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Reading, Math and Grit - NYTimes.com

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This column did not surprise me. Understanding human behavior and identifying character traits is what "school" always accomplished. Children cannot hang words on thoughts they never encountered, and they cannot grasp the intentions of behaviors that were never examined with an adult.
Thinking is a skill only acquired through practice, and the examination of the character traits that motivate humans is the meat of discussion. It is through discussion that meaning is garnered from text, and that is where the role of the mentor, the facilitator, the 'teacher' is crucial. With the removal of tens of thousands of experienced, dedicated professional educators, the mentors that provided the context for learning disappeared, and so did public education-- and the disappearance of of civility, integrity and honor, those character traits that enable compromise and cooperation!

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At www.nytimes.com

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