33 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cariann
    Jul 12, 2011 @ 23:13:37

    You make some great points. 1 thing that strikes me though and it stems from one of your early points. So many of our source documents are in cursive.. What I’m seeing is the intentional dumming down of society and a brain washing of society, since they won’t be able to read the source documents they will have to believe whatever they are told , never questioning because they can’t read it for themselves. That will be a sad state.


  2. Deborah Becker
    Jul 12, 2011 @ 23:28:13

    Your blog is very interesting. I have three children and I sent them to private school. We had to give up a lot for them to do so. We checked into public schools and found that most were out of control. When I took my daughter to check out 1st grade. The class was a free for all! Kids were running in an out of the room. I don’t know how they could learn anything. We I spoke to the teacher, she told me that the ones that wanted to learn would learn but if they couldn’t pay attention would probably fall behind. I took my daughter out and went to the private school system. I know why public schools can’t get all the courses in, is because they spend most of the time trying to keep some kind of control over the class. My children went to school from 8:30 to 3:00 and they staggered the arts and gym during the week. They were also required to take after school activities. The teachers had to stay later and help with these activities. Public schools have no way of disciplining the children today. You know you have given me an idea for my blog tomorrow. Hope you will read it.


  3. nomeradona
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 04:44:15

    the problem is politics. Since the beginning, curriculum was dictated by those people in power not those people inside the classroom. They think they now best what is good for the children.

    The question is when will be the time where teachers have their voice. It wont happen if there are only cluster of voices here and there. Put them together then there is a big chance that it will be heard.


  4. http://resumes-for-teachers.com
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 06:33:20

    This is very interesting and an eye opener Stuart. I am just wondering what will happen to our future generation. Great post… thanks!



  5. Melinda
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 10:44:03

    I chose to homeschool in part because I could choose my son’s curriculum and decide what is important for him to learn. I wanted to teach him cursive but he is very resistant partly because of the discipline required but also because of a minor muscle weakness in his hand that makes it a bit more difficult for him. I was going to give up on cursive altogether but your post is making me rethink that to some extent. I think I will at least teach him to read cursive well.


  6. mumuGB
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 12:33:19

    Well, I have seen some children who can not write without a keyboard. I find it appalling.


  7. Hocam
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 20:11:50

    Research shows there is a link between cursive writing andd spelling. Cursive writing aids correct spelling. We teach the looped print letters from day 1 in primary schools in Ireland and full cursive script by second class at the age of 7/8


  8. Adriene (Sweepy Jean)
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 20:37:07

    Wow, has our culture come to this? But then again, I’m old…

    I’ll play the devil’s advocate: Having to sign our names on the dotted line will be a thing of the past. I’ve signed a few “electronic” signatures. Many kids have never seen a typewriter in person. Are they the deprived because of it? I don’t think our society should be divided into who can read cursive and who can’t. Investing in our public school systems, though, is a must, but there also has to be flexibility when it comes to innovation.


    • bornstoryteller
      Jul 13, 2011 @ 20:59:00

      Adriene: I feel it goes beyond the writing of; there are a lot of things that will change in the future, but we’re not there yet. We have a large portion of the society in the upper classes (moneyed) that will remain on the top simply because we are working on mediocrity.


  9. miwdeb
    Jul 13, 2011 @ 22:16:02

    bornstoryteller, my blog is http://debirant.blogspot.com Would love you to read my blog today. It deals with public verse private schools. I can tell you my children learn cursive. After kindergarten they learned cursive and they had to use that from then on. I have to say by the time my son was in high school the teachers wanted them to write papers via computer and e-mail it to them. They didn’t want to take the time to decipher their papers.. Boys for some reason lose the ability to write with some grace, unlike girls that love to play around with cursive to make it their own. http://debirant.blogspot.com/2011/07/private-or-public.html


  10. tom
    Jul 14, 2011 @ 09:31:01

    I agree with you Stuart. We’re no longer raising our kids to be achievers. No longer teaching them to excel. Is it because we stopped teaching them cursive? No, I don’t think so. I think it’s because we stopped holding them accountable, stopped disciplining bad behavior, and are more concerned about how they “feel” rather than whether or not they are learning anything. The cursive thing doesn’t bother me much. Handwriting changes over time anyway, mine is a kind of hybrid of cursive and print. As far as source documents, kids today are not being taught about them. Or at the very least the truth about them. Especially about our Founding Documents. They don’t study the actual document (Constitution or Declaration of Independence), they study someone’s interpretation of it. Usually written by someone who has an agenda and a dislike of the founding principles. They absolutely need to read and study them themselves. That’s really the only way to understand them. Read the documents and the correspondence of the authors. But I will admit this, I’ve noticed my spelling is getting bad since most of my writing is done on a computer of some kind. We have become very reliant on technology. For good or bad, it’s leading us away from many of our fundamentals. We no longer need to know how to spell something, the program will correct it for us.

    As always, good post!


  11. Joy Page Manuel
    Jul 14, 2011 @ 09:54:54

    I learned touch typing (with the typewriter) in highschool (Philippines). I learned cursive in elementary school. Touch typing came in handy even when I started using the computer and now there are cursive fonts used on the computer which I’m able to read, thankfully. My point is that my skills have continued to build on themselves and sadly, this may no longer be true for the younger generations. Saying that this is a social issue and that something needs to be done are understatements indeed. These things you speak of, these skills are all part of our culture that I believe are not obsolete to be dropped or forgotten, but need to be preserved and built upon.


  12. charlie nitric
    Jul 14, 2011 @ 21:27:27

    Hey Stuart –

    I want to clue you in on a little secret here. The powers that be in America want a vast separation between 2 classes of people; the elite and the peons. There are many factors coming in to play and has been in the works now for decades. The dysfunction of public education is one of them. The masses become ignorant. Haven’t you noticed how the government and corporations are keeping us all very busy busy busy doing nothing nothing nothing? More red tape, more laws, more taxes, ect….that many people are too busy to make waves about what is really going on. Longer story to this…much bigger one indeed.


  13. Penelope J.
    Jul 17, 2011 @ 23:45:05

    The dreadful conclusion to the above is that this curriculum difference between public and private schools is creating a class distinction. It already exists – but the gap will widen. I’m glad that you gave some examples of NYC Elementary school performance standards.

    I believe that Steve Jobs, who studied calligraphy, might have a word or two to say about the benefits of cursive writing. Others, you stated very well or were in the comments. All I can add is that cursive writing also enhances creativity, and is character forming thus the emphasis on the written essay. Or does the current public educational system really want future generations to be unable to even compose or spell a correct sentence, and dumbed down to complete dependency on technology that may very well, as you pointed out, leave them clueless when a massive energy crisis occurs, which is bound to happen – sooner or later..


    • bornstoryteller
      Jul 18, 2011 @ 06:37:30

      Penelope: yes, the Upstairs/Downstairs mentality is present. I keep bringing up the Robber Baron mentality that is rampant in the US (not sure of the world). Big Money thinks it can do what it wants, and is overall self serving. I’m not talking about people like Jobs (whose graduation speech from another essay was one amazing grad speech). I’m talking the Bloomberg’s, Bush jr, and the like whose friends get away with murder.


  14. Naresh (@naresh_annam)
    Sep 15, 2011 @ 07:17:51

    I agree with you. As a teacher, I can not stress enough the importance of parental involvement. The teacher and the schools are like everything else – there are good and bad everywhere!


    • bornstoryteller
      Sep 15, 2011 @ 09:27:42

      Naresh: I find that the schools/students that do the best, overall, are the ones where parental involvement makes the difference. Not obstructionist involvement but sportive and team playing. Thank you.


  15. Trackback: Would You Like Fries With That? « bornstoryteller
  16. Stefanie Davis
    Apr 06, 2012 @ 15:28:49

    I stumbled upon your site, how I’m not sure, but am very glad I did. I’ve already pinned several of your blogs to read when I have more time. I’m currently majoring in Secondary Math Education, but as a mom I have been considering private schools for my daughter, when she is old enough. Being in Arkansas, we don’t have as many private school choices, but the articles are still relevant, thanks for the good work!


    • Stuart Nager
      Apr 06, 2012 @ 21:59:01

      I’m really of the opinion, now, that private schools are where it’s at for the betterment of the future (unless home schooling is the only other option). I’m not to keen on public education. Good luck, and thanks for finding BornStoryteller.


  17. Rene'e Roepstorff
    Sep 17, 2012 @ 06:18:34

    My daughter and I had a discussion last year about my grandson’s troubles in reg school. He has not been able to grasp the style of teaching ( for the test). My grandson in general is quite, reserved and bright. After starting public school, in two years he struggled with the work that was presented to him, began to act out wich was very unusual for him and had a general dislike for school. She was forced to home school despite the fact she works full time and her husband is going to school himself. Since removing from school his normal well behaved self has returned and is learning in his own way. Yes I was appalled to learn that they have removed cursive writing from public school curriculum. Dumbing down.


  18. Trackback: privatization of education: a cautionary tale | No mo' flow

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