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American Educator
Winter 1989


Table of Contents


What If Good Jobs Depended on Good Grades?
By James E. Rosenbaum

What would happen if the work-bound students at your school knew that the best jobs in town would go to those whose effort and achievement in high school were strongest? The author considers how we might spark student motivation—and increase teacher authority—by linking grades directly to jobs.

Science Education: It's Not Enough to 'Do' or 'Relate'
By Kathleen J. Roth

Everyone seems to agree that science education has to move away from its over-reliance on didactic instruction and the memorization of facts. Bur proposals that students "do" more science by becoming comfortable with the skills of scientific inquiry, or that the science curriculum be chosen for its "relevance" to students' lives may both fail to improve students' conceptual understanding of scientific phenomena.

And Then They Asked for Hamlet
By Barbara Pollard

Teachers who are committed to the idea of a "high-track" education for all children but who nonetheless feel overwhelmed by the unpreparedness of many of the students who enter their classrooms will be cheered and inspired by this teacher's account of how she introduced her students to Shakespeare.

Out from the Underground
An interview with leaders of Teachers Solidarity by Joshua Muravchik

When Solidarity was illegal and Poland was under martial law, teacher Wiktor Kulerski ran Solidarity's Warsaw region and helped organize Teachers Solidarity. Now, with Solidarity sharing government power, he and colleague Andrzej Janowski discuss what needs to be done—especially in education—to transform Communist Poland into democratic Poland.

History Is for Children
By Charlotte Crabtree

The traditional K–3 social studies curriculum—in which children study their home, their family, and their neighborhood—is a bore. And it's not developmentally desirable either. History, taught at the right level with the right methods, is a better choice.

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About American Educator

American Educator is a quarterly journal of educational research and ideas published by the American Federation of Teachers. Recent articles have focused on such topics as reducing the achievement gap between poor and affluent students, heading off student discipline problems, teaching an appreciation and understanding of democracy, the benefits of a common coherent curriculum, and other issues affecting children and education here and abroad. Total circulation, as of our most recent issue, is over 900,000.

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