Monday, December 19, 2005

Trends in Education

What Every 3rd Grader Needs to Know
Diversity training is all the rage in schools these days. Parents have accepted this teaching as part of the public schools desire to create a culture of understanding. The last thing anyone wants to be labeled is "intolerant".

A school in California is taking diversity training to a new level. They are training the junior high school students to teach diversity to the younger students in the district.

Come January, 68 students will take the stage at neighboring elementary schools in the Saugus Union School District to deliver short performances to third-graders about respecting race, ethnicity and sexual orientation.
The students have been in training since November. Just what is a thirteen year old is going to teach an eight year old about sexual orientation?

(HT: Jessica at Our Family's Highlights)

Are the public schools short changing our boys?
I was out walking one day when our children were little. We happened to walk past our local elementary school. Class was in session. Curious, the children asked if they could peek in the windows. Sure I said just don't stare too long. As I lingered back with the baby in the stroller the older three cupped their hands to see inside the darkened glass. They took a quick look and came running back to my side.

"Mom , there just sitting there." They said. "Do they get to get up at all?"

"Yes, but with so many children they have to maintain a certain amount of order. They will get up for lunch and a short recess."

"And then they sit back in their seats?"

"Pretty much. They'll move around the room some but for the most part they sit in their desks."

"Where's the refridgerator?" My son wondered.

"They don't need one. They eat in the cafeteria."

"Sit at a desk and no fridge, Mommy, don't ever send me there."

And so he realized early on that his appetite for food and his energy for life would never be compatible with the typical school situation.

It seems as though researchers are coming to the same startling conclusion - boys and girls learn differently. Current research shows it's the boys who are suffering the most.

Boys' learning abilities mature later than girls; consequently, boys enter school behind girls in reading and writing ability. That means the recent emphasis on early learning, before boys are prepared, leads to more boys disengaging from school.

In addition, boys need more hands-on experience and visual stimuli to learn. But schools are generally organized so that students sit at desks and listen. And boys are more impulsive and physical, but schools have cut recess time and demanded more discipline.

I have seen this with my own boys. Not just when their young but even as teens. They are different. God made it so. They need to eat often and flex their muscles. This keeps their minds alert and more seems to get accomplished.

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