The Death of Tiger Mom (Part 1 of 2)
It’s been over a decade since Amy Chua launched her notorious writing career describing the benefits of being a Tiger mom. In her book, she told how Asian moms were “better” and pointed to the exceptional academic performance of her children — and Asian children generally — as proof. And she’s right. Asian kids have, […]
3 Ways to Survive The Education Jungle (No Fear!)
The future is fuzzy and uncertain, yet your child’s school stays stuck in the past. Your child is going to The Jungle… are they ready?
Past, Present, and Future Fathers
It’s time to re-think Father’s Day. No more cards… do something radically useful instead.
The Short Order Cook and Her Two Daughters (and other commentary)
Dr. Scott discusses the soft bigotry of low expectations, the return of the “Graduate Profile,” and getting kids back in school.
Putting It All Together: Parent Upskills for Smarter and Stronger Kids
The Education Game promised parents a series of coaching points around “upskilling.” This is a collection of 7 articles written by Dr. Scott and Matt to help parents build life-long, independent learners.
It’s All About Relationships
We all know that “without relationship, learning suffers.” Can’t we do better building relationships among learners and educators? It turns out that we can…
Writing as Learning
Writing is not what you think it is. “Writing is an act of discovery!” “Writing gives us power.” (says, Dr. Robin Reagler, longtime writing expert). Here’s a plan to improve your LEARNING through writing.
Habits of Mind Drive Success
Any parents looking to build Character into your children? We have found that the “Habits of Mind” overlap with key character qualities. Build the Habits of Mind in your kids and you build their Character!
Math, Science, and Social Studies is All About Problem-Solving
This week Dr. Scott takes on problem-solving skills in the areas of science and social studies.
You’re Not a Rogue Parent (or Teacher) if You Want the Best for Your Kids
Dr. Scott takes on traditional decision-makers in this essay, whether they are the school principal or the President of the United States. Parents are the public in public schooling, make no mistake about it.
Don’t Teach Your Kids to Read (Part 2 of 2)
I continue the provocative idea of prioritizing Self-Control over Reading. This week, I describe how self-control can be built through “student engagement” and include examples and strategies for families to consider.
Don’t Teach Your Kids to Read (Part 1 of 2)
His mother yelled his name as he raced past me. She was close on his heels. The child, probably around age 4 or 5, was holding a package of sausage under his right arm — I’m not making this up — and, given the smile on his face, it was clear that he was having a great time grocery shopping with mom. Mom, not so much.
How Your Child Rocks Learning!
Dr. Scott pays tribute to arguably the greatest rock guitarist ever – Eddie Van Halen – in this blog discussing interest-based learning. Van Halen epitomized the pursuit of interest-based learning as he perfected playing the electric guitar while inventing a number of innovations connected with that same instrument. Parents! Can you form a plan to support your child’s interest/passion/drive? Read on for tips on how to do it.
Smack Down Response to NYT Op Ed
Dr. Scott Van Beck takes on Harvard professor Jal Mehta’s recent op ed in the New York Times. This “Smack Down” hammers long-standing and antiquated beliefs about school (without using a folding chair!) Take a read and choose your side!
Is School Blockbuster or Netflix?
Blockbuster failed because they didn’t realize that our world was moving towards “Anytime, Anywhere, Everything.” If your child still sees school as “the place where learning happens,” then they may suffer the same fate as Blockbuster. Learning is now Anytime, Anywhere! Here’s how to do it.
The Great Parent “Up-Skill” (8 Essential Skills for 2021)
Matt and Dr. Scott present an 8 week bootcamp plan to develop adult learning leader skills within the most important person in the life of a child – the parent.
When drowning on dry land, jump into deep water
If your child doesn’t want to learn over the holiday break, it’s likely because they have been “drowning” in a school environment that is dull and uninspiring. Now’s your chance to push them into the “deep water” where the excitement to learn can be reignited! Here’s how…
Two Pathways to a Learning Pod
Learning Pods — which are a form of “Microschool” — are set to revolutionize learning. Parents keep asking us, “how to establish a FUN, FAIR, and POSITIVE learning pod?” Here’s how.
Looking for the “Sick and Tireds of Being Sick and Tired”
Are you a parent who is dissatisfied with your child’s learning? We mean, REALLY dissatisfied? Are you “sick and tired” of 1) schools that produce students who can’t learn on their own, 2) of feeling ignored by your school, 3) of a school system that is stuck in time? If yes, then for the sake of your child, it’s time to build a new approach.
Baby, You Can Drive My Car
Teaching our kids how to be self-directed, independent, life-long learners intimidates us as much as teaching them to drive a car. But we do teach our kids how to drive and eventually get comfortable letting them take total control of a 4,000-lb metal box capable of going 100 miles per hour down the highway. Why is it we’re not ready to teach them how to take total control of their own learning? Parents, it’s time to step up!
(Part 2) Blame Thomas Friedman
Part 2 of “Blame Thomas Friedman” contains a simple “baby step” suggestion to help parents build self-motivation and self-direction in their children. (Maybe you’ll even thank Mr. Friedman… one day.)
Parents ≥ Teachers
I was a middle school and high school principal for 10 years. During that time, I saw many parents who allowed teachers or principals to make all the decisions about their child’s learning, with little or no input from the parent. It’s time to flip the script.
Blame Thomas Friedman (Part 1)
Parents: What’s your reaction to Thomas Friedman’s quote? “..in a world where you will change jobs and professions several times, the self-motivation to be a lifelong learner will be paramount.” It’s time to pivot to a different type of learning.
The Art of Negotiation
When I was a high school principal, I was visited by many middle class parents asking favors for their children. Here’s what parents need to know to negotiate improved learning for their children. (Part 1)
What do Parents — Even You — REALLY Want?
Three parents tell us what they want most for their kids. Meet Brenda, Kelly and Adolfo. (Hint: They want the same thing that you and I do.)
Toilet paper or diploma? – that is the question.
Self-directed learning is the undiscussed civil rights issue of our time. When a learner is able to define, plan, execute, and evaluate their own learning they cease being owned by the traditional school system. The learner now possesses skills they own and cannot be taken away for a lifetime.
How Do You Eat an Elephant?
I spoke with a parent today whose 7-year-old will be expected to spend many hours on, or near, the computer each day. Really?! This rigid, “More is Better” model of learning will not lead to a love of learning, student engagement, or learning independence.
Instead, consider an integrated, “Less but Better” approach… and decide which will work better for you and your young learner.
What if School Did Not Exist?
Education is being disrupted in real time and basic assumptions about “school” are rightly being questioned. Co-Founder of The Education Game, Dr. Scott Van Beck, leads a new blog series we call “What if…?” Each discussion will compel readers to explore basic assumptions about education that may no longer apply. This week’s question: “What if schools did not exist?” We welcome your comments.
The Unbundling of Education
COVID is massively accelerating the “unbundling of education.” Instead of a “one-size-fits-few” model, COVID is driving innovation, experimentation and personalization (finally!). Welcome to the future of education… don’t mind the mess.
Anxious Parents: Here’s Your 6-Week Playbook to Prepare for the Fall
Parents: Before you decide on virtual, home, hybrid, “Learning Pod”, private tutor, or online courses, walk with me through a 6-week process to develop a plan that can flex with the expected disruption of the coming months (years?!). Here’s your Playbook that looks far beyond COVID.
Fear-Less This Fall: A Parent Story
Every parent is feeling afraid. Their fear comes, in part, because they have not clearly defined their risks and developed mitigation strategies. Here is one parent’s story.
COVID Almost Killed Me and FrankenSchool Tried to Kill My Child’s Education
COVID almost killed me and FrankenSchool almost killed my kid’s education. No one can convince me that restarting traditional school in the fall makes sense. The risks are too high for too many. But there is another way: home learning. It will be hard… but the benefits far outweigh the risks. Let me show you how.
To Parents with Black Boys
Parents with Black boys have been reminded that raising their sons is tricky/dangerous business. But we can be order out of the chaos… if we stay focused.
How Kumon Turned a Black Father into an Asian Mother
What does a Black Male Preschool teacher and the largest Educational franchise have in common? A lot it seems.
The Playbook for Highly Engaged Parents
Losing Trust She asked me with surprisingly little emotion in her voice. “Why should I trust anything you say,” she started. “After the corruption, dysfunction, and failed promises, how can any parent trust you…” her voice trailed off as she looked for the right words. “…to trust you to make sure that MY child is […]
COVID: Education Smoke. Not Fire.
COVID is a minor educational problem. There, I said it. Truth. For decades, in the 7th largest district in the US — and in many schools around the world — the majority of kids are not mastering the basics (especially Black/Brown boys). Truth. COVID isn’t the crisis. It is short-term smoke from a long-term raging […]
Death of Tiger Mom (part 2 of 2)
I am continuing my attempts to declaw Tiger-parents. Click here for last week’s post. As a reminder, I am a Black man. I have a Black son. I am recovering from life as an Asian Tiger mom. These may seem unrelated, but they are linked. Tiger moms represent one side of the educational spectrum. They […]
Hey John King! Let’s start a neighborhood tutoring corps before we take on a national one.
Dr. Scott responds to past Secretary of Education John King’s idea of forming a national tutoring corps to help kids catch up during this nasty pandemic. Dr. Scott offers the idea of families starting neighborhood tutoring programs, using next door friends as tutors for a group of neighborhood kids.