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Amanda Ripley's Smartest Children In The World

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Amanda Ripley the author of the smartest kids in the world and how they got that way worked for Time and other magazines generally stayed away from talking about the delicate situation of education. Until an editor asked her to write a story about Michelle Rhee the new leader of Washington D.C’s public schools she “[slipped] into the fog of education”(1) and to her surprise she became very interested. She began wondering “Why were some kids learning so much-and others so very little”(2) when comparing kids from all around the world to the United States. In some cases kids were “literally begging”(2) to solve problems, while in other cases they were “bored out of their young minds”(2), these contrasting events cause the United States to mostly…show more content…
For instance, in Korea their “pressure cooker”(24) style of education “school never stopped”(57). In comparison, Korean student typically went to school from 8am to sometimes 10-11pm, while in the United States generally school is from about 8am to usually at the latest 4pm. With this style of schooling the Koreans never use excuses found commonly in the United States such as, “the test was unfair or not everyone can be good at math”(57) instead their mindset was “You didn’t work hard enough”(57). While Ripley and Korean Education minister Lee Ju-Ho think this method is extreme she uses this comparison to show that their is no denying that working harder in school whether it be more rigorous or lengthy improves scores tremendously. In Finland the utopia of education, many comparisons were linked to the teachers as well as students. In Finland “all education schools were selective”(85) meaning that most finnish teachers had received “the highest levels of education in the world”(85), in comparison to the United States where an Oklahoma algebra one teacher’s college had “low standards and little rigor”(88). This comparison also shows how seriously foreign countries take teaching compared to the United States where “jobs were protected by powerful unions”(84). Many finnish kids also were
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