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The School Without Tests

The School Without Tests
Hello to the members of CYE.com! This is Ilchi Lee.

Last month, on April 18th, I spoke at a Brain Education Conference in Queens, New York. Approximately 250 principals, educators, and parents attended this event. I heard the news that parents of students in New York had begun a movement to end testing. Coincidentally, what I presented in my lecture that day was also about a school that has no tests. It’s a school I established in South Korea last year called the Benjamin School for Character Education*.

This school is missing five things: In addition to tests, it also doesn’t have a school building, teachers, textbooks, or homework. When I said I would make a school like that, at first, many people warned me that it wouldn’t be viable. They expressed the opinion that, even though existing schools have teachers who give classes, homework, and tests, the students still aren't getting proper attention. So if those things are eliminated, they wondered, how could the students be cared for?

But it turned out to be a huge success. The 27 students who were admitted the first year experienced truly incredible changes, and as a result, 479 students were admitted the second year. Through individual as well as collaborative projects, they learned how to actualize their true value and lead self-directed, creative lives. There are no teachers at this school, but there are 500 mentors, so the students can receive help at any time when they're working on their projects.

The modus operandi of the Benjamin School for Character Education is that it isn't systematized lessons, homework, or tests that are important. Rather, each student should experience confidence and a sense of achievement, self-esteem and a sense of their presence, and that they are able to help people and society.

Allow me to share with you a video that shows how those 27 students from the first year changed and the response from their parents. After you watch the video, please share how you feel.

* The "Benjamin" in Benjamin School for Character Education hails from Benjamin Franklin's name. The school was named after Benjamin Franklin because he lived a life that became an excellent example for prodigies of character and integrity. He started working as a printer when he was ten years old, and although he only attended two years of school, he set the formation of his character and integrity as the purpose of his life and worked endlessly on his self-development as he dedicated himself to the greater good. Thus, he was active as a respected American politician, scientist, inventor, diplomat, businessman, and author, and he also stands out as a pioneer of time management and self-development.

At the Benjamin School for Character Education, the term "insung youngjae," or "prodigy of character and integrity," refers to talented people who adopt the completion of their character and integrity as the purpose of their life. They design their life in an independent and creative way for their self-development and for the sake of accomplishing what’s best for the common good.

Click here to get a free copy of Ilchi Lee's new book The Solar Body: The Secret to Natural Healing.
Written by Ilchi Lee
A visionary, educator, author, and founder of ChangeYourEnergy.com, Ilchi Lee has spent nearly three decades helping people create better lives for themselves. Lee has created Body & Brain Yoga, Brain Education, and hundreds of other wellness programs and methods. A model for the self-improvement he teaches, Ilchi Lee is continually changing and continually creative. Keep up with Ilchi Lee on his blog at http://www.ilchi.com.
8 Comments Tell us your thoughts
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wow this video about the the Benjamin school made me very emotional and am wondering if there is s school like this in the USA for adults? I wish I had this when i was younger i would be living my life so differently and wouldn't have as many school loans to pay off and worked in a way to be fulfilled in knowing I am doing good for the people in society as well as for myself and my family.
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Thank you for sharing the touching stories of the first term students & family members. To know our own value is exactly what we need to help us navigate through these confusing times. I can't even imagine how powerful it will be for the second term of 479 students! 
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Thank you for your support. I wish for the same level of growth for all of you.
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A school where there is attention for the heart is really precious and rare. Watching the video made me believe that it is possible! I hope that the number of schools will grow and deliver young, bright and enthousiastic  young adults who will turn the community around them in a wonderful world.
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What marvelous work changing the way we learn!  Education has been grounded in the teacher who knows all and students who learn to parody and pass tests.  How refreshing to learn beyond the books and how amazing this shared process must be.  Wish I was at this school!

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At the Benjamin School, each student chooses and completes his or her own project. We can all learn this way. Carry out a project that allows you to explore things you've always wanted to and forces you to step outside your box.
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What a wonderful gift those 27 students and families were given and now they can share it and make the Earth a more beautiful place!  When will this school be opening in the US?  We need it desperately here.  Thank you so much for sharing.  
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Thank you for your wonderful wishes, Monica. Right now in the U.S., Power Brain Education has the goal of having Brain Education taught in at least 350 schools. Let's support that goal for U.S. students!
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This is amazing! It's joyful to watch and so touching, before I knew it tears were rolling down my cheeks!  I'm so glad the intake this year is almost 500 students. What a great education to receive!  I hope many many more of these schools can be created. Thank you for creating this video so that I had a chance to watch it  
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This is amazing! Thank you for sharing the beautiful tribute that the students made to their parents and mentors. And for showing us what is possible in a year when we choose to change. 
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