“My dog ate my homework” has long been the default excuse for students who miss the mark with their school assignments.
But high school students in New Zealand appear to have moved beyond this tired excuse, for instead of blaming the dog, they are turning their own ignorance into an excuse for victimhood.
According to The Guardian, New Zealand students in their last year of high school sat for an important history exam in the middle of November. During the exam, students were asked to write an essay on the Julius Caesar quote, “Events of importance are the result of trivial causes.” Continue reading
“Yes,” according to psychology professor Jean Twenge, who says that the smartphone and social media are the cause… Continue reading
An education policy analyst is calling on Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to do away with an Obama-era regulation dealing with school discipline.
The Obama administration issued a controversial “Dear Colleague” letter on school safety and student discipline in 2014, taking most control away from local schools. For those who value local control, it was considered a federal overreach. Now the DOE is reportedly considering a compromise measure proposed by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute. Continue reading
Students Caden Ward, Amya Washington, Joshua Gage, Cheyenne Waller and McKenzie Frye engage in a computer activity.
“Some kids are art smart, or music smart, or book smart, and we don’t get to explore enough of that during a traditional school day,” says Kerry Blackwelder, a veteran Read to Achieve third-grade HillRAP instructor. “I get excited for the kids who are coming to camp because this environment helps build their confidence so much and they blossom! They discover how smart they are and what they can accomplish.” Continue reading
How is it that America, this nation of ingenuity like no other, we still can’t seem to find a way to educate our children in a proper manner?
As a species, mankind quickly figured out the idea of exponential progress back in some paleolithic era, at the advent of tool-making tribes out in the wildernesses of this ancient land. We saw a problem that could be solved by indirect invention. We then taught those skills to our young, who improved on them as they gathered and shared these individual clans’ ingenious solutions. And on and on, forever and ever, until we have airplanes, and computers, and space travel. Continue reading
June 21, 2011 ~ Children are not learning the history of their country, the school subject at which America’s young perform at their worst.
On history tests given to 31,000 pupils by the National Assessment of Education Progress, the “Nation’s Report Card,” most fourth-graders could not identify a picture of Abraham Lincoln or a reason why he was important.
Most eighth-graders could not identify an advantage American forces had in the Revolutionary War. Twelfth-graders did not know why America entered World War II or that China was North Korea’s ally in the Korean War.
Laura Ingalls Wilder
The way we were…
How did the Ingalls girls get such a stellar education?
The education received by the characters in the Little House on the Prairie books has long amazed readers. How in the world did the Ingalls girls manage to get such a stellar education in the midst of primitive surroundings and a transitory lifestyle in the 19th century?
In honor of Laura’s 151st birthday on February 7th (2018), here are five key educational practices that may have contributed to her success: Continue reading
Last fall we shared a new bit of preschool research conducted by the Peabody Research Institute at Vanderbilt University. The research found that Tennessee’s state-funded Voluntary Prekindergarten program made little difference in giving children a head start in learning. In fact, the time in preschool actually seemed to make children fall behind their peers who had not attended. Continue reading
When a federal court dismissed on June 29 the class-action lawsuit claiming the State of Michigan had deprived Detroit public schoolchildren of “their right to literacy,” the left was all set to react in faux shock. The court’s key finding hardly came as news to most of us, but the headlines in the New York Times sounded as if someone had denied climate change: “Access to Literacy’ Is Not a Constitutional Right, Judge in Detroit Rules.”
These days, when everything progressives want government to provide free is defined as a “right,” i.e., healthcare, housing, a guaranteed income, American citizenship for illegal aliens, etc., etc., it stands to reason that literacy may as well be thrown in there, too. Continue reading
“The honeymoon is over.” Instructors who award low grades in humanities disciplines will likely be familiar with a phenomenon that occurs after the first essays are returned to students: former smiles vanish, hands once jubilantly raised to answer questions are now resentfully folded across chests, offended pride and sulkiness replace the careless cheer of former days. Too often, the smiles are gone for good because the customary “B+” or “A” grades have been withheld, and many students cannot forgive the insult.
America’s school children are falling even further behind other nations in the core subjects of reading, mathematics and science, according to a new study released this week.
The worrying data, compiled as part of the Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), found that the academic performance of 15-year-olds in the U.S. has remained relatively flat in recent years, while other nations have experienced significant growth.
Two recent events — one on the east coast and one on the west coast — raise painful questions about whether we are really serious when we say that we want better education for minority children.
One of these events was an announcement by Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C., that it plans on Aug. 19  to begin “an entire week of activities to celebrate the grand opening of our new $160 million state-of-the-art school building.” Continue reading
The following essay was originally published in the Fall ’91 issue of Whole Earth Review. It finally clarified for many, why American school is such a spirit-crushing experience, and suggested what to do about it.
Before reading, please set your irony detector to the on position. If you find yourself inclined to dismiss the below as paranoid, you should know that the design behind the current American school system is very well-documented historically, in published writings of dizzying cynicism by such well-known figures as Horace Mann and Andrew Carnegie. Continue reading
September 6, 2009 ~ The following is adapted from a comment, which I posted early on the 5th of September, in response to several comments from readers, who spoke out against our stand against Chairman Obama’s indoctrination of the school children of America, scheduled for September 8, 2009. Comments were left on the column entitled, Chairman Obama to Speak to Students of America (K-12) (which is no longer available for viewing).
In addition, my wife and I received an email from a friend in Flagstaff, Arizona – a retired liberal teacher and die-hard Democrat. We are not sure whether her letter was submitted to the local bird-cage liner, which passes for a newspaper, or if it was submitted to someone with the Flagstaff Public School District, itself. Her letter follows this brief foreword. (Ed.) Continue reading