Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Book twenty-two: Boys Adrift by Leonard Sax, M.D., Ph. D.

The subtitle of this book is "The Five Factors Driving the Growing Epidemic of Unmotivated Boys and Underachieving Young Men". It focuses on video games, teaching methods, prescription drugs, environmental toxins, and devaluation of masculinity. 

Since last year (I think) I read a book that also looked at video games, and more generally screen time, that stated vastly different outcomes regarding aggressive behaviors, etc., further inquiry is required before I can make up my mind. 

What I found most interesting was the discussion of how school has changed, and how the changes have distanced boys from their education and removed much of the incentive to be engaged in the learning process. We know that kindergarten today is more like the first grade of thirty plus years ago. In 2007, a NIMH study showed differences in brain development of girls and boys. (Sax was careful to note that the study warned that "differences do not imply an order of rank".) While the pace of education has accelerated, boys brains are not developing differently. We have also moved away from teaching knowledge from experience to more of a knowledge from books model of education. 

You know what? I kind of think I took copious notes and that it would be far more effective to just recommend the book than try to piece together a summary of his work. 

22 down plus 30 to go.

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