I'm baaaaaaack.

Hoarding All the Glitter Since 2001.

07 July 2012

The Strange Double Life of Mr. Brooks

I think this Charles Pierce column covers most of the issues with David Brooks' latest screed in the New York Times, but a few questions remain:

  1. How does Mr. Brooks reconcile his love of bizarre drill-and-kill experimental charter schools with the inquiry-driven, student-centered education he mourns here?
  2. Is Mr. Brooks familiar with the diagnosis of ADHD in childhood?  Because even screening for ADHD is strongly discouraged until 2nd grade or so.  And many school districts (like mine) refuse to screen for it at all.  In short, Mr. Brooks: just because you heard about the mean spinster nursery school teacher who forcibly drugs young boys with Ritalin doesn't mean she exists.
  3. Has Mr. Brooks read any recent Newbery Award winners?  While the narrator in Dead End in Norvelt does have nose bleeds under stress and avoids viewing corpses, he also spies on Hells Angels and assists in building a bomb shelter.  I don't think this is sensitive, anti-boy literature.  Does he propose that the author's other autobiographical tale be read instead?
As a side note, in New York Jack Gantos was one of the keynote speakers and pretty hilarious.  Although he did not tell the story of James Marshall and the scotch, he did highlight some of my favorite children's authors (on Tomi Ungerer: "...kicked out of [children's books] for being too grumpy!") and some of my least favorites (on Fancy Nancy: "I'm still shaking out the glitter!").

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