British Studies Web Pages
|Thoughts on Education|
Read the quotations below and think how you would answer the questions.
“Education makes a people easy to lead, but difficult to drive: easy to govern, but impossible to enslave.” [Lord Brougham: in a speech to the House of Commons, 1828]
Does the sentence suggest that it’s easier to control uneducated masses?
Is it in the interest of those who wield power to keep people ignorant?
Do you think that it’s still possible in the 21st century to doubt the benefits of education?
“A little learning is a dangerous thing.” [Alexander Pope]
How would the meaning of the sentence change if it started with ‘little learning’ instead of ‘a little learning’?
What can be dangerous about ‘a little learning’?
Is ‘a little learning’ better than ignorance?
“Nothing that is worth knowing can be taught.” [Oscar Wilde]
Which things are worth knowing that cannot be taught?
If you were to choose things that you want to know, would they exclude things that you are currently learning?
If certain things cannot be taught, does it mean that they cannot be learned?
“The things which hurt, instruct.” [Benjamin Franklin]
Do we learn better through pain?
If children learn through fun and play, isn’t it proper education?
Is an idea of punishment necessarily connected with instruction?
“A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops.” [Henry Adams]
Doesn’t teachers’ influence stop the moment you leave the classroom?
Have you ever been taught by a teacher whose lessons you will still remember after 10 or even 20 years?
Is the teaching profession considered a ‘vocation’ or a ‘job’?
“The only medicine for suffering, crime, and all the other woes of mankind, is wisdom.” [T.H. Huxley]
How different is ‘wisdom’ from ‘education’?
Is wisdom connected with technological and scientific progress or compassion and understanding?
Who can be called a wise man?
Click here for more quotations on the subject.