U of Chicago working to raise self-esteem of teachers afraid to teach science

Teachers are usually comfortable teaching "bread and butter" subjects like race, sex, class, and gender.  But other subjects, like science, aren't so easy for some teachers, who are confused by the "hard facts" of science and don't always know what to tell their students.  That's why so many teachers are actually afraid to teach science.  The University of Chicago recognizes that this is a problem and is working to raise teachers' self-esteem (at the 36-minute mark of the PBS Newshour) so they will be more comfortable teaching about subjects with which teachers have so little familiarity.

This is Edward Marshall.  He's a Head Start teacher.  And he finds teaching science intimidating!  He becomes anxious when children ask him questions about science because often he doesn't know the answers.

University of Chicago researchers tell teachers it's okay if they don't know the answers to basic science questions.

In the photo above, students are learning which objects float in water.

In the exercise, Marshall did not always know which objects would sink or float and was surprised along with his students.  A University of Chicago researcher assured Marshall that it was okay not to know the answer.

Marshall said the UC interviewers gave him the courage to teach science.  He said that now that he understands that there are no wrong answers, he no longer feels silly or afraid.

This entire story was presented on the PBS Newshour as described above.  Not once did the reporter raise the issue of whether teachers who are unprepared to teach basic science should be in the classroom at all.  Our federal tax dollars pay for Head Start, and I believe that much of the money is wasted because many of the "teachers" doing the teaching are blatantly unqualified.

Instead of doing a serious investigative piece to expose unqualified teachers, the Newshour instead lauds a program to cover up teacher deficiencies by teaching them "self-esteem."  How does self-esteem help a teacher who is so ignorant that he doesn't know which objects will float in water?

This in a nutshell is the problem with our educational system: an inability to hold teachers accountable, as they would be if they worked in any other profession.

This in a nutshell is also the problem with our mainstream media, who cover up the basic inadequacies of the educational system by talking of the need for greater "self-esteem."

Ed Straker is the senior writer at Newsmachete.com.

Teachers are usually comfortable teaching "bread and butter" subjects like race, sex, class, and gender.  But other subjects, like science, aren't so easy for some teachers, who are confused by the "hard facts" of science and don't always know what to tell their students.  That's why so many teachers are actually afraid to teach science.  The University of Chicago recognizes that this is a problem and is working to raise teachers' self-esteem (at the 36-minute mark of the PBS Newshour) so they will be more comfortable teaching about subjects with which teachers have so little familiarity.

This is Edward Marshall.  He's a Head Start teacher.  And he finds teaching science intimidating!  He becomes anxious when children ask him questions about science because often he doesn't know the answers.

University of Chicago researchers tell teachers it's okay if they don't know the answers to basic science questions.

In the photo above, students are learning which objects float in water.

In the exercise, Marshall did not always know which objects would sink or float and was surprised along with his students.  A University of Chicago researcher assured Marshall that it was okay not to know the answer.

Marshall said the UC interviewers gave him the courage to teach science.  He said that now that he understands that there are no wrong answers, he no longer feels silly or afraid.

This entire story was presented on the PBS Newshour as described above.  Not once did the reporter raise the issue of whether teachers who are unprepared to teach basic science should be in the classroom at all.  Our federal tax dollars pay for Head Start, and I believe that much of the money is wasted because many of the "teachers" doing the teaching are blatantly unqualified.

Instead of doing a serious investigative piece to expose unqualified teachers, the Newshour instead lauds a program to cover up teacher deficiencies by teaching them "self-esteem."  How does self-esteem help a teacher who is so ignorant that he doesn't know which objects will float in water?

This in a nutshell is the problem with our educational system: an inability to hold teachers accountable, as they would be if they worked in any other profession.

This in a nutshell is also the problem with our mainstream media, who cover up the basic inadequacies of the educational system by talking of the need for greater "self-esteem."

Ed Straker is the senior writer at Newsmachete.com.