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Why aren't schools teaching kids how to learn?

Nicole Cardoza

A paper published in Psychological Science in the Public Interest evaluated ten techniques for improving learning, ranging from mnemonics to highlighting. Unsurprisingly, only two (both testing related) are used regularly, and many aren't considered at all, which shows that if we don't provide children with all the tools they can use to learn better, they might always be behind.

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  • Lafayette Howell

    This is an important question that requires a multi-dimensional response. I may have to reply to expand since it is simply too complex to explain in one post. As background, I have worked with turning around low-performing, high poverty schools and also as a management consultant to global companies. I taught school many moons ago, and my kids attend public schools. But first, there is a larger malaise with parents across the country. People are tired--especially parents. Consequently, teachers are tired. What this translates to is both parents and teachers are not paying attention. Its like texting and driving--collectively we have taken our eye off the ball.

    The economy exacerbates this problem because households, are, unfortunately built to require dual incomes just to "keep the lights on". Or, in some cases, perpetuate more consumption, which means, our children are being neglected. Interestingly, this can be most acute in so-called "good areas". School work, and talking to children is being outsourced to video games. And just like texting, parents are taking their eye off the road--in this case, the road being the safety and welfare of their children.

    I haven't even gotten to the more complex issues like funding, poor quality teaching, community apathy and the preference to abandon public schools in favor of "shifting the problem" to charter schools or private. More to come on this question...