What about the boys?

Filling the pail


There is much to like in Barbara Oakley’s recent opinion piece for the New York Times. Oakley is an engineering professor at Oakland university in the U.S. and her views on teaching are refreshingly well-informed. We will get to those later but we need to deal with something odd first, Here’s a quote from her article:

“A large body of research has revealed that boys and girls have, on average, similar abilities in math. But girls have a consistent advantage in reading and writing and are often relatively better at these than they are at math, even though their math skills are as good as the boys’.”

Having read that, you might think that the article is about how we might improve the reading and writing skills of boys, but it’s not. Instead, Oakley is concerned that girls’ relative ability in literacy will convince them that they are no good…

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