We’re Not in Reggio Emilia Anymore: Kathy and Ro’s Translation Project

img-boy-surfing-web

Play, the primary engine of human development, is vanishing. Melvin Konner, an anthropologist and neuroscientist, regards it as the central paradox of evolutionary biology, combining great energy and risk for an activity that seems pointless.

But pointless it’s not. The positive emotions evoked by interactions, physical exercise, and mastery of skills in play spurs us toward novelty and more flexible learning—an exquisite means of developing our brains, social selves, and alleviating stress.

Sadly, recent education policies have squelched what all the smartest mammals do naturally. Literacy and numeracy, the prime foci of the Common Core, have . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus

Enough Already with the Word Gap, Says Amy Rothschild

blog-big-boyreading

I’ve been worried about the “word gap.” The 30-million vocabulary “deficit” discovered in low-income children by psychologists Betty Hart and Todd Risley in 1995. I’m concerned about the hidden curriculum.

“Deficit’ is the operative term. In an article published in the Teachers College Record a few years ago, researchers Sylvia Martinez and John Rury take us on a tour of the terms “culturally deprived” and “disadvantaged,” from 1960 through 1985, noting how they engendered controversy as frustration with educational change grew. They report on a group of sociologists at the University of Chicago, who convened a meeting to . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus

Oh, the Places We'll Go with the Word Gap!

blog-big-boyreading

Oh, the Places You’ll Go! may have preceded the publication of Betty Hart’s and Todd Risley’s landmark study by five years. But oh, how deliciously apt. The researchers’ discovery of language disparities among children across the socioeconomic spectrum has taken off.

Reducing the gap of 30 million words between low- and high-income children has approached the level of national obsession. The Clinton Foundation got on board with its initiative Too Small to Fail. So did the University of Chicago medical school, which created a website to support the ongoing conversation.

Efforts reached . . . Read full article →

SHARE

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Plus