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Afternoon Video: Life In The "Smart Kid" Countries

Here's a talk from Amanda Ripley about her forthcoming book, The Smartest Kids In The Class:


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This looks useful. Fortunately, I've been working with kids like this for around 20 years now, and have learned a lot from them. But I hope Ms. Ripley has more luck than I've had in getting Americans to listen. For example, right now the education blogosphere is in a tizzy with respect to the Tom Kane's report for the Gates Foundation released yesterday. But that report, which pretends to draw broadly applicable conclusions about relationships between students, teachers, and tests for all subjects everywhere, is limited to the United States alone, and to only some of our public elementary and middle schools. If its conclusions were seen in the light of international and intercultural experience, its limitations would immediately become apparent; but it is extremely hard, I've found, to get people to pay attention to what isn't apparent -- to see what isn't presented, what has been left out, what isn't there.

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