Do Students Need to “Catch Up?”

There is much talk in the news at the moment about students needing to “catch up” post Covid-19, but is this extra pressure on parents, teachers and students justified?

Here’s a blog post by author and lecturer on education, parenting and human behaviour, Alfie Kohn on this subject:

Is Learning “Lost” When Kids Are Out of School? By Alfie Kohn

“What, after all, does it mean to say that children can “lose what they’ve learned”? True, time away from school may entail less exposure to academic content, but that shouldn’t be equated with — nor does it imply the absence of — intellectual development. (Similarly, let’s not forget that time away from school doesn’t mean kids can’t flourish in all sorts of other ways: emotionally, physically, artistically, socially, and morally.)

Too often, schooling consists of cramming bits of knowledge into students’ short-term memories — by means of lectures, textbooks, worksheets, quizzes, and homework — all enforced with grades. Many of these facts and skills are indeed forgotten, but that doesn’t mean that being out of school is calamitous. Rather, it suggests that we should reexamine what too often takes place in school.”

Alfie Kohn

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