To Teach a Kid How to Read, Teach a Kid How to Think

I’ve written an essay appearing on The Millions this morning about one of the big disagreements surrounding teaching kids how to comprehend books. My argument is a defense, contra Diane Ravitch, of teaching students explicit ‘thinking skills’ in addition to just teaching them content:

The more I delved into breaking down and sequencing the skills, however, the less I came to view them as “relatively simple” operations that amounted to droll fodder for standardized tests, and the more I thought of them as a high-stakes crash course in how to think that, when looked at in the right light, was more thrilling than just about anything I ever learned in middle school.