Schools are removing clocks from exam halls as teens 'cannot tell time'
151 replies, posted
I'm surprised people have memories about learning to read the time, as far as I'm aware I've always known. Obviously I was taught at some point but it must have been before I was 4-5 before I have any solid memories.
Even though the whole thing was drilled into my skull for several years, I'm still really bad at reading analogue clocks.
Sure I can get a very rough estimate of what time it is at a glance, but to get the exact time down to the correct minute, I have to stare at it and count the bars til I hit the one the minute hand is closest to.
Then again, I also still have to count on my fingers for basic addition and subtraction, and lose track instantly if so much of a breeze tickling my face disrupts my focus by the most minuscule amount.
I swear I'm not stupid. I passed all my HS grad tests a full year before I was supposed to graduate naturally with flying colors, except for algebra of which I only passed by one meager point. Numbers just do not play well with my brain.
I still don't know the months intuitively. I have to think about it.
I've got January, February, March, April, May, June, and July memorized. But after July, I have to remember them in this way:
"Okay, so September would be month 7, Sept = 7, but Julius and Augustus Caesar were dicks and named months after themselves. July is Julius, which means next is August for Augustus. Ergo, August is after July, and then it's September, October (Octo = 8), November (Nov = 9), and finally December (Deca = 10)."
Is this more common then I think??
Well, I can't speak for anyone else, but I am extremely number-oriented.
And so the fact that December is not month 10 throws me for a loop, if I don't think about it.
That's why all of the months before August I have memorized, their names don't have an numeric correlation to me. But September onward do have numeric correlations, and so if I don't stop and think about it, I'll just blindly think "Decimal December" and say December is the 10th month. Which isn't right.
Honestly my schooling did both but they never hammered in telling the time via half past ten, it was always using digital 4:20 formats even when explaining analog times. Through I can read analog I have trouble knowing precise time, just something that over time I've forgotten and don't try to ask me precise "Half past ten" as I've long disregarded it.
Even if you full-stop quit using analogue clocks, the rest of the world wouldn't.
Analogue clocks will be in use at least for the next 50 years so an understanding of them will be useful if you travel at all.
About all the things to worry about the next generation and what they have to face in these times:
The ability to read analogue clocks is not on the priority list.
I couldn't care less if they disappear or not.
This is a great example of everything wrong with how people look at school results.
"Oh they're having trouble reading time of an analog clock, remove the clocks"
"Oh they're getting bad grades for math and not passing their exams, lets make it not count to get your diploma" (This is the case in The Netherlands)
Instead of bypassing the fucking problem you keep them in school and investigate why they aren't learning these basic skills. More than likely there is a problem that can be helped in a more meaningful way than just bypassing it.
It also would help if the government didn't poke their fucking nose into the school system every year, making up vague ideas based on nothing and then forcing the teachers (who are already hard at work trying to improve the learning experience) to halt their work and conform to the new rules.
I was taught time through my mum telling me I have to wait an hour before I can turn on PS2 and then explaining what an hour is. You learn very quickly when your fun is dependant on it
They got automatic and solar watches now with digital movement. Those will last a long time. Sure they'll fail eventually, but mechanical watches need to be serviced too and tend to lose accuracy if not cared for properly much more quickly than digital so after the collapse you're going to have issues telling the time with either system regardless.
I'm seriously baffled that in 2018 we have to explain to people on an internet forum how to read analog clocks (which are still absolutely common btw, and will be).
Unless you have dyscalculia or some other specific disorder, I cannot comprehend:
how one never came across this problem in their education (in elementary, grades 1-2, or later when they were learning a foreign language and they had to do the most basic "tell the time from the clock" excercise)
how one never managed to pick this skill up by themselves (which honestly takes very little effort and time)
This problem is not unique to youth.
A mate of mine was an engineer building a gas plant and they needed a huge clock in the mess hall so that shift workers would be able to tell when their break is up. Because of the risk of fires or explosion in such an environment, any electrical device needs to be designed to be intrinsically safe such that no malfunction could result in it becoming an ignition source.
Being a mechanical engineer, he decided that a simple and cheap solution would be to install a mechanical clock that required no electric power. After installing it, so many of the workers were unable to tell the time from the analogue face that they had to spend tens of thousands of dollars designing a digital clock that met the strict electrical safety standards.
Those kids that can't read clocks? They grow into adults that can't read clocks...
Not everything, but it's the case here. I had difficulties with it at first, too, as most kids that age do. But it took eventually.
FWIF analog clocks are EZPZ for me, and I don't have a problem with the number for the months of the years, but ask me for their names and orders... and I'm pretty helpless - I can get September, October, November, and December, but that's it.
100 years ago you would have to learn to write with pencils because that is what you would be doing for your entire life.
Now? You're expected to use computers in your workplace. You're gonna be sending e-mails, not handwritten letters.
It's not just laziness. There's no realistic long-term benefits to learning these skills.
... unless you want to go full Pai-Mei on these kids and teach them using pencils for hours just for the sake of discipline.
How is not learning relatively useless skills laziness?
This is honestly just silly, they aren't lazy, they just don't have a need to learn these skills. I wouldn't even be surprised if these kids were taught at one point, but forgot, due to never using those skills.
we could hug
It’s easier and less distracting to take notes by hands, there are going to be situations where yes, you are going to have to handwrite things as you’re not going to have access to a computer.
Man, imagine a kid going out on a nature journey and not being able to write in a diary chronicling his journey. Or worse, just typing it out on his phone. And then uploading it to Instagram for likes.
I remember being told by my mom how Spongebob episodes are 15 minutes, and there's 4 episodes in 1 hour.
If I did something bad she'd tell me to go to my room for 15 minutes, and I'd be like "WHAT? For as long as a whole episode of Spongebob?? That's way too long!"
If it was easier kids wouldn't complain, would they?
Scrapping the bottom of the barrel I see? Nobody writes diaries, this is a fringe case. Kid that wants to write a diary will write in the damn diary and will keep it to themselves. And if a kid wants to make a blog or a vlog for others to see then the digital beats out the pen and paper in every way. A kid who knows how to type shit on mobile will figure out how to do it on paper if such a need emerges. If you're looking fore reasons to be depressed, there are plenty out there but this is not one of them.
Nobody writes diaries? Maybe in whatever creativity-devoid social circles you grew up in. Handwriting is an essential skill that you can perform with almost anything on almost everything, but you'd surrender to dependency on your phone at the flick of a hat because it takes effort to teach it to children who would rather enjoy the instant no effort gratification of their cell phone. And of course, you don't need it for work, so obviously you don't need it at all.
To add to that, handwriting is personal expression, just by the fact that you yourself wrote it with your own hand, in the handwriting that only you have. That is nonexistent on a phone or a keyboard. You won't be finding Word files 70 years from now hidden in your attic with your own authentic signature on them. It's a pathway to creativity, whether in writing poetry or drawing and painting.
Man, good luck getting work outside of the shittiest of jobs without basic handwriting skills. I don't care how you try to spin it or how prevalent technology is, there will be times in your life when you need to hand write something, be it tomorrow or 50 years from now. The calculator didn't kill needing to know simple math, the ubiquity of technology won't kill handwriting.
To be honest I barely write anything anymore. I can go days without using a pen or pencil except to jot down single word notes at work while working on the database. But the idea that someone could not know - or shouldn't need to know - how to write coherently is ludicrous.
I don't really see the point of keeping analogue clocks around.
I'm starting to suspect you're naive. Perhaps you live in a creative bubble where all of your friends write diaries, attend poetry clubs and draw oil paintings. But if you look broadly - yes, relatively speaking, nobody writes diaries. Growing up in creativity-devoid social circle is more probable than the other way around. Most people usually work or study and entertain themselves in the free time.
As for creative people - they usually find ways to express themselves, so don't worry about them. To struggle is literally their lot in life.
I'm not being naive, you're just being cynical. I value a person's artistic development, and you don't. The duty of an educational system is to plant the seeds that will help the child grow and find himself as an adult, and developing their ability to express themselves in a creative manner is a huge part of that. Otherwise we'd have all gone to business school since first grade, and imagine a world that boring.
I think it's fine, for a practical purpose there's not much point to analog clocks anymore. I'm sure this is our "damn kids back in my days..." moment. Analog clocks are hard to read at longer distances anyway compared to bright contrasting digital displays.
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