The Incredible Ridiculousness of Readiness

MissionHillBlocks3s

The subject line was irresistible: “Early Childhood Pushes Up.” The Teachers College Record, a hotbed of radical critique, had delivered another gem to my inbox. Here was a scathing commentary on Obama’s “Cradle-to-Career” education policy.

“Wish you hadn’t moved to Australia,” I emailed Jeanne Marie Iorio, a senior lecturer at Victoria University, in Melbourne. She’s co-author of the aforementioned work, with Clifton Tanabe, who hasn’t left the United States, but offers perspective from the periphery, at the University of Hawaii, Manoa.

Their thesis is sound: School readiness, a state we so avidly seek, has created a chain . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus

Emily Kaplan’s Musings on the Luxury of Lingering in Childhood

blog-big-playground

A battle rages across the land. How on earth do we bridge those cavernous achievement gaps? The ghosts of No Child Left Behind hover. George W. Bush’s attempt to banish the “soft bigotry of low expectations” has morphed into a “no excuses” reform movement that ignores early childhood’s robust evidence base, consigning children to joyless hamster wheels and school creeds. Recess is disappearing.

Emily Kaplan, an elementary school teacher in Boston, has taken note. She’s bravely left the “Silent Area,” where giggling and critical thinking are prohibited. Here are her musings, originally published at . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus

No Art Left Behind: Sustaining the Spirit of Children

blog_without-art

Support for the arts has been steadily dwindling in the United States. Lots of competition out there for a slice of the multi-trillion-dollar American budget. And, besides, we’re too busy with more important stuff, aren’t we?

But other, more enlightened views have held sway. Fifty years ago last September, Lyndon B. Johnson, patriarch of the Great Society—including Head Start and the War on Poverty—signed the Arts and Humanities Act. The United States “cannot rest solely upon superior power, wealth, and technology,” the legislation noted, “but must be founded upon worldwide respect…for the nation’s high qualities as . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus

Jamaal Bowman Says Yes to Whole-Child Education Reform

ECE PolicyWorks blog Jamaal Bowman

There’s been a change in the weather. I’m not referring to shorts, tee shirts, and cherry trees blossoming as the temperature hit 72 degrees on Christmas Eve in New York City. I’m talking about the climate of education reform.

The signs have been unmistakable, although most of us have been too mired in the muck to notice. The descriptor “social-emotional” kept turning up last year in Education Week, not known for its warm and fuzzy take on the process of teaching and learning. Why, a bunch of researchers—ever rationalist and utilitarian—had applied cost-benefit analysis to . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus