The Unliteracy Policy

The schools should reject Hirsch's ideas about literacy in favor of an opposing policy which we can dub the "Unliteracy Policy." The Unliteracy Policy states that there is no one fact or set of facts that everyone should know. If we discovered a fact that did seem worth knowing, the interesting issues would be the reason it was worth knowing, how other facts were related to it, and what a person had learned when they compared that fact to similar or contradictory "facts." It doesn't matter which historical facts one has learned, it matters that one has learned to think about history in a reasoned way. It doesn't matter what mathematical formulas one has memorized, it matters that one has learned to solve problems in a logical way. It doesn't matter if one can recite every conjugation in French, it matters that one can communicate in French.

The subject matter we use to motivate students is not as important as the need to motivate them. It makes little difference what children learn, it matters that they learn and that they want to continue to learn. Regardless of what they learn, certain things that we want them to know will come for along for the ride anyway. You can hardly learn about some specialty area of interest without also learning how to reason, how to learn more, and how to communicate what you know.

Next Story Dangers of Literacy Lists

Outline Where am I in the content of the book?

Give Me Alternatives

What Is Next

What Led To This?

What Should Be Avoided?

What Can Be Done?

Give Me Details

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