Sunday, September 27, 2009

More school: Obama would curtail summer vacation

So President Obama has figured out something else that ails our nation. This time it is summer vacation. To be fair, Obama isn't the only one who thinks this way.

"Obama says American kids spend too little time in school, putting them at a disadvantage with other students around the globe." Do we always have to keep up with the Joneses.

We have child labor laws that were enacted to allow children to be children. We send then to school 6 hours a day to learn. That turns out not to be enough for many people. Many teachers seem to think if they are not giving kids a bunch of homework they are not doing their job. So the poor kid has about 8 or 9 hours of education a day if the want to get a good grade. Now the president thinks that is not good enough. So much for the child labor laws doing the kids any good. What ever happened to the idea that children should be able to enjoy being a child.

Sometimes I get the idea that some people think that children just new assets for corporations that need to be correctly programed to serve the good of the whole.

Apparently how many hours children spend in school does not necessarily make them smarter. "Kids in the U.S. spend more hours in school (1,146 instructional hours per year) than do kids in the Asian countries that persistently outscore the U.S. on math and science tests — Singapore (903), Taiwan (1,050), Japan (1,005) and Hong Kong (1,013). That is despite the fact that Taiwan, Japan and Hong Kong have longer school years (190 to 201 days) than does the U.S. (180 days)."

How about instead of lengthening the school year we go back to teaching the basics. There is really no reason a kid in elementary school needs to use a calculator to do his math and having memorizing multiplication tables would not hurt. I think we are easily caught up in all the new fangled methods when many times the old methods work just as well.