See Infra

Digging at the confluence of culture and everything else

Tag Archives: education

The Dark Side of Potential

I was lucky in a lot of ways as a child: I had two parents who loved, nurtured and instilled a love of learning in me; we lived in an affluent neighborhood with a good school; I had certain gifts from nature and nurture that we call above-average intelligence; and finally I had access to books through ownership and the well funded local library. As a result, I was reading five or six grades above my level. I knew this because on the back of every book a schoolchild was going to get their hands on they printed the suggested reading level. Between school, personality, and my parents I had gotten clear signals that being smart was good, and being smart had something to do with your age and your grade levels, so I was quietly pleased with being an advanced reader.1 On top of that, throughout elementary school I was the fastest reader in my class. At some point, second grade I think, the class was split, or tracked, into two reading groups. One track was for the advanced readers, and the other track was for the normal readers. 2 So you can imagine my personal disappointment and filial shame when I was tracked into the normal reader group.3 Read more of this post

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