Tuesday, April 19, 2011

High School Dropout Prevention

High School Dropout Prevention: Is it a Lost Battle in Today's Accountability and Reform Mindset?

High school dropout prevention needs to start before high school.

Raison d'etre is French for "reason for being," and students who
can’t read, write, calculate, converse cogently, understand complex ideas, learn new skills, problem solve, reason or desire to cope with the never-ending high stakes test prep, those students feel they have no reason for being in school. Students will start thinking school is a prison and will behave and act institutionalized towards teachers, peers, and academics. Students get more cynical when the gold stars lose their luster, and teachers' mendacity about their performance start showing through the insight of their poor thinking skills and inability to perform academic tasks. It’s a small death suffered every day by these students, as they see their dreams crashed on the rocks of reality. We ask students to come to school daily and give 100% to what they believe is an intolerable humiliation, and we get angry when they don’t smile and take school more seriously. We scratch our heads, wondering what we can do when half of our kids drop out of school. If students can’t read and reason everything else is moot.

Why Students Drop Out of School!
Characteristics of high school dropouts: Key factors in high drop-out rates in high school.

Top Ten Reasons Why At-risk Teens Drop Out of High School.
  • Low academic ability and poor study skills "Austerity = Bigger classes and less enrichment"
  • Poor student engagement and attendance "stress" 
  • Social and emotional problems "depression"
  • Emotionally detached from school and learning "over-testing"
  • Choosing low performing and troubled friends "tribe mindset"
  • History of failure and retention "failure mindset"
  • Social alienation or bullies "fear"
  • Finding and keeping a job "paying bills"
  • Feckless academic institution "public school daycare" 
  • Please share your tenth reason why students drop out!
Students don't drop out of high school at the age of 16 because they feel socially or academically lost... Students start dropping out of school in the first and second grade, just pretending they are students when they can't read or write. Students pick up a litany of bad habits (coping mechanisms) from peers as a way to deal with the stress, fear, humiliation, and embarrassment of being a "Loser, Stupid, or Dumb". Students act institutionalized after twelve years of forced school participation (Failure). Always having to be on the defensive is a sure-fire way to get burned out to drop out.

Many parents that have not taught their child to read before they enter kindergartner have sealed the fate of their child to 12 years of playing ketchup!

I spent most of my time in public school feeling dumb, embarrassed, scared, humiliated, lost, and stupid because of my severe dyslexia and dysgraphia! Sean Taylor

Reading Boot Camp or Reasoning Boot Camp is not a twenty-day miracle; it’s a way of being a teacher. My raison d’erte is to never let a student pass through my class without teaching them to read and learn to reason period. 

The 20-day transformation starts with your students finding their own path to philosophy. “love of wisdom and learning.” Twenty days may not do the job; you may need forty or eighty to get the inspiration started. The inception of Socratic Thinkers that thrive academically is a true anagnorisis a change from ignorance to knowledge. 

We can and do use the One Starfish parable too often in education, and that sacrifices too many students to a devastating future. Students are not going to change unless we devise an effective way to change their outlook. We are teaching things that have no heart, soul, meaning, relevance or we teach in ways that kill curiosity and desire. The idea of focusing on reading and reasoning in class for twenty days may appear bizarre, ludicrous, like child abuse, impossible, or asinine; yet, it works for my kids. Students see it as perfectly logical and 'buy in' almost immediately when they see their reading and reasoning progress accelerate or realize they can actually read and understand the world with fresh curious eyes.

Give a child the most complex computer video game and they will go without food, sleep, bathing, and talking to learn and master the first level. They will spend the next day, week, and month with the singular preoccupation to win and master the game.

Children in the third-world with access to computers, sky Tablets or XO laptops will teach themselves to read and write without a teacher because of their incredible desire to learn. I just focus that same incredible intrinsic drive and perseverance into Reading Boot Camp. 

Motivating Students!

The Secret To Building Reading Comprehension Fast
  • Learn the 1000-2000 most used words or characters using sight/auditory methods.
  • Learn the 200 most used sayings, metaphors, expressions, cognates, and phrases.
  • Learn the words and phrase by sight, sound, and articulation through repetition.

Reading Boot Camp is used during the first 20 days of school to teach the basics of English literacy and oracy. We spend 120 hours reading, singing, articulating, writing, and focusing on building the foundations of word and phrase knowledge.

The Program is fast, rigorous, challenging, and fun.

Reading Comprehension Results: 20 Days!

Students growth, 31% POINTS in reading NWEA MAP), Boot Camp ran longer than normal, twenty-five days because I had more students on IEPs and English Language Learners than last year and the behavior was far from ready for instruction. The class is now 74% at or above the mean in reading in all domains, and 87% of students are reading at grade level in the domain on reading comprehension (NWEA MAP)! 

Reading Boot Camp Overview

1) Launch students into the rigorous and intensive reading and writing program that is taught throughout the year:

2) Accelerate the closure of the academic achievement gap in lowest quartile students; and 

3) Teach the student's school etiquette, classroom manners, discipline, responsibility and a foundation in classic children’s literature...

4) Close the language and word gap

The 20 Day Intervention Is Fast, Rigorous, Enriching, and Fun.

Quick Look
Vocabulary Games
Reading Vocabulary Word Walls
Academic Vocabulary Word Walls
Poetry Reading
Buddy Reading
Music and Lyrics
Chapter Books
Whiteboard E-books and Librivox Audio Books
Fluency Drills
Comprehension Building Games
American Juku
Peer Tutoring
Fireside Book Club
Reading Master By Grade Competition
Reading Journals

Expecting A World Class Education!

Students and parents may not expect much from public school these
days, my class is the exception, students receive a world class
college preparatory experience from the rigorous demanding
curriculum to the high expectations of meticulous manners and

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you!