparing our students for the future.
Why is this so important?
We are teaching a generation that is going to take care of me in a nursing home one day in the near future, and their poor judgment frightens me. I want to make sure the person changing my diaper has a good head on their shoulders.
We have to find the time in school schedules to teach common sense.
Our country can’t continue to parade students through graduation ceremonies who lack this basic skill.
Examples of our societies pathetic mastery of common sense is all around us.
We live in a world where people buy bottled water. Why? Walk over to the sink and turn on the faucet. It is the same water. And it’s free (basically free, don’t email).
Just because they put a mountain on the label doesn’t mean the water is from some mystical mountain spring.
It doesn’t come from Colorado; it comes from a garden hose in a factory in New Jersey. And I am willing to bet the guy running the hose hasn’t even washed his hands.
If more people had common sense they would notice that EVIAN spelled backwards is NAIVE.
If that isn’t enough to convince you to join my movement to add a Common Sense Class to every school curriculum, I have more.
My truck’s service manual says to change the oil every 5,000 miles. So why is it that I change it every 3,000 miles? The answer is that I have no common sense.
Actually, I do this because some 17 year old kid with grease all over his shirt (with his name above the pocket) puts a sticker on my windshield. I must follow his directions, or my truck engine will blow up. I have no common sense.
Lack of common sense mistakes are all around us.
Neck tattoos. Why do people think these will stand the test of time? My ties look out of style in 9 months. A tattoo of Bugs Bunny on the side of your head doesn’t show much common sense (or fashion sense).
The buying of houses that are too big and unaffordable is yet another example. Who needs 5 bathrooms, and more importantly who is going to clean them? Just because your friends have a brand new house doesn’t mean you need one. Use some common sense.
Americans are not taking care of their health. We spend trillions of dollars fighting illnesses. Why don’t we spend that money on prevention instead of trying to cure what has already happened? No common sense.
As soon as you’re done reading this, put down the donut and take a walk.
People are making more and more mistakes that prove our lack of common sense skills.
We don’t save enough of our paychecks for a rainy day. We put what should be embarrassing pictures of ourselves on MySpace. We spend time watching Brittany Spears’s life go into the dumpster instead of reading a book.
We buy permanent life insurance when term life is what we need. We supersize our fast food meals, simply because it seems cheaper (with no regard to its effect on our impending death).
We waste time watching TV or reading blogs instead of something more productive (okay bad example… I do love that Mike Rowe).
Schools have to step forward and save us from ourselves. We can be taught common sense and we can’t afford to wait.
In education we feed kids twice a day, look after their health, teach them to drive, help them get into college, provide extracurricular opportunities, discipline them, and test them and then test them some more.
Surely, we have time to teach common sense. We have to do this for the good of society.
And more importantly we must do this for my sake.
I am not getting any younger. Every day I am inching closer to that nursing home.