09 Sep '11, 11pm

The Schools We Need | Erik Reece | Orion Magazine

The Schools We Need | Erik Reece | Orion Magazine

Deborah Meier, a senior scholar at NYU’s Steinhardt School of Education and a founder of the Coalition of Essential Schools, suggests that we replace the cover-the-material mode of teaching by cultivating a “habit of mind” that can be applied to all material. Such a habit nurtures the intellectual skills students need to make decisions on complex matters and is based on such things as: quality of evidence (how do we know it’s true?), consideration of various viewpoints (how would it look through someone else’s eyes?), the search for patterns and causes (what are the consequences?), and relevance (who cares?). These criteria will serve students well on any standardized test because they will have been taught how to evaluate the evidence before them, regardless of what it may be. And Meier’s last question, “who cares?” speaks directly to my students’ complaint about the rele...

Full article: http://www.orionmagazine.org/index.php/articles/article/6401

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