As Powerful as a Religious Conversion: Bestowing Deep Understandings for their Revolutionary Effects

In one of those obvious statements that really deserves a sarcastic “Really Sherlock?” response, did you know that people differ in their ability to come up with explanations and structures to organize their thoughts? Which is of course unfair. So in the interests of fairness and equity and without any mention of the political usefulness, schools and effective teaching should now be about providing those so-called Cognitive Structures. That enable thinking and motivate acting in the future. Thinking Tools. How nice. Then there need not be any “cognitive consequences of cultural opportunity.” Single parents, second language, learning disabilities. School will provide the Enduring or Deep Understandings that “serves to organize perception in new ways.” That conceptual lens that may not be true and is not spontaneously generated by All children will now fortuitously be Provided to All children.

Then All Children Can Learn and coincidentally will believe the same things that can have very nice side effects for anyone looking for Fundamental Transformation. Here’s a quote from a 1988 book reprinted regularly through the 90s about the research done with Native Hawaiians as part of the Kamehameha Elementary Education Program (KEEP). It had Ford and Carnegie Foundation funding as well as the National Science Foundation. KEEP was part of a restructuring template to make schools places providing assistance so Each Student can Learn. In the unadvertised sense of behavioral or belief system changes. Much more lasting than mere factual knowledge you see. Only someone working at someone else’s expense would dare say:

“We do not yet know under what circumstances cognitive structuring is to be preferred over questioning, or vice versa. The potential power of cognitive structuring is not in doubt. As in instances of religious conversion, the acceptance of a cognitive structure can have the most revolutionary effects on human behavior and experience. How and why this occurs remain largely mysteries, although our understanding of these remarkable processes is increasing.”

Now it would be possible to provide Concepts and Generalizations and Understandings that are politically neutral but once we get beyond fractions that does not appear to be what anyone has in mind. Old Timers in the Ed Wars will be quaking in their boots when they read that Lynn Erickson was citing Hilda Taba as a model to be emulated in this area of Conceptual Understanding. I will let you look Hilda up. But the idea that human development in school takes the “individual child in whatever form and guides and nurtures the mind, body, and self-concept” should give us all pause. Let’s put that in the context of World Bank economist Kaushik Basu writing in concluding Beyond the Invisible Hand:

“We can come to have norms where behaving otherwise is met with so much social disdain or self-loathing that no one does so. And in the long run, the norms can become so much a part of us that we end up following them not for any reason but rather because that is our instinctive behavioral response.”

And there’s nothing quite like providing “accepted explanatory belief systems” that are practiced with daily over years to transform those norms to instinctive responses. So nice from someone who also wrote that the “demise of the USSR is thus an indictment of a perverse brand of capitalism, not of socialism.” Gulp. Lots of political value in providing the concepts that guide everyday life. And don’t think the radical educators and political schemers (who are sometimes the same person) do not know it. They have been gloating over this for decades beyond our sight but not unrecorded for posterity.

We have covered Soviet psychologist Lev Vygotsky and his Cognitive Tools repeatedly as well as the related Cultural-Historical Activity Theory (CHAT) beehive at UC-San Diego.  It would probably surprise you then to know that in June 2007 the American Education Research Association (yes it was about the time AERA elected Bill Ayers as one of their guiding light execs) published  “Vygotsky’s Neglected Legacy: Cultural-Historical Activity Theory.”

Now neither CHAT nor Vygotsky strikes me as neglected in the least. I am practically feeling crushed by the frequency at which they pop up without looking. I think that essay though was intended to mainstream these theories in preparation for offense and implementation in more classrooms. The fact that the paper received funding from the Canadian government and had a co-author from Singapore further suggests we are dealing with a coordinated psychological assault against the individual mind anywhere that ever upheld Anglo-Saxon common law. This is a little long but important. Concepts matter and Concepts aimed at Reorganizing Thought matter most of all.

“Because CHAT addresses the troubling divides [not to me. I prefer the division thank you very much] between individual and collective, material and mental, biography and history, and praxis and theory, we believe that it is deserving of wider currency in the educational community. . . In part, the vigorous dialectical materialist grounding of psychology in Marxism that A.N. Leont’ev pursued may have slowed the reception of CHAT in the West. Yet we emphasize that these powerful analytic tools, existing even in Vygotsky’s works, have little to do with totalitarian regimes that have falsely masqueraded under the banner of Marxism, socialism, or communism.”

I believe that translates as nasty dictators misappropriated those lovely intentions of Uncle Karl and needlessly besmirched this lovely tool for future human development. This time we will get it right and will only manipulate people’s driving belief systems and values in beneficial ways. For their own good. For the Common Good. For the Planet. And you and I may find Dialectics to be an off-putting word we could do without but that is because we fail to appreciate “the dialectical nature of consciousness, which includes cognition, memory, and personality, among others.”

Well, I guess the dialectical part comes from wanting to fundamentally transform it and CHAT is apparently a PRIMO tool. Did you know that “dialectics is ‘possibly the most appropriate frame of reference for the study of human development, and indeed was actually developed as an explanation for human development?” Well, actually I did point that out   http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/who-knew-karl-marx-had-a-human-development-model-or-that-it-fit-our-facts-so-well/ but now we know once again why it fits our Common Core and global reform realities so well.

I am not going to belabor the number of times those coauthors used that D word in that essay. I will, however, mention that the result of all those contradictions and synthesis of Concepts results in a Deep Understanding. Which is exactly the phraseology the Hewlett Foundation keeps using to describe where it sees the Common Core going. And it dovetails with the Education for Life and Work report from last summer. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/so-now-common-core-rejects-individual-thinking-to-embrace-soviet-psychology-ecology/ .

Boy it sure does look like Leont’ev is getting his transformative experiment in the West that he told Urie Bronfenbrenner he aspired to back in the 60s. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/imitating-the-ussr-in-striving-to-discover-how-the-child-can-become-what-he-not-yet-is/ is the post where I explained that ginormous discovery. That is even more important now as we think about all those false conceptual lenses in Urie’s Ecological Systems Thinking Theory. Which is all through the new C3 Social Studies Framework.

One way to think of the to-be-supplied Concepts and Cognitive Structures and Mental Maps is to see them as “schooled concepts.” The Russians so got the importance of the difference between what can be understood only as a result of formal instruction and everyday practices that the 1988 book mentioned above includes the Russian term nauchnoe ponyatie along with the cite to Vygotsky. These Abstract Concepts are learned at school and then applied “downward” from “generalization to palpable example.” All our mentions of Real World problems and Relevance seem to be based on the recognition from Vygotsky and his followers that “Everyday concepts stand between schooled concepts and the experienced world. Schooled concepts, in Jovian detachment, can connect with the world below only through the everyday concepts that have risen through practical activity. …The constant relating of schooled with everyday concepts enriches and saves schooling from aridity, but this relating also profoundly changes the nature of the everyday concepts that are touched, making them ever more systemic, autonomous, and tool-like.”

These research observations could be used to help teach students to better understand reality as it exists but that would not be transformative. Or perhaps as Engaging. Instead the weaving of schooled concepts with the everyday is to be used to create activities and projects and learning tasks with the purpose of “a fundamental restructuring in which all are transformed: actions, relationships, and thinking.” The cite is to another Soviet psychologist. This time El’konin.

I am not looking for Boogie Men (or women) here but we clearly have a constant refrain of Transformation. And I am getting an increasingly uncomfortable feeling that many influential people at the helm or employed by influential institutions or foundations believe that the Human Development aspects of Uncle Karl’s writings make a good Overlord theory for the 21st Century. And they do intend to give it a try in real time on a massive scale all over the West. But especially against the World’s only Superpower and its  economy.

And the US for the most part is completely unaware that this most subjugating of theories against the primacy of the individual is coming in under an “How All Children Can Learn” banner.

 

 

25 thoughts on “As Powerful as a Religious Conversion: Bestowing Deep Understandings for their Revolutionary Effects

  1. So the new 21st Century educational paradigm is not concerned with a gradual maturation of concept, but rather, in the interest of equity (and its clandestine social, economic, and political goals) it furnishes the concept, the orthodox concept. This doesn’t require much intellectual exertion on the part of the students. Exertion? That would be silly.

    And these orthodox concepts (Erickson’s EU’s and so forth), outside of the study of fractions and the like, do have a quasi-religious dimension. Are we to forget the past? Remember the words of Justice Robert Jackson:
    “The very purpose of a Bill of Rights was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them beyond the reach of majorities and officials and to establish them as legal principles to be applied by the courts. One’s right to life, liberty, and property, to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections . . . If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein.”

    Yet that’s precisely what they’re requiring, a belief in communitarianism, sustainability, social justice, etc. These are most definitely “matters of opinion,” dogmatically presented as concepts and enduring understandings.

    • Well said. And a very good Jackson quote. No, these are not areas where the government can provide these beliefs and values for them and have any expectation of our remaining free long. It really is hard to read but it is too important not to tell.

      In Georgia in the battle over integrated math it was the Frameworks not the content standards that governed the assessments and tests and the classroom. Then when Race to the Top was seeking participating districts the contract language insisted that the instruction and prof devt comply with the frameworks, not CCSSI and its content. I pointed it out to the Deputy State Super and she danced a jig on why it was phrased that way.

      Then when I read the CRESST report for Hewlett Eva Baker mentioned that the assessments would be built around the concepts in the frameworks not the standards themselves. The idea is these beliefs will frame how people see the world and that understandings are to be common. They can have classroom input but everyone does not get to build their own case. I was PBK in college and the comparable honor in law school. I did that because I could develop and back up answers even my profs had not necessarily thought of that way. That used to be A + work. Developing an understanding from the facts. I used to think my profs should ask as good a synthesizing question as they expected in answers.

      One of the reasons I went ahead and wrote this up this afternoon was how much it bothered me to understand this. But I got up early this morning to read Erickson’s Stirring the Head, Heart and Soul and then tied it back against the AERA and 1988 book. Dialectic. Dialectic. Every other page because they do want change. Reproduction or individually developed and supported concepts are really not OK.

      You may have guessed it was Basu who I spoke of earlier. Hard to read him writing nice things about Mao and Che. Or talking about free market capitalism which is darn rare in most of the world. But that is not consistent with his story of change. And with the World Bank being connected to ATC 21S and Brookings featuring him it feels like a barrage and everyone is seeking much the same transformation while they get paid taxpayer money regardless to spin these schemes.

      I feel like shaking these books sometimes and asking if anyone understands what makes the world work.

      Would you like unicorns with that vision while we are at it?

  2. As a point of information, “nauk” in Russian is “science”, so I would translate “nauchnoye ponyatii” as “scientific understandings” rather than “schooled understandings”.

    • David,

      That was explicitly discussed in the book that it could mean scientific but it is scientific in the soft science sense. Then they discussed if scholarly was more apt and then settled on schooled because the point is that these theories or understandings or abstractions are to be formally taught. I can quote it verbatim if you’d like but it is not hard science scientific. It’s not necessarily true. It is theory designed to be put into practice to yield the desired changes.

    • Ok. Now that I have fed child No 3 you can have the full quote:

      “How does the development of literacy alter verbal thinking? In order to examine this question, it is necessary first to distinguish between ‘everyday’ concepts and ‘schooled’ concepts. Minick translated the Russian nauchnoe ponyatie (Vygotsky, 1987) as ‘scientific concepts’ (NJ Minick, personal communication, 1986). It translates equally well as ‘scholarly concepts.’ The kernel of the issue is that these concepts, unlike everyday concepts, are schooled and systematic. The connotations of both ‘scientific’ and ‘scholarly’ are not quite correct for the realities of the phenomena, regardless of the translatability issues.

      Furthermore, science as it is practiced is not described accurately by Vygotsky’s ‘scientific concepts’ (M Wilson, personal communication, 1986). Thus, the most accurate English word for the concept as we understand it today may be neither ‘scientific’ or ‘scholarly,’ but ‘schooled.’ We shall therefore use the term ‘schooled concepts’ as the term to be opposed to ‘everyday concepts.’ Though he does not suggest any revision in the term ‘scientific concepts,’ Leont’ev (1935/1983) discusses the term in language consistent with our proposed usage. He urges that the social interactions that produce scientific concepts must be understood as arising from the social and historical development of formal education and its related and supporting social institutions.”

      • OK now I see, there’s just a bit of built-in snark in the translation. Literally it is either “scientific” or “scholarly”, but the translator in this case believes that does not properly describe it and the use of the root word “nauk” is not appropriate. Perhaps “uchennii” (studied) would have been better, if the original in Russian had been written objectively.

        I have to agree, to the extent that understandings arrived at via Vygotskian “education” would likely diverge from those that are scientific.

        • Let’s just say Vygotsky and his interpreters seized on the possibilities for words that “can be wrested from their designata and manipulated in the mind independent of their images.” I am convinced this is why sight reading is being pushed so much again. There is no desire for children and adults to be free and able to read anything. That ability to read words you have never seen is to be gone. You can read what you have been exposed to and those words become what frames most people’s inner speech. I have looked into Fountas & Pinnell’s Guided Reading. You can see the equal communicative capacity vision coming into play.

          This is a passage on the next page that tells you how much the possibilities of restricting and manipulating the language used are being thought through here. It also explains why Pittsburgh’s LRDC copyrighted the term Accountable Talk before the Common Core rollout and why I am hearing of K and lower el teachers being told they cannot go off script in the classroom.

          [Written speech] “enforces an experience of language as a system. This systematicity–self-contained and self-sufficient–is what allows language to be unhooked from the sensory world, to be taken in hand by the thinker, to be used as a tool for thought.”

          So the desire is to have it be a closed system with meanings and understandings provided and illustrated with examples but not independently arrived at. It does not have to be gamed but a look at the concepts and generalizations to be taught and the insistence on common meanings and Understandings and going back to CORE, Cognitive Reorganization, from that 1997 Teaching Intelligence essay we talked about in the Viewing a CORE Decree post in April. Remember it does not matter for behavioral influences if causation is real, believing everything you do impacts others has a behavioral effect even if it is not true. Same is true of the RECAST research on Revealing Causal Structures. There has been a great deal of money spent looking into how to get students to believe ideas in the social sciences including history as it is to be taught and the physical complex systems around us that are false but influential. Big History indicates to me this is ramping up and coming together almost as a common cosmology in the typical student’s mind. History as a progression building upon people and events as if there were no human will involved. With this kind of education engaged in Mind Arson and deliberate Manipulation of Beliefs there won’t be much independent will. Certainly not of the herd defying kind.

          But you and I know that many of the physical systems like Climate that the students will be urged to see as closed, are in fact open to the extent they operate as systems at all. And the relationships the students and then adults will come to see as causal are actually not at all or only tangentially. Where poverty exists, for example, the reasons are always structural. Never poor individual choices that then steamroll.

          Going back to the USSR or China for a minute those citizens always knew or know on some level that they are being manipulated. What makes education a useful weapon against the West if the attack is noetic, which over time impacts everything else, is that the manipulation is largely invisible. And with the rise of the Cloud and the move away from textbooks and open-ended assessments about to be more so. Barber gets to make Global Citizenship and its tenets the replacement for religion and Marx. A little late than he envisioned in the 90s if you remember that post but coming in now all over the world.

          It’s not just the repeated refrain of transformative purpose and intent. You can see the falsities in the definitions of terms provided. Or in something like the AP World History Frameworks. Capitalism and Industrialization were at fault for all the world’s wrongs and environmental horrors and communism was just an international economic and political system for allocating goods and services. That’s why those frameworks got pulled. They were so blatant but I have never forgotten what was sought. Nor the connection to Big History through the friendship and working relationship between William McNeill and David Christian.

          • If they were pulled no one told my school.the 2008 pearson text book from my sons fifth grade ss class says exactly that.

          • Mad Mommy-can you elaborate?

            What exactly does the textbook say? At least you have textbooks to monitor. There are many reasons the cloud concept covers up most of the curriculum of the future.

            Plus today’s post was the start of a series that pulls everything together. My head is just swimming now with both sinus congestion and all the things I know, have documented, but have not written up yet.

    • Liz-here’s an anecdote about me. I was General Counsel of the company that developed outpatient MRI centers back when no one had heard of MRI. You cannot bring MRI into a classroom because of what a magnet can do. You have to keep so many substances away from it. BUT the functional MRIs are tremendously useful for learning what parts of the brain are firing and what it means must have been going on in the classroom. They are especially useful in how the brain reads.

      MRI can be a monitor of what must be going on, or NOT if that’s the preference, in a classroom. But it cannot be physically present in a classroom.

      And having dealt with GE on numerous business contracts, if an MRI could be put in the classroom, GE would be looking at the terms of servicing and financing it. That’s where they make their money. Apart from the benefits of a Cronyism Economy about who knows whom.

      I am concerned about the ability and desire to monitor whether the brain works well given that working poorly seems to be the goal. But the best that can be done is a mobile MRI van in a parking lot. And even that is a nuisance.

      That would necessitate an NSF brain monitoring grant. Which unfortunately they would likely fund and then forward the info to the Data Quality Campaign.

      • That was an interesting post that you linked to above, the one about the Marxist Human Development Model. Especially strange was the excerpt from Vol. 1 of Capital:

        “it is essential to communism that it transcend the capitalist division of labor… the partially developed individual, who is merely the bearer of one specialized social function, must be replaced by the fully developed individual, fit for a variety of labors, ready to face any change in production, for whom the different social functions he performs are only so many modes of giving free scope to his own natural and acquired powers.”

        A large part of these “labors,” I suspect, could be keeping data on one another—there’s no end to what can be monitored, recorded, and filed away.

        Thanks for bringing up Data Quality Campaign, something else that’s new to me. One of the state actions that jumped out at me (in light of the Marx quote) was “Develop a P-20/workforce research agenda.” Sounds like a dialectic in the making.

        • Desuetude,

          The Data Quality Campaign has been on my radar since Michael Barber scooped up the Ga State Super who had pushed the performance standards and integrated math that were supposedly piloting the actual Common Core implementation. I had met and spoken to Kathy on more than one occasion and she was not being hired for her competence and brains. She gets a Deer in the Headlights look when asked a question. Which told me DQP was something in need of a frontperson.

          There’s an Ed Week article from a few weeks ago that did not merit a separate story but it mentions as it is going somewhere else that all these videogames and online learning programs a la Blended Learning have algorithms that can tell much about an individual from their choices. Then a trajectory can be created for whatever the actual goal is. Like a “shared’ mental model as a paper that included both Peter Senge and Tina Grotzer of CORE and RECAST and Understanding of Consequence framed it. How to shift individuals away from their individual mental models to the “shared” one. With scare quotes just like that.

          There is no disputing that is what is going on because I am relying on people’s own words as to intentions. So I have gone back to the clearly related economic visions like Basu’s. I need to spend more time delving in but he wants to move away from technical understandings to intuitive ones. And use social institutions, which of course would include schools, to create different beliefs and attitudes and prevailing norms, so that the kind of future society that seems Utopian now is possible.

          I would guess that is why World Bank hired him from being a Cornell prof and India’s Chief Eco Advisor. I have seen in several places in the last week recent as in last several years published essays that too much attention was paid in the past to ownership of the means of production and not enough to that Human Devt Model. It sure fits with the ed vision I am seeing all over the world.

          Think of it as education to be malleable and incapable or unwilling to Rock the Boat as it is being steered for you. And a willingness to join in and row hard where ever it is going.

          I minored in Economics by the way. I wouldn’t say I am having fun but I can tell when I am reading BS or a “new” theory that is merely a renamed old one being told from a structural rather than an individual perspective. This old post should also help http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/all-that-is-solid-melts-into-air-but-does-it-really/

          Remember I am pulling all this out of published and funded UN plans and the accreditors work with the UN agencies to transition toward their vision of the future.

          Think of school as part of the environment to be changed and an environment that can change the students that go there. And curricula not as a body of knowledge but as a tool for such change from the inside out.

  3. Hey, rse, for reasons that are unclear, this primer on one of the profs in the Journal Op Ed, doesn’t post,so I put it here; http://math.berkeley.edu/~frenkel/ From my limited experience, admittedly, i’ve seen how the state approved NCLB template, Ignite doesn’t work,

    • Thanks narciso. I will get a hard copy of that plug for the Common Core Frenkel is pushing in today’s Wall Street Journal.

      I just read that Michelle Rhee told a group of Florida legislators to counter all criticisms of the Common Core with it being necessary to remain competitive with China. To drop the state led line. Yes, because the evidence that it was fictitious is getting overwhelming and it feeds into a response that the states should now be able to change their minds.

      Of course the China line simply plays into my posts that this is all about creating govt led Industrial Policy built around Big Business and creating mindsets that will tolerate such collective direction in the future.

      It seems to me the sales pitches for the Common Core are getting increasingly shrill as people like me push through the rhetoric and lay out the real planned implementation in schools and the classroom. And the accompanying visions of wholesale economic, social, and political Transformations being sought.

      I simply cannot distance what Berkeley math profs have to say from what George Akerlof wrote in his Identity Economics and the intro Robert Reich wrote to The Spirit Society or the work that has been done at the Berkeley School of Ed. If you have a holistic view of the future and advocate holistic approaches with schools as the transformative mechanism, it is silly to pretend you are then just a disinterested mathematician speaking from the silo of the math department.

      Discrediting siloes and academic disciplines is a huge part of the CCSSI approach offensively. Protecting the implementation does not get to then be based on using math siloes as bunkers to defer to.

      These people definitely are not used to someone reading the footnotes and the small print and actual reports instead of Executive Summaries.

      • Falsus in uno, falsus in omnibus.
        COMMON CORE, like so much of the UN sustainable charade is built upon falsehoods such as “state led”, like your Rhee reference, just change the excuse, or name, or story if it gets too hot.
        this bears reposting.
        http://www.narlo.org/congamea21.pdf

        http://www.joelkotkin.com/content/00737-ca-vs-suburbs-planners-smart-growth-and-manhattan-delusion

        here is a great little vid starring an interesting accented central planner running a REDEVELOPMENT org named SCAG in LA, like ABAG in the north of California and with an atitude to match. Joel points out the historical differences between NYC and LA and why one should not be forced to be the other, much like the COMMON CORE search for sameness, but not.

        My son 2 years ago in 3rd grade was vygotskied under the pretense of ” county provided speech therapy ” to our private school for his developmentally normal speech glitch.
        He was bringing home ” homework” which was very weird worksheets with obviously NOT american graphics and questions ( under the guise of practicing speaking?) like, “what kind of shirts did your father wear when he was young? compare those to the shirts you wear today.”
        I was like WTbleep, I cannot even talk about this idiocy…. so I looked up the bottom of the sheet where it said:
        “THINKING SPEECH”
        googled it and this was top site
        http://www.marxists.org/archive/vygotsky/works/words/
        needless to say I was THRILLED.

        at that time I was living a very real central planning battle in my own town and was struck by the similarities when I began to research this also, found COMMON CORE eventually.

        • Yes, the Secretary General of the UN has said that education is now the UN’s primary tool in implementing their agenda. They really do not need additional treaties.

          Read that old post I posted to Desuetude citing the 2006 Economic Affairs approach that all we need is Tacit Knowledge. And how closely the language about building better governmental institutions dovetails with President Obama’s commencement speech Sunday at Ohio State. Almost verbatim.

          No need to fear an Overlord attitude and approach, it’s the 21st century and this time with new norms and using school to change a student’s sense of self, it will all work.

          They should have unicorns grazing in a field to tip people off about the fantasies involved with the political, social, and economic goals attached to the Common Core actual vision.

          Or this from the Dept of Energy http://www.brookings.edu/blogs/the-avenue/posts/2013/05/06-clean-energy-manufacturing-andes-muro

          No wonder the state and local politicians of both parties do not want to face the reality that they are selling off our future for what is unquestionably Mind Arson.

  4. this is interesting, provides a map to accomplish what you are saying in the scholarly name of socrates, how clever

    http://api.ning.com/files/co4SlF2nbJc8Gg84AwwqfZmBGn53Rgd3MeBet0dLVnmgfPQVyjrRmQ23Q*3yDbHU06I*gQFiOTllf2yj2t01pj*VY53vEfQH/SocraticTIEConference2012.pdf

    aside from the above document, what you are saying is pulling together my research.
    breaking down the silos, confusing and intermingling areas of study. I see it every day with my kids assignments and I am like, exactly what is this trying to teach? what subject is it?
    well I will tell you. alot of nada. generalized insufficent unscholarly vagueness straddling subjects. with a vocab to add the spice of cognative reorganizing repetition, to imprint the chosen worldview. calculating words of political radicalism, and social justice, globalism, antinationalism, gender justice, terror, fear, all the marquee topics, I have all the assignments saved, my kids bring them to me now.

      • Magical thinking? Wow, I never heard of that approach, unless we’re writing fantasy. But that fits right in with the quote (from Psychological Tools) that Robin shared in the Desiring Radical Dialectic Change post:

        “Prospective education implies that students should be capable of approaching problems that do not yet exist …To achieve this capability, the student should be oriented toward productive, rather than reproductive knowledge. Knowledge should thus appear not in the form of results and solutions but rather as a process of authoring.”

        Sounds like the ‘feelings, guessing, and impressions’ that Robin mentioned in connection with Tacit Knowledge. And if the student adds a touch of anger towards free markets and individualism, or a call for social justice, globalism, etc. he’ll earn his pellet—a decent grade.

      • Well that’s good news. There were a lot of interesting points towards the end—that there may have been violations of federal laws that forbid the Education Department to influence curriculum or assemble a national database; public education being controlled by 2 private organizations; the copyright issue.

        I don’t know if I share the optimism with which the article concluded. It seems like it’s one trick after another with politicians today. It scares me to think of what they might have done today that we won’t be finding out about for another 3 years.

        • It is good news because it increases the profile that there is a problem.

          You have probably noticed my pattern on discovering troubling facts is to go delving into history or economics or both to help explain it. In this case that ended up pushing out facts that I am familiar with from other directions but my word it’s a story.

          Plural. Several. But it just keeps making sense as well. In an I have power and would like to keep it sort of way.

          Going to be an interesting week. Just playing with what to describe, how, and when. Hope you had a lovely holiday weekend.

    • I started watching this video before and I didn’t have the patience to finish it. But I gave it another try. I agree—it’s a lot of nothing. Cognitive structure—I bet those ladies would consider tomato soup to be a cognitive structure.

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