What Happens When Repeated and Intentional Threats to Student Beliefs Becomes Mandated?

That provocative title based on an urgent concern we should all be pondering comes from this quote from an Education Professor credentialling who can teach or be the boss. All at taxpayer expense based on an unappreciated definition of Literacy being imposed everywhere now on classrooms under the Common Core ruse.

“My sense is that all learners need their belief structures to be routinely threatened in ways that move them to interrogate those beliefs. To do otherwise is to deny the opportunity for my students, my colleagues, and myself to teeter on that fulcrum of threat and, using our collective weight, to defy the gravity of our circumstances.

Now, this acknowledges these methods constitute threats to a student’s sense of self that will be painful for some students and teachers. And it acknowledges trying to create mental approaches that students will remain in as they journey through life that  may well repudiate the Mindset brought from homes with educated, involved parents and lots of books and conversation from birth. And it acknowledges that the desired classroom is about encouraging teachers and students to be theorizers–”creating theories about how the world operated, testing those theories, and reassessing” without regard to facts or history or reality. If this is the school and classroom experience you advocate Educators impose, should you immediately write a Op-Ed after the Newtown tragedy complaining that there is something wrong with Upper Middle Class White Students and the US needs gun control?

http://blogs.ajc.com/get-schooled-blog/2012/12/21/fearing-young-black-men-in-hoodies-while-ignoring-while-young-white-men-with-glocks/ is the editorial before Christmas that really struck me as propaganda for the paper that published it. I have chronicled all the social and emotional targeting of students and the repeated rational, abstract  mind attacks. Those are not well-known to the public at large but they seem well-known in the Colleges of Education. That’s where they get created and a willingness to be a blind and deaf advocate for them earns Masters and Doctorate degrees now in too many places.

The fact is that these largely White Middle Class communities and schools that have been the location of school tragedies also are places that all seem to be piloting the Affective, Change the Student Approaches instead of the historic Transmitting of Knowledge. This fact is quite well-known among the education professorate. It’s the public that fails to see the connection among Flow experiences, Transformational Outcomes Based Education (both are described in the previous post), Systems Thinking, or the Best Practice/Standards for Teaching and Learning that I described here http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/didnt-the-president-just-admit-ccssi-was-a-ruse-to-change-classroom-interactions/ .

This paragraph is an aside to this post but it may well be enlightening to some of you on how this gets in place. Plus I try to be fair here. We are dealing with troubling or bad ideas on this blog and not people themselves. I would classify Professor Fecho’s work as well as his UGA colleague Peter Smagorinsky as being part of that Standards for Teaching and Learning approach. Their theories of pedagogy and Literacy suggest that UGA was not just interested in constructivist math when it took a huge NSF grant of $10.3 million in 2002 to set up a Center for Learning and Teaching. Lucky Georgians were getting the Whole Language/Psycholinguistics approach to reading and writing as well as part of Georgia’s piloting of the Performance Standards that would in turn become the basis for the actual Common Core implementation now going national. And really catching up to the international initiative being pushed globally through UNESCO.

This matters to me and maybe you too, for example, because it explains why the description of Common Core sent out at the beginning of this school year by high school English teachers did not match what I know about the Common Core and those teachers. They had a new Department head with a UGA Masters in Reading who would have been influenced by Fecho and Smagorinsky’s politically inspired approaches to teaching. She is now an Assistant Principal about a year after joining the school as a teacher. See how advocating certain theories creates a fast track to lucrative promotions? See how all this can affect your child’s classroom or just your community school out of site? In the nicest neighborhoods? Which is the whole idea. No islands of academic knowledge and minds burgeoning with accurate facts and logic are to be allowed. Anywhere.

Back to this post’s concern over what has really been transpiring in many classrooms. It is now to be a national mandate in the name of the Common Core with requirements imposed for schools to remain accredited. Professor Fecho himself advocates a classroom approach for adult and younger students he calls creating “an atmosphere where wobble takes place.” http://www.cocostudio.com/pubs/Fecho-July10_EE.pdf is the 2010 article from English Education that explains the wobble process and the desired “shift in balance” in a student’s belief system. Later (page 429) the article cites Soviet philosopher Bakhtin and politically radical educator Paulo Freire for this theoretical view of Self. It is not a factual view of Self but a political aspiration for accomplishing what everyone involved admits is a radical economic, political, and social Transformation.

In other words, this is not about how to teach subjects but how to transform enough students from the inside-out to use the majority electoral process to impose a New Vision for the future. On all of us. Key to that is treating the student’s identity as not settled. So that the classroom curriculum and activities become a means of creating continuous “centripetal and centrifugal tension” on a student’s personality. That seems to be a fancy way of saying pulling it apart from every direction.

The stronger the personality and mind that walks in the door of one of these soon to be increasingly prevalent classrooms, the harder this type of classroom experience will be. For a sharp mind this highly psychological emphasis makes the school anything but a safe zone. If it was me as a teenager, I would see the process described above in the opening paragraph or the wobble push as turning school into a torture chamber. Forcing teachers to go along is a huge part of of these Effective Teacher Evals you are hearing so much about. See http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/coercing-teachers-to-be-social-and-political-saboteurs-what-can-be-done/ for more on the Eval Coercion and why.

I delayed posting a few days on this so I could read Professor Fecho’s book “Is This English?” Race, Language, and the Culture in the Classroom to make sure I was being fair. The title and opening quote comes from that book (page 146 to be exact). I am not going to second guess the Professors belief that this was a good approach in an urban Philadelphia classroom with minority children that seemed disengaged from school.

I am saying that the insistence on Equity and Levelling and eliminating the Axemaker Mind anywhere it appears means that school in some of our suburbs became and is becoming a place where teachers are being forced to push theories and psychological practices that already have a tragic history. They may be unfamiliar with the background of these theories and practices but we are not any longer. The creators of these theories and practices want Change in students mentally and emotionally and what they value and believe in going forward. They want those changes to gain a Collectivist oriented political and economic future. This time it is supposed to be “humane” socialism with politically connected amenable Big Business allowed as Collaborators with this Government Led and Enforced Vision.

I don’t think it will work well. Most people will be looking at a much lower standard of living in the future with less differences among us. That’s a high price to pay for Equity. No more widespread prosperity.

I genuinely believe that the “inexplicable” school shootings of the last 20 or so years in the US are too consistently tied to places that are cutting edge in pushing these transformative theories in the classroom for it to be coincidental. School ceases to be a place of safety when the intention is to create something akin to wobble. Deliberately trying to break the mind brought from home. Intentionally using education to mount a political coup by stealth may avoid the Gulags that were necessary elsewhere. But this education theory approach has not been without victims.

If these theories and practices become nationalized as planned, I fear these tragedies may become more common. The answer is to first stop this psychologized, mentally abusive and emotionally intrusive political classroom.

Not to insist that everyone must be disarmed so that guns and rational minds are both being deliberately taken away by what amounts to government fiat.

13 thoughts on “What Happens When Repeated and Intentional Threats to Student Beliefs Becomes Mandated?

  1. The hubris – the sheer, unalloyed hubris – that drives these people is utterly astonishing to me. Utterly fantastic. Just coming to grips with the fact that people who think in this way exist, not only around the world but in America takes a good bit of intellectual/historical background as well as a willingness to stare the Gorgon in the face.

    Its rather, in our day, like the gophers that pop up out of the holes in that carnival game. You smack one down and another pops up. One Lenin,, one Gramsci, one Marcuse, one Carson leaves the stage and three more take his/her place.

    I was surfing around some of my favorite conservative/libertarian websites and came across this. I think this is a wonderful object lesson in what we are facing as a people and what some of the possibilities might be in circumventing and tuning in, turning on, and dropping out of the “progressive’s” risk and personal responsibility-free controlled day care center state.

    http://cascadepolicy.org/?p=11343

    • That’s a good link Loran.

      You know Peter Senge rates Portland as one of the school districts most supportive of the systems thinking approach.

      And Bill Spady mentioned Oregon in his 1997 book from the previous post as the state that did not back away from OBE. I would list others but he mentioned Oregon. I think it is the state where you can most clearly see the links among education and the Agenda 21 planning of how land can and cannot be used.

      The Bioregionalism movement is really strong through there, Washington State, and into British Columbia where it began. Silly artificial borders being so 20th century.

      When I am reading so many of these books, I am reading someone who has lived at taxpayer expense or received a salary from a nonprofit all their lives. I honestly think they have no idea what drives an economy or why social interaction, theorizing, and meaning making of life’s situations as they come along mean a whole lot of adults unable to produce anything of value apart from showing up with their hands and their time.

      You gut the division of labor with its varieties of knowledge and skills and aptitudes and interests and you necessarily gut an economy regardless of personal intentions. As Von Mises said, you cannot change the economic effects regardless of whether you understand them. Like gravity that way.

      Happy New Year even if the topic is sobering. We understand this and that’s important. Given the number of demonstrable falsehoods I have already read in 2013 on what Common Core is doing, it will be a busy time here at Invisible Serfs Collar. Classify me as going into that dark night kicking, screaming, and writing in earnest.

    • Let us begin asking a very basic question: How can a “threat” be mandated? Not under my Constitution, and never within my educational experience. I recall Norman O. Brown suggesting, “Let us pry,” and anyone with any literary background will get the reference. “Let us pry” does not mean, nor has it ever meant, “Let me tell you what to think.” People: read more carefully. Think more carefully. It seems to me the professor in question, to whom this poster refers, is simply saying, “Let us pry.”

      • Hi Elizabeth,

        Having read Fecho’s entire book as well as his article on creating Wobble in the classroom and challenging student’s identity and sense of self. I think it’s more than prying that is intended. If this is the only post you have read we have multiple cites in other posts declaring as john a powell of Ohio State wrote, we must break the concept of the unitary self. Using a book Professor Fecho cited about designing social futures, yesterday I got to read Professor James Paul Gee explain that there are “no discrete individuals, Only ensembles of skills stored in a person.” That’s factually not true and the whole paragraph gets worse. But it is what is being taught in colleges of education or we would not be getting principals resigning and then explaining to the local paper that he had an opportunity to “increase his skill set.”

        Because of the power the accreditation agencies have been given by legislatures and federal agencies, they actually can require this sort of thing in the classroom as part of a student centered classroom. They currently function in a virtually unrestricted capacity and it is John Dewey’s Social Reconstruction and Ericson’s human development theory among others guiding them.

        A great deal of what is going on is the converse of what the US Constitution dictates which is why Common Core is part of a coordinated effort to undermine the common understanding of it. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/morphing-the-common-core-into-a-new-rewritten-us-constitution-by-mandating-false-beliefs/ is that story citing Goodwin Liu’s work. I am not stretching in the least. But as a lawyer and history major I am more familiar with the Constitution that is typical.

        Finally the new College, Career and Civic Life (C3) Framework that was released Thanksgiving week quietly is also a rejection of our history and Constitution as it existed before this 21st century assault via education. http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/tearing-up-the-fabric-of-a-free-society-the-new-college-career-and-civic-life-c3-framework/ explains C3. I have never forgotten reading its desire for students to put on and wear and use false lenses of reality for years at a time via school to permanently change their adult perceptions of reality.

        I personally would love having English class return to a “Let Us Pry” examination of literature. But that is not what is being aspired to. And I know what my own children and their friends had to say about the IB approach to literature. They hated that they were being told what to believe instead of discussing interpretations of the book.

        Please post some more. I would love to have your continued contributions to something that is just cranking up in most schools. Those of us in IB schools or with Gypsy Principals or Supers are a bit further along. Unfortunately.

  2. hi Robin,
    the wack a mole analogy is so true! however it occurs to me that perhaps a proactive thing we can do to supplement writing is get it out there at your school and meet with every one of your children’s teachers and admin and tell them not only that you know this is happening, that it is unethical and damaging to children and that you are a gatekeeper. tell them you want listings of every program used in the classroom to generate worksheets and tests and the names of all textbooks and workbooks. Tell them you want the names of all of the curriculum council and contacts. tell them you want to know of any outside groups or student teachers or teachers aides and things like CNN for kids or Time for Kids and you want copies. Let them know you are on the case and get some other parents onboardwith you. Let them know that they are being watched.
    like alinsky says a few can seem like an army.
    below is a link to a paper from a teacher prof at a local college outside philly, it says it all… teaching the teachers how to justify this kinder psych ops.

    http://people.exeter.ac.uk/PErnest/pome22/Appelbaum%20and%20Davila%20%20Math%20Education%20And%20Social%20Justice.doc

    I have been so shocked at the little things, the little chipping away at childrens minds going on in every subject. my kids have ” lifeskills” class.
    It is so obvious to me, I tell my kids to make up stuff. they ask questions like
    ” did you ever have a secret?” ask them to write about it. shades of hitler youth ratting out their parents! this is private Catholic school! Philadelphia arch diocese has embraced common core, and the blue ribbon and middle states accreditiation has gotten to them, not to mention the radical nuns, another mole to wack…. also be careful of the ” intermediate units”, we have mciu and they are county and do speech therapy among alot of other things including pushing mctigh’s understanding by design, UdB…. backward design OBE same stuff…. teach to the ” BIG IDEAS” no facts no history just get the kids to remember the big idea…. whites are bad, you are bad, america is bad, religion is bad, communism is good. I am seeing it.

    I have spoken to a few teachers and gotten different responses, one young married pregnant sweet, confessed that she would not recommend anyone go into teaching. she said zero of her is allowed and it is 100% common core.
    she stopped the CNN for kids because she never thought of it in any other terms than that kids need to see current events, of course what she was taught by these loons. I told her it was none of her business to have my children watch any tv shows, least of all the main stream media biased politicised fear monger pushers. I told her to think of her baby and would she want a stranger deciding to show her child news of a shooting, volcano, terrorist election, whatever? she got it.
    the other one was a 56 year old man, second career teacher who got defensive and showed his colors by telling me very adamently that ” we didn’t win the American Revolution, Washington didn’t win that war, the British just got tired of fighting, then he jumped to vietnam and I knew his deal… Nevertheless I bet he will think twice now and then, knowing I am on to it and will not hesitate to take him to the woodshed again so to speak, and I have the ear of so many parents…
    anyway, great post and please check out http://www.jenkintownchronicle.com

    another critical pedagogy paper for the archive same bleep different page.
    http://faculty.education.illinois.edu/burbules/papers/critical.html

    • mad mommy,

      I have had an offline discussion with a concerned parent about the Catholic schools being included in that Gates Foundation grant. I looked into it and Philly was the only location that explicitly included the Catholic schools.

      This response will have to be swift as I am finishing dinner. Have you read the post where I explained the Pastoral Cycle for Social Justice and Henriot & Holland?

      http://www.invisibleserfscollar.com/now-its-head-heart-and-hands-to-get-us-to-environmental-social-and-economic-justice/ is that link.

      The teachers who want to teach content are afraid for their jobs. Others seem angry at the students who still manage to learn the content even though the teachers are not to teach it in this transitional phase.

      The District Super seemed to believe that having the accreditors limit the jurisdiction of the local school board meant that I had no recourse. So when I asked respectful but precise questions upon first meeting him and then went up later to shake his hand he refused to take it. And gave me the most evil, blackhearted stare I have ever seen. And I have dealt with a scoundrel or two in my life. Enough that I talked to defense lawyers I know on the look I was talking about.

      They knew.

      So creating a national and international hullaboola actually gives more local leverage. This is more than an objection as a parent about teaching methods.

      This is a political coup. And the sources say so repeatedly.

  3. This is from the “Critical Thinking and Critical Pedagogy:
    Relations, Differences, and Limits” mad mommy posted, and is an excellent example of the linguistic arson (what Robin calls “mind arson” when its taught to unsuspecting and uncritical children) and deceptiveness inherent in the entire cultural Marxist project:

    “At a broad level, Critical Thinking and Critical Pedagogy share some common concerns. They both imagine a general population in society who are to some extent deficient in the abilities or dispositions that would allow them to discern certain kinds of inaccuracies, distortions, and even falsehoods. They share a concern with how these inaccuracies, distortions, and falsehoods limit freedom, though this concern is more explicit in the Critical Pedagogy tradition, which sees society as fundamentally divided by relations of unequal power. Critical Pedagogues are specifically concerned with the influences of educational knowledge, and of cultural formations generally, that perpetuate or legitimate an unjust status quo; fostering a critical capacity in citizens is a way of enabling them to resist such power effects. Critical Pedagogues take sides, on behalf of those groups who are disenfranchised from social, economic, and political possibilities. Many Critical Thinking authors would cite similar concerns, but regard them as subsidiary to the more inclusive problem of people basing their life choices on unsubstantiated truth claims — a problem that is nonpartisan in its nature or effects.”

    Anyone versed in actual “critical thinking” can easily take away from this at least several things, but what stands out is the way one question is begged after another to support a narrow, ideologically channeled body of presuppositions. Notice how all the answers are already known in advance, the only problem being to discover the details or process involved? The authors already assume, and speak as if they know that there is such a thing as “groups who are disenfranchised from social, economic, and political possibilities” and that society is ” fundamentally divided by relations of unequal power.” There is an “unjust status quo” that K-12 teachers (i.e., “change agents”) must teach the children of others to “resist.”

    “Critical thinking,” for the Left, then, is not disciplined, methodical thought, or the study of the laws of language (deductive and inductive logic, broadly speaking) to analyze the evidential content of arguments (or interest in semantics as a feature of such scrutiny), but simply an ideological template. That’s it. “Critical” means nothing more than “leftist” or “progressive.”

    Ideology hides in plain sight in word games.

    • Hi Loran,

      You had a duplicate so I took it out.

      Critical thinking as used in education does mean the recognition of the problems with existing society that supposedly merit wholesale Transformation. Even if the problems are real, we are likely to throw the unappreciated, quietly sleeping baby out with the bathwater.

      I will usually use analytical, logical or abstract thinking instead now to mean what is really conceptual thinking.

      I believe history shows nothing has delivered more prosperity for the disenfranchised than the ability to pursue their own interests and use their abilities and figure out how to better themselves. Critical pedagogy doesn’t lift anyone up and it guts much of what lifts everyone up to varying degrees.

      I forget how shocking this language can be the first time you read it. You recognize there is something else going on than how to teach a subject. Then when you discover it is widespread in a “we get to live off your taxes and you can’t stop us” sense, it’s like the world shifts.

      Mad Mommy’s links are great.

  4. Yes, Mad Mommy, keep ‘em coming. I am trying to put this link out there on the American Spectator site. The mighty Thomas Sowell has a great article about this at Spectator.org today. The truth is gradually emerging, but not nearly fast enough for us at serfs collar. So keep those links coming, I am reading them as fast as I can, or until I get sick and must choke in my beer. I am spreading the word among excolleagues but they only want to hear so much. As younsay, Robin, it’s their livelihoods, that’s all.

  5. No, you must do this soberly. And thanks for that. I shudder as I read social emotional vision for elementary students . . . My daughter now has 5, ages 2.5 through 10, and I absolutely shudder at the thought of my babies being engineered. I am watching them all closely, closely as I can without stepping on their Mom’s toes too much. She is with me on this though. Stay vigilant parents just learning of this blog.

  6. Hello from MADMOMMY,

    watched a documentary today about swedish gender philosophy that while subtitled made a fabulous case for the emporers new clothes. fabulous.
    watching and reading more info from UK and Scandanavia as they are much further along the dialectic process, much can be learned. Like us, their press is the 4 th arm of government and as we know we get very little of their news regarding the outrages by their citizens against this transformational cultural marxist destruction of society and overtaking. the fabians and frankfurts together skipping hand in hand, ” what me?” ” no no NOT us, it’s you…”
    hegelian weapon of choice.
    headed for an adult beverage, cheers!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQ2xrnyH2wQ&feature=youtube_gdata_player

    like this concise explanation and they are teachers I think
    http://www.verumserum.com/?p=10846

    a few links of provenance
    http://www.nccrest.org/Briefs/Teacher_Ed_Brief.pdf

    http://www.ncte.org/cee/positions/socialjustice

    Check out this brilliant guy from the UK:

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