Enlish Paper 1

Submitted By heathermichhelle18
Words: 742
Pages: 3

Heather Keenan
English 1301 Section
Diagnostic Essay
September 4, 2014

Disaster in Education Lawrence Steinberg’s article, “What’s Holding Back American Teenagers?” is about how the standards for education in America compared to all the countries such as China, Korea, and Japan is much lower when they reach high school. The article also suggests that even though we have put so much money and effort into the education system it still has not shown any improvement. I found this information to be alarming as I am a recent high school graduate. The educational system in high school is very flawed because teachers are being pressured to teach to the state test, students aren’t challenging themselves and aren’t being challenged themselves, they are more worried about the social lives. The reason why I think there are flaws in America’s education system based on Lawrence’s article “What’s Holding American Teenager Back?” is because teachers are being pressured to teach more towards state testing. School districts receive different funding types and recognitions based on the state testing scores. With the heightened focus on teaching to the test teachers are limited in building different curriculum types. This also hinders the teacher’s ability to creatively teach and engage their students. I believe that teachers should be empowered to use different teaching styles to ensure adolescents are obtaining and retaining the needed information. I have a former history teacher who taught in very unconventional ways. Though I thought he was weird at the time, I learned a lot in his class because we were not just memorizing historical facts, we were actually exploring and living history. There were some parents who did not like this untraditional teaching style, and he was instructed by the principal to teach to the test and not do all this other crazy stuff. Adolescents need to be taught in a learning environment that is relative and engaging. Another observation is high school students are not driven to do more than the minimal in high school. This lack of drive by high school students is another factor impacting America’s education system. If students aren’t pushing themselves and don’t have the teachers trying to challenge and require more than just the minimal, where does this leave teenagers. Teachers are not keeping the students attention nor pushing them to be better. It seems they are caught up in the mundane tasks of teaching the basics and don’t have the passion to teach anymore. Adolescences tend to be a minimalist so they really have to be challenged to do more. In Lawrence’s article he quotes “A huge population of the world’s high school students say that school is boring.” So if the students