Why do schools have too many exams

Nearly all thinkers and, scientists and educationists are of the opinion that children today are overburdened with books and exams. The curriculum is snatching their childhood away from them. The modern child is so overburdened with his school bag that he is getting drooping shoulders and curved spines. Not to mention sleepless nights and bad eyesight.

All studies and no play; makes both Jack and Jill dull.

Is this responsible for making our society self centred and inhuman too?

May be yes, because all these exams are the result of cut throat competitions, the scramble to reach the top, everyone wants to be there. They all want to look down; no one wants to see the horizon spreading before them. No one has the time or inclinations to see the beauty of the morning sun or the evening moon but they all have the time to either look at the sky above or sneer at the earth below.

We find parents fretting about the burden of tests but at the same time we find them pushing their child towards achieving goals, towards preparing for exams, towards reaching the top, towards beating their peers in the race for excellence. There’s nothing wrong in this because excellence and perfection are the aim of society we don’t want our children to be second rate citizens we want all of them to be great achievers.

Sadly our measuring scale for success is through exams. It is the exams that decide where a child stands, it is the exam which grades him, and it is the exam that makes him eligible for a certain cut out. We as parents do crib and complain about the burden of studies and exams but from the day our children enter school we become paranoid with their grades. More than the child it is the parents who set a time table for themselves, they plan a strategy which is to be followed to make their children toppers in academics but very few make strategies about making their children good human beings, very few make strategies about telling their children to appreciate the outdoors, to help the beggar on the streets, to be compassionate to fellow humans.

But what we forget is that the goals that we want them to achieve are set by us, we want them not to do what they want but what we think is good   for them.

Teachers too say that exams take away the pleasure of teaching from them. They are forced to resort to rote learning instead of taking the children on nature rambles, teaching about the creations of God about the beauty of the, about the chirping of birds and the singing of the brook.

We find people deciding about which school to send their children to, on the basis of the results these schools give. A school’s success depends on how many children from their institute have got admissions in professional courses. We have coaching classes and institutes mushrooming all around us only because they help us prepare our children to enter into professional courses.

One feature of standardized tests is that they make comparison easy. And Comparison today is the criteria for measuring success. So examinations are needed, they are important for judging where you stand among your peers. But a few exams in school and some annual ones should be enough for that to let the child relax and enjoy the bounties of nature not those of the material world. Let him relax in the garden not inside the four walls of a computer room. He need not worry about the next exam he has to take in the morning and the one in the afternoon, one in school and the others at the coaching class followed by another which his tuition teacher will be getting ready for him. Let him worry about the eggs in the birds nest whether fledglings have been hatched or not, whether the seed he sowed in the basket has sprouted or not, and whether the urchin he gave his shirt to wore it or not.

All great men and women of history had their teachers prepare them to explore the world. All this is good wishful thinking but in reality it is very difficult to achieve this because our social status has changed, the world is thinking on different lines. The definition of success all over has changed. It’s the material goods and comforts that we are after. No more do we pray for our daily bread but our demands are now for the butter and the jam and the tea and coffee and all this can be got through material achievements which are dependent on the present job market which is dependent on competitions and challenges the criteria for which is ones standing in the various exams.

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