BBC- Guy Claxton, visiting professor at Kings College London, has sparked arguments with his comments that the humble eraser is "an instrument of the devil". At some schools corrective fluid is already banned, though more because some unruly pupils try to sniff its fumes.
The cognitive scientist told the Daily Telegraph that rubbers create "a culture of shame about error. It's a way of lying to the world, which says 'I didn't make a mistake. I got it right first time.'"
It is better, Claxton argues, to embrace mistakes, because that's what happens in the real world. Is he correct, and should erasers be banned from the classroom?
In fact, seeing children's mistakes is an important part of learning. "The observation of children's mistakes is essential to good teaching," adds Coe. "Teachers need to observe all the attempts children make so they can target their instruction."
Claxton's argument is that by making children deny they make mistakes, we fail to prepare them for the real world, where mistakes can be made, and consequences ensue.
This is just another case of this new age teaching method isn't it? Kind of like that 'Common Core' math thing they are doing where you have to do 15 different things just to complete the simple act of adding two numbers? Just completely overthinking the concept of learning? Hey, it's 2015. You have Super Bowl winning head coaches calling for drop back passes on the 1 yard line when they have the best running back in the league. Apparently nothing these days is beyond overcomplication.
With that said, this is one of those concepts that causes far more problems than it solves. As a human being the one thing that you don't want to do is to constantly be reminded of the mistakes you've made. That goes for everyone from preschool to the nursing home. If learning is a never ending process you better take away every literal and metaphorical eraser that exists among all demographics of society. You want kids to be reminded of how dumb they can be, then everyone should be reminded of how dumb they can. Scary thought, huh? Think about every time you've thought to yourself "well that was fucking stupid". Now imagine that you had a lasting reminder to go along with every one of those suppressed memories. You want children to constantly think about every time they got it wrong the first time? Fine. Then every person that gets divorced should have to wear a scarlet letter. Every person that makes a correctable mistake at their job should have to mark it on their arm like they are counting down shots during their 21st birthday. With age does not always come wisdom. If shaming is the new educating then everyone should be subject to it.
You're either right or wrong. Fuck the whole principle that you learn how to do things right by learning how you did them wrong. That's a load of shit. Remember when you used to get a test back in grade school. Did your teacher redo all the work on the paper and show you exactly how you did it wrong? Fuck no, because they were a teacher and were trying to do the least amount of work possible. Instead they just put a big ass red slash through it and you were left to feel like a failure. It's one thing to be wrong. It's a totally different thing to see exactly how wrong you can be. This guy needs to realize that everyone lies to themselves. Every single person thinks they are smarter than they are. If everyone had to accept the brutal truth about themselves the suicide rate would go by 10,000%. Erasers, white out, autocorrect, and backspace buttons were all created so that we don't feel completely awful about ourselves. Society's advances have probably made us more careless and stupid, but they have also done wonders for our self esteem. The last thing the fragile minds of our youth need is another thing to feel self conscious about.