While some written tests spur creativity and higher level thinking via written essays, the National Assessment of Educational Progress (Nation’s Report Card) notes in their most recent 2011 and 2013 reports, that nearly 64% of our students at grades 4, 8 and 12 do not read at grade level (proficient). The remainder of the students perform at basic or below grade level.
Writing results in their 2011 report are even worse. 76% of students in grades 8 and 12 do not write at proficient grade levels. In the 2013 report for mathematics, only 42% of 4th graders and 34% of 8th grade students are proficient.
In their own words on the NCES (National Center for Education Statistics) website, “Twenty-four percent of students at both grades 8 and 12 performed at the Proficient level in writing in 2011. The NAEP Proficient level represents solid academic performance for each grade assessed. Students performing at this level have clearly demonstrated the ability to accomplish the communicative purpose of their writing.”
What Does the Failure to Learn Tell Us About the How to Learn Process?
Many learning experts write about what the failure to learn tells us about the how to learn process. As previously stated in the Nation’s Report Card results, if students truly knew how to learn, the test scores would not look so dismal.
“For the past 30 years, I’ve taught teachers, medical school faculty and students, parents and school-age students that learning how to learn empowers and catapults them into lifelong learners,” says Pat Wyman, college professor, medical school trainer, and best-selling author of multiple books on how to learn.
“Learning is never about being smart or the ability to memorize more faster, and it’s always about lifelong learning strategies that allow you to independently think critically, make judgments, summarize, synthesize, be able to teach someone else what you’ve just learned, and literally determine what you need to learn in order to stay current in school, life and work,” she continued.
“It’s important, first of all to understand how you learn best so you can adapt your learning style to the information you have to learn”, Wyman said. “That is why I created our Personal Learning Styles Quiz to help you understand both how to learn, and how to adapt your learning to help match the way in which you will be tested on what you learned.”
Edtech, Open Courseware and Platforms like Google, Skype and Live Video Feeds Fuel the How To Learn Movement
Today, our students can chat with each other in their classrooms, in real time, although they are thousands of miles apart. Global education is a reality and when you participate, you quickly learn why some countries are succeeding in the global economy more than others.
Learn what makes the difference when learning how to learn