Learning to Bloviate

A group of acclaimed children’s authors including the UK’s newest Carnegie medallist Tanya Landman is preparing to contact the education secretary about the “very damaging” tendency for primary school teachers to steer children’s creative writing towards “too elaborate, flowery and over-complex” language to meet assessment criteria.

The authors, a growing group that already numbers 35, say that national curriculum assessment criteria have become a “prescription for how to teach children to write (to pass the tests), with quite adverse effects on their writing skills”. This means, they say, that children are taught “not to use simple words such as ‘good’, ‘bad’, ‘small’ or ‘big’ but to always find other more ‘interesting’ words to replace them – such as ‘wonderful’, ‘terrible’, ‘minuscule’ or ‘enormous’”.

See the rest at the Guardian.

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