Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Are American Students Lazier Than the Rest of the World?

After reading this article from the Boston Globe about how American students in this professor's class are lazier than her International students, it got me thinking.

Her argument goes something like this: American students are not doing well in her class because they are playing video games all night while her International students are overcoming their language challenges to produce better quality work. I won't argue with this. I went to school with a few of these students. I find it believable. It is the next argument that I have trouble with.

She says "... creativity without knowledge - a common phenomenon - is just not enough." Hmm. Again, I agree, but I don't see the connection. Because some students play video games too long into the night, we should return to old style teaching of base level facts? OR... would a more engaging classroom that utilizes the power of technology make the class more beneficial to ALL students? The kids with lousy time management skills will continue to do poorly, but that doesn't change the fact that learning how to leverage technology for research, collaboration, creation, and communication is essential to the success of these students.

Just saying...


  1. Bottom line is - if students don't manage their time well they will do badly (for the most part).

  2. Thanks for your comment Michelle. I totally agree, but learning to manage your time by ignoring technology is not the answer. We need to do a better job of teaching kids how to manage their time so they find balance between the technology tools at their disposal and the many other aspects of their life.

    My problem with the article wasn't that it called out poor student time management as a key issue, but rather that she seems to be calling into question the need to develop solid technological skills. She seems to feel that technology is interfering with time management, when it can be used to improve it if we teach kids to do so.