Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Boy Do We Need Argument
One of the elements of Common Core Standards that I heartily embrace is the emphasis on argument, including the ability to marshal evidence in support of a position, and especially the ability to understand counterarguments and address those facts and opinions clearly and explicitly. Unfortunately, our children have some huge barriers to overcome, namely adults who can't do this AT ALL. We are a biased and unthinking lot at times, led by talking heads who scream at one another and listen not one iota. Chris Lehmann underscores one clear example of how we have an aversion to healthy debate and differences of opinion. So, educators, embrace this opportunity to train a new generation of clear thinkers and reasoned debaters. The opportunity to improve our community life is right before our eyes if we truly embrace the spirit of argument. Our students will benefit from learning to carefully consider all sides of an issue and make determination based on the facts and a clear sense of logic and reasoning.