Friday, April 6, 2007

Observe Spot Scamper

This No Child Left Behind Act has clearly had an impact on what we're teaching our preschoolers. The level of literacy they are expected to have now is astonishing. You remember those learning to read books, right? Different levels depending on literacy level. Easily understood, yes?

This is the one Luke and I were reading the other night:


What does Level 1 mean? It means you're starting to read. There are "simple stories, increased vocabulary, longer sentences." It says so on the back of the book:

All is fine. Instead of just words, they'll put a picture and the word underneath it. In previous books I've seen like this, you'll have a little photo of a table and the word written under it. Or a chair. Or a dog. Or other easily recognizable photos and simple words. That's the key, right? The kid will associate the picture with the letters. I get that. Then what the heck is this?

"There are animal teams from all over the rainforest. There is a spectacled bear team, a howler monkey team, and a puma team."

Excuse me? "Spectacled bear," "howler monkey" and "puma" are the simple words my kid is going to learn? Okay, maybe we don't watch enough "Go, Diego, Go," but what exactly is a spectacled bear? [It's this.] Please, don't tell me that preschoolers in South America countries know this and I'm just raising a bunch of cultural buffoons. Luke's going to enter kindergarten in August. Should I focus on spectacled bears, howler monkeys and puma or should I focus on sight words?

Oh, for the good ole days of Dick, Jane and Spot.

1 comment:

Undercover Angel said...

I know what you mean. I can't believe the things they expect kids to learn at younger ages these days....

I loved Dick and Jane by the way. And Mr. Mugs - Mr. Mugs readers were my favorite when I was a kid...

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