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Blogging On History, Science, and Education

Choosing Blindly: The Challenge of Textbook Selection

March 6, 2014

Tags: textbooks, textbook adoptions, reading scores, science standards

In 1964, renowned physicist Richard Feynman was asked to serve on the California Curriculum Commission to help pick new science textbooks. Feynman, a Nobel prizewinner, lived in California and his children attended public schools, so he agreed to serve on the commission. Soon, 300 pounds of textbooks were delivered to his door. He installed 17 feet of shelving, began reading, and went through each of the submitted textbooks: the only one on the adoption committee to do so. (more…)

Textbooks, Reading Scores? Is there a correlation?

August 19, 2013

Tags: textbooks, textbook adoptions, reading scores

Reading scores have plummeted again? Is anyone surprised? Let me tell you a personal story. Twenty-five years ago, disturbed by declining SAT scores and what I was seeing as a parent, a teacher, and a journalist, I decided to write a history book for young readers. As I wrote I did something that seemed logical, I gave manuscript to children and asked them to be my editors. (I turned it into a job and actually paid them.) After all, they were my potential readers. (more…)




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A History of US
Tel: (800) 445-9714

The Story of Science
Tel: (202) 633-2495

Reading Science Stories
Email: joyhakim@​gmail.com

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