Wagner, Tony The Global Achievement Gap – Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach The New Survival Skills Our Children Need – And What We Can Do About It, Basic Books – A Member of The Perseus Books Group, New York, NY Copyright © 2008 by Tony Wagner.
One of the BEST books you will ever read about the pathway for the reform and improvement of U.S. public education. PERIOD!
I am admittedly rushing, so here are a few morsels (any emphasis is mine):
Finally, I have observed that the longer our children are in school, the less curious they become. Effective communication, curiosity, and critical-thinking skills, as we will see, are much more than just the traditional desirable outcomes of a liberal arts education. They are essential competencies and habits of mind for life in the twenty-first century. P. Xxiii
“Students are simply not learning the skills that matter most for the twenty-first century. Our system of public education-our curricula, teaching methods, and the tests we require students to take-were created in a different century for the needs of another era. They are hopelessly outdated.” P. 9.
We are simply not developing our intellectual capital to the extent that many other countries are. Perhaps our real competitive advantage as a country in the future will be in those areas requiring innovation-which in turn relies on curiosity and imagination.” P. 75
The most important skill in the New World of work, learning, and citizenship today – the rigor that matters most-is the ability to ask the right questions. Old World rigor is still about having the right answers – and the more, the better.
Have questions about how to improve the U.S. public education system? You should. If so, this book is required reading.