Saturday, March 15, 2014

Stephen Krashen Blog 3-15-14


Nonstop hi-tech testing
Sent to the Los Angeles Times, March 14, 2014Not mentioned in the Times' editorials  (March 13, 14) is the astonishing amount of testing required by the Common Core and the requirement that testing must be done online. No Child Left Behind "only" required tests at the end of year in reading and math in grades 3-8 and once in high school. The common core aims to test all subjects in all g

MAR 12

Does the data support charters? Does the data support test-centered schooling?
Sent to the Wall Street Journal, March 12, 2014"Cuomo steps up for charters," (editorial, March 10) claims that New York charter school students outperform students in nearby traditional schools. But charters can often be very selective in who they admit, and can expell "problem" students. Were these factors included in the New York analysis? Despite their advantages, studies s

MAR 11

How we acquire language
Sent to the China Daily, March 11 Re: "Language is better learned in casual study, scholars say"  March 6Prof. Van Damme's conclusion that language acquisition takes place in informal environments and through active communication is correct, but research supports a deeper generalization, one that gives hope to language education programs: Language is acquired when we understand what we
Yes, let's drop the SAT essay. While we're at it, let's drop the SAT.
Sent to the NY Times, March 11Re: "Can writing be assessed?"  March 10.There is no point in testing writing form, i.e. the use of conventional writing style, grammatical accuracy.  Research consistently tells us that writing form comes from reading, not from writing and not from study.Writing itself is a powerful tool for solving problems and making yourself smarter.  This requires maste

MAR 09

The common core: An untried curriculum plus nonstop testing
Sent to the Salt Lake Tribune, March 9, 2014M. Donald Thomas is right: "Common Core supporters (are) providing misinformation" (March 7). In addition to the points he makes, there are other serious problems.First, the common core standards are untested.  There were no pilot studies. Second, the common core requires a huge increase in testing; research has indicated that increasing testin

MAR 08

No Unnecessary Testing, Not No Testing
Submitted to the Indy Star, March 8, 2014Tim Swarens writes that "Diane Ravitch’s opposition to accountability isn’t realistic," (March 7) because we need to "identify those who excel and those who lag behind."Agreed. But we don't need to test every child every year on every subject to find this out.  The NAEP test, a zero-stakes standardized test, is given to samples of studen

MAR 07

Let's do some critical thinking
Let's do some critical thinkingSent to the Denver Post, March 7.The Douglas County school superintendent says that students should not just "compare and contrast" but "create and evaluate" and engage in critical thinking ("Educators to state: Let's go above common core," March 6).Agreed. Let's start by evaluating whether we should have common core standards and tests