Published Online: February 26, 2008
Published in Print: February 27, 2008, as Reading Skills

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Reading Skills

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Why Do We Have a Knowledge Deficit?

Educators place too much emphasis on teaching specific reading-comprehension skills at the expense of helping students build a strong knowledge base in academic subjects they are expected to read about, understand, and analyze, argues a policy paper by E.D. Hirsch Jr., the founder of the Charlottesville, Va.-based Core Knowledge Foundation, which advocates the idea that knowledge building is the best approach for improving academic achievement.

The paper also says that rather than adopting a curriculum based on knowledge building and assessing its impact, educators tend to blame social inequalities and poverty for their students’ inability to demonstrate critical-thinking and reading skills.

Vol. 27, Issue 25, Page 5

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