Here’s A Shocker

Since Intel took over sponsorship of the Science Talent Search in 1998 (formerly The Westinghouse Scholars), several schools have consistently produced a large number of semifinalists and finalists. Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, MD and Stuyvesant High School in New York, NY have produced the most winners over this time period and are the only schools averaging more than 10 semifinalists each year and more than 1 finalist each year.

Ten schools, all of which are (Stuyvesant High School, Montgomery Blair High School, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Ward Melville High School, Bronx High School of Science, Paul D. Schreiber High School, Byram Hills High School, Jericho High School, Great Neck North High School, and Great Neck South High School), have had semifinalists in every year that Intel has sponsored the competition.

Now here’s the shocker – every one of these schools is a public school.

Mmmm?

Sound This Out?

January 24, 2015

Whatever Happened to Phonics?

By Bruce Deitrick Price

Parents of every school age child should read this important piece in American thinker.  Below is an excerpt read the full article here.

“First, every parent should take a few minutes to understand why phonics is essential but memorizing sight-words one by one makes no sense at all. Very few people, for example, could memorize even 100 license plates or instantly identify 100 celebrities. Even when you know the name, you can’t always bring it up from your memory in a fraction of a second. It’s no different with sight-words.

“Second, teachers who haven’t read “Why Johnny Can’t Read” (or “Why Johnny STILL Can’t Read,” 1981) should acknowledge that they are clueless amateurs. Such a person should not be allowed in an elementary school. Why? Because you will not be able to recognize inferior methods and the damage they’re doing to children. All phonics experts confidently assert that 99% of children can learn to read in the first grade. If you are accepting a lower level of achievement, then you are part of the problem.”

 

The Emerging Butterfly In Our Lives

Daily Mail today – “Parents who deny their children independence are creating a generation incapable of dealing with failure, a leading neuroscientist has warned.”

“A trend over the past two decades towards ‘wrapping children in cotton wool’ is leaving them struggling to cope with setbacks in their teenage years and adult life.”

To read full article click here.

butterflyWe all know this to be true.  Most of us, well many of us anyway, learned in grade school science that it’s wrong to help a butterfly emerge from its cocoon because the struggle involved strengthens the thing enough to spread its wings.

Yet we have to keep learning the same lesson over and over again every few generations like the storied elevator operator who kept getting fired because he kept forgetting his route.

Strong independent children is our route as parents and grandparents and so we have to take them to the right floor.

The situation is confusing because some  children will develop strong and independent no matter what we do and some won’t.  So beware of anecdotal parenting advice.  Instead it’s a general rule TO LET THEM STRUGGLE with as much as your conscience allows and then some.   All the while of course, inspiring them.