Are We Asking Too Much of Boys?

The difficulty with “one size fits all” education is meeting all your student’s needs.  In recent years there has been an increase of discussion as to whether our current standards are developmentally appropriate.  Many educators have been voicing their concern that certain expectations we are having academically are in complete discordance with educational theorists such as Jean Piaget and Erik Erikson. Perhaps we as educators are trying to force certain children to do things they are simply not developmentally ready to do. As a result we are impairing their self esteem and negatively impacting their future potential.  Two books that really shaped my thinking to this notion were “Boy’s Adrift” by Leonard Sax and “Thinking Goes to School: Piaget’s Theory in Practice” by Hans G. Furth and Harry Wachs. I had the privilege of hearing and interfacing with Harry Wachs at the Cushman School in Miami.  It was enlightening to say the least! He spoke with such confidence and had performed the studies and research to prove it.  So often when in the classroom our gut tells us something but we may not have the research to prove it.  He did!  It was definitely a teaching highlight!  Both these books compliment each other very well. “Thinking Goes to School: Piaget’s Theory in Practice” really helps remind us what developmental-ism is and why it is damaging when we ignore it and plow forward when children aren’t ready. Boys Adrift highlights the consequences and dissects exactly how curriculum has changed and what is and is not appropriate and its consequences.  I landed on a “Ted Talk” recently that scratched the surface of what these two books examine in depth.

boys adrift                                   thinking goes to school