CEP812: Why People are Stupid


When I first saw the title of this week’s assignment, “Why People are Stupid”, I will admit I was a bit taken aback, and even a little offended. However, after completing the assignment I agree that humans are, in fact, making themselves “stupid”. 

This week in CEP 812 we were asked to read several chapters from James Paul Gee’s The Anti-Education Era:Creating Smarter Students through Digital Learning, and respond to the question: what limitations prevent us from solving big, complex problems smartly? For the assignment, I chose to respond to the prompt focusing on Chapter 10: Institutions and Frozen Thought. Read my essay to learn a little more about how institutions prevent humans from solving complex problems and how I see this in our schools.


Gee, J.P. (2013). The Anti-Education Era: Creating Smarter Students through Digital Learning. New York,NY: Palgrave Macmillian

The Anti-Education Era: Creating Smarter Students through Digital Learning. Retrieved July 19, 2015 from http://www.amazon.com/The-Anti-Education-Era-Creating-Students/dp/0230342094.


One thought on “CEP812: Why People are Stupid

  1. Kristine,
    I really enjoyed reading your essay and your insight to JP Gee’s book. The frozen thought really sticks in my mind because of the rut that students, teachers, and administrators can fall into. I feel that often times new innovative ideas are talked about, but not implemented because of one track thinking. Summer learning loss is a key factor in why some students are not achieving as much as they need. To get out of one track thinking we have designed our summer program to be more of a summer camp. Two hours of math and then two hours of ELA, followed by lunch and then two 45 minute electives such as gym, cooking, science, art, or technology. Every Friday is a field trip to a place where we can tie in content in the real world. This has made kids want to be at summer school and not feel as if they are stupid. It has taken two years for the mindset of the kids to accept that it is okay to be in summer school. I feel that many times kids who do not achieve academically begin to dislike school altogether and this “summer camp” feel rather than summer school has helped them like school again.
    The summer learning loss at my school is very noticeable. I look at year round school or in other words “balanced calendar” and I am in opposition still. I reflect on my classroom and when my students come back from a two week break, the previous lessons seem to be “lost” and I end up re-teaching anyway. I’m thinking that general retention would not be increased by having breaks in the school year, but rather keeping it the same. Your point about school calendars originally being designed to have the summer months off due to lack of air conditioning and the heat is true, however I know it is a struggle to keep kids indoors in Michigan when the summer is already so short let alone to keep them in school.

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