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Schools In Japan – Still Insane?

September 22, 2015 Categories: Uncategorized. Tags: americans in japan and japanese education. 2 Comments on Schools In Japan – Still Insane?

JAPANESE SCHOOLS HAVE a mixed reputation among American educators. On one hand, there is a certain admiration based on the fact that Japanese students consistently place first in international comparisons, especially in mathematics and science, far ahead of American students. On the other, it is widely believed that their academic success relies almost exclusively on rote memory and a rigid curriculum. Many American educators think that the Japanese have purchased achievement by squelching individuality and creativity.

The Japanese have encouraged a degree of smugness among Americans by their own humility. During the past two years, teams of Japanese educators have been touring American schools, eager to learn how we encourage the development of unusually gifted children. In addition, as I discovered in a recent trip to Japan, their educational leaders typically downplay their remarkable record of academic achievement and focus instead on their problems, such as “school violence.” (In fact, their discipline problems pale in comparison to ours;

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