My nine-year old daughter started attending some once a week homeschool classes. After the first week, I asked how she liked it. She said, “It’s OK. It’s fun to see people and I like lunch and recess. But the rest is weird.”

I asked what was weird about it.

“We sit in the same place for 45 minutes in each class and just listen to the teacher talk. The entire time! We’re supposed to learn just from listening to what she says and memorizing it?! It’s so weird. That’s literally ALL it is!”

She wasn’t complaining. She was genuinely mystified. I don’t know what she expected, but this classroom experience was so foreign to her, she seemed to be wondering why no one else finds this odd and who in their right mind would think people would learn in this fashion.

She’s a curious kid and very hands-on. It was a good reminder how the main thrust of schooling is to condition kids out of natural learning and make blind obedience, even with no clear goal or measure of effectiveness, normalized.