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Ten Common Myths in
American Education

Mordechai Gordon

All of us want to make sure that the educational opportunities that we provide our children are going to meet their needs and those of our society. But how to translate that goal into national policy and the real world of the classroom is hardly unanimous -- largely because the translation is itself rooted in personal convictions and assumptions that are often without any solid empirical research support. We assume, for example, that classroom time that is not "on task" is really time wasted and that students will learn more if they were kept busy and focused every minute of the school day. The problem with this is that research (and even our own experience) shows that the "on task" assumption simply is not valid.

In Ten Common Myths in American Education Mordechai Gordon, who is quickly establishing himself as one of the top Educational Foundations scholars in this country, directly examines ten such assumptions. He points out that all of them, despite their popularity and public acceptance, are grounded on thin or nonexistent research -- and that they are effectively subverting the fundamental educational goal upon which we all agree.

Myths is a book that will open your eyes -- whether you are an administrator, policy maker, teacher, parent, or student. It will help you begin to reevaluate what our schools really should be doing ... And maybe, just maybe, result in schools where the real needs of students and our society are actually met!

Table of Contents

  • Foreword by Joe L. Kincheloe
  • Introduction
  • Good Teaching Means Following a Recipe
  • Theories Can Be Applied Directly to Practice
  • Students Need to Know "The Basics"
  • Keeping Students Busy Enhances Learning
  • Confusion and Uncertainty Hinder Learning
  • Technology is the Cure for All Problems in Education
  • Good Techniques Are Those that Seem to "Work"
  • More Testing Results in Higher Standards
  • Multicultural Education: It's All About Heroes and Holidays
  • Easy Solutions Work in Education
  • References
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Mordechai Gordon, father of two, is an Associate Professor of Education at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut. His areas of specialization include the foundations of education, teacher education, and democratic education. He is the editor of Hannah Arendt and Education: Renewing Our Common World, winner of the 2002 AESA Critics Choice Award. He has written numerous articles that have appeared in such scholarly journals as Educational Theory, Journal of Thought, and Encounter: Education for Meaning and Social Justice.

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