OK, I know, it's too early for another rant on Amairkuhn Edgykayshun and the billionaire busybodies like Bill Gates who want to hurry the process of ruination and dumbing down even more, by more injections of technology. But I have to rant anyway, and you'll probably want to join me after you finish reading this study that was sent to me by Mr. S.D.H. Only in this case, we're talking not just about the dumbing down of Amairkuhn edgykayshun, but also about its numbing down:
Background and Documentation for Parents Across America EdTech Position Paper: Our Children @ Risk
What do I mean by numbing down? Well, the above report, while lengthy, says it all, and I cite here a lengthy section from this article to drive the point home:
Impaired cognitive functioning:
Imaging studies have found less efficient information processing and reduced impulse inhibition (Dong & Devito 2013), increased sensitivity to rewards and insensitivity to loss (Dong & Devito 2013), and abnormal spontaneous brain activity associated with poor task performance (Yuan 2011).
In short, excessive screen-time appears to impair brain structure and function. Much of the damage occurs in the brain’s frontal lobe, which undergoes massive changes from puberty until the mid-twenties. Frontal lobe development, in turn, largely determines success in every area of life—from sense of well-being to academic or
career success to relationship skills.
In other words, all this "screen time", now enforced through Rotten to the Common Core's individually adaptive computerized tests and "assessments", is doing actual brain damage, and as a result, damage and impairment to children's abilities to recognize and name their emotions. (And please note an additional thing that I've ranted about occasionally: note the use of completely inadequate methods of citation: this is now the [dumbed-down] standard in professional journals: one need no longer cite the article by title, magazine or journal, volume number, and actual page citation where the specific points are to be found, one need only cite the author and year of publication, and one does so by inserting a parenthetical expression in the main text itself, interrupting the smooth flow of argument and the "look on the page"! Had I tried this "now acceptable" nonsense in high school on my papers, Mrs. Connors would have returned the paper with a big red letter F for lack of adequate and proper scholarly citation. But through the efforts of the "educators", these shoddy methods are now considered acceptable. And I say, they are not. They need to be ditched, completely, and professional journals need to insist on the older style of referencing such as I use in my books. Period. End of discussion. No negotiation here.)
Referencing orthography problems aside, the focus of the article is clear: do we want to expose schoolchildren, whose brains are still developing, to the fallacy of "more" (as my co-author Gary Lawrence in Rotten to the (Common) Core put it), to more "obesity, sleep deprivation, mental illness,and radiation"(to cite the article once again). I think the answer is a perfectly clear "no!"
The most damaging study cited by the article, however, is this finding on "technology in the classroom":
Last fall, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development published its first-ever, and one of the largest-ever, international analyses of student access to computers and how that relates to student learning. "Students who use computers very frequently at school do a lot worse in most learning outcomes, even after controlling for social background and student demographics."
That's right. Lots of computer time meant worse school performance — by a lot.
A little bit of computer use was modestly positive, the authors found. But countries that invested the most in technology for education in recent years showed "no appreciable results" in student achievement. And, striking at the root of one of the biggest claims made about tech in education, "perhaps the most disappointing finding in the report is that technology is of little help in bridging the skills divide between advantaged and disadvantaged students."
(A) study published in July looked at high-achieving eighth-graders across North Carolina who had the opportunity to take Algebra I online. The study found that they did much worse than students who took the course face-to-face — about a third of a letter grade worse, in fact. The study author, Jennifer Heissel, a doctoral student at Northwestern University, noted that across education research, "There's not a lot of cases where you see these big of drops in high-achieving students. Usually you can throw a lot at them."
So, do we really want students to be spending more time with Bill and Melinda Gates via their computers and standardized tests and electronic textbooks? Well, as one person put it to me in a recent private email to me, not only are the tests proprietary, and hence, not subject to parental scrutiny, the fact that more and more schools are moving to electronic textbooks - amendable at the touch of a button, let us remember - little Johnny or Susie cannot come home and easily point to their schoolbook and ask parent for clarification in many cases, thus removing parental scrutiny from the "texts" themselves. Of course, currently many parents can probably access these "e-texts" via their home computers. But just wait for what's coming down the pike, for you know it as well as I do: the "edugarchy" and their corporate billionaire busybody masters will next come up with some lame excuse to prohibit parents from that access. Remember, the game is total control, so that even parental access to textbook content will have to go inevitably, and the "e-textbook" is a convenient stepping stone to that end.
Recently someone asked me why I think so many modern American schoolchildren cannot, like, talk coherently, like, without like dropping like the word "like" into every, like, sentence, you, like, know, man? Well, like, consider this, like, explanation for the, like, phenomenon:
“Children learn to talk and communicate through interactions with other people. That’s the way it has always been and that’s the way it will continue to be, despite any new technology that comes our way. The first several years of life are crucial for your child’s language development. It is when their brain is the most receptive to learning new language and is building communication pathways that will be with them for the rest of their lives. Once that window closes, it is much more difficult for someone to learn and develop language skills. “Every minute that your child spends in front of a screen is one fewer minute that he could spend learning from your interactions with him or practicing his interactions with you. Screen time takes away from time that could (and should) be spent on person-to-person interactions. “Communication is about interacting with others, the give and take. The speaker responds to the listener’s body language and responses to change and adapt what they are saying. The listener uses non-verbal cues to gain deeper meaning from the speaker’s message. There is so much more going on than the list of vocabulary words that the lady in the video is teaching. Videos do not replace
person-to-person interactions for teaching language or communication.”
But when, like, children are, like, exposed to such, like, "conversation" or methods of, like, speaking, like all the time, like on television or, like, you know in their, like, ipads and e-books, they, like, think that is like a perfectly acceptable way of like speaking, and, even like, more importantly, like in, ya know, like writing an' things like that, ya know?
So I have a "modest proposal" for the addle-minded phylogenetically impaired billionaire busybodies: we'll sign off on your Common Core assessment process and e-textbooks, if you can first sell the program to Russia. After all, Mr. Putin is the epitome of evil neo-Soviet centralization and backwardness, according to our modern "media," and should therefore leap at the chance to turn the entire Russian population into compliant "maroons," as Mr. Bugs Bunny used to say. (And please remember, Mr. Bunny had to tailor his cartoonish remarks to the American audience. And as for the billionaire busybodies, it would be really nice if you move over there too, and stay there while you're trying to sell the Russians on the idea, and leave us alone... just a suggestion...)
But we all know that Mr. Putin's response is likely to be a polite but firm "HET!" to the educational side of that proposition, and probably a firm "HET!" to a Russian version of The Consortium Foundation of Billionaire Busybodies and Agitprop as well.
And that requires we must say our own very polite but firm "NO!" to the whole scheme being proposed; we must recognize what renowned American school teacher John Taylor Gatto has reminded us of: the current system is not fixable, no amount of money, no amount of technology, or trendy educational methodology or theory will save it or fix it. It is the system itself, i.e., its underlying philosophy and assumptions, and the quackery of the standardized test, that is the problem. From the late 19th and early 20th centuries, as Dr Gary Lawrence and I attempted to show in Rotten to the (Common) Core, the billionaire busybodies created the problem, and are therefore never to be trusted to provide the solution. As far as education goes, they are the problem, not the solution.
See you on the flip side...
Dont rely on the Indoctrination System to educate yourselves.
lol My current education system are try to do more and more computer and internet base study, the previous weekend, my 8 years old was suppose to stay home for 2 days and conducting home base computer/internet study.
I wrote on my little one’s planner – We only have one computer home, and it use for my husband’s work only, no extra computer available for this, sorry.
What do the teacher expect parents to do during this so call internet teaching? Sit with my kids for like 1 – 3 hours and doing nothing else? Or should I just leave them to the computer? Sure when I return and check them up, I will sure find them playing computer game instead.
I hope I am not stepping out of bounds because I have no intend to offend. Even way back in the eighties and nineties I never found Americans could speak properly. Tv was full of American TV series where I live, still is today but put that next to street journalist interviewees of that era and you could hardly understand it was American English spoken by the interviewees. Lots of swearing, stammering and certainly no full sentences.
I found it even then reality versus movie industrie produced pronunciation a world of difference.
Sadly European youth today are no different from their American counterparts. No full sentenses, putting you know in every sentence and needing creativity to decypher their work reports, if you can call it that.
If I were an American, I probably would choose homeschooling for my children. Of course it can be tricky, as people usually must work outside from home and make some money to support their family, but I think I would find a way to do it. Somehow.
The article cited in this posting is funny (in a sad way), since Joseph Chilton Pearce identified the prefrontal lobes as crucial in “The Biology of Transcendence” back in 2002. It broad terms, the prefrontal lobes are packed with (what are called) ‘excess’ neuron connections. After puberty and into early teenager-hood, this ‘excess’ is whittled down by a third to a half. Conventional thinking explains this as a way that nature prunes down unneeded connections…
Pearce turns this ‘excess’-talk around. He posits that the die-off occurs because because these ‘circuits’ are not capable of being activated in our dumbed-down society. And by dumbed-down, he is not only speaking of the cellphone culture. He is speaking of what might be called higher human capabilities.
What if, around the time puberty began, there were human-taught classes in ESP-ish capabilities, advanced meditative states, etc.? Would the die-off of neuronal connections still occur? What if the die-off only occurred because of lack of usage of THOSE capabilities? In effect, is the die-off the result of OUR own lack of ‘higher’ teachers?
Pearce makes a pretty-good case that this may be so…
(And what might this imply for the existence of former advanced-cultures, to have this capability ‘in-built’ into our very biology?)
I see, so you’re implying that it may be likely that man has been deliberately dumbed down over the WHOLE of its evolution, not just in the last few hundred years? And that perhaps with each human upgrade comes a downgrade of these other beautiful abilities.
It makes sense now. Animals have all sorts of mind capabilities that we just don’t understand (anymore?). Some people from Native cultures still have an ability to speak with the animals, plants, rocks etc, and without hallucinogenic substances. Maybe ours is the technology that brings man only few steps from the complete removal of these other special abilities. The AI-human interface is then truly the death knell for the species.
So, is this the great work of Lucifer? simply to destroy mankind?
Could one of those capabilities have been the ability to somehow mind-map the universe, and speak with other beings across the galaxies?
My personal anecdote: Many ago I used to meditate quite alot. I was self experimenting and throwing my consciousness out into space so to speak and I ‘hung’ around deliberately in nothing for a while. On one amazing occasion, I entered a slightly deeper state, but was still very aware of my surroundings. I asked if anybody wanted to talk to me and I think I received a response.
I was face to face with another being. He had a round bulbous bald head, big round red-brown eyes and his skin was green. He wore a cape and held a yellow crystal with one hand, and the other pointing upward. I asked him where he was from and another image suddenly appeared and I was facing the orion constellation, and either Rigel or Betelgeuse (the red one) brightened in intensity and diminished. I took that to mean that he was from there. Then I realised that I was actually ‘talking’ to someone and just as quickly lost the deep state and opened my eyes.
Could it be possible that this was a form of communication, one that is a natural ability for the species, and one that has been quelled by the establishment over thousands of years?
Or maybe the quarantine of Earth extends to human abilities as well as military ones.
Human abilities are the same as military abilities. ESP can be used for peace or war. Watch the ‘Babylon 5’ television SF series for pointers. If ‘we’ lost some war in the ancient past (as the good guys, or as the bad guys), we may be under ‘interdiction’ of our natural abilities…
Right! I’ve been thinking about Babylon 5 alot recently as I too watched it years ago. Now that it’s mentioned again, I’m putting it on my list of DVDs to get.
Either these narratives are purposely giving us hints and messages, or the writers have no fresh ideas and go to the sciences and occult sciences for plot formation. I think it’s a mixture of both.
B5: I remember when Kosh’s ‘ship’ sensed Sheridan and extruded a probiscus/appendage to look him over. It was a living ship! I remember thinking, “Ohh, cr@p!” about the combination of science and enlightenment required to pull that off…
iZeta, that is only partially what Pearce (and I) implied:
Certainly, the modern Western view of what is important and what should be excluded is likely the ‘culprit’ for the dumbing-down (many neurons dying-off after puberty). I do believe that this is negatively-guided. For instance, psychic abilities and altered states were actively researched up until WWI. Then, scientism cracked-down with a vengeance, tarring the honest researchers with the fakers and charlatans…
However, think of the many Eastern histories and folklore that include advanced states. Everything from Shaolin Monasteries (or temples) to Tibetan meditational practices. The list of advanced human abilities dating from this era/location is astounding. Note that, in terms of genetic drift, this is virtually NOW. It is only with the wiping-out of these ‘resources’ that these abilities are passing into folklore rather than real history. (Some may see this as a ‘target set’ for extermination…)
In an earlier book, “The Magical Child”, Joseph Chilton Pearce surveyed the world’s human cultures for various advanced abilities. Astounding. He then assembled this ‘data’ into what a human could be – assuming he/she was not stymied in their personal development, from babyhood through young adult. Highly recommended. But a caveat; you will likely be angry by the end of that book…
One time, I was having an argument with my then-relationship. I was incredibly angry. I was in bed, lying down. At one point, a part of me said, “I don’t want to be here; I don’t have to be here!” Instantly, my center-of-vision was down in my chest area. I could see the wall next to me, and it started going down. I was going UP, out of my body! Unfortunately, by the time I got a couple of feet up, my excitement in realizing what was happening broke the ‘state’. I snapped back into my body and resumed my normal eyeball ‘seeing’. That experience is still plain-as-day to me.
Another time, I got in some kind of exhilarated state, while meditating. I just flung myself ‘outwards’. I went straight-out from Earth. I could see it quickly shrinking. Around the time I got to near-Moon-orbit (in seconds), fear kicked in. I said, “What the [email protected] am I doing out here?” With that, I plunged back into my body.
We are much-more than we are ‘advertised’ to be…
(For the record, there were no drugs, alcohol, medicine, fugue state, etc., involved in the above.)
Hi Goshawks and thank you for sharing. Amazing! How is it even possible with the current western mindset! I must look into that book by Pearce. I sense that I’ll be exhilarated – we may simply have dormant abilities that can be resurrected. And for my record, there were no drugs, alcohol, or medication either.
iZeta, I believe that our dormant abilities can be ‘resurrected’. My childhood and early adulthood were as normal as can be. It was only when I began casting-about into the ‘above-normal’ (grin) that various events beyond normalcy began to occur. (Part of it is reading about others’ experiences enough that you can entertain the possibility of something being true.) So, carry-on…
(Be aware that anyone threatened by ‘the beyond’ will try to draw you back into normalcy. It takes stubbornness and passion-for-enlightenment to keep on keeping-on.)
it all sounds like some behaviorist not so experiment – as in driving behavior, not so much watching it.
One reason that computer-based “Amairkuhn Edgykayshun” may result in inferior education results is that girls & boys do not learn to interact with their teachers & others students — both with body language and with more esoteric-etheric “aura”-type cues. The above research is good — but incomplete.
Friend Bucky Fuller was a big advocate of computer-based programmed learning, although Bucky rarely used computers. So, the above findings are new to me. Regardless, they do not surprise me. Just don’t (yet) know how to explain it.
Of course they are also changing the SAT college admission exam. They will never be able to compare year to year scores. So we can’t measure how common core curriculum compares.
Children also spend less time outside and nature. Cities are covered in cement/asphalt and kids are stuck in the urban jungle with no opportunity to explore and expand the left side of their brain.
At least in the last century you could educate yourself buying paperbacks and putting together a private library on a barebones budget. Not anymore try finding a brick and mortar bookshop or going little mom and pop store looking for paperbacks, magazine, newspaper and a carousel rack of comicbooks.
Agreed Marcos Toledo. This is why we buy many second hand books from charity stores. My husband purchased the C.S. Lewis’s Trilogy a few years ago, and when I was in my early twenties, I found a copy of The Epic of Gilgamesh. I didn’t know what it was, but I bought it anyway because it looked interesting. Little did I know it would form part of journey of discovery! Sometimes I feel like I’m part of an underground movement, desperately trying to preserve the past.
By agreed upon education yardsticks to U.S. is far behind it’s European competition. Norway is rated #1 in a system that places the curiosity of the student above almost all other criteria. In language, Europeans are way ahead of the dumbed-down Amerikans. But; when it comes to monopolies/oligopolies the U.S. excels, as they do in being #1 in other concerns, like propaganda.
Still, even the Europeans are under threat as REAL capital[like real education] is being replaced/mistaken by/for VIRTUAL financial capital[faux/education].
This internet development is intrically connected to this political/economic development[in terms of REAL vs. VIRTUAL]. Personnel communication, mass media, and market information have been subsumed w/in this new order so that distinctions[like private/public] are becomimg passe.
REAL Publicness threatens institutions[like REAL education/the art of remembering is the art of thinking] whose power is invested in the control of information.
Capitalists want to maximize profits and minimize risks; in the digital age, they shape and define it.
Too BIG to fail[think also, education] isn’t a problem w/in the system. It IS the system.
If this digital age is going to be worth its salt it must arrest those forces that are promoting/increasing: inequalities, monopolies, hyper-commercialism, corruption, de-politization & stagnation. BUT to BEGIN to DO so, would put the internet front & center in the crosshairs of Capitalism.
It was Finland.
I was trying to remember from the Michael Moore DVD where to invade nest? He did a lot on education from different countries; including their recesses and meals prepared by chefs no less. Real high quality food, where Moore sunk in some Coke for the kids to try. He also provided pictures of American school kid cafeteria meals. They were less than 3rd world quality that European kids wouldn’t even feed their dogs.
But The American’s bottom line is HUGE in profits. All the European’s have is a real education. Somehow their leader weren’t hustled. Probably something to do w/morals or some such weakness in their communities.
They just don’t get it. It’s all about profits. Even education.
Like, Luv conquers all
Finance Capital Talks =
I posted this comment first; because I planned to write a timely piece that would, w/o a doubt be censored[albeit in a timely fashion].
REAL comment posted: 4:01 PM.
Because I used the word:
I was not able to complete my original comment due to being unable to express it without exposing my own cold, dark heart that has definitely been nurtured and trellised by an over-active computer life.
At the same time, I grew up pre-computer, but into an already defunct western discourse. Therefore my personal view of the problem of tech does not include the added sentimentality of a time ‘when things were better’.
Tech is definitely a stimulant -to the point of irritant- for the nervous system, as outlined in the article. The physiology of the addiction cycle, when turned upside down is identical to the allergy cycle. This is why most alcohol addicts also have wheat allergies, or fungal-overgrowths related to the alcohol that produce an allergic response that triggers the alcohol impulse. Inflammatory responses drive the addiction as well as allergy response using the same adrenal steroids.
The body has to be properly exposed, often to the point of being overloaded before it mounts a noticeable response. Therefore I think eventually you are going to see a rejection of the overuse of screens, which I already see happening among young parents where I live. Or perhaps new forms of computing using holographic screens will shift the effects onto other neuromuscular pathways, which will present new problems.
Those fat zombie kids with a weird stare in the eyes after 5 hours of war games and the temper tantrums over cell-phones are hilarious, I’m sorry. The proverbial weird-stare kids and their parents will always be with humanity in the same way as we travel with our livestock, our fighting words and our germs. Personally I like the effect this modular thinking is having on language for humanity as a whole. The constant referencing to the body of reference was by the time I was born so sclerotic, not to mention fragmented due having been totally subverted by politics. Maybe I’m wrong, but I’ve come to enjoy the subtle injection of a priori approaches. One walks the line, but of course.
This is a old story go a look up the history of the reeducation camps that were setup to brainwash the native conquered people. Under Christianity-Islam-Capitalism-Socialism you name the dogma it all brain rot design as Roger says to turn domestic bipeds for their masters. I am even having trouble reading comicbooks since I began using a computer and magazines as well. I just can’t get into reading them anymore.
The more one seeks total control, the more it slips through your fingers. It may be attainable for a short time, but eventually it will be lost. Once lost, it does not bode well for those who sought it. For all their faults, humans don’t take domestication very well or for long periods of time. Every culture that has attempted it has eventually failed.
One example of what I’m saying…
We are all different and our learning capabilities are all different. Some love knowledge and doing certain things and others don’t. No matter what way you choose to educate you will have the same percentages of successes and failures I suspect because of differing natural ability and inclination of different people to learn different things. For the last couple thousand years most cultures severely punished or executed their brightest who questioned things or had too much interest in learning new things. It’s now in many people’s DNA to resist thinking too much. This wasn’t done by accident either, it’s called domestication. And just like livestock domestication this causes physical weakness and loss of cognitive ability in people as well. In the long run it destroys those who seek to be above everyone else as well.