Thursday, April 8, 2010

Talking Point 8

Jean Anyon- "Social Class and the Hidden Curriculum of Schooling"

1. "(In working class schools) The teachers rarely explain why the work is being assigned, how it might be connected to other assignments, or what the idea is that lies behind the procedure or gives it coherence and perhaps meaning or significance."
-I think it is a shame and unfair that students are not given the connection to other assignments in the past or even a meaning or significance of the assignment. I know that when i know the purpose of the assignment i am much more interesting in working it through. Just because the teachers work in a working class school should not determine how they state purposes of assignments and make connections.

2. "While the teachers spend a lot of time on explaining and expanding on what the textbooks say, there is little attempt on how or why things happen, or to give thought on how pieces of a culture, or say, how a system of numbers or elements of a language fit together or can be analyzed."
-I think that teaching should go beyond the lessons and learnings of a textbook. The most important question is WHY something would happen and if teachers are giving little attempts on answering the "why" questions in middle class schooling, then i feel that they arent learning subjects to the fullest extent of which they can be taught.

3. "(In the executive elite schools) A primary goal of thought is to conceptualize rules by which elements may fit together in systems and then apply these rules in solving a problem. Schoolwork helps to acheive, to excel, to prepare for life."
-I find this quote important; especially the second sentence. I think that no matter what social class a school is located in, the goal of school work should be exactly as the quote states; to help achieve, excel and prepare for life. School work should be enriching for all students no matter what social class they are in.

I found it very interesting to read about how teachers teach and the creativity factors that are included at each school. It seems like at the working class and the middle class schools, the students dont seem like they are asked as much as students in the higher social classes. I feel this is wrong. Just because someone lives in a lower income neighborhood doesnt mean that they should be taught at such different extermes as the students that live in high class areas. I also noticed that in the elite schooling, students are asked to explain their answers in great detail and they seem very challenged. On the other hand, the working class students seem to get some answers handed to them; which means they really are not learning what they need to be. Why cant lower income students be challenged too? I think the students should be challenged starting in the first grade; so that by the time that they get to high school, they will know what will be expected from them. I can relate this to the students that i work with from the service learning project. These students come from lower income areas and i can tell by the lessons and tons of worksheets that they are receiving each class that they were not challenged at a young age. These students are in eighth grade and they have no motivation in class, nor are they discussing problems in class. This doesnt help their learning process of the new material that they are being taught.
I really thought this article was eye opening and the differences between the schools and classes are easily visible. I really didnt think that the differences would be that apparent, but after reading the article, the examples of the same types of lessons are taught so differently amongst the classes. I am looking forward to class to discuss the schools and social classes on Monday.


  1. I agree with what you say on your first quote. Also it doesn't give kids the chance to make connections.

  2. You are completely right, schools should not teach to children differently based on their economic status.

  3. I love your second quote. Teaching should go beyond the textbooks and lessons. Connections and analyzations should be made.

  4. Your second quote is great. I feel the same way and feel like those situations short change the student's learning.

  5. I agree with what you said about your first quote. It is not fair and it is just setting the students in the working class up for failure or jsut nothing at all.

  6. I agree with your last paragraph. Why should lower income students be treated differently than higher income students? Everyone goes to school to learn so that they can become successful in life - all the students have the same goal!

  7. I liked your first quote. I think it is wrong that teachers don't explain why the students are doing the work.