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message 1: by Julie (new)

Julie (juliemoncton) | 248 comments Mod
4th-8th posted this article as part of a book review.
The article discusses a new report released by the Center on Education Policy that studied reading proficiency for US boys and girls in elementary, middle and high school. The article "finds that, overall, male students in every state where data were available lag behind females in reading." If you read the article, the numbers are scary. In some states, the difference is as much as 14 percentage points! And it's not just isolated to reading. More girls go to college than boys. 70% of C's and D's are given to boys. The statistics go on and on. As a mother of an 11-year old boy, this makes me worry. And unless we want to live in a society of Amazons (and not the .com, please!), this could not possibly bode well for our future.

What should parents do? I read lots of books and articles that recommend we change how schools educate our boys, but my son is in middle school NOW and changes will take a long time to take effect. I've been reading (and loving!) That Crumpled Paper Was Due Last Week: Helping Disorganized and Distracted Boys Master the Skills They Need for Success in School and Life (I think the title describes it all) which gives realistic and concrete advice on organizational skills and study habits. We listen to audiobooks. Any other suggestions? or comments?

message 2: by 4th-8th (last edited Apr 14, 2010 05:12AM) (new)

4th-8th | 17 comments

I am answering with another article link which is about boys and education in the beginning. They also mention the value of reading and listening to books, that children should have a thousand books in their heads. I say let them listen too.
My son chose a research paper over dancing in music class. Now I know what will encourage my son to write. Having an alternative is wonderful but this paints the picture of just how school is oriented in so many ways for girls.
As Julie said many of us don't have time for reform in our child's limited time in school, but we can send articles to administrators and speak to counselors about what works for our boys and see what teachers can make a good fit. If it works let them know. It may make it better for your child and the next child that comes along.
Sadly, it use to be when a magazine like Newsweek ran a cover story like this it could create change, but I am not sure enough people read headlines to make the same impact. What does it take for reform?

message 3: by Katie (new)

Katie (afkatie) | 1 comments Julie—you might be interested in the Guys Listen/Guys Read campaign that has recognized these statistics and encourages boys of all grade levels to start reading. You can find more info here:

I work for AudioFile Magazine, and we just did a feature for our April/May issue on teacher and author John Scieszka, one of the major proponents Guys Listen. You can check that out here:

message 4: by Julie (new)

Julie (juliemoncton) | 248 comments Mod
Katie wrote: "Julie—you might be interested in the Guys Listen/Guys Read campaign that has recognized these statistics and encourages boys of all grade levels to start reading. You can find more info here: http:..."

Hello Katie! I love Audiofile magazine - we carry it in the store and give it to our members. What a wonderful resource filled with audiobook info!

I had seen the 'Guys Read' campaign, but not seen this info on audiobooks. Thank you for the links. So many parents feel like their son is the ONLY reluctant reader in the world, let along in his class. And I feel relieved or at least that 'hope is on the way' with all of this media attention. Schools and education agencies really addessed the inequality of girls in school when the book Reviving Ophelia became popular. Now maybe schools will change to create an environment that is more conducive for boys to learn.

Looking forward to hearing more from you - love the reviews in Audiofile!

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