Since it’s Labor Day, what better day to talk about one of the largest and most influential unions in the country—the National Education Association [NEA]. This also allows me to continue my intermittent history of American education. The NEA was founded in Philadelphia in 1857. The ostensible rationale for its creation was to provide a voice for all teachers in the nation to promote the interests of the profession. A statement from that initial meeting said it hoped to one… Read more »
While my mind is on education, let me continue with a little more of the history of education in America. In previous posts, I mentioned John Dewey and his baneful influence. Known as the Father of Progressive Education, Dewey introduced a number of new ideas: no eternal truths; let the child decide what he wants to learn; minimize booklearning and magnify experiences [which can often be divorced from substance]; socialization of children to fit into his vision of a socialist… Read more »
I have colleagues who are education professors, and I want to make sure they don’t misunderstand what I will say today. I know their hearts—they are committed to doing the best for the students as they prepare to go out and teach others. They might be in the minority, however. All too often, education degrees focus rather heavily on how to manage a classroom or on the latest trendy experiments. Now, managing a classroom is important—I know that from personal… Read more »
I love this time of year. This is now my 22nd year of teaching full time at the college level. When a new academic year begins, I experience an emotional rush. I’ve experienced that for 21 of those 22 years [no need to talk about the exception—that’s history]. Students also seem fresh and ready. Yes, that early excitement will scale back as the semester wears on, but it never goes away entirely, particularly if you believe what you are doing… Read more »
As a new school season is upon us, I thought I would be short and quick today in my commentary: To all students everywhere: excellence is the goal. Try it, you might like it.
The Arizona illegal immigration controversy and the oil spill continue to dominate the news. That’s enough to make me want to write about something completely different. Well, maybe tomorrow. In the meantime, I’ve got some great cartoons to fill the space today—on those two issues. We’re on the verge of the federal government suing Arizona. How ironic. There’s Arizona on the front lines of tackling the illegal immigration problem, and what does the federal government do? This is a pretty… Read more »
In the nearly two years that I’ve written this daily blog, I’ve never, to the best of my recollection (how’s that for a lawyerly termÂ that gets me off the hook if I’m wrong?), advertised for books I’ve authored. Today, though, I would beg your indulgence, since I’ve just had a new edition of one of my books come off the presses. I first wrote If the Foundations Are Destroyed in 1994. This is now the fourth edition of it, complete… Read more »