- The whole programme felt a lot like Educating Yorkshire, which to me seemed high in entertainment stakes but low in any kind of meaningful commentary about the British education system. I quite enjoyed watching Sophie and Luca play up, and I can't wait for the bit with Josh and the kettle next week. This might possibly be because I'm on holiday though, and am fully aware that I won't have to deal with any Sophies or Joshes for another four and a bit weeks yet.
- The maths teacher saying "sin" instead of "sine" irritated the hell out of me, but I'm just picky about that personally.
- I'd like one of those puzzles! I also completely felt for the maths teacher when pupils left their presents on the tables or on the floor.
- As Mel mentioned in her blog, the headteacher deciding that he didn't want the better method to turn out to be the teacher talking and pupils listening because it didn't agree with his personal ideology was really grating.
There is one thing that's concerning me slightly, and that's why this programme exists. If purely as entertainment, that's fine by me. I think most clued-up teachers will take the whole series with a pinch of salt - see the list of links below for some responses and views I've enjoyed.
However, if the "experiment" done in the series concludes that "the Chinese method is the best", will that further fan the flames of those trying to transplant Chinese teaching (or, if we're being frank, just their success with PISA tests) into British classrooms while completely ignoring the cultural influences?
Here are some links to people discussing these issues far more eloquently than me:
- The Learning Profession: 'Survive or Die' #ChineseSchool
- The Telegraph: Take note, Chinese teachers...
- Sue Cowley: A question of culture
- The Independent: We don't need Chinese teachers...
- TES: New documentary brings Chinese teaching to UK students
- Eduflections: Longer school hours, academic pressure and adolescent suicides
- Mel Muldowney: #ChineseSchool ... oh dear ...
As I've got no way of getting the photos off my camera and onto my blog while I'm away, there are no planned posts until I get back next weekend - but I'll post them all then!