Archive for August 6th, 2004

6th August
2004

First Published in The New York Sun, August 6, 2004

By Andrew Wolf

 The National Endowment for the Arts recently released a report on our nation’s literacy. Americans are not reading as much as they used to.This trend has been accelerating in the past two decades.There has been a lot of anguish over this news, which has drawn much comment on both the left and right, and no shortage of theories attempting to explain how we came to this. Everything gets blamed, from television to videogames to the Internet. I have my own theory. 

    It is curious is that the movement of our young people away from the joy of reading for pleasure appears to coincide with the rise of the whole language (often labeled “balanced literacy”) method of teaching reading, and the associated content-poor “progressive” teaching model that encourages students to “construct” their own knowledge.  (more…)