Posts tagged ‘literacy’

November 24, 2012

“What Should Children Read?”

From Sara Mosle, “What Should Children Read?” NY Times (November 22, 2012):

“What schools really need isn’t more nonfiction but better nonfiction, especially that which provides good models for student writing. Most students could use greater familiarity with what newspaper, magazine and book editors call “narrative nonfiction”: writing that tells a factual story, sometimes even a personal one, but also makes an argument and conveys information in vivid, effective ways.

What Tom Wolfe once said about New Journalism could be applied to most student writing. It benefits from intense reporting, immersion in a subject, imaginative scene setting, dialogue and telling details. These are the very skills most English teachers want students to develop. What’s odd is how rarely such literary nonfiction appears on English — or other class — reading lists. In addition to a biology textbook, for example, why can’t more high school students read “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks”?”

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September 24, 2012

SAT reading scores hit four-decade low

From the Washington Post: “SAT reading scores for graduating high school seniors this year reached a four-decade low as the number and diversity of students taking the college admissions tests hit an all-time high, the College Board reported Monday. The average reading score for the Class of 2012 was 496, down one point from the previous year and 34 points since 1972….In writing, the average score was 488, down nine points since that subject was first tested in 2006.”