"Teaching takes a back seat to the more socially salient task of sorting, and grading becomes more important for its social consequences than for its pedagogical uses." p 146 Shopclass as Soulcraft
From there I bounced around your typical low income jobs (night time security, Canadian Tire) before finding myself an apprenticeship. This I did for a couple of years before finishing up high school and going to university. It only took me until second year to get into trouble at university, brashly questioning the veracity of my professors. The younger profs tended to want to change your life. I have a great deal of trouble buying in to systems, especially when the people advocating them put themselves in the centre of this marvelous new way of thinking. I've always felt that these Rasputiny types aren't in it for mastery, they are in it to be masters. My skepticism in this has been born out in politics as well.
"The master has no need for the psychology of persuasion that will make the apprentice compliant to whatever purposes the master might dream up; those purposes are given and determinate. He does the same work as the apprentice, only better... for the apprentice there is a progressive revelation of the reasonableness of the master's actions." p. 159
When I worked as a Millwright, I had a number of senior mechanics who taught me the ropes. They taught me by doing the job, showing me the job, letting me do the job while they berated me for doing it badly, letting me do it on my own and if it worked, it worked. It was messy, but at no point did any of the senior guys have to tell me they were the experts and I should do what they say, they let the work demonstrate their expertise. I seldom saw that kind of do as I do, not as I say demonstration of expertise in formal education.
|Students are always looking for credible teachers.|
Last summer I took my additional qualification for computer studies. I worked in I.T. after university, mainly because objective skill sets pay a lot better than abstract ones. Ask anyone with a Masters Degree in the arts or humanities how the job search is going for proof of that. While in university I worked as an auto mechanic, because it paid way better than the knowledge economy job my arts degree was preparing me for. I've always migrated back to those objective skill sets because it seems like credible work. You don't have arbitrary managers downsizing you based on abstraction, personal dynamics or their own towering sense of self importance.
Crawford makes a compelling argument for respecting those skills that we tend to diminish. Objective, experientially gained mastery is often looked down upon by the academic class which itself rules education with a university-clad fist. Objective mastery isn't up for debate, or the charismatic manipulation of office politics by experts in "human management". If you know what you're doing, reality responds, and no amount of talking is going to change that. I miss that kind of traction in education.