Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Communism in the Class room

Story: "the students had been building an elaborate "Legotown," but it was accidentally demolished. The teachers decided its destruction was an opportunity to explore "the inequities of private ownership." According to the teachers, "Our intention was to promote a contrasting set of values: collectivity, collaboration, resource-sharing, and full democratic participation."

The children were allegedly incorporating into Legotown "their assumptions about ownership and the social power it conveys." These assumptions "mirrored those of a class-based, capitalist society -- a society that we teachers believe to be unjust and oppressive."
At the end of that time, Legos returned to the classroom after the children agreed to several guiding principles framed by the teachers, including that "All structures are public structures" and "All structures will be standard sizes." The teachers quote the children:

-"A house is good because it is a community house."
-"We should have equal houses. They should be standard sizes."
-"It's important to have the same amount of power as other people over your building."

What the heck? This is coming out of Seattle, but still! Taking kids legos because they promote private ownership? And the town was accidentally destroyed, I am sure.

When I played with legos as a kid, I loved them. But it wasn't until I was playing with someone else that it was really fun, get a group of 5 kids in there playing with legos, and it was great fun. We cooperated with each other, traded necessary pieces, and each built our own mansion, to be our little neck of legoville. But what is this about, 'A house is good because it is a community House'? Nonsense, I say. Shared houses turn into dumps, because no one cares to up keep or improve them. Whats next, all the lego people should have equal ownership to the suits?

This is really lame. I'm glad the kids got their legos back though.
Great article, I highly suggest that you read it.


SolaMeanie said...

Hi, Palm Boy..

You got me again, LOL. I just HAD to comment here.

Check out the following link, which is an excellent resource for studying how the Hegelian dialectic has infested all aspects of our society, but especially in education. It's maddening. Also contains some cool suggestions on how to throw a monkey wrench into the works if they try it locally.

Dyspraxic Fundamentalist said...

Those values stink.

DAWEED said...

Build a kid a lego house he will be happy for an hour. Give a kid a bucket of legos he will be happy for life. :)

Palm boy said...

Sola lives... :D
Maddening indeed.

Matt, I agree.

David, A big bucket of legos has endless possiblities.

Haru-san said...

"Pass the red bricks, Comrade" is a phrase I can see becoming very popular among this next generation of PSers.

Daniel said...

Hmmmm… I wonder what would happen if one of these kids showed up with a couple Lego guns? Down with the evil dictators!

Palm boy said...

Haru, lol.

Daniel, they'd probably get suspended... :D
Bloody tyranants indeed.

Gino said...

i wonder how big the lego houses were that the teachers made for themselves.

Amelia said...

Funny how things like this always remind me of dystopian literature. This particular article, for instance, reminded me of Ayn Rand's "Anthem." Although the fact that I was just thinking about it may have something to do with that. My, oh my. What is this world coming to, when even something as innocent as Legos may spark controversy?

Rabenstrange said...

Not realizing that you had already covered this story, (you seem to be beating me to the punch pretty often lately) I posted on this a couple days ago.

Living in a shared dump, where the private rooms are clean and community spaces are slimy pits I can attest to the falsity of "A house is good because it is a community house." statement.

"Pass the red brick, comrade."