Alexis Efron
Edu 102
Diversity In Your Education
I went to two high schools, because I moved to Massachusetts my senior year. Both of my schools had different forms of diversity. When I lived in Florida, my freshman, sophomore and junior year, my school was very diverse. We were one of the most diverse schools in Florida. All the different cultures were represented. When I moved to Massachusetts, I went to a small school in a small suburban town. The school was mostly white with not many diverse people living in the town. In Massachusetts, there is a program called Metco. Through this program, students living in inner city Boston get bused out to the surrounding towns to go to school. My school had one of the biggest Metco programs so this brought diversity to the town. I don’t think a school can flourish without a diverse environment.

Alexis Efron
Education 102

Education philosophers and schools of thoughts that match your feelings about schooling.

I chose two schools of thought and one educational philosopher to talk about. I believe that teaching should be focused on a particular individual. The best way to teach is basing the material off the aspects of a student’s life. Every student is different, and they should not all be treated the same way. The two schools of thought I chose are Abstraction and Navajo Thought: harmony and inner forms. The philosopher I chose is Maxine Greene.
I believe abstraction is a great way of learning. Students can associate objects from their lives to understand more complex objects. The text book describe abstraction as having three steps: 1) focusing attention on a feature from someone’s experience, 2) examining the precise characteristics of the feature, and 3) remembering these features so you can apply them to other instances and ideas. This is such a successful way of learning because it is easier to remember to less information. Tying different concepts to one objects narrows in on the characteristics of that object. The word abstraction comes from a Latin word that means “draw away”. The reason I like this school of thought is because it lets students use their individual ideas to help understand and remember concepts better.
The next school of thought that I believed was successful is the Navajo Thought: Harmony and Inner Forms. The textbook describes their school of thought as being known for “their unique ability to assimilate with and adapt to the thought and customs of other tribes.” I believe that teachers should be able to adapt this concept. Teachers need to look at each of their students as individual and realize that these students are all different and need to be taught differently. The Najajo’s were able to adapt to the other tribes. Even though they were their own inclusive community with a set of ideas that they believed to be true, they could accept other’s ideas as something that other tribes believed to be true and not as something they believed to be untrue.
The philosopher I chose as having the best principles is Maxine Greene. Maxine Greene believes schools should be a place that offers “an authentic public space where diverse human beings can appear before one another as best they know to be.” She believes that students should have more freedom in developing who they are as human beings. They need to decide what they like and don’t like on their own. I agree with her in the fact that teachers dictate too much of their students’ lives. They need to be able to choose who they want to be throughout their lives.
As you can see, I would teach kids to become individuals. The students I would teach would decide what they want to do with their lives. I want students to bring as much of their personalities and their life into the classroom as they can. I believe education is too uniform. These concepts all agree with my thought on education.

Education- Reflection on middle school

23 September 2013

Middle School was an interesting experience for me. I went to a small private school that went from pre-k to 12th grade. I had 60 kids in my in 7th grade class and 65 kids in my 8th grade class. There were 29 girls in my 7th grade class and 31 for 8th grade. At the school I chose, Park View Middle School in Cranston RI, there are 468 students in grade 7-8. This is four times the size of my middle school. I'm sure these students are having a completely different experience than I did.

Right before eight grade, my mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer. When I think of middle school I only think about eighth grade. This was the hardest time of my life. Along with dealing with all the stress of being a teenage girl, I was dealing with the fact my mom was really sick. Going to school was difficult for me because I only wanted to be with my mom. I missed a lot of school in eighth grade. In other ways, it was an escape for me from everything bad that was going on at home.

Going to a small school meant that everyone knew everything about you. There was a lot of people who would talk about you and say things that weren't true. Even though I had some great friends, there was always someone who felt left out in my school. There was 30 girls so when you had a birthday party everyone would find out and everyone had to be invited. Going through this was hard because I didn't really like everyone at my school but I never wanted to feel left out.

When I went to high school, I went to a big school. I wasn't faced with the problems of feeling included and including other people. I'm sure that the students at Park View are never faced with the problems I was faced with because there is so many students. I'm sure most of the students don't have to deal with problems as complex as the ones I had. My middle school experience wasn't one that was ordinary.

Alexis Efron
Education- expertise statement
16 September 2013

Something I know a lot about now, after reading the article American Schools in Crisis is how the government tries to run our school systems. Truthfully, before reading this article and the text book I didn't know very much about standards students had to meet and why they had to meet them. This article explained the different kinds of programs the government tries to install in order to boost standardized testing scores. This article talks mostly about the problems faced when these programs are enacted.
The article starts off talking about how people have had problems with the American school system for years. I have always thought the school systems weren't run well based on what I've heard and experienced. When taking an international test in 1964 we came in twelfth out of twelve countries. This gave America a bad reputation and lowered the morale for Americans. Americans were discouraged because they felt that the new generations would be on par with the rest of the world.
Since then, our education system has gotten better and we have seen some advances. The government is still trying to better our school systems though. In 2001 a law was passed called No Child Left Behind. This changed how the government was able to control education. Every school was required to test kids from grades three through eight on math and reading through standardized testing. The schools with the higher test scores would get higher benefits and same with the teachers. Not all students are the same and not all are perfect. The system says it will shut down or privatize all schools that do not improve within five years. According to the Secretary of Education, that would be around 80% of the schools. That is why this system is flawed.
I didn't know about any of this before reading the text book or American Schools in Crisis. Now I have a vast understanding on the topic. I do not think that either the system that Bush or Obama tried administering worked well. Both of these systems were very flawed because they did not look at the individual students. They just looked at students as a whole. Their main goal was to boost test scores, they didn't care about the individual needs of the children.