BEHS 343 Achievement Gap and Behavior Problems in Middle Childhood

BEHS 343 Achievement Gap and Behavior Problems in Middle Childhood

BEHS 343 Achievement Gap and Behavior Problems in Middle Childhood

Education over a long period has been presumed to be the most effective method to make people better and more productive in the society. While this appears to be true, Sir Ken Robinson in his speech “Bring on the Learning Revolution” challenges this notion by criticizing how formal education stifles innovation among students (Jetnikoff & Armitage, 2013). Sir Ken highlights the achievement gap as among the impediments that can affect creativity among school-going children in the United States.

Robinson addresses the concept of conformity, linearity, and standardization as key concepts of education that contributes to the achievement gap among children. According to Robinson, linearity is based on the concept of a straight line which suggests that people must start their life from a point, go through it, and do everything right in the course of their survival on earth. The context of conformity on the other hand refers to compliance with the established standards of education in a country (Matei, 2016). In this concept, pupils and students are expected to pay attention to educational standards whether they excite them or not as long as they complete the tasks assigned. As per Robinson, the concept appears challenging considering that learners sometimes are required to comply with educational standards that do not align with their passion (Jetnikoff & Armitage, 2013). Standardization as the final concept relates to how educational goals enhance maximum compatibility as well as promote safety of learning to students. In other words, the concept implies that the standards are established to ensure that learners achieve positive results at the end of the different stages of education.

In an attempt to criticize modern-day education and how it limits public education in America, Robinson questions the reason why everyone must be prepared for a college education. In a humble but a firm tone, he indulges the audience against the issue of college education citing that it is not a noble idea for the current economic matrix of the American society. In fact, Robinson is surprised by the sheer joy and obsession of Americans to achieve a college degree without the very people assessing their passion for courses pursued in those institutions. He challenges audiences to first recognize their skills so that they select college programs that excite and align with their passion. He is however concerned that Americans directly peg their education achievement on time such that young adults rush to pursue college courses before reviewing their relevance in their life goals (Jetnikoff & Armitage, 2013). Instead, people rely upon the standards placed on education by relevant institutions in America to select courses that are right for them as they advance from basic education to advanced learning. Robinson challenges this pattern of established educational standards in the United States arguing that it is not possible to predict the outcomes of human development and that learners need to be given space so that they understand what they want and what they can do for their future life.

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Despite his criticism of modern education, Robinson does not recommend the best approach to enhance the

BEHS 343 Achievement Gap and Behavior Problems in Middle Childhood
BEHS 343 Achievement Gap and Behavior Problems in Middle Childhood

achievement of quality learning in the United States. He however does not single out whether the current education approaches are bad or good but instead suggests an overhaul that will lead to a revolution in the modality of learning among American students (Matei, 2016). From his observation and experience, Robinson suggests that knowledge delivery should be learner-centered to befit the requirement of modern students. While this approach may offer a bundle of evidence to create passion among learners, it may also appear impossible because it takes a little bit of time for students to understand what they want or select courses that are within their ability to comprehend (Jetnikoff & Armitage, 2013). Nonetheless, the sheer joy of pursuing a specific course due to peer influence may also subject American students to enroll in programs that are beyond the scope of their knowledge and therefore fail to achieve the education requirements needed for such professions. Robinson reports that it is not the responsibility of an educator to impose courses on students but instead, they need to analyze the behavior and the skills of the learners to offer them an option to choose the best programs (Clarke, 2020). However, an educator should play the role of a guide to enable learners understand their priorities in education and follow such intuition to pursue educational courses that interest them the most.

In order to enhance learning outcomes for students, top educational systems in the world particularly Canada has revamped teacher education to equip them with cutting-edge programs that meet the demand of the current world. The United States can emulate educational reforms used in Canada by lengthening the training and practicum periods of teacher education as well as the school leaders (Tan et al., 2017). The approach will ensure that teachers are equipped with cutting-edge skills of the current world which will enable learners to acquire adequate knowledge in course selection. Skilled teachers and trainers also guarantee quality content delivery to motivate learners in pursuing programs that match their competencies and interest (Matei, 2016). In a similar approach to Canada, the United States can implement major reforms in education by introducing experiential learning and career-focused programs that stimulate the passion of students. This is to say that, basic literacy and numeracy skills introduced in intermediate learning should guide learners about their career trajectory such that it lays a foundation for future selection of courses as junior learners transit to colleges (Tan et al., 2017). In this regard, learners will pursue programs that align with the demands of the current society so that they tap into multiple opportunities associated with such careers.

Parenting can have a direct influence on the educational attainment of children. The home can be a source of encouragement for learners if proper family upbringing is embraced. In order to advance this discourse, the selected document for the study is article 7. The latter addresses the issue of the involvement of the father in parenting (Pleck, 2012). According to the research, paternal involvement in the lives of children directly influence the behavior of youngsters when compared to those raised by the mother. Most often, quality interaction between the father and the children can enact behavior that enhances the laboratory skills of those children.

The father’s involvement in parenting can also improve the motivational engagement of the child in education and other aspects of learning. The article suggests that in many instances, mothering in parenting is mandatory while fathering seems discretionary. In essence, the involvement of the father in parenting is likely to improve the interaction of the child with their peers and teachers (Pleck, 2012). Children will shun fear and therefore will be able to engage actively in educational activities. Such children acquire identity in selecting courses that befit their interest and therefore can progress well in career selections.

From the article, certain language used seem beyond the scope of my knowledge. For instance, words like “paternal essentials” and “essential father” were relatively confusing. The article also addressed the hypothesis of the “important father” in describing the context of paternal roles of the father in parenting (Pleck, 2012). While these words may be used interchangeably, they seem confusing so much so that one may not understand whether they have the same meaning or they are distinctly in different sentences.


Clarke, T. (2020). Children’s wellbeing and their academic achievement: The dangerous discourse of ‘trade-offs’ in education. Theory and Research in Education18(3), 263-294. DOI: 10.1177/1477878520980197

Jetnikoff, A., & Armitage, C. (2013). Creativity is as important as literacy: Making a film trailer responding to literature. Words’ Worth46(1), 9-15.

Matei, C. (2016). Organizational culture and creativity’s perspectives. Euromentor Journal-Studies about education, (03), 40-47.

Pleck, J. H. (2012). Integrating father involvement in parenting research. Parenting12(2-3), 243-253.

Tan, J. P. L., Choo, S. S., Kang, T., & Liem, G. A. D. (2017). Educating for twenty-first century competencies and future-ready learners: research perspectives from Singapore. Asia Pacific Journal of Education37(4), 425-436.