Articles on Education

Dear Reader,

I am always running across interesting articles and then losing them again. This is my attempt to keep some record of things so I can find them again when I need to. If you have things you’ve run across, feel free to share them. My aim is to do posts like this once a month or so. Because there is a lot out there, I am sticking to relatively recent articles and ones that al least tangentially touch on education.

Recent Articles on Education (3/2019)

“”Homeschooling Produces Better-Educated, More-Tolerant Kids. Politicians Hate That,” by J.D. Tuccille from Reason.com (January 22, 2019) https://reason.com/archives/2019/01/22/homeschooling-produces-better-students/

This is not an unbiased article. You can tell that early on when it refers to “government-controlled schools.” And it ends with this conclusion: “So government-run schools are academically inferior to homeschooling, riddled with crime and abuse, and producing graduates less tolerant than their counterparts who were educated at home.” In between are  statistics from NHERI which I keep bookmarked anyway. I did like that this article points out that not all homeschoolers are religious. Though we are “religious” I would say we don’t homeschool for religious reasons. One of the biggest misconceptions I encounter is that all homeschoolers are conservative Christians and that we are therefore sheltering our children by homeschooling. I would venture to say we meet people with more diverse religious and political views in our homeschooling circles than most of our friends do in their schools. Homeschooling attracts the ends of the spectrum and, at least in New England, some of those ends are pretty wonky.

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“How Much Time do Students Spend in School,” by Jennifer Crawford from Top of the Class Newsletter from NCEE (Feb. 22, 2019) http://ncee.org/2018/02/statistic-of-the-month-how-much-time-do-students-spend-in-school/

Charts showing how much time kids spend in school in various countries. Published by the National Center on Education and the Economy whose goal is to determine best educational practices. They draw a conclusion — that time in school itself does not affect outcomes — which I don’t see from the charts. That is, the charts themselves do not tell us if educational outcomes are better in Estonia vs. Finland or South Korea vs. the US. Since this is their business, they may have ideas of which countries’ systems are better that they are reading into these numbers. Makes me wonder how they define better education as well.

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“Greener Childhood Associated with Happier Adulthood,” by Jonathan Lambert from NPR (Feb. 25, 2019) https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/02/25/697788559/greener-childhood-associated-with-happier-adulthood

I thought we already had studies that showed this but it is a good reminder. Of course they offer an evolutionary explanation 😉

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“Children must be freed from the curriculum’s chokehold,” by Harriet Sweatman at TES (Feb. 27, 2019) https://www.tes.com/news/children-must-be-freed-curriculums-chokehold?fbclid=IwAR26jzlbLXrngn6Ybjh-1oEAa5Vi77w8qY572qpv9K7M8FsOTlBJf1tJZ4Y

A prize-winning essay from a high schooler in Britain on the horrors of her own high school experience. She speaks of the “conveyor belt of exam seasons” and how mind-numbing and spirit-killing the whole thing is. Though honestly she clearly writes well and thinks for herself so something has not been failing this girl.


Until next time,

Nebby

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