"Will this be on the test?"
These questions commonly heard from students show that our current educational system is in deep trouble.
The mere act of discovery and achievement isn't worth very much but the fact that students should get rewarded for doing an assignment is worth a lot.
And then there comes a fear of doing badly on the test because, after all, it will affect semester grades which will affect students' overall average. And as we know good grades in school will get students into a famous college. Good performance in college will land a job of their dream. And by having a job of their dream they will be happier.
All of this, of course, is a myth. A myth which we choose to be believe because it gets us off the hook to choose what to do next.
What if we rewarded those who try the hardest even if they fail?
Sure, this kind of education is difficult to measure but it doesn't mean we shouldn't try. We should create a culture of learning on its own merit, learning for the sake of the joy of discovery, for the sake of making mistakes, for the sake of making an effort, and not for the sake of getting good grades.
It starts with curiosity.