Thursday, December 8, 2011

Education, Culture and Society

Education is an important part of our lives and contributes to our socialization. When speaking of education, sociologists focus on the "formal and informal social interactions that train, discipline, or shape (or reshape) the mind and body in planned or unplanned ways" (Ferrante, 366). We all achieve some sort of education during our lifetime, whether it's spontaneous or intended. Much of our education begins at a very young age in schooling systems. Schools are designed to provide formal, systematic instructions that take place primarily in classrooms. Schools also include extracurricular activities and assignments to be completed outside of the classroom.

Although the aim of schools is to educate students, sometimes the type and method of education is different. Growing up, I went to multiple schools and in different countries. I was born in Saudi Arabia and attended school there until the age of five before I moved to Scotland and studied there. After almost two years of living in Scotland, I returned once again to my previous school in Saudi Arabia. During this period in my life, I realized how different the education systems were. The type of schools were completely different as well.

Saudi Arabia is an Islamic and Arab country, so the majority of the schools taught and encouraged Islamic behavior and Arab culture. Manarat Al-Riyadh, the school which I went to in Saudi Arabia, was an International School that taught both American and British curriculum. In addition, Arabic and Islamic studies were also enforced on students even if they were not Muslims. The cultural and religious studies started from as early as the first grade and continued until the 12th grade.

On the contrary, when I was in Hillhead Primary School in Scotland, the curriculum that was being taught was very different. Unlike my previous school, in Scotland, my school emphasized mostly on manners, behaviors and how to work and interact with people. There was less emphasis on studies and more emphasis on social interaction. Also, there were no classes offered about Scottish or Western culture and no theology classes. Contrasting to Saudi Arabia, the students in my class were of different religions and cultures. There were Muslims, Hindus, Christians, Buddhist, Arab, African, Caucasian and Asian.

We can see how schools are designed to serve society by functioning as places for education, discipline and socialization. The curriculum for schools differ on which background they're from, nevertheless they're purpose is to socialize people to allow them to function according to their society.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.