Trachtenberg shows in his article “Education is Not a Luxury,” that Americans are still using an education system that posses the strategies from an ancient world. He also states that education is no longer a luxury, and makes emphasis in the idea that by lengthening the school year to 11 months and longer days, the education system would be better than how it is now; moreover, students would be more prepared for their future productive life. I agree with Trachtenberg’s idea of making a better use of the whole school year but I don’t think that making them longer is the right answer.
Instead, a better use of the school hours is what I think is more important to the students, to teach them all the theory, but most importantly to practice what they learn in the classroom. The education system as it is now has a lot of theory in all the subjects, from the kinder garden until the University. Theory takes I’d say 80-85% of the student’s time; as a result, they spend the majority of the day studying merely theory. Hence, most of the students don’t take the school seriously because they don’t know if what they are reading would be beneficial to them in the future.
Trachtenberg supports this point by expressing that to some students school is just a requirement they have to fulfill (214). Instead of having students bored with tones of history sentences, economic statements, chemical formulas and mathematics expressions we could look for a way to teach the theory in a more practical way. We could, for instance, mount a theatrical piece to show a certain passage of the American history, instead of just reading and commenting about it, where students would be a part of it.
A practical example in a laboratory to create a product students use in their daily lives and that includes certain substance which formula was explained by the teacher in the classroom. By using this method they would become aware that chemical is applied in normal things and they could start liking it. I would also include a subject that will only focus on merely practice. Its purpose would be to help students to choose a career. The occupation the will do for the rest of their lives.
It could be imparted throughout the Secondary and College school years and it would have a different approach in each, with examples according to the student’s age. This subject could focus on a particular occupation each quarter, the teacher would take the students to places where people are performing their jobs. By seeing with their own eyes, students would have a clearer idea of what the people do when they study certain profession, and would help them in deciding weather or not the career they were thinking on studying turned out to be what they thought it was or is totally different.
I conclude, our society is in constant change and we can’t stop the flowing of time. It is well known that the education system in The U. S. is not as robust and successful as we would desire and it is also true that a change needs to be done. I would say that instead of lengthening the school year and school day, a change in quality and not in quantity is what I think would make the education better for future generations.