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Grizzly Mama

There's a Grizzly who has escaped the City of Brotherly Love..(and she's going back to homeschooling!!)

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Location: Out of Philly, Pennsylvania, United States

"All who have meditated on the art of governing mankind have been convinced that the fate of empires depends on the education of youth." Aristotle - Greek Philosopher.

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Education in America

Here is some information that parents in America ought to be interested in.


A little tidbit to whet your appetite:

"According to the most recent NAEP assessments, only 31 percent of 4th graders are proficient in reading, while 32 percent are proficient in mathematics, 29 percent in science, and 18 percent in American history."

Scary - huh?

I've heard many people say before that parents can't do it. Not only are they unable to educate their children, but they are too stupid to even raise them properly. 'It takes a village', they say.

Bullshit. This 'village' of yours is ruining our children.


A reader posted a valid question and that is - how do homeschoolers fare in achievement testing? I found some very interesting information and I am putting a link here for your viewing pleasure. We must remember that many homeschoolers take a dim view of achievement testing and for good reason.

I think it only fair to point out that there has been a bit of criticism of Rudner's findings due to the fact that Bob Jones University was involved in the research and they are *gasp* a Christian University who apparently hates black people - based on the fact that over 30 years ago blacks were not allowed in BJU. The critical abstract points out the Christian thing so many times that I cannot count them all - and spends atleast one lengthy paragraph on the black hating aspect of BJU.

So! drumroll please.........

Homeschooling Achievement

Read it and weep for your children being ruined in our government education system. Then - get up off your ass and Do The Right Thing!


Blogger Steve Donohue said...

As a tutor for K-5 reading and math, I can iterate that reading at proficiency is no huge accomplishment at the 4th grade level. This is what, in reality, would be considered B-C range readers, the kids who are neither ahead nor behind the pace for where they'll need to be. Attaining proficiency levels of 70%-90% is not merely a utopian dream- it could very well be met.

Do you have any statistics on home schooled children proficiency levels? I have never seen the data anywhere, but this is your topic, so I'd expect you to know more than me on this.

30 April, 2005 19:11  
Blogger DirtCrashr said...

I was homeschooled in 3rd and 4th grade - we were missionaries overseas. For entertainment I read selections from the old Encyclopedia Britannica at our house - just pull out a volume and leaf through it to an interesting selection - I skipped all the farm-report and economic production table-stuff. People were interesting and I enjoyed reading about the Fliegende Hollander and Richard Wagner, how an airplane (specifically a biplane) flies and how a submarine dives and surfaces, and how a machinegun operates (and how to spell: m-a-c-h-i-n-e-g-u-n. I was bored somewhat by the Reader's Digest condensed version of Michner's Hawaii, probably because it involved themes (romance) that a nine-year old didn't find very compelling - I liked adventure though, and the description of building the big double-canoes and sailing to Hawaii.
I read a lot of Biggles adventure books that we got at the railroad-station booksellers, and books on the native wildlife where we lived. Jim Corbett the hunter was a roile-model. In 5th grade after a year in boarding-school it was discovered that I was quite nearsighted - maybe reading was the easiest thing for me to do, so I did it a lot. I kinda sucked at math.

02 May, 2005 14:57  
Blogger MonicaR said...

I hope that you liked my update Steven - and even though it's a damnable PDF file - it is striking to see the differences. I can attest to the fact that my kid is waaaaay ahead of what the other kids tested at her grade level. I do not have any objection to testing my kids. In fact I WANT to know how they are doing. I can also say that an infinitesimal part of me understands the state's concern that all kids are being educated. How this plays out in the real world is quite a different thing though, isn't it? When kids are graduating government education high school unable to read - then who needs the oversight? It's the state that needs the oversight, not the parents.

Dirtcrasher - I read an interesting article about homeschoolers who really didn't get a lot of structured teaching time. These kids progressed quite nicely in spite of it.

02 May, 2005 22:37  
Blogger DirtCrashr said...

I probably could have benefitted from a more structure in Math - maybe it was that 5th Grade year in boarding school. I couldn't see the blackboard or the mechanics of how math actually worked, and I never really caught up. I can do numbers fine in application, but not in abstraction.

03 May, 2005 15:47  
Blogger DirtCrashr said...

Don't worry about a thing, according to the NY Times, the new SAT Test takes care of everything!
Write long and don't worry about errors.: "Dr. Perelman studied every graded sample SAT essay that the College Board made public. He looked at the 15 samples in the ScoreWrite book that the College Board distributed to high schools nationwide to prepare students for the new writing section. He reviewed the 23 graded essays on the College Board Web site meant as a guide for students and the 16 writing "anchor" samples the College Board used to train graders to properly mark essays.
He was stunned by how complete the correlation was between length and score. "I have never found a quantifiable predictor in 25 years of grading that was anywhere near as strong as this one," he said. "If you just graded them based on length without ever reading them, you'd be right over 90 percent of the time." The shortest essays, typically 100 words, got the lowest grade of one. The longest, about 400 words, got the top grade of six. In between, there was virtually a direct match between length and grade."

04 May, 2005 15:35  
Blogger Victoria said...

Utterly true, this ridiculousness about a village is just another excuse for people to delegate their parenting responsibilities to someone else.

04 May, 2005 19:52  
Blogger MonicaR said...

Interesting Dirtcrasher about the SAT. It's sad. America could easily be doomed. Well, except that I think people are waking up and starting to take the bull by the horns.

That's too bad about the eyesight problem affecting your ability to learn. I remember in 4th grade someone coming in and showing us how to vote. I couldn't see a thing. I was too embarassed to say that I couldn't see. The next year I got glasses.

Victoria thanks for coming by. You are correct. The thing is that it's more nefarious to me than just an excuse that some people use to abdicate their responsibilities. I think that parents are being fed the idea that they CAN'T do it right and kids are better off in the care of others - the 'experts' who supposedly know what they are doing. Maybe I'm just paranoid.

04 May, 2005 23:28  

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