Week 4

What does it mean to be a “good” student according to the commonsense? Which students are privileged by this definition of the good student?  How is the “good” student shaped by historical factors?

According to common sense, to be a “good” student is to get good grades, not cause trouble, or inconvenience the teacher. I believe that the common-sense definition of a “good” student marginalizes all students; even those who get good grades, don’t cause trouble or inconvenience the teacher. I say this because those who are not deemed as “good” are seen as unteachable and pushed to the side; however, those who are “good” are also overlooked as the teacher understands that they don’t have to worry about them. 

I believe that the common-sense definition of a “good” student also tailors to a student who does not have a learning disability or disability in general. Students with disabilities from the beginning of their education experience are labelled as unteachable because teachers have to make adaptations or may have to instruct in different ways to learn. Another group of students that a “good” student tailors to is students from the caucasian middle class to wealthy households. Students that do not fall into this category will always be depicted as lesser than or unteachable. In relation to Kumashiro’s text, students like M or N were labelled as unteachable or troublesome because they were simply outliers among their classmates. 

Historically speaking, the curriculum as a product was a popular model of education and curriculum. I believe that a “good” student would excel in a curriculum as a product model. In reference to A History of Education by Painter, the phrase such as “train the child into habits of conformity” speaks to a curriculum as a product model. As the book goes on, it also becomes apparent that school aside, a “good” student is also a good moral Christian as well.

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