American Elephants

The Newest Fix For K-12 Education by The Elephant's Child

I am troubled by our K-12 education system. I don’t think the teacher’s unions have the welfare of the kids in mind, but just good pay for teachers and more union dues for political purposes. I don’t like the administration’s “Common Core” national curriculum, but believe that better education comes from intense competition among schools and school districts.

Political correctness, the self-esteem movement, and diversity, are noxious ideas that have done enormous damage to our kids. It’s well known that our kids are confident, have high self-esteem, and don’t know anything about math and history, or how to write a paper. And it’s unsurprising that home-schooled kids do better than public school grads.

One of the major problems with education is that everybody has participated in it, and thus has a better idea about how to fix education. I plead guilty.

This article just appeared in our local paper:

The School District will launch a new social and emotional learning curriculum in grades three through five to help children work well together.

Called the RULER approach — an acronym for Recognizing, Understanding, Labeling, Expressing and Regulation emotion —the curriculum teaches skills to promote effective personal, social and workplace success. The idea is based on decades of research from Yale University.

Research shows that emotional literacy skills support academic success and promote school engagement, school officials say. Data also shows that students who recognize and regulate their emotions are more focused on instruction and invested in their learning. Those social and emotional skills create a foundation for taking academic risks. Over the school year, students and staff will learn four “anchor tools” to develop skills:

  • Emotional Literacy Charter: Students create and sign charters t o describe how they want to feel in class, what needs to happen to support those feelings and guidelines for handling uncomfortable conflict.
  • Mood Meter: Students learn to use a tool for recognizing and labeling their feelings.
  • Meta-Moments: Students learn strategies for expanding the “space in time” between an emotional trigger and a response.
  • Blueprint: Used to problem-solve conflicts and disagreements, with students and adults considering each other’s (sic) feelings and perspectives to identify healthy solutions.

The RULER approach will be built into lessons throughout the school year. While the RULER approach will be introduced to students in grades three through five this year, school  staff and administrators across the district also have been trained to use the tools.

I’m inclined to say I think it’s spinach and I say the hell with it.


Old but famous cartoon from the New Yorker, probably in the 1930s.

2 Comments so far
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“…better education comes from intense competition among schools…”

The problem is that Progressives absolutely hate competition — in anything. They want everyone to be absolutely equal, even if that means they are equally poor, equally ignorant, equally deprived and equally without hope or a future. They are control freaks who don’t especially care what the outcome of their controls might lead to, as long as they are following their “feelings”.

This is just a embodiment of the 60s mantra of “If it feels good, do it!” Only now their variant is “If it makes me feel good, I’ll make YOU do it!”


Comment by Jim Yardley

Oh yes. I think the fad of trying to eliminate every kids game in school that was very competitive has passed, maybe just because they’ve already banned them all, but there are really extreme examples of not wanting any winners because then there would be a loser who might feel bad. I think it comes out of the Schools of Education, where professors and PhDs know they are poorly regarded by their peers in more serious fields and they have a need to do serious “studies.” The reason that we don’t hear about competition in the schools is because their attention turned to pop-tarts chewed into a gun shape and other idiocy.


Comment by The Elephant's Child

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