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I always hate my school. No I don’t completely hate. But I hate a lot. School gave me a lot. But whatever it gave me came in change of things unique about me.

Today I was going through SICP book and came across the algorithm that finds the square root of a number. It specified Newtons method and I felt like looking for the way one can manually find square root value. The method my father taught when I was in grade 6 or 7 (It was the last thing math my father taught me). And I think I found it.

Sri Lankan School kids / cc txd

Sri Lankan school kids / cc txd

Well that method was annoying me at that time (even now I’m too lazy to go with that). So I came up with an easier method. Alone. And that method is very similar to the one suggested in the  first comment on previous post I linked. I had a little diary which I wrote all those fascinating stuff I come up with. I can remember, there I documented all the pitfalls of the method too. In side notes, there was a plan for a solar oven, among other crazy stuff :D.

I think that diary was more of an engineers note book (a term I heard in Personal Software Process course I’m currently following) for me. And I was still so young. Going even more back in time line, I can remember I came up with a dirty trick to memorize process the multiplication table in mind just in time :D (I suck in memorizing).

I’ve read most of my dads book shelf including books about psychology which I shouldn’t have read at the time. My reading speed was great and today I’m just a loser in reading at my younger self.

But all that spirit was taken away by the rat race that was introduced by school. School only killed the thinking part of me and expected me to memorize more, which I didn’t do well anyway. That little notebook went away from me so quickly. Next came the hatred of books for some reason. I wanted to love Electronics and  Astrology but I didn’t receive enough encouragement.

Then I found this shiny new concept called computing and strongly fell in love with it. School was so stone age and never kept up with me in computing stuff either. And only option I had is hating school. I didn’t want to leave my new love for anything. I spent the last days of my school as more of a rebel. And that was pretty much how I ended up with school.

And thank god that school shit has gone forever. Not that I don’t reminisce and love the beautiful moments of school days as any other sane kid would do. But there are more reasons to hate.

I think I’m again thinking free. A bunch of text files had replaced that little diary. And I read a lot, online (I know I should read more physical books. And especially read more literature.). It was really hard to get back in the track, but the natural urge coming from inside of me and being with right people has actually given breath of life to my childhood goodness.

To finish up, some anti-school stuff I can find in my Twitter feed :D

“You don’t learn anything in school. It’s just a waste of time.” ~ Bobby Fischer

I’m not gonna change the world. I completed school. ~ My self

About School grades. Good read. http://www.marco.org/55382197

Self educated people who’ve made a difference.

14 Comments

  1. true that, it kills the logical you to a certain amount in the lower classes and tries to get you memorising stuff, then at ALs they blame you for not logically thinking of stuff, i think this is the main reason many who were good in OLs just dont get ALs right.
    It’s up to the student really, because those who make you memorise like crazy are not held liable and can’t be they are doing what they are told, and paid to do it.
    Anyways thanks for the link to the book :) i was searching for some algo books, and do give a visit to ocw.mit.edu

    • I hate A/Ls about taking the spirit of chemistry away from me. A/L too wanted me too push things stuff in mind other than discovering stuff. I know blaming those things just make me sound more of a loser. But what do I have to lose anyway? :).

      By the way, SICP won’t really be an algo book. It’ll teach you about programming. For a good algo book you should go with CLRS book or Donald Knuths algo book. You can find MIT videos of their algo course which follows CLRS book. Good Luck in studies.

      • Thanks! I was like lost on work, now have something to dig in :)

  2. mmmmmmm I can understand brooo!!!
    I’d also suck my A/L life……

  3. I think I found my long lost brother. Give me a big hug bro. Let me weep on your shoulder for wasted youth of ours.

    If one asked me what I learn in the school, I have to say “little as one can”. When I fully understood the concept of 1 and 0, the first thing I tried to figure out was how to convert music in to binary. I knew CD was there, but I thought it could have done better. I knew my logic was lacking something, and my untrained brain tried to figure our hard while struggling with A/L and other unholy things. Now I know it was bit rate that I would not calculated correctly on the paper. When I saw the first mp3 file, indeed not created by me, I felt like some magical world is out there somewhere that I did not had access to.

    I used listen to one of my dear friend who was fascinated by engines, explains everyday how Wankel engine work and all other fascinating parts in an automobile. That knowledge still comes pretty handy. I wish if he had chance to follow that.

    Just like Sir Ken Robinson says, school grouped us by the year of manufacture and trained us to work in an industrial society where creativity does not have any significant. Paul McCartney, George Harrison was in the same class, which is half of Beatles, and their music teacher thought they have no skill in music. School is a horrible place where you send kids to kill their creativity and be good citizens with nice haircuts.

    • I’m a happier person than the one I was before I write this. I didn’t expect a single person from SL to agree with me. But I’ve got a plenty.

      So happy we finally met and so sad that everything happened the wrong way. But anyhow, finally we are given some freedom so let’s make a difference with the little creativity that is left out in ourselves.

      PS: I’ve written few exactly similar comments and it feels good to read one like that on my blog. I love Internetz :)

  4. අඩේ සිරාවටම!
    But the difference is I blame for the outdated Education system of Sri Lanka and Our Politicians. They always Change Test Books, Test Book Layouts, Teachings and even Subjects. But Not the systems such make students think creative and wisely, Many don’t even know their skills from birth.

    I PURELY hate it because It lost my track and taste in Arts. The Social system that based from Education forced me to do Maths instead of Arts (even my parents let me to choose my own path).

    In this Country; Canada, I finally realized my passion and skills. but it was kinda late and I feel shame when seeing others who as gone ahead of me

    BTW dude, We should be proud of ourselves because we are kinda different some other peoples. you know what I meant ;)

    • Agree with you. It’s the system that is broken. But it was so easy to blame school, the smallest entity of the system and the one that I’ve gone through so that I know about inside out. :)

      People who love arts and other similar interests are the common victims of schools. Because they are not first class citizens in the system. Schools (or more precisely education system) are aimed at only a narrow scope. And it’s not doing well at least in that scope.

      And yes, it’s good to be different.

  5. You are dead right of course. I used to hate school too. I didn’t hate uni so much in fact I loved it cause it was fun (even though the place was full of parrots).

    Things have changed over the past decade though. I hear that late night parties, boozing sessions, just sitting under a tree shooting the breeze have all disappeared from Sri Lankan campuses. That would make them a place to hate.

    Bobby Fischer didn’t just say what he said, he quit school at 16. If I remember correctly he was already US champion at the time.

    • I knew you’d agree if you’d ever comment on this :).

      Yes Unis are fun since it gives more freedom. I’ve never officially been in to a Uni because I’m crap selected out of the system. But there was a place that still accepted me and threw some love at me. And I started a new life there.

      Yeah it’s full of parrots and with time it is badly normally distributed. So it’s more like a modern day Sri Lankan university.

      Adding to your list, Uni has become a place where retards manage to find sex.

      So unis are ruining too. They are just a part of the so called ‘education system’ after all.

  6. I have to agree. School kills the part that make who you are and turn you in to a mindless zombie.

    Most of the times when people try to change the system it becomes too little too late. Just look at how they introduced computers/technology and other things in to curriculum. They are there but they have no significance. Still you have to do mindless cramming to be called a good student.

  7. Reading this blog, as an educator who works with programs that encourage children to think, saddens me. Although much of learning is memorization and recall, there must be a balance with hands on activities, brainstorming, sharing and contributing. Not just sitting at a desk regurgitating information.
    I am sorry to hear that this was your experience.

  8. Nicely compiled. Though I love my school life I agree with your points. I also suck at memorizing, so screwed up my A/L as well. But I gotta say something, whatever we couldn’t achieve from school, it gave us one thing that last forever.
    The self confidence to work as a team or with friends. We should admit that we had our best days with friends doing rubbish, yet we have some oldies to think about and smile from our heart. And I believe it gave us some sort of discipline as well, to build a solid basement for our life. So I don’t hate those days…..when I think of the time I wasted all these years, it reminds me that everything happens for something good :)


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