Posts Tagged ‘Daily Mail’

Catering for Four-Year Old Transgendered Children

June 20, 2012


From a system that eats up and spits out so many children it’s great to see that we have the 4-year old transgender demographic satisfied. A classroom may struggle to curb bullying, respond to self-esteem issues and provide a safe environment, but as long as they promote gender neutrality they are going just fine.

A report found young pupils were being encouraged to express themselves and permitted to dress as the opposite sex without judgment.

The education watchdog highlighted examples of good practice, such as appreciating “that a boy may prefer to be known as a girl and have a girl’s name and similarly a girl may have a girl’s name but wants to dress as and be a boy”.

It praised primary schools where “transgender pupils are taken seriously”, and those which had “gender-neutral” environments.

According to a report on one infants’ school, teaching children aged four to seven, found it was doing “excellent work” with “pupils who are or may be transgender”.

In a survey of 37 primary and 19 secondary schools, Ofsted questioned 1,357 pupils about their experiences at school to draw conclusions.

According to the Daily Mail, it found one unnamed school encourage children to behave in a “non-gender stereotypical way”, with younger boys dressing up in traditionally female clothing and allowed to wear ribbons in their hair.

If these 4-year olds are really transgendered, why would we have to ‘encourage’ them to behave in a “non-gender stereotypical way”. Surely as long as we promoted acceptance and tolerance we could let these children find themselves without being so obviously pointed in a certain direction.

Likewise, I find it offensive that teachers are being congratulated for something they have always upheld. Besides in the religious schools (which you would assume are still opposed to the concept of transgendered children) what teacher would interfere with a child’s desire to express themselves in what ever way they see fit?

It bothers me when our system is judged by how we recognise the 1% of students that fall into categories like this one, instead of an all-encompassing policy that spends less time finding differences and more time focussing on the fact that fundamentally we are all the same. If you run a tolerant, caring, inviting classroom you don’t need to worry about transgendered children, because all your students will feel free to express themselves in the way that feels natural to them.

Instead of encouraging boys to dress like girls, encourage boys to be themselves.

Absent-Minded Kids Are Smarter: Study

March 18, 2012

For an absent-minded teacher like myself, this is very encouraging news. To think that we could be smarter, regardless of whether we know what day it is or recall what our passwords are, is surprising to say the least:

Is your child absent-minded? You should feel happy, for a new study says that it may well be a sign that the kid is intelligent. Researchers have found that children who have wandering minds actually have sharper brains — in fact, those who are constantly distracted are able to hold far more information than their diligent peers.

The study has shown that those who appear to be constantly distracted have more “working memory”, giving them the ability to do two things at the same time, the Daily Mail reported.

Those who appear to be constantly distracted have more “working memory”.

Participants in the study had to either press a button in response to the appearance of a certain letter on a screen, or tap in time with their breath. The researchers checked periodically to ask if their minds were wandering.

At the end, they measured the participants’ working memory capacity, giving them a score for their ability to remember a series of letters interspersed with easy maths questions.

Daniel Levinson of University of Wisconsin-Madison, who led the study, said those with higher working memory capacity reported “more mind wandering during these simple tasks” even though their performance was not compromised.

The results are the first to show the association with mind wandering and intelligence. It is thought the extra mental workspace is used, for instance, when adding up two spoken numbers without being able to write them down. Its capacity has been associated with general measures of intelligence, such as reading comprehension and IQ score.

I could sit here and show-off about these findings but I’m too busy trying to find my darn car keys …. again!


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