Saturday, March 15, 2014

"warnings went unheeded"

On the education front, the growth of the common core and standardized testing should be discussed. 
A new University of Virginia study found that kindergarten changed in disturbing ways from 1999-2006. There was a marked decline in exposure to social studies, science, music, art and physical education and an increased emphasis on reading instruction. Teachers reported spending as much time on reading as all other subjects combined. 
The time spent in child-selected activity dropped by more than one-third. Direct instruction and testing increased. Moreover, more teachers reported holding all children to the same standard. 
Is this drastic shift in kindergarten the result of a transformation in the way children learn? 
No. A 2011 nationwide study by the Gesell Institute for Child Development found that the ages at which children reach developmental milestones have not changed in 100 years.
What I find interesting is that the Univ of Virginia study covered the period 1999-2006. The trend they noticed has only increased since 2006. If one follows that logic, then we are worse off because of this.

Oak St/Horace Mann school complex
Oak St/Horace Mann school complex

Disclosure - yes, my wife happens to be a kindergarten teacher here in Franklin. 

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