Monday, April 6, 2015

Literacy with an Attitude

While doing this weeks reading, chapter 2 stuck out to me the most.  I’ve grown up and lived in an upper middle class town my whole life.  I have been able to experience on first hand how child who live in poverty get taught.  I always thought that they wouldn’t get as in depth taught as I did due to the fact that they probability do have someone to help them out at home like I did.  But what I didn’t totally realize about all the points that Patrick Flinn stated.
Jean Anyon did a study with five elementary schools that we located in New Jersey.  The five schools ranged from being located in rich neighborhoods and in poor ones.  Anyon said that the schools we nearly all white students.  All the schools had to follow the same state requirements and there school curriculums were pretty much based off the same material, but there were many differences.
1.    two working class schools (dominate theme: resistance)
a.     most of the teachers born in the same city but lived in better sections
b.     young
c.      recently graduated from local teachers college
d.     knowledge presented in fragmented facts isolated from bigger bodies of meaning
e.     work was followed in steps and procedures
f.      students didn’t have many choices
g.     teachers didn’t really explain why work was assigned or how it connected to other assignments
h.     teachers would skip lessons in books because they thought it was too hard for the students
i.       used some different text books because they were for “low ability students”
j.       students have to copy lot of information the teacher says or that is written in a book
k.     doing lower level “easy” work
l.       learning basic concepts
m.   not being able to participate in hands on activities
n.     teachers try everything to control their students, call parents, discipline other students
2.    middle class school (dominate theme: possibility)
a.     1/3 teachers grew up in the neighborhood of the school
b.     graduated from local state teacher schools
c.      seem their job is to teach the knowledge found in textbooks or stuff curriculm experts say
d.     value that information more than experiences
e.     correct students when they say something wrong and educate them why their answer was incorrect
f.      use books that are intended for a grade level above, but use them because there purpose is to introduce fundamental concepts
g.     they do all different types of work (papers, tests, assignments)
h.     knowledge is more conceptual
i.       teachers range from easy to strict
3.    affluent professional school (dominate theme: individualism)
a.     teachers come from all over state
b.     come from middle to upper class backgrounds
c.      creativity and personal development are important goals
d.     teachers want students to think for themselves
e.     make sense for their own experiences
f.      able to create questions for other students to answer
g.     collect data, make films, experiments, crafts, projects
h.     doesn’t matter if the students answer is right or wrong
i.       students get more freedom to explore things and figure out answers on their own
j.       high level concepts
k.     work with current events
l.       hands on work
m.   not many behavioral issues
4.    executive elite schools (dominate theme: excellence)
a.     teachers were women who were well off
b.     knowledge was academic, intellectual, rigorous
c.      difficult concepts taught
d.     a lot of work
e.     logical thinking
f.      wok is complex
g.     children are required to plan and teach lessons
h.     allowed to use/get any material they wanted whenever they needed it, even if it was in the teachers desk
i.       sometimes rude

I never realized that there were so many differences between different schools that have students from different backgrounds.  I believe that no matter where you go to school, all basic concepts that are taught should be pretty much the same all around the board.

I like how Allee compare the dominate themes of each type of school to her service learning school.  I have to agree with her, my students don’t show resistance(1).  My students want to learn and are opened to discover new things(2).  My teacher tries her best to teach students how to be independent, but because of their background, some need extra help(3).


  1. I really like how you described all of the differences between the different types of schools. I didn't realize there were so many differences, nice job!

  2. I have to agree with Kaileen. I really liked how in depth you went with talking about the differences in all of the schools. really well done.

  3. It's great how you listed everything out that each school showed in the study, it would definitely help someone who did not get to read the article learn from it too.

  4. I really liked your blog. I think you made a great outline on the differences of each school. I agree with you, I had never realized how many differences there were before reading this.