professornana (professornana) wrote,
professornana
professornana

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Help, I need somebody...

So, people of a certain age will recognize the opening line of the Beatles' song, "HELP!" The lyrics are about asking for help when we need it. I have to keep that in mind, the need for help, more often than I care to admit. It is tough to admit help is needed, that I cannot do something on my own. I need help. So imagine my consternation when I read this recently:

"When children struggle, our instinct is to ride in on our white horse to save the day, but when we do that, we deny them opportunities to feel the discomfort of cognitive dissonance. In turn, we teach them to rely on us... We need our children to be able to solve problems leaving us to think that instead of teaching children to “call us when they need help,” the mantra of the Common Core instruction should be this: Call me when you’ve figured something out."

Now, I do get it: there is a line between help and enabling (or whatever other jargonish word you care to substitute). There is a difference between helping and DOING (ask any parents who have completed a science or history project "with" their kids). And I know there are games kids play to get us to do more than help. I get all that. But I do not see helping a kid who is struggling as riding in on a white horse. I see it as teaching and re-teaching. It is my job. I also do not see how allowing cognitive dissonance is helpful at all (perhaps I do not know the real meaning of that term? or how CCSS has adopted and changed its meaning?).

Once again, I take issue with these broad, sweeping statements. Sometimes we all need a little help, some direction, some assistance. The mantra for CCSS should not be "Call me when you have figured something out." Perhaps the mantra that CCSS should take on as its own comes from the musical OLIVER! How about "reviewing the situation"? How about re-thinking this document? How about funding this mandate? How about knowing how children actually develop before setting curriculum that asks them to perform above their developmental ability? How about stopping the pushing and allowing kids to read all manner of texts? How about ending this insane dichotomy between literary and informational texts as if one cannot be both informative and literary? How about keeping you eye on the KIDS?

Could someone please HELP me?
Tags: ccss, help
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