WHY RUN FOR BOYS?
Right now, one of The Foundation for Male Studies’ most important projects is the establishment of a Charter School for Boys, based on the 'science of the male'.
The Foundation is challenging the philosophy of education that claims to be educating everyone, while in reality, fails to consider the unique needs of one-half of the school population - males.
The Model Charter School for the Engagement of Boys is an example of our vision, and Run for Boys is a great way to help support our goals. It’s healthy, social and exciting.
Here's a small sampling of reasons why a Charter School for Boys deserves your support, and why Run for Boys can be a formidable tool:
➤ An analysis of the situation in education for males, shows that performance and achievement are falling at very alarming rates. At these rates, male human capital in an age of education and technology is significantly threatened. Many men will no longer be able to participate in the future’s work force or be partners or providers in family structures.
➤ Statistics show the fall-off in participation in college, the diminished achievement in secondary education, and the failure to catch hold in primary education are equally alarming and pose a threat to both national integrity and national security. There is no known society that has flourished without a vigorous segment of male innovators, leaders, providers and protectors.
There is no doubt that one of the major contributors to the decline of the male in the area of education is a mismatch between the educational system as it has evolved, and its relevance to the instincts of males in the early stages of learning.
Inadvertently, over many decades, as a result of the shift in the culture of education, the teaching of basics has moved toward modalities that favor females and away from those that support male entry into the learning path at critical points, especially in early education. The resulting disadvantage for boys in reading and engagement in the first three years of school, translates into a loss of ability to use 'reading' as a tool for learning over the rest of their lives.
This sense of early failure saps their enthusiasm for something they feel they have no aptitude for. They get discouraged to the point that it is common to hear teachers describe their male students as being completely turned off from school by the fourth grade.
It doesn’t have to be this way. An imaginative understanding of what works for boys and why, rooted in an emerging science of the male brain and male psychology, creates wonderful possibilities for change.
Male and female brains, in the first six years of life develop on different trajectories. Female brains are 'reading ready' about two full years before male brains. Girls learn to read as an aspect of their greater facility with words at a very early age and by virtue of this early learning ability are primed to participate in educational initiatives that are driven by language.
HAVE BOYS? NEED HELP?
BREAK THE CYCLE AND MAKE IT HAPPEN!
3 ways to light their fire:
Teach Through Action
Male brains mature into language skills years later. Boys are disadvantaged in learning language before they are ready, to the point that decrements of performance follow them in each subsequent learning module, setting them up for discouragement and failure.
Factually, boys have the same intellectual capacity as girls and yet are performing below girls at every level of education. This under-performance is carried with them with each advancing year: until the end point is demonstrated in post secondary and graduate education where men are vanishing.
There are many charter schools for boys attempting to remedy these difficulties with standard measures of uniforms, discipline, and rigor. They all succeed to a degree that exceeds any standard immersion of boys in the general process of education. However, there is a better way.
It can start with retooling education in ways that correspond to the male developmental processes starting with a consideration of the 'male brain' and the introduction of 'a science of the male' into the educational process. This approach capitalizes on the natural tendencies of boys to be actively engaged in the process of learning in an atmosphere that supports their skill development and developmental age.
A short list of educational strategies that build on a science of the male brain and major aspects of the psychology of boys can be seen in the following brief list of teaching perspectives:
1) Don't start before they are developmentally ready
2) Use action situations in learning vs. language only in learning
3) Teach language acquisition through action
4) Employ structured instruction, which produces end products that
are tangible and manipulable
5) Create atmospheres that encourage boys to perform with pride
6) Realize the power of the team
In this brief listing, both the brain science of the young male learner, as well as the psychology of the male, are honored in ways that are not considered in a 'one size fits all' model of gender 'neutrality' that ignores gender differences. This male-sensitive approach stakes out the position that learning differences, male vs. female, do not infer either superiority or inferiority to the young learners. What it does, is capitalize on the varied instincts of the learners.
To be sure, not all boys will be susceptible to this approach nor will the action, pride and competition models be inimical to learning enhancement for girls. In truth, it is an experiment, in the best spirit of the Charter Movement, to rescue young male learners from a system that does not work for them with lasting consequences for their learning lives.
This 'Model' charter is proposed as the ounce of prevention that is worth a ton of cure, and a way of rescuing generations of male learners from academic demise.