Do it now – Write my Name!October 02 2020 | Dave Fardoe
Education is a gift we seldom think about.
Do you ever think about school? Your education? Like many of us I can remember my school days with a mixed set of emotions. Yet last night as I was writing in my journal I began to think back to the days I was taught to write, the repetition of forming letters, joining them together in ‘Real Writing’ as opposed to printing. The formation of words, sounds and meaning. Sentences and, my worst topic, punctuation.
It struck me how blessed I have been to have undergone that process, and the joy it brings me now to pick up a book and read, to write notes in my journal on news or interesting ideas that I’ve seen or heard. I began to imagine what it would be like to not have those basic skills, not be able to sign my own name. The times I read, scan an article, or return to a favourite author. All without thinking of the process or the journey to get here. Even languages I do not know, Arabic, Japanese – I do not have to recognise the characters or sounds themselves to know much of the meaning and to begin to form understanding. The basic rules are sufficient.
We know that there are many people in the world today who do not have those skills. They live life and get by for sure, and many are high achievers, yet so many do miss out. Education, basic education should not be seen as a gift, or the right of a few – it is far more important than that. The ability to communicate ideas in a common form across boundaries is so central to our evolution as a species that it should be held in high regard and imparted to all for the benefit of all.
Who is to say that the intellect of that person in country x or country z isn’t the very intellect that will put the final piece into the fight against Cancer or heart disease, to link the quantum world and classic world to form the Theory of Everything. Don’t we owe ourselves the chance to find out?
Rather than think of the campaign for global education as a nice charity cause, we need to see it for what it is – a global imperative. An imperative that we all need to recognise and, for those of us lucky enough to live in a country where it is the norm, recognise the gift that literacy and basic numeracy gives us each and every day. As you sit reading these words, or maybe penning a line or two in your journal be grateful and marvel at the magic you hold in your hand; support the idea that all people are entitled to such gifts, male, female, young and old alike. Those gifts will benefit us all.