13 comments on “Therefore we must not teach it in schools

  1. I remember the olden days when companies started giving everyone a computer. My class in my audit firm was the first where everyone got a laptop.

    The IT trainers were, largely, admin staff who’d been on a course. They were so far behind those of us who’d been using computers for a few years beforehand it was hillarious. When you got to the proper techies, they knew their stuff but asking people to teach things they’d barealy grasped themselves was deeply counterproductive.

    The average teacher can’t code, doesn’t understand data or databases, doesn’t understand the privacy aspects of the digital world, and will bring little to the party that the average child hasn’t mastered long ago. Those that were actually into computers (as opposed to Facebook) will adapt, the rest will look like idiots. Few will learn anything.

  2. “A new internet tsar – the children’s digital champion – should be appointed…”

    NO! No more bloody tsars. And certainly no more ‘children’s champions’!

  3. I have an abiding memory of a teacher/computer interaction from a few years ago. She wanted to check her mail on my machine. So she attempted to access it by her usual method of clicking the Hotmail link on Google & sat dumbfounded when it didn’t open on her personal mail account.

  4. If any teacher had a clue about computers they would have a real job. Almost by definition the children will be light years ahead of them.

    Teaching is increasingly driven by the desire of teachers to avoid the boring work. Teaching the alphabet for instance. Hence the desire to do something cool like computers. The only use children will put their computer skills to will be downloading porn. Maybe ripping music and films. But in the end the only skills the children need is basic literacy and numeracy. The very things teachers cannot be bothered to teach.

  5. Teaching is the best job you can get if you’re a bang-average student without the looks/patter to get into sales. SMFS is right.. if someone is computer-savvy enough to be a useful teacher of computer-savvyness, then absent a genuine vocational drive, that person probably isn’t a teacher.

    It’s not like, say, art or music, where genuinely talented people teach because there are so few opportunities to make a living from those talents. The world can’t get enough of people with good tech skills and the ability to use them and or impart them unto others.

  6. A few years ago, I worked next to the helpdesk covering rollout of new computers for five schools.

    They receved a call from a teacher who’d been issued a laptop, and wanted a technician to make a site visit to connect the power supply.

  7. I was part of a team doing a upgrade roll-out last year, and have been kept on the lists for tail-end mopping up new users. Users who are new the the system and have no legacy data. I get sent on site to *literally*: Log on as the user. Run Outlook. Wait for Outlook to fetch the user’s profile and configure itself.

  8. @CJ Nerd & jgh: my mother was the governor of a school, and remembers when they brought in computers, all paid for by the local authority, for the office staff.

    She brought my brother along to a visit to the office (I think he was 11 or 12 at the time) and he was sitting with the staff while she did some catch up work.

    The next day, the council IT ‘expert’ arrived to teach them, and was astounded to see a clock sitting on each person’s front screen. My brother had set it up for the secretary, and seeing it, they’d all asked him to do the same for them.

    The council IT guy was baffled – he didn’t know how to do that….

  9. For IT my son had to learn PowerPoint &Word despite he fact that for the previous couple of years he had to submit homework and assignments using both, told me that all the kids knew more than the teacher. Even funnier when he was doing excel I knocked up a spreadsheet for him using some more advanced formulas and techniques and the teacher didn’t understand how it worked

  10. The sine qua non of being a decent coder is a level of literacy and numeracy. Forget all the other stuff until you’ve got that in hand.

  11. My chin hit the floor when my nephew told me he did IT support in a school. He’s a lovely lad but definitely not the sharpest knife in the block, even on IT from what he says. It makes me shudder to think how bad the teachers must be if they need his help.

    BiCR, plus problem solving skills and curiosity. I suggest if you have to be taught the absolute basics you really haven’t got the aptitude or attitude for coding.

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