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Thread: Teaching News

  1. #76
    the beloved: Gladys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Paulclem View Post
    By using the word coerce I think you are betraying a belief that parents could teach their kids if they really wanted to. The problem is much more complicated than you suggest and is closely linked to poverty.
    I not only 'believe in the ability of children to be educated' but also in the ability of all parents to educate. Neither illiteracy nor poverty precludes parents contributing much to the education of their children. For instance, teaching a child to think, to organise, to learn, to persevere, and to communicate are within the capability of most poor or illiterate parents.

    As for coercion, we already coerce parents to present their children to school and to exercise some restraint on behaviour.

  2. #77
    solid motherhubbard's Avatar
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    Have either of you read A Framework for Understanding Poverty by Ruby K. Payne?

  3. #78
    the beloved: Gladys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motherhubbard View Post
    Have either of you read A Framework for Understanding Poverty by Ruby K. Payne?
    I've just read a summary of the book on WIkEd.

    In speaking of poverty I was focussed on Australia which, I understand, has a more generous welfare safety-net for the unemployed and for financially disadvantaged parents than that in the US. I do understand that extremes of poverty are likely to have dire educational consequences, and that children are educationally advantaged higher up the class ladder.

    The educational challenges for working class children are considerable, but for the destitute, extreme. Still, a better education offers a glimmer of hope.

  4. #79
    This celestial seascape! Lynne50's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gladys View Post
    For instance, teaching a child to think, to organise, to learn, to persevere, and to communicate are within the capability of most poor or illiterate parents.

    .
    I'm not sure that is true all the time. I work with Kindergarten children and you would be surprised how many children try to do their homework alone. And very often, their 'Homework Folder' is not returned or signed. Working parents are very stressed these days and often kindergarten homework is not high on the to-do list. It is very sad. Organizational skills are lacking with parents. We are seeing, too, more and more children starting school with language deficits because parents don't have the time to have conversations with their children. Most of the time, parents tell children.. "Hang up your coat, eat your dinner, brush your teeth", etc. instead of having one to one interactions. If all parents had these fundamental skills, teachers and administrators would have much easier jobs, however, often that is just not the case. I think, Gladys. you probably would take your parenting very seriously, and so you are already starting from the 'ideal' place, but many parents are really ill-equipped for the job.
    "What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare." W.H. Davies

  5. #80
    TobeFrank Paulclem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gladys View Post
    I not only 'believe in the ability of children to be educated' but also in the ability of all parents to educate. Neither illiteracy nor poverty precludes parents contributing much to the education of their children. For instance, teaching a child to think, to organise, to learn, to persevere, and to communicate are within the capability of most poor or illiterate parents.

    As for coercion, we already coerce parents to present their children to school and to exercise some restraint on behaviour.
    Have you ever met anyone who is lliterate? I can tell you that the shame and fear they feel about school would present a great trial for them. How can an illiterate person teach a child how to learn? The problem that parents who are illiterate, or who have had a poor eucation, (which is more likely), is that they don't understand how to learn themselves. How can they then feel confident about teaching a child?

    I'm afraid that you have an idealistic view. The parents we are talking about, as has been said, may have many problems including drug, alcohol, organisational, financial and problems with mental health. These are the extremes, but in some areas of deprivation there is a significant proportion. That is without taking into account the second language speakers and parents who are still children themselves, those who work long hours or have learning difficulties. These examples are not plucked out of the air, but are real parents I can think of in my small experience of teaching in an inner city.

    As for coercion, what kind of coercion would you suggest? The "coercion" of having to attend school doesn't work in prompting these parents to teach their kids. Coecion often has repercussions for the very people you want to encourage - the kids.

  6. #81
    the beloved: Gladys's Avatar
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    Revolution

    Quote Originally Posted by Paulclem View Post
    I can tell you that the shame and fear they feel about school would present a great trial for them. How can an illiterate person teach a child how to learn?
    I suspect the majority of literate, working class parents feel 'shame and fear' in their dealings with middle class teachers. Since parents are the most important factor in a child's educational success, schools ought to address these negative emotions through aggressive cooperation with those parents that care. Such cooperation would require a revolution in education administration and objectives.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paulclem View Post
    The parents we are talking about, as has been said, may have many problems including drug, alcohol, organisational, financial and problems with mental health.
    Obviously, many parents will be unable or unwilling to form a partnership with school. Those that do will eventually encourage others to join them. In China, for instance, poor families have a much higher involvement in their children's education. Our culture can evolve in this direction.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynne50 View Post
    I work with Kindergarten children and you would be surprised how many children try to do their homework alone. And very often, their 'Homework Folder' is not returned or signed. Working parents are very stressed these days and often kindergarten homework is not high on the to-do list. It is very sad.
    Sadly, some children are beyond rescue. Schools should reach out, at least weekly, to those disadvantaged parents that do care. Token communication once or twice a year is worthless. Teachers should spend much less time teaching and much more empowering parents! An inclusive educational culture will, in time, shift parental attitudes across the nation. Does this make me an idealist?

    Quote Originally Posted by Paulclem View Post
    As for coercion, what kind of coercion would you suggest? The "coercion" of having to attend school doesn't work in prompting these parents to teach their kids.
    Coercion of intransigents could be as subtle as 'education leave' from work, tax breaks, resource handouts or fun excursions for those parents that cooperate with schools.

  7. #82
    TobeFrank Paulclem's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gladys View Post
    I suspect the majority of literate, working class parents feel 'shame and fear' in their dealings with middle class teachers. Since parents are the most important factor in a child's educational success, schools ought to address these negative emotions through aggressive cooperation with those parents that care. Such cooperation would require a revolution in education administration and objectives.



    Obviously, many parents will be unable or unwilling to form a partnership with school. Those that do will eventually encourage others to join them. In China, for instance, poor families have a much higher involvement in their children's education. Our culture can evolve in this direction.




    Sadly, some children are beyond rescue. Schools should reach out, at least weekly, to those disadvantaged parents that do care. Token communication once or twice a year is worthless. Teachers should spend much less time teaching and much more empowering parents! An inclusive educational culture will, in time, shift parental attitudes across the nation. Does this make me an idealist?



    Coercion of intransigents could be as subtle as 'education leave' from work, tax breaks, resource handouts or fun excursions for those parents that cooperate with schools.
    I can sympathise more with these thoughts Gladys. I agree with many of your points. What is needed is structural support, rather than just the expectation that parents can and will contribute, as has been the case so far in schools.

    I also agree that a shift in attitudes and the structure of schools would be better. Too many kids come out of the One-Stop-Shop that is school with a negative attitude to education and qualifications that are a poor reflection of their ability. (I speak of England here, but I think there are similar problems elsewhere). I know that parents do have a massive input into a child's education for better or worse. It's about attitude as well as activity.

  8. #83
    Pièce de Résistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    Petition to stop school's lessons in The Simpsons

    More than 400 people have signed a petition calling for a Somerset school to stop teaching the US cartoon series The Simpsons in lessons.

    The opening sequence and an episode are being covered in the media module of the course at Kingsmead Community School, in Wiveliscombe.

    The school said the show demonstrated use of language in the media.

    Parent Joseph Reynolds said it was not the right quality of learning material for his daughter and her classmates.

    Mr Reynolds collected signatures for his petition in the local community, but the school's governors upheld the school's decision to continue teaching the cartoon.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-10697272
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  9. #84
    TobeFrank Paulclem's Avatar
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    I agree with the school about this. I find the Simpsons humour quite sophisticated at times, and it's fun for the kids. After all it's a media module and not literature. Perhaps he could set up his own school now that the Gig Society has been mooted.

  10. #85
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    AS-level maths error: students set impossible question

    An "unfortunate error" meant maths students were set a question that was impossible to answer in an AS-level exam.

    Just under 6,800 teenagers took the paper - set by the OCR exam body - last Thursday.

    OCR has apologised, saying it will make sure candidates are not disadvantaged by the mistake.

    But some students writing on social networking sites have been calling for the test to be re-run.

    The error was in an exam paper taken in 335 schools and other exam centres in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

    Stress
    The question carried eight marks out of 72 being awarded for the paper.

    One candidate Thomas Fay, who contacted the BBC News website said he had been distressed to find a question that appeared "impossible".

    "This threw me in the exam and many people found this to cause much added stress in the exam," he added.


    "Many people are worried that the mistake made by the examining board will severely affect the mark and grade they achieve in the paper. For many this was a final exam and will most likely influence final grades and university admission."

    ...

    A spokeswoman said: "We very much regret that there was a mistake... and that our quality assurance procedures failed to identify this error.

    "Because we have been alerted to this so early, we are able to take this error into account when marking the paper. We will also take it into account when setting the grade boundaries. We have sent a letter to all schools and colleges explaining in more detail what we shall do.

    "We do apologise again that this has happened."

    The exam body says it is not going to discount the question from the marking, because that might disadvantage candidates who spent a lot of time trying to answer it.

    Students will be awarded points for their attempts to work out the question and measures are also in place which are designed to recognise that other candidates may have discovered the error quickly, OCR says.

    OCR released full details of the error - on paper "Decision Mathematics 1" - as follows:

    The question as printed asked candidates to verify the shortest route, for two given conditions, giving values of 32.4 + 2x km and 34.2 + x km. These values should have been 34.3 + 2x km and 36.1 + x km respectively. The error was not to have included twice the journey between A and B (0.9 km) and the journey between F and G (1.0 km) in the values given.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-13627415
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  11. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by SleepyWitch View Post
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/new...cle1945751.ece


    hey, those articles you guys have posted sound really interesting, will have to read them some time.
    This is the saddest part that school going children have to face. Not even those children are bullied who have learning disabilities even students with certain accent are picked up upon!
    There must be some guidance and protection for these students before it goes out of hand!
    http://www.flashpapers.com/

  12. #87
    The caffeinated newbie SFG75's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motherhubbard View Post
    Have either of you read A Framework for Understanding Poverty by Ruby K. Payne?
    If anyone teaches, this is a MUST read. Public schools are a creation and creature of their respective communities. If you want to understand the "mind frame" of families and students from completely different backgrounds, this book is absolutely necessary. Behavior that doesn't make sense to you based on your own upbringing, becomes very clear and people of other backgrounds can equally see why you would make the decisions that you do. An effective teacher understands the social realities that individuals students face.

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    Where the rest goes: Lawyers and beauracracy. Likewise remember that is a normal. Rationally crippled understudies cost as much as $50k per student, simply because their folks decline to trust they are unique and request they go to indistinguishable schools from every other person. It winds up being celebrated keeping an eye on should be possible for considerably less expensive.

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