What is it with males?
Another report, another set of data showing boys lagging behind girls! The headlines are usually about writing. This report goes beyond the one subject and looks at their interest in school, whether they are happy, talk in class and are tired in the mornings. The study by the Institute of Education, London interviewed over 14,000 children. The data is looking at developments between 2000 – 2002.
So what is it about the boys? How come among top entrepreneurs, designers, engineers, scientists (the list goes on) the male of the species can be found? Does this mean they have to play ‘catch up ‘ at some time?
In a very energetic debate on Twitter a while ago the topic of ‘What is different between the ways in which boys and girls learn? fully explored the whys and wherefores. The question I ask is – Does it matter? I think this holds the key to this apparent failure of boy’s early learning. We seem to be very keen in this country to have a one size fits all for so many things. Another interesting thread is here from LinkedIn which looks at adult learners. It seems it is still aproblem when we grow up!
Speaking with a friend who is involved in teacher training I expressed the view that the Colleges needed to provide more in the way of training in learning styles. Apparently, the thinking is that it is schools that create the learning environment and the approaches to learning within them.
However, wouldn’t you know it; the boys come up trumps in this article.
Male teachers seem to be able to produce better results according to this small study. This was borne out by a friend whose son has made brilliant progress with his new male teacher. Is this perhaps the reason that in the past only men were allowed into the profession? Is this where education has gone wrong – allowing females into the hallows of academia (tongue firmly in cheek!)
Sarcasm aside, it is also about society’s perception – you know all that Venus and Mars stuff!. When I first became a head teacher the school gate gossip was that there was no way I would stay because I was not a man. ‘Women can’t do that sort of a job because it takes discipline.’ This was only 13 years ago so we’re not talking dark ages!
So Dear Reader – what are your views? Are you the parent of a ‘failing’ boy? Would having a male teacher help? Teachers – what do you do with all those apparently disinterested boys?Image courtesy of Google