It was the first premise of all schools throughout history: students would be educated by people who were themselves already educated. A biology teacher had to be an expert in biology; a history teacher must know history to teach history. Who would question the wisdom of these statements? This country´s Education Establishment now preaches a contrary view. Students must not be told that 2+3=5; this is not "authentic learning." Essentially, teachers should stop teaching. The theory, generally called Constructivism or Discovery, requires that students (typically working in groups) construct knowledge for themselves. This approach gained traction in the 1980s and is now
Comments: I need to find out if this is going on in my county. I suggest everybody do likewise in their localities.
This has been going on in math education for 20 years now. It has ruined a generation of students. The kids acing the SAT´s are going to after-school clinics at Kumon or these many other math-learning centers you see in shopping centers these days. These weren´t around in my day...they were not needed. The public schools used to teach math. They stopped doing it, so private enterprise picked up the slack. Yet we still pay the public schools to waste time ´teaching´ this crazy math substitute.
This ploy of the Communists to dumb down our children, so they are more readily brainwashed,has worked very well. Why did we let it happen? We were distracted by less important issues and entertainments that dumbed us down as well. We MUST regain our governmental control on the community and county and state levels once again. The Federal Government must be put back in its rightful, constitutional place. How? Lord help us, I don´t know.
Why do parents put up with this stuff? What if they took their kids to swimming lessons and the teacher just threw everyone in the pool, at the same time, regardless of ability to swim or touch the bottom? When I was a kid, the adults used to tell us that an education was something no one could take away from you. Apparently these parents don´t care enough to sacrifice for their children´s education.
OP, yes it is going on in your area. Books are out, ´devices´ are in. Why must the taxpayers pay for schools? Educators brag that Josh and Jen can follow the lesson from home. While you´re at it, you might also monitor your city and county government. Taxpayers for the most part have abdicated...
This author gives a dumbed-down, inaccurate account of "constructivism" and would have us think that children can sit through lectures all day and leave with competency in the skills and knowledge they need. Read through the replies and see comments from a home-school mom who actually understands it. The best home-schooling parents I know do not act as the "sage on the stage" but get their children actively engaged in authentic, not contrived learning. No Child Left Behind funneled billions of dollars into behavioristic (think dog-training style) methods of teaching reading that set us back at least 30-40 years- we produced kids who can bark out words pretty easily, but can´t think about what the words mean. Ramona (the Pest)
Mr. Price is, unfortunately, preaching to the birds and trees. The second the Federal Government stepped into the Education system, the future of millions of our kids was doomed. Stop it? Change it? Might as well try to stop the tide at the beach. The progressive rule us now. they will not be swayed in their course.
The objective is to eradicate all past knowledge and then force-educate with a whip and starvation so that every citizen has only the "New Knowledge" of the state. Orwell knew what he was writing of.
Most modern efforts to radically rethink institutional education are worthy of scorn, seemingly being geared toward a generalized denial of (or opposition to) objective truth and objective morality.
But there does seem to be a difference between the ability to discover and the ability to be taught, and we dare not neglect the former out of obsession with standardizing the latter. There are many plausible (even if highly improbable) scenarios that could leave the human race scrambling to rebuild our technological foundation from scratch (solar flare, EMP, superbug pandemic, asteroid strike, etc.) It might be helpful if some of the survivors have honed skills for expanding the envelope of knowledge - not just for opening it and digesting it.
I´m merely arguing for the potential value for society of some non-rote learning, not endorsing any particular approach being hyped today.
We all build on the discoveries and accomplishments of those who came before us. We don´t bother to reinvent the wheel each generation, we learn how to make and use wheels and then the inventive among us use wheels to make something new. This new ´teaching method´ called ´Constructionism´ is a clever deceit I suspect the purpose of which is to make the teaching job easier and almost superfluous (in which case we only need bureaucratic flunkies for teachers). Consider, where do they start with their constructionism? Are the children expected to first invent an alphabet, then words, then a grammar and finally writing skills? I don´t know but I suspect in this area they start the construction method with writing skills for the simple reason that anything else would take years of the child´s life. And that points out that Constructionism is literally a waste of time. The reason we have progressed to our present advanced technological civilization is because we don´t waste time reinventing the wheel or the alphabet. We take those things and apply our inventiveness (which I posit is innate and not learned) to it to produce new and better stuff. Don´t bother kids with having to reinvent wheels, alphabets, mathematics and science, we`ve already done that. Direct them to learn what we already know and extend that knowledge.
Amy (not her real name) sat in my office and wiped her streaming tears on her sleeve, refusing the scratchy tissues I’d offered. (Snip) It became increasingly difficult to balance school, socializing, laundry, and a part-time job. She finally had to dump the part-time job, was still unable to do laundry, and often stayed up until 2 a.m. trying to complete homework because she didn’t know how to manage her time without her parents keeping track of her schedule. I suggested finding a job after graduation, even if it’s only temporary. She cried harder at this idea. “So, becoming an
Nobody should be surprised that President Obama´s Department of Health and Human Services has proposed a new bailout for insurers. Whenever Obama sees a problem, he proposes a regulation. When that regulation hurts someone, he proposes a subsidy. That subsidy, in turn, justifies a new tax or regulation, then more bailouts. It may seem like he’s swinging back and forth — pro-business, then anti-business — but he’s marching in a straight line: more state control of industry. It´s the ratchet of state corporatism, and Obama is pretty handy with it. Health insurers and the federal government were intertwined in a web of subsidies
A Congressional Research Service (CRS) report shows that while gun ownership climbed from 192 million firearms in 1994 to 310 million firearms in 2009, crime fell—and fell sharply. According to the report, the "firearm-related murder and non-negligent homicide" rate was 6.6 per 100,000 Americans in 1993. Following the exponential growth in the number of guns, that rate fell to 3.6 per 100,000 in 2000. This rate rose from 2004 to 2005 and got as high as 3.9 in 2006 and 2007, but it then resumed falling in 2008, the year the Supreme Court ruled in District of Columbia v. Heller that individual
The first glimpse of how Richard III could be reburied has been revealed, with the service to be shaped by the scholarly detective work of an Oxford University academic. Alexandra Buckle, from St Anne´s and St Hilda´s colleges, has reconstructed how an authentic medieval reburial service should be conducted. (Snip) Richard III, found by archaeologists last autumn below a Leicester car park, would have attended such reburials in his own lifetime, including for his own father. And when this last king of the Plantagenet dynasty is reburied next year, with Leicester Cathedral the planned resting place, Dr Buckle´s discovery is likely to form an
When President Franklin D. Roosevelt proposed in his Second Bill of Rights that having a job is a right, the squire of Hyde Park unwittingly ushered in the era of White Trash Normal, the subject of my new book. With apologies to FDR, a job is not a right. How could it be? Obtaining and holding down a job are instead obligations unless a trust fund (now, that’s my idea of a right!?) relieves you of such mundane concerns. It seems that that many recent college grads agree with President Roosevelt, however. Indeed, many have not bothered to cultivate the social
Saturday the 7th of December will mark the seventy-second anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. (Snip) A glance at one of the nation’s leading high-school literature textbooks—Prentice Hall’s The American Experience, which has been aligned to the Common Core—will tell us how we are doing on that front. The opening page of the slim chapter devoted to World War II called “War Shock” features a photograph of a woman inspecting a large stockpile of thousand-pound bomb castings. The notes in the margins of the Teacher’s Edition set the tone: In this section, nonfiction prose and a single stark poem etch into
Remember the terrible murder of Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyo. in 1998 -- tortured, beaten and left hanging on a fence to die -- because he was gay? The American people were led from the outset to believe that Shepard was the victim of a hate crime, murdered because he was gay. And that is how virtually every American still views the story. In the words of Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney (D-N.Y.), "Matthew Shepard is to gay rights what Emmett Till was to the civil rights movement." A play based on Shepard´s killing, "The Laramie Project" became, according to the Wall
Depressing news about black students scoring far below white students on various mental tests has become so familiar that people in different parts of the ideological spectrum have long ago developed their different explanations for why this is so. But both may have to do some rethinking, in light of radically different news from England. The November 9th-15th issue of the distinguished British magazine "The Economist" reports that, among children who are eligible for free meals in England´s schools, black children of immigrants from Africa meet the standards of school tests nearly 60 percent of the time -- as do immigrant
President Barack Obama will launch a coordinated campaign Tuesday by the White House, congressional Democrats and their outside allies to return attention to why the Affordable Care Act passed in the first place. After two months of intense coverage of the botched HealthCare.gov rollout, the president will host a White House event kicking off a three-week drive to refocus the public on the law’s benefits, senior administration officials told POLITICO. The White House will take the lead in emphasizing a different benefit each day until the Dec. 23 enrollment deadline for Jan. 1 coverage. The daily message will be amplified
It was a money-making opportunity that could have gone either way - and could have only have been pulled off by the most tech-savvy of people. A college student has somehow been able to amass over $24,000 by waving a sign at a television camera. The hopeful venture started on Saturday with the ESPN show College GameDay, a football program that is filmed at a different campus each weekend and was in Auburn, Alabama. The student came armed with a banner that had seemed to plea for money from his mother. It also included the logo for Bitcoin, a US payment network, and a
The British government tried to cover its tracks. But a new cache of documents Robert Spencer and I have received in our battle to overturn our being banned from Britain reveal that a chief reason why we were banned from the country was because we strongly support Israel. As part of our lawsuit against the Queen of England and the Home Secretary et al, we have received numerous documents between the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Office of Security and Counterterrorism, and the Home Secretary. In one of them, an official in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office whose name was
When Skateboards Will Be Free. By Saïd Sayrafiezadeh (2009). 1. This intensely poignant, beautifully rendered memoir tells the story of a child brought up in a Trotskyist family in America. (Snip) The narrator, who fervently desires a skateboard, is denied this wish by his mother, who tells him that the $11 price is a form of capitalist theft and that he needs to wait for the revolutionary day “when skateboards will be free.” This book gave me shivers each time I picked it up.
President Obama will cast growing income inequality and a decline in economic mobility as a “fundamental threat to the American dream” during a speech Wednesday in Washington. The speech will serve as an early preview for next year’s State of the Union address, according to a White House official, who said Obama would focus much of his energy over the next three years on the issue. “The decisions we make over the next few years will determine whether or not our children will grow up in an America where, if you work hard, you can get ahead,” the official said.
Good stuff from Jonathan Turley at today’s House hearing on executive power, although I regret that I couldn’t find a more user-friendly format for you to watch. There’s no compilation clip; you’ll have to make do with the C-SPAN embed by fast-forwarding to the time cues I give you and being patient while the vid buffers (and buffers, and buffers).(Snip)That brings us to point two: Even if Congress can’t stop Obama, the courts can. The problem there, though, says Turley, is that O and the DOJ have argued successfully in many cases that no one has standing to sue him
During a presentation at the White House in which President Barack Obama touted the benefits of the Affordable Care Act, the president declared that his signature health care reform law was not going to be repealed. This assertion led his administration members, his staff, and audience members to rise from their seats and give the president a standing ovation. Obama said that ACA opponents’ alternative to the health care reform law is to champion repeal and going back to the health care delivery system status quo ante. He specifically cited Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) who he said was asked directly for
A woman has revealed how difficult it is to eat healthily and stay full when living off an average food stamp budget. Melinda Moulton, from Huntington, Vermont, was one of 200 people to take part in the 3Squares Challenge, which saw her living for a week on just $36 worth of food, or around $1.71 a meal. Opting to try and eat as healthily as possible, Ms Moulton resorted to cheap foods like yogurt for breakfast, two handfuls of peanuts for lunch and lentil stew for dinner, all of which left her unsatisfied.´I don´t know how people do it,´ said
Just over two weeks ago, MSNBC host Martin Bashir delivered a harsh piece of commentary that culminated in the suggestion that someone should “s-h-i-t” in former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin‘s (R-AK) mouth. Bashir offered an abject apology on his next broadcast, but a chorus of critics continued to demand action against the host. After a reported “vacation” for the host earlier this week, Bashir announced, Wednesday afternoon, that MSNBC and Martin Bashir are parting ways. Here’s the statement from Martin Bashir, via email: After making an on-air apology, I asked for permission to take some additional time out around the Thanksgiving holiday. Upon
[Video] President Obama on Wednesday declared that addressing income inequality would be the focus of “all” of the White House’s efforts “for the rest of my presidency.” In a sweeping address that touched on raising the minimum wage, investing in infrastructure and ending tax breaks for the wealthy, Obama warned that the American economy has become “profoundly unequal,” declaring economic mobility the “challenge of our time.” “The combined trends of increasing inequality and decreasing mobility pose a fundamental threat to the American dream, our way of life, and what we stand for around the globe,” he said in an hour-long
Nineteen people stood behind President Obama on stage in the Executive Office Building Tuesday as the president kicked off a new campaign to promote Obamacare. One of those people, a young Florida woman named Monica Weeks, introduced Obama after telling the story of being struck with Crohn´s Disease at age 19 and receiving expensive treatments for several years that were covered by her parents´ health care plan — because Obamacare allowed her to remain on that plan until age 26. Now, Weeks said, she has coverage through a job. "The Affordable Care Act gives young adults who are just starting
MSNBC has announced that Chris Matthews, Barack Obama´s most excitable fan, will be interviewing the President on Thursday´s Hardball. Fawning over the liberal politician is incredibly common among journalists, but Matthews has taken it to a whole new level. According to the network host, Obama is a "perfect," "cool," brilliant figure who is comparable to Jesus, Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy. The verbose Matthews has no filter when it comes to the Democrat, even once bizarrely blurting out that an Obama speech made him "forget" that the commander in chief "was black." To prepare you for the likely love-fest
Continued global warming poses a risk of rapid, drastic changes in some human and natural systems, a scientific panel warned Tuesday, citing the possible collapse of polar sea ice, the potential for a mass extinction of plant and animal life and the threat of immense dead zones in the ocean. At the same time, some worst-case fears about climate change that have entered the popular imagination can be ruled out as unlikely, at least over the next century, the panel found. These include a sudden belch of methane from the ocean or the Arctic that would fry the planet, as
Nobody could accuse the press of ignoring the fiasco-on-a-server that is HealthCare.gov. The Obamacare website’s woes are dominating coverage on the network news, the cable talk shows, the blogs and, of course, high-octane websites like POLITICO. But did the press do a good job of covering the Affordable Care Act before the health care exchanges went online—sort of—on Oct. 1? Were we adequately warned of the troubles that were to come? And now that HealthCare.gov’s problems are headline news, is the coverage of it any better? Sure, one can find a few examples of one news outlet or another warning of impending
MSNBC´s Chris Matthews will interview President Barack Obama this Thursday, the network announced Tuesday. The interview is part of Matthews´ "Hardball College Tour," and will take place at American University in Washington, D.C. According to a news release from MSNBC, Matthews, along with university students, will "discuss a variety of topics with the president including voter suppression, healthcare, the decline of confidence in the government and the overall political dysfunction in Washington." On Monday our colleagues Carrie Budoff Brown and Jonathan Allen reported that the White House is launching a coordinated campaign to return attention to why the Affordable Care Act
The president put in his ask to Disney CEO Bob Iger at a private meeting with entertainment moguls during his Nov. 26 visit to Jeffrey Katzenberg´s DreamWorks Animation. [snip] If you have any doubt as to how much of a sports junkie Barack Obama is, check in with the entertainment moguls who attended a private briefing with the president Nov. 26 before his speech at Jeffrey Katzenberg´s DreamWorks Animation campus in Glendale. At the end of the conversation -- which touched on a myriad of topics, from piracy to Iran -- Obama revealed what´s at the top of his bucket