Time Magazine journalist, Amanda Ripley, examines the superpowers of education thru the stories of 3 American foreign exchange students. Kim goes to Finland, Tom to Poland, and Eric to South Korea. She asks why do US students continue to lag behind other developed countries.
So, do you think parental involvement with extracurricular activities helps children in school? actually there is a slight negative correlation with parental extracurricular involvement and children’s education scores. However, reading to your kids, or reading at home (books, magazines) and discussing books, social issues, etc with your kids, is associated with higher educational scores.
Why is education so under-valued in the US? and why does this field get so much more respect in other developed countries? Why do we as Americans think Mathematics is really an optional topic. An interesting example was of the Bama pie making factory. They couldn’t find smart enough people to work in their factory, so they opened another factory in Poland (okay, they can probably get skilled and cheap labor there). Another example, was that even Head of Maintenance jobs require a fair amount of skill these days. One needs to be able to be able to read blue-prints, perform applied mathematical equations, motivate subordinates, and communicate well, including writing reports.
I wish she has examined the effect of students studying in groups. I had one prof who clearly believed in it, and it was a practice that I took up, finding other motivated students to study with.
She claims to only be transmitting information, and letting the reader decide, but she does seem to have a something of political agenda (though it is neither right nor left). She advocates stronger requirements for both teachers (of which we seem to have a plethora) and for students to pass classes. She dismisses technology and gadgets.