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Thursday, January 10, 2013

Why girls get better grades

It isn't because they actually know the material better, but because they don't annoy the teacher:
Despite having higher scores on standardized tests, boys get lower grades than girls. Why? Because teachers are basing grades at least partly on classroom behavior, and the standards are very much geared to female norms....

"Boys in all racial categories across all subject areas are not represented in grade distributions where their test scores would predict. Even those boys who perform equally as well as girls on reading, math and science tests are nevertheless graded less favorably by their teachers."
In summary, girls are able to substitute apple-polishing and classroom etiquette for an amount of knowing the material, and they are being rewarded for it, beginning in kindergarten.  Their better grades are eventually used to give them priority of place in college, thereby leading observers to erroneously conclude that they are "outperforming" men. 

Unsurprisingly, the boys who are smart enough to figure out the deck is stacked against them lose all respect for the system and opt out in varying degrees.

Labels:

83 Comments:

Anonymous Josh January 10, 2013 1:31 PM  

Obviously the solution is to teach these young kindergartners to man up.

Anonymous Brendan January 10, 2013 1:42 PM  

They need to get some "teacher Game", obviously.

In all seriousness, however, the fact that the teachers are almost all female is a huge contributing factor to this. When I went to grammar school back in the late 1970s, we had quite a few men as teachers, and then again at my all-boys HS as well. It makes a huge, huge difference. The classrooms are thoroughly feminized because the teaching profession has been thoroughly feminized -- people now see this as "normal", but it's actually rather new and it's quite harmful to boys.

Anonymous JNorth January 10, 2013 1:55 PM  

Back when I was in grade school (70s-80s) the big fuss was how schools were failing girls. They responded by changing everything around for the benefit of girls without caring what effect it would have on the boys.

Anonymous Kickass January 10, 2013 2:06 PM  

I also think this has something to do with the increase in female teachers versus male teachers. No one messed with the male teachers when I was in school (most were vets, some were nuts, all were pretty dominate). Everyone was terrified of the Principal who would be about 90 now. He would paddle your ass hard if you screwed up.
EVERYONE messed with the female teachers. After a certain age, boys really only want to submit to an older man.

As it should be.

Anonymous Beau January 10, 2013 2:06 PM  

OT

My wife and I will be taking a few days rest in Ruidoso. Could someone give a few sci-fi recommendations for the kindle before we depart?

Thanks.

P.S. Many thanks to the praying Ilk. The only residual symptoms of my stroke are a faint numbness on the left, some small balance problems, and a desire to withdraw when too many audio variables are in play. Blessings

Anonymous Daniel January 10, 2013 2:10 PM  

This is a generational thing. Because teachers stick around for 30 years, educational trends take that long to catch up with the whims of society. Schools today have finally achieved the ability to produce a workforce that is believed to be in demand...in 1983.

Now if they could just teach these polite little girls to make a time machine, the problem will be solved.

The problem is that by the time public schools figure out they should have been preparing kids for a decentralized, non-corporate, community based workforce of 2014, and graduating them at age 11, it will be 2043, and President Squat is going to have established a trangender-based economy. School failure will be measured in the number of heterosexuals it graduates.

Anonymous MikeH January 10, 2013 2:12 PM  

Beau, thank God. Glad to hear your condition is improving.

Blogger Giraffe January 10, 2013 2:12 PM  

Praise the Lord, Beau. Great news.

Anonymous PC Geek January 10, 2013 2:13 PM  

@Beau

I am just an occasional commenter but let me take a moment to congratulate you on your ongoing recovery. All us Ilk (even lurkers like myself) were praying for ya - our prayers have been answered.

Blogger Giraffe January 10, 2013 2:14 PM  

Nah, Daniel.

By then, the public schools will just dump kids into the FEMA camps never to be seen again and the home-schooled will rule the world.

Blogger CR106 January 10, 2013 2:18 PM  

Love it. My wife is homeschooling our kids. I need to keep this in mind even there. We have 2 girls and 1 boy. (1 boy on the way).

Anonymous Anonymous January 10, 2013 2:21 PM  

I doubt most boys realize anything is wrong until at least late high school, and even then I doubt they have more than a gestalt.

The truly intelligent would play the game until they got what they wanted and could change the system

Anonymous DonReynolds January 10, 2013 2:21 PM  

My kid sister is two years younger than myself and I am the oldest. The first big lesson I learned as a child was that girls had different rules than boys. Sometimes this was to my benefit and most of the time it was not. We were not equal and we never would be equal, simply because we lived in two different worlds. Here in the South, men and women traditionally segregated themselves. Anytime there was a family gathering, the women and the little children took over the kitchen and the men went outside. (Did not matter about the weather.) A little boy could stay with the women in the kitchen as long as he was a cute toddler, but once he was no longer cute, the women would insist that the men take the little tyke with them when they went outside. This is an important point, because now the boy starts to learn how to be around men....and the rules were quite different. In school, many of the teachers reinforced the separation of the boys and the girls, and yes, the rules were different for each. It was not until high school that the boys spent much time around the girls at all. I honestly believe this partly explains the disconnect between men and women when they get older and the difficulty of sustaining a marriage or relationship.

As for women teaching in the classroom....while it is a popular line of work for modern women, it is a fairly recent development. Lifelong teachers have traditionally been men, not just in the USA but in the UK as well. When my great aunt got married to my uncle, she was forced to quit her job as a classroom teacher because in the 1930s, a MARRIED woman was not allowed to work as a teacher. Unmarried women could teach in public schools but the long-time women teachers were normally old maids (never married).

Anonymous JartStar January 10, 2013 2:23 PM  

They need to get some "teacher Game", obviously.

This was my immediate thought as well. Rather than just checking out of the system they could be taught Education Game.

Blogger JDC January 10, 2013 2:25 PM  

@beau - God bless you and your recovery. Couple of recommendations, if you haven't already read them is the Miles Vorkosigan series. Start with Warrior Apprentice. You also can't go wrong with Ender's Game.

Keep doing your home-therapy program (if you have one). Your balance will come back.

Blogger JDC January 10, 2013 2:31 PM  

I recently had a discussion with our Sunday School music leader. She has made it mandatory for all SS kids (k-6) to participate in the children's choir and drama groups. I ended this draconian practice - with a bit of pain, but there it is.

Now...I'm not saying that boys cannot flourish and enjoy these activities (my 6 y/o son is in a Christian dance group), but to mandate these activities, especially singing in public is quite unfair to many of the boys (and some of the girls - although the girls are usually quite excited about the prospect). Many of the boys don't want to sing - and all she is doing is putting a bad taste in their mouths for church. (I myself was a rather recalcitrant participant in singing as a kid. I hated it, and hated it even more that I had to do it in public, so I did my best to be either off-key or only move my lips).

Blogger john January 10, 2013 2:33 PM  

"The truly intelligent would play the game until they got what they wanted and could change the system "

I think I gamed the system ok. Was told I was "gifted" in elementary school. I was placed in extra classes studying geology and foreign languages at 8 and 9. Got bored. Told them I hated it. Went back to regular class. My parent's were pushed to skip me a grade but didn't.

In high school, the summer before our senior year, the "gifted" students were all told they needed to spend the summer reading extra books and preparing essays. There was a revolt. We all told the snooty English teacher that we were enjoying our last summer as teenagers before college started. I think only one or two of the GIRLS from that class actually did the assignments.

I also got myself onto Office staff so that I could leave during lunch to get the mail. Our campus wasn't open so no one got to leave. Would often order pizza for my friends and bring it to the lunch room, triumphantly. :-) Managed to snag the Vice Principal's pre-signed excuse notes too and handed those out to friends.

I hated HS. It was a joke. I took sick days on purpose just to take mental breaks. Parents were ok with it because I was a "good student."

And I'll never forget my female HS Guidance Counselor telling me I should just go to the local tech college. I'd never get a scholarship. Ignored her. Applied for scholarships and got a full ride.

Anonymous Daniel January 10, 2013 2:34 PM  

OT: My wife and I will be taking a few days rest in Ruidoso. Could someone give a few sci-fi recommendations for the kindle before we depart?

Beau, I'm sure you probably read it long ago, but somehow I had missed it entirely all these years, and enjoyed it recently, so I thought I'd mention The Dragon Masters for kindle, by Jack Vance. Just had a blast with that little book.

Others:

Newish - Wool Omnibus - Hugh Howey, Spinward Fringe, Origins - Lalonde (It's a little Star Warsy for me, good plot, shaky science but the price makes it worth it), The Way of the Wolf (1st of series) - E.E. Knight (military sci-fi),

Oldish (in case you've missed any) - The Best of Philip K. Dick (Unexpurgated Edition) - 11 of his shorts. "Golden Age of Science Fiction: Novels" is worth the three bucks or whatever. Hit or miss on the contents, but definitely at least six old gems that I had missed.

Anonymous DonReynolds January 10, 2013 2:38 PM  

My second big lesson in life was when I found out that legitimate authority can be wrong, not only in their judgement, but the rules themselves can be wrong too. Prior to that, I accepted that authority was wise, prudent, correct, truthful, fair, and trustworthy. (Yes, children can be like that.)

Jeff Foxworthy the commedian has a number of jokes based on the opening line "You might be a redneck if...". One of those was "You might be a redneck if your mother does not take the Marlboro from her lips as she tells the state trooper to go to hell". I guess I am a redneck then, cause I have seen it myself. Yeah, my mother was that way. I was in the 4th grade when my mother came to the school to discuss with the principal about certain rules that resulted in my punishment. The discussion became quite heated and loud until the principal picked up the phone on his desk and said "If you don't control yourself, I am going to call the police and have you arrested!" My mother looked him in the face and in a calm voice said "You are a yellow-bellied son-of-a-bitch if you don't". The principal put down the receiver of the phone and took on a much friendier tone instead. Important lesson, boys and girls.



Anonymous DaveD January 10, 2013 2:39 PM  

I'm a 40 year old man currently in college to become a teacher. Have no illusions, the predominance of women & feminized men teaching is no accident. Every layer of the process is designed to weed out the masculine or crush it out of prospective teachers. They intend for boys to have only female influences.

There are days it takes every thing I have not to just walk out & go back to IT work. Then I remember the boys I've worked with who were DESPERATE for a male role model. Heck, most of the girls are desperate for one too.

DD

Blogger Barneycb January 10, 2013 2:41 PM  

The further pussification of America....

Anonymous Sheila January 10, 2013 2:42 PM  

We saw this with both our boys, neither of whom was a persistent "classroom problem," but both of whom had difficulty sitting and learning passively for hours (the older because he is exceptionally bright and was thus bored; the younger because he is a slower processor and writer and gets overwhelmed. While we were blessed with a number of outstanding Christian teachers, we also endured some God-awful ones who caused some serious problems. I've been homeschooling our younger son this year, and we're looking into a new private school for next year (most likely a University model where the child attends 3 days a week and works at home the other 2 and/or simply signs up for individual courses). One of the first questions I ask upon visiting a school is if there are any male teachers. The employee leading the school tour (invariably a female) is always surprised by the question, and after some hemming and hawing usually mentions a few PE teachers who double as science teachers. I understand men have to earn enough to support a family, and the suspicion of molestation is another disincentive, but it's been an almost unbroken succession of women from preschool onwards. Even when my older boy took classes at a local science museum and volunteered at the zoo, the supervisors were women.

In addition to the obvious classroom bias, the overwhelmingly feminine atmosphere at any school, public or private, also means a vociferous policy of "no violence." In practice, of course, this means that teasing/cattiness/bullying is ignored, but putting a stop to the same by physical means is regarded as abhorrent. I truly pity the sons of any female teacher.

Blogger Barneycb January 10, 2013 2:42 PM  

The further pussification of America....

Blogger CR106 January 10, 2013 2:43 PM  

Great comment DaveD. We are called to redeem areas taken by the world. Schooling is one of them. I pray you would be a great masculine influence. Don't let grad school take this away from you. Check out my blog if you want to know more. I reviewed a great book on the subject.

Anonymous Mr. Tzu January 10, 2013 2:50 PM  

My more cynical observation is the male children are behaving in a non-alpha manner and are being graded accordingly. No tingle equals lower marks. The boys should just know.

Blogger Nate January 10, 2013 3:03 PM  

It should be noted by the way... this also applies to the workplace. It favors female values and female behavior and thus females are rewarded disproportionately to males with promotions.

Anonymous . January 10, 2013 3:04 PM  

My more cynical observation is the male children are behaving in a non-alpha manner and are being graded accordingly. No tingle equals lower marks. The boys should just know.

Nah, just the opposite. Alphas are punished, betas rewarded.

From the linked article: " boys who adhere to female norms on non-cognitive skills were not penalized. Effectively, the more female behavior was rewarded with a grade “bonus” for males."

Anonymous Stilicho January 10, 2013 3:05 PM  

Could someone give a few sci-fi recommendations for the kindle before we depart?

1st--good to hear you are doing well. 2nd-- I recommend the collected works of H. Beam Piper on Kindle. Some of the best stuff from the golden age of sci-fi and pretty cheap given the volume of the work included.

Anonymous Josh January 10, 2013 3:20 PM  

Beau,

God bless you, my brother. Glad to hear you're doing better and that our prayers were answered.

Blogger Nate January 10, 2013 3:32 PM  

"OT

My wife and I will be taking a few days rest in Ruidoso. Could someone give a few sci-fi recommendations for the kindle before we depart?

Thanks."

Monster Hunter International.

The Dresden Files.

By the way... it warms my soul to see you comment mate. May God continue to bless you.

Anonymous Daniel January 10, 2013 3:37 PM  

I recommend the collected works of H. Beam Piper on Kindle.

Hear, hear - just watch out for some Fuzzy fan-fiction by a feller named Scalzi. I put up with his Old Man's War take on Heinlein because it was pretty decent, but I couldn't bear to see what he did to Piper, especially since he originally wrote it for himself (according to him) and not for publication!

Anonymous Beau January 10, 2013 3:38 PM  

Thanks again for the prayers and recommendations. Ruidoso!

Anonymous Rantor January 10, 2013 3:44 PM  

@Beau,

May God continue to bless you.

As for Science Fiction, I am feeling nostalgic, have you ever read John Brunner? I enjoyed Stand on Zanzibar and Shockwave Rider. I also liked Players at the Game of People, but I don't think it is available electronically. Looks like Zanzibar is available on Kindle. Was a Hugo winner in 1968 I think.

I met John at a con once, many years ago. He was friendly and we chatted. Then I started reading his books. Really good stuff

Blogger Tiny Tim January 10, 2013 3:55 PM  

And then the boys get in the workforce and rise to the top and run everything.

Anonymous Stickwick January 10, 2013 3:56 PM  

When I was a university prof (female), I found that my personal feelings about students sometimes affected my mindset when I was grading papers. I tend to be male-friendly, so it was more often a case of feeling slightly antagonistic about the students who either annoyed me with their in-class whining or who started off as poor performers. I was concerned about objectivity, so I developed a method wherein the identity of the student was concealed while grading. After implementing this method, I realized that I had been unfairly harsh with some students, because their scores went up when I didn't know their identities. By the same token, a few students I had perceived as good performers were graded down more often when I didn't know which papers belonged to them.

It would be very instructive to know if this is a typical source of bias for all instructors, male or female, or if it predominantly affects females. If the latter, then that would help make a case for having more male instructors, especially if the bias tends to be against male students.

Anonymous Stickwick January 10, 2013 3:59 PM  

Beau: Good to know you're recovering nicely!

Blogger tz January 10, 2013 4:01 PM  

Any change based on the gender of the teacher? (and molestation statistics? - "sleeping" their way to the top [of the class]).

Talk about class warfare.

But not that long ago, we figured out that boys and girls do better in all-male or all-female classrooms, at least at the factory schools. The one-room schoolhouse that had everyone from every grade was almost homeschool by proxy, and go see what 8th graders tests looked like in 1870.

Anonymous Kickass January 10, 2013 4:04 PM  

@ Beau.

God Bless and Keep you Brother. You and yours. We were not worried. We knew you would either be healed or moving on to the Party in Heaven. We were worried for the dark spot left by your light in the world.

Keep posting when possible. It knocks the smartass right out of me.

Anonymous Kickass January 10, 2013 4:08 PM  

I don't know about this article Vox, according to the daily mail on a pretty regular basis female teachers take a rather personal interest in their male student.

Just another reason to Homeschool.

@ Stickwick, what you are talking about is something that is an asset as a Mother. Mothers are able to asses each child indidiviually and tailor their care and upbringing to their current and future needs.

Blogger JDC January 10, 2013 4:09 PM  

Being kickass and smartass is better than being dumbass (as my grandaddy used to always say).

Blogger Res Ipsa January 10, 2013 4:14 PM  

"smart enough to figure out the deck is stacked against them lose all respect for the system and opt out"

I know I did starting in 3rd grade. My experience led our family to go it on our own with the kids education. We've only been homeschooling for a little better than a year, but it would seem that we are out preforming our friends who rely on the gov schools. Public schools are child abuse at best.

Anonymous Somers'61 January 10, 2013 4:14 PM  

When I was in school in the 60's and 70's teachers and people in generalo knew that boys needed more outlets for their energy. And so there was alot of running around, football, kickball, playing catch during recess. Since then boys have been demonized due to the impact of feminism. It's a girls=good boys=bad mentality. And boys having energy was seen as a bad thing..something to be supressed. as the outlets for energy were taken away due to 'safety' concerns, and saving kids from the 'abuse' of competition, drugs like adderall became the favored way to deal with boys. Medicate them into more docile and controllable beings.. almost like castration without the blade.

Anonymous RedJack January 10, 2013 4:19 PM  

Preperation for life.

What you do is never as important as who you know/do.

I struggled with this for a long time as a kid. Got good marks on the Iowa Basic Skills test, but had a teacher that told my parents she "hated that son of a bitch". Seems I reminded her of her ex husband.

You learn to adapt.

Anonymous Anonymous January 10, 2013 4:28 PM  

Drug the boys up on ritalin is what they do.

Anonymous scoobius dubious January 10, 2013 4:32 PM  

The simple, logical thing would be to separate girls and boys into separate classes for certain key lessons with different teaching styles (and for reading, different content!), and let them mingle in homeroom, recess, and a few more frivolous classes.

When I was in grade school I got dragooned into tutoring a bunch of the slow-witted kids in my own "private" class at the back of the classroom. At first I got nowhere with them in math, then I started making up my own word problems for them, that used examples from horror movies and action movies and blowing things up. Made much more progress that way. I doubt any of those kids got their PhD, but at least they can probably balance a checkbook by comparing it to the Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

btw, Beau -- glad to hear you're on the mend. Keep up the good progress, and God bless!

Blogger Res Ipsa January 10, 2013 4:33 PM  

Stickwick,

I think female proffs do that more than male proffs. I only had one female proff in either undergrad or grad school that didn't. Her method envolved red inking the heck out of your paper evertime she didn't like what you wrote, but then she did a second eval of how the paper complied with the assignement requirements. The final grade was based on the eval not the red ink.

I don't know how this plays into your question, but what subject they teach may play a big part in who sunjective the teacher response is.

FWIW, I was on the recieving end of inflated grades and unfair treatment due to the relationship with female proffs yet I never had a male proff do either to me.

Blogger Res Ipsa January 10, 2013 4:36 PM  

"Seems I reminded her of her ex husband."

No doubt she was torn between her desire to be dominated sexually by you and her equally strong desire to avenge herself on you.

Blogger ray January 10, 2013 4:42 PM  

LOL yeah, the constant barrage of "articles" from Mammy's Medea, assuring the planet that girls are ever so much smarter and capable than mere boys; that girls ALWAYS have been smarter, it's just that (boo hoo hoo) the girls were HELD DOWN from their great brilliance by million of years under Patriarchal Slavery

of course, it's all a lie, just like the totality of this nanny nation

the gynocracy has spent the past forty years CRUSHING and DRUGGING boys in their "schools" to ENSURE the outcome of the Superior Sisters and their insipid New Woman Order

here's their logic: i blow off your head with my 12 gauge, then write an article in the NY Times about how afterwards i was much smarter than you, and how i'm "out performing" you, and always would have, if only i hadn't been "held down" and "oppressed" by you

:O)

the schools are just as feminist as everything else in this dying nation, but correcting the problem would mean Women and the Matriarchy admitting they were wrong, and that aint gonna happen, so we'll just claim to the world that see! girls ARE better, girls ARE smarter, while grinding their designer heels into the faces of little boys

Anonymous Anonymous January 10, 2013 4:47 PM  

"Unsurprisingly, the boys who are smart enough to figure out the deck is stacked against them lose all respect for the system and opt out in varying degrees."

That pretty much sums up my education experiance, lol

Blogger Susan Walsh January 10, 2013 4:50 PM  

Thanks, Vox, it's always a treat to get a link from your "other" blog.

Back when I was in grade school (70s-80s) the big fuss was how schools were failing girls. They responded by changing everything around for the benefit of girls without caring what effect it would have on the boys.

This had a huge effect. The "Reviving Ophelia" movement was meant to silence boys so that girls would not be too intimidated to speak up. This often took the form of teachers refusing to call on boys at all, even when no girl raised her hand. It was targeted at middle schoolers, but there was a trickle down effect that didn't take long to reach the youngest grades.

Blogger Longstreet January 10, 2013 4:55 PM  

Beau, I'm very happy to hear that you're doing better. And enormously jealous of you and your trip to Ruidoso.

Blessings to you and yours!

Anonymous Mr. Tzu January 10, 2013 4:56 PM  

@.
Nah, just the opposite. Alphas are punished, betas rewarded.

From the linked article: " boys who adhere to female norms on non-cognitive skills were not penalized. Effectively, the more female behavior was rewarded with a grade “bonus” for males."


I stand corrected.

As such, no tingle equals higher marks.

Anonymous Curlytop January 10, 2013 5:27 PM  

Beau! So happy to receive an update from you personally. :-) Still sending prayers your way as you recover. Enjoy the much-deserved trip.

Anonymous Jay January 10, 2013 5:43 PM  

Good word Vox! Totally agree!

Anonymous PC Geek January 10, 2013 6:34 PM  

@Beau

Seeing as though you had a bit of a health scare - as you know, Rycamor often comments here with great (non-mainstream, quite red-pill) health advice that (while there is in this world of course no guarantees of heath and safety) has been shown in practice to really help reduce the occurence and severity of many of the common health problems (such as strokes) that plague our nation (especially the older crowd.)

Have you checked any of his comments here out? If not, I would be glad to gather some of them together for you or point you to other sources of Paleo diet/other red-pill health and wellness info.

Of course your soul is quite well so that is most important! All of us here knew that no matter what happened wrt your health that it would be a happy ending!

Anonymous Stickwick January 10, 2013 6:35 PM  

As such, no tingle equals higher marks.

Perhaps you didn't realize, but the study Susan cited only included elementary school children. It has nothing to do with "tingles." I'm sure you know some harried, stressed-out moms, who just want their kids to be low-maintenance. It's the same thing with female teachers: they want a classroom full of little girls who sit there demurely and do their work quietly, not energetic little boys who bounce off walls. The boys who conform to the feminine standard, and therefore make less work for the teacher, are rewarded.

Anonymous tiredofitall January 10, 2013 7:05 PM  

Posted this elsewhere, (years ago) but it bears repeating:

One of my nephews is going to college for a teaching degree in early education (K-6th) and right now they are being sent into actual schools as student teachers to observe teachers in action and possibly help out where they can.

A female classmate of his made an observation after their first week.

Female Classmate: "Teaching would be great if those little boys could just sit still and be quiet for five minutes like the girls do."

My Nephew: "So...you'd rather not teach little boys?"

FC: "No. It's just why can't they behave like the girls can?"

Cut to about a week or so later and they've moved up from 1st - 3rd graders into 4th - 6th.

FC: "What is wrong with the girls in our classes?"

MN: "What do you mean?"

FC: "It's like they're retarded or something. They just sit all quiet in class and don't even want to participate. Like at all."

MN: "So last week when you said you wished all the boys could be like the girls?"

FC: "No, it's just now the boys seem excited about class and actually get involved. Something should be done about that. They're stifling the girls in class. The girls never even get a chance to participate in class."

So to sum up: When boys act like boys instead of girls, it's the problem of the boys and they need to be punished. When girls act like girls and suffer somehow, it's the problem of the boys and they need to be punished.

Anonymous bw January 10, 2013 7:19 PM  

Don't forget the $financial$ Federal MEDICAID incentive for these schools to put the children on mind-altering drugs.
Good business plans have any number of beneficial outcomes - for the business itself, of course. Which in this case is the State and its employees.
And business is good.


Anonymous Azimus January 10, 2013 7:24 PM  

I run a department of 9 three-year contract employees. The job is essentially a clerical job, where the clerks fill out paperwork and chase down details to "iron out the wrinkles" for the departments that use the paperwork (ordering production stock, customer forecasting, staffing, etc). Almost without exception, women do a better job filling out the paperwork thoroughly and completely, so the 80% of the time there isn't an oddball exception or an unexpected snafu, they do the job better than men.

But the 20% of the time they have to go "off script" from the usual systems to avert a disaster (anyone in contract manufacturing knows about the OEM's staggering hourly shut-down fees for late orders - the "cheap" ones are $10,000/hr), the men do a superior job seeing the trouble, identifying the correct key personnel to fix the problem, and nipping it in the bud.

However I note that systems are growing increasingly comprensive, and consequently my clerical staff is being increasingly pressured to just "fill out the d*mn paperwork".

Anonymous scoobius dubious January 10, 2013 7:33 PM  

For reasons that take too long to explain, even though I'm not involved in the education world, at one point when I was younger I devised a small handful of useful tropes and game-like exercises that were designed to focus kids' attention on certain academic problems, usually involving science or language. A handful of teachers started using them and got good results, and there was some positive word of mouth (not a whole lot, we're not talking about a movement) and so to this day, once in a blue moon, I get invited to visit a school for a day as a sort of guest lecturer, who "teaches" a class for an afternoon. I do it for the lulz, or as a favor to a friend or something, and also to see what I can learn about human behavior from doing it. My job or goal or whatever you want to call it, is to put certain topics in an unusual perspective, which motivates the kids' curiosity on a subject they might otherwise avoid.

One of the things that I find sparks the interest of the boys in particular, is doing something that apparently nobody ever does with them: using a bit of Socratic method to explain to them what the hell they're doing in school in the first place. Or more accurately, getting them to deduce for themselves why the hell they're in school. For most kids, it's just this thing you mysteriously have to do and nobody explains to them why. I have a little game-like device which puts the question to them of why the hell are they there, and forces them to make their own conclusion. Once that has happened, it's amazing how much more attention they're willing to focus on some other abstract matter. It's fun to watch the transformation.

Anonymous Athor Pel January 10, 2013 7:38 PM  

I had a female English teacher in college that gave me lower grades because I was white and a guy. She was visibly agitated every time I talked to her. I had rarely met someone full of so much anger.

I was making A's on senior level history papers and the papers I wrote for her class were mechanically and grammatically perfect but she gave me C's.

There were hardly any marks on the papers and the things she did write were all concerned with her personal preferences. She would sometimes literally downgrade based on her dislike of the subject I chose to write about. I had never seen that before.

I tried pointing out the disparity, the fact that she graded me on purely subjective grounds. She gave me the impression of a stubborn but proudly ill informed woman out to boost her self esteem through the denigration of certain students.

I took the C. It just wasn't worth the trouble to fight for an objective grade. I passed, that's all I cared about. But the teacher evaluation I wrote up at the end of the term was scathing and all I did was tell the truth.

To explain how she came be in that job, her husband was a recently hired Dean of the School of Education. To get him to take the job they gave her the teaching position in the English department. Yes, they were black.


Anonymous herman January 10, 2013 7:39 PM  

The very act of forcing boys to learn alongside girls as if girls were their damned equal is patently emasculating. It demonstrates a total lack of respect for the manhood of boys from the get-go.

Anonymous Athor Pel January 10, 2013 7:50 PM  

Beau,

Your health scare reminds me of mine from a couple years ago, in that a bad thing happened but in the best possible way. Praise the Lord for His faithfulness.


I've got to second Nate's recommendation of "Monster Hunter International" by Larry Correia. Here's his blog.
http://larrycorreia.wordpress.com/

The Monster Hunter books are at five books now I think. I've read three. Enjoyed them all. Monsters, guns and explosives, what more could you ask for?

Anonymous scoobius dubious January 10, 2013 8:05 PM  

As far as sci-fi goes I'm not well-versed in the literature, but if you want a mind-blowing bit of more high-culture literature with a strong SF/F feel, don't miss "Ficciones" by Jorge Luis Borges. Short, sharp, to the point, leaves your head spinning for days. "Funes the Memorious," "The Garden of Forking Paths," "The Lottery in Babylon," "Pierre Menard: Author of Don Quixote" "Tlon, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius" -- guaranteed to make you dazed and confused, and then far more certain of the ground you're standing on afterwards.

Anonymous Idle Spectator January 10, 2013 8:37 PM  

I tried pointing out the disparity, the fact that she graded me on purely subjective grounds. She gave me the impression of a stubborn but proudly ill informed woman out to boost her self esteem through the denigration of certain students.

I took the C. It just wasn't worth the trouble to fight for an objective grade. I passed, that's all I cared about. But the teacher evaluation I wrote up at the end of the term was scathing and all I did was tell the truth.


Cuz whitey gots to pay for his oppression!

This is nothing new though. Here's an anecdote from Michael Crichton's writing career:

"During his undergraduate study in literature, he conducted an experiment to expose a professor whom he believed to be giving him abnormally low marks and criticizing his literary style. Informing another professor of his suspicions, Crichton plagiarized a work by George Orwell and submitted it as his own. The paper was returned by his unwitting professor with a mark of "B−". His issues with the English department led Crichton to switch his concentration to biological anthropology as an undergraduate, obtaining his A.B. summa cum laude in 1964. He was also initiated into the Phi Beta Kappa Society. He went on to become the Henry Russell Shaw Traveling Fellow from 1964 to 1965 and Visiting Lecturer in Anthropology at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom in 1965."

I mean what did he ever write. Who ever heard of Jurassic Park or The Andromeda Strain? And that was Harvard University (in Harvardas, veritas anus) in the 1960s. I can only imagine it has gotten much worse. Burn the schools.

Anonymous Mr. Tzu January 10, 2013 9:16 PM  

@Stickwick
Perhaps you didn't realize, but the study Susan cited only included elementary school children. It has nothing to do with "tingles." I'm sure you know some harried, stressed-out moms, who just want their kids to be low-maintenance.

heh, I did mention cynical further up. Not to be taken literally as it would become too Freudian ad absurdum.

Anonymous rubberducky January 10, 2013 10:48 PM  

When I was in school back in the 70's the vast majority of my teachers were female and they were excellent. It began to change rapidly as I approached college. This is because when I started the teachers were all older women. They were typically homemakers whose own children had left the nest. They were experienced, talented and accomplished mothers, and also skilled in the traditional ways of teaching and of dealing with kids and youth. I lived in Texas, and at the time getting a teachers' certificate didn't require any special degree. They had to take some courses, pass some subject matter tests, and that was it.

That all started changing in every way. They new teachers began arriving from the education schools and armed with radicalism of the 60's. New teaching methods showed up, along with new focus in progressive socialization. Our teachers rapidly became feminists of an activist bent. And new certification regimes began to show up which pretty much guaranteed to lock any other schools of thought out.

Teaching methods themselves moved away from the traditional rote and drills of hard skills into the areas designed to promote interpretation, community, and "critical thinking" (ie, parroting the interpretations that the prevailing ideologies preferred to hear).

In the end it all collapsed not because they were women, so much, but because they were young, activist, feminists. The older women I knew and gained from before were not like this. And I haven't seen any woman like them in any of my childrens' schools as they have grown up. Rather they are all of the Modern Education Faculty stamp. Which is a joke.

I have always held that degrees in education ought to be withdrawn in academia, based on my experience.

Anonymous DaveD January 10, 2013 11:02 PM  

Scooby, science is one of the subjects I will be teaching. I would be interested in your tasks/challenges/etc., if you're willing to share. Im all about anything I can do to help more kids learn.

DD

Anonymous Ain January 11, 2013 12:28 AM  

Shiela: "In addition to the obvious classroom bias, the overwhelmingly feminine atmosphere at any school, public or private, also means a vociferous policy of "no violence." In practice, of course, this means that teasing/cattiness/bullying is ignored, but putting a stop to the same by physical means is regarded as abhorrent. I truly pity the sons of any female teacher."

Never underestimate the effect that lawsuits have on school policy. Many of the stupid rules they have to prevent any sort of physical injury is a direct result of this.

Blogger Srikanto Bormon January 11, 2013 1:31 AM  


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Blogger David of One January 11, 2013 3:07 AM  

Take time to find a book called "The Decline of the American Male" by William Attwood (Author), Jr. George B. Leonard (Author), J. Robert Moskin (Author), Robert Osborn (Illustrator) ... 1958 ... The Editors of Look Magazine

Many of you would likely find the Editors of Look as being very prophetic. They were very concerned about turning eduction over to women almost exclusively. The fact that it was written 55 years ago is extremely significant since history has proven their concerns and arguments.

Additionally, C.S. Lewis wrote a short piece on American Education ...

Essentially C.S. Lewis made a number of critical arguments and observations about the American Public Educational system ... a good start would be the Abolution of Man and some of his other writings as well as a number of web resources/blogs ... such as this one:

http://blog.acton.org/archives/73-c-s-lewis-on-american-public-education.html

I found a number of quotes ... etc. but it was difficult to find his complete writing on the topic on the web during my brief search.

Again, this is important as there have been voices throughout the years trying to alert folk to the dangers.

For the most part, CS Lewis thought that the American Public Educational system was suicidal.

Anonymous scoobius dubious January 11, 2013 4:07 AM  

@DaveD -- good luck with your teaching career, I hope it is successful and satisfying!

Most of the tropes I used are too hard to explain in a blog comment, but I can tell you one of the basic, simple strategies and you might use the idea to construct your own. I'm not a teacher myself, so I wasn't trying to actually "teach" a subject, the idea was just trying to get kids to approach it and consider it in a way that would engage them and make them argue about it.

For instance, one of the simplest things was to ask a seemingly stupid question, the answer to which had to be inferred or deduced because there was something missing; in other words, the answer wasn't just something in the teacher's book that you look up and it has the answers, it was something they needed to infer on their own.

A simple example was this: I'd drop a coin on the floor and then ask why it fell to the ground. The kids all chime in: "Because the law of gravity!" Next question: Okay, if it was just the law of gravity, then why didn't the coin crash through the floor and keep on falling, down through the basement, into the ground, and all the way to the center of the earth? What stopped it from doing that? If the earth is pulling on all of us with gravity, why don't we all just fall through the floor and hit the center of the earth? The earth is a lot bigger than the floor -- why does the floor seem to be stronger than the earth?

Or: How come if I drop a plate, a coin, and a piece of paper, the plate will break into pieces but the other two things don't? Did the coin and the piece of paper not break for the same reason, or for different reasons? Kids: "The coin didn't break because it's metal!" Okay, so next question: What's metal? What makes it different from paper?

Or: if I throw a basketball through the hoop, have I just solved a math problem? If I did, what was the problem?

Or: why doesn't Mercury just crash into the sun? It's really small, and it's really close to the sun. Why doesn't the sun just sort of suck it in?

You can see how you can make this sort of thing entertaining. The games, though, are too hard to explain.

If you're teaching anything about writing or English or language, I'd highly recommend the poet Kenneth Koch's books on teaching poetry to people who don't have a literary bent. I think his book on teaching writing to children is called "Wishes, Lies and Dreams" and it has a lot of valuable insights.

Anyway, good luck with it all!

Anonymous jla January 11, 2013 8:20 AM  

I quit college when an old bitty flunk me in a five hour chemistry class in which my test scores were tops in the class. I took my graded test and a three fellow classmates to the Dean of engineering to protest and found a rather unsympathetic black man who informed me the best he could do was give me an incomplete and a chance to take the class over next year.

Anonymous E. PERLINE January 11, 2013 8:32 AM  

The instinct for reproduction from finding a mate and rearing children is strong in males but is much stronger in females. Males use their Reasoning Brain (the hunting brain only 160,000 years old) more often.

Females are geared to use their Reptilian Brain, millions of years old, and shared by other species. There would seem to be a parity between the sexes, but it is based on different sources of thinking.

Anonymous same MO everywhere January 11, 2013 8:44 AM  

same happens in UK, GCSE got coursework and girls got ahead on all subjects even PE, nevermind the grade inflation.
They dropped it in 2010 in maths, and boys finally outscored. By a little margin.

Same in Sweden:

www.thelocal.se/31962/20110210/#.UPAG1NV5d0I

they also have something akin to the SAT on which boys outscore girls, apparently that is also derided as sexist test, even though fewer boys take it just like SAT.

Anonymous same MO everywhere January 11, 2013 8:52 AM  

'Back when I was in grade school (70s-80s) the big fuss was how schools were failing girls. "

and the schools shortchanging girls in the 90s.

when the call should have been raised about boys' performance, offence the best defense.

Blogger Tom January 11, 2013 9:12 AM  

As a high school teacher, I would disagree with Vox's conclusion with respect to high school kids:

"In summary, girls are able to substitute apple-polishing and classroom etiquette for an amount of knowing the material, and they are being rewarded for it, beginning in kindergarten."

It is probably true in grade school, but by the time they get to high school, it has morphed into something very different.

Instead, I would suggest the following:

"In general, girls tend to be more compliant with externally assigned tasks and academic requirements. They are more detail oriented and willing to submit to authority. Guys will try to buck the requirements and get away with minimal effort far more often."

I teach physics, and even in this historically male dominated subject, more of my highest grades go to girls. However, more of the interesting "What if..." questions come from boys. Guys tend to be better at venturing off the beaten path when the chance comes up, and worse at simply fulfilling requirements. Perhaps this is a result of previous imbalances shifted towards apple polishing, but it has manifested as a genuine difference in doing what is required of them.

As a homeschooling dad, I've had a lot of inspiration from watching my own children learn, and I've tried to make my courses less and less like a factory and more and more like an academy. We've got open ended, re-attemptable (randomized) tests that allow students to come back and learn things at the own pace and in their own timing. However even with these changes, guys still seem to be far more likely to try to buck the requirements of the courses completely. The kids that are putting off completing things until the last week before they are due are 80% guys. Of course, so far with this course design they've usually come through in the end, but they haven't mastered as much material because it.

Just my direct observations from an actual classroom.

Anonymous Kickass January 11, 2013 10:17 AM  

@ JDC, you have just given me my new mantra

@ Beau, have you looked into Coconut oil? It has been used to heal several brain injuries with great success.

Anonymous Agree January 11, 2013 11:19 AM  

Also endorse the recommendation for the Monster Hunter books.

I am reading the massive volume that has the first three books, and just finished book #2. Lots o' fun!

Anonymous PC Geek January 11, 2013 2:05 PM  

Beau, have you looked into Coconut oil? It has been used to heal several brain injuries with great success.

Same here - coconut oil is wonderful stuff from what I have read.

Anonymous E. PERLINE January 12, 2013 2:05 PM  

Yesterday I exchanged looks with a boy in a wheel chair and I said "I told you not to ski that mountain, didn't I?" And we both got a laugh.

Apparently no one, including my own family, knows what to make of my statements like "Boys and Girls rely on using a different brain."

The Reasoning Brain was developed to address the male's need for hunting animals. This change made human craniums 30% larger.

Females get along very well with the instinctive Reptilian Brain. This ancient brain covers reproduction and young-rearing for every species and needs no change.

Both brains have remarkable abilities. Pedagogues don't understand what they're looking at when they see a difference in male and female behavior.

Blogger Galt-in-Da-Box January 14, 2013 12:32 AM  

It might also be that the girls can put out.
So can the boys, in Catholic schools!

Blogger bekkyman May 15, 2013 3:40 AM  

Thanks for the great sharing! cheap android phones was given to me for new hope this past year and it has gotten some heavy use.

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