"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Monday, September 11, 2006

Good and Evil, Us and Them, Education and Indoctrination

CNN has this interesting piece on the polarization of teaching ideas related to 9-11. On one side, we have those who believe that good American teachers will wave the flag, praise the Lord, and encourage buying as the way to keep America strong. On the other side, we have those who view the teaching of history as a vehicle for critical thinking and questioning about the past, present, and future of American democracy. These, by the way, are the teachers who Cheney says are giving comfort to the enemy.

Be that as it may, thanks, Eric Foner, for reminding us that the "purpose of teaching history is not only to give students a sense of the country's past, but to teach them to think critically and to weigh different points of view and come to their own conclusions."

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