100 Years War Against Learning

Dr. Don Glines has poured his energy, extensive experience and knowledge of research about learning into this extraordinary article, “100 Years Against Learning.” He likens the actual 100 Years War to the more thanĀ 100 years during which schools have ignored learning principles. He asks why do we still have, for example, seventh graders. He says there is no such thing. Any examination of existing seventh graders finds a range on academic skills of at least eight years and physical development of four years. To simply assume that schools can assemble a group of seventh graders and batch process them makes no sense given the huge differences in development, temperament, motivation, interests, and abilities.

He asks why would a decision about entering kindergarten hinge on age. A student born one minute before midnight on the cutoff date may be far ahead of the student born one minute after the cutoff date. Glines details numerous instances of such incongruities and offers remedies.

Using the war metaphor, he calls upon all of us to refuse continuation of learning atrocities. This is a powerful piece by one of the world’s leading educational thinkers and practitioners.

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