Top home-school texts dismiss Darwin, evolution

  • metta

    Posts: 39167

    Mar 07, 2010 8:03 AM GMT
    Top home-school texts dismiss Darwin, evolution

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100306/ap_on_re/us_rel_home_school_evolution;_ylt=AuKM3eOGzVVh1blecXd4XVEDW7oF;_ylu=X3oDMTMxbzM2b25tBGFzc2V0A2FwLzIwMTAwMzA2L3VzX3JlbF9ob21lX3NjaG9vbF9ldm9sdXRpb24EcG9zAzYEc2VjA3luX2FydGljbGVfc3VtbWFyeV9saXN0BHNsawN0b3Bob21lLXNjaG8-

    http://alturl.com/t7nf
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 1:15 PM GMT
    from the article: "Those who don't, however, often feel isolated and frustrated from trying to find a textbook that fits their beliefs."

    isn't the point of getting an education to expand your horizons, not reinforce them? i don't know, maybe learn something new that may be different from what you already know? maybe that's just me...

    but it doesn't surprise me that most home schooled kids are learning anti-evolution theories, i mean, most of them probably come from middle america where they grow up on farms and live miles and miles away from their neighbors or that their parents don't let them go to public school because the school teaches "radical" things.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 1:57 PM GMT
    heckyeah09 said...but it doesn't surprise me that most home schooled kids are learning anti-evolution theories, i mean, most of them probably come from middle america where they grow up on farms and live miles and miles away from their neighbors or that their parents don't let them go to public school because the school teaches "radical" things.

    I don't know how home schooling breaks down demographically, and geographically, but some thoughts from when I lived 11 years in North Dakota, one of the most sparsely populated states in the US:

    The first time I judged a regional high school science fair, 1984 in Minot, I was blown away by how smart these kids were. Around 400 exhibits, far too many for me to see in detail in a single day, I had to devise a way to quickly scan as I walked, and decide which ones I'd visit and those I'd pass by. I wasn't the only judge, and interestingly, the others did the same thing, and we independently made the same selections in most cases.

    And the student projects heavily reflected their lives on the northern Great Plains: agriculture, cattle, soil conservation, oil drilling, even tornadoes, a phenomenon I myself encountered quite a few times over the years. These kids came from a vast area around Minot, many living on isolated farmsteads.

    But none of them home-schooled, for my understanding was that only schools could sponsor students at the fair. And later, when I taught senior high in that state, I knew some of my students traveled many miles by school bus, across whole counties.

    One of the projects that most impressed me dealt with dairy cows. Here a 15-year old girl is showing me computerized spreadsheets and graphs of her family's dairy herd, indicating individual milk volume for each animal, fat content, and other data relevant to having a productive dairy herd, and what means were applied to increase yield for each cow.

    Computerized cows??? In the middle of nowhere in 1984? And I had just gotten my own first home computer a few months earlier, and this high-schooler has already been charting their dairy herd for years? Don't ever assume that physical isolation means technological isolation in today's world.

    Nor did these students seem adverse to evolution and other aspects of science. There were plenty of project dealing with fossils (many found in the eroding Badlands of North and South Dakota), no attempts to claim this all happened in the last 5,000 years, per the Old Testament.

    So I have to wonder if this radical Christian fundamentalism and creationism is a mostly recent thing, because I never saw it much before the last 10 or 15 years. And who is responsible for it? Why is education taking a backwards step, when 25 years ago I saw kids living on remote farms who were as knowledgeable of science as any others in this country.
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Mar 07, 2010 2:34 PM GMT
    The religious right is trying to indoctrinate kids with religion in order to cultivate a larger conservative population for political reasons. What will happen is that as these kids grow up and expand their horizons, they will see for themselves that if religion has to lie in order to get people to believe, then it's not worth believing in the first place. Consider the propaganda system of the former USSR in their education system. They lied about historical events to their kids in order to create a more nationalistic country.
  • creature

    Posts: 5197

    Mar 07, 2010 3:02 PM GMT
    Red_Vespa,

    It's not a recent issue. Books like Noah Webster's Blue Back Speller, American Dictionary of the English Language, and the New England Primer have been a staple for home schooling since their publication. Even the McGuffey Readers series is religious in nature. And parents today are still seeking out these classics to raise their children on.

    My guess as to why the top home-school texts dismiss evolution as the article says is because they take a cue from the texts (from the Eclectic Education Series) that had dominated the home school market. According to the wikipedia article on the McGuffey Readers series:

    It is estimated that at least 120 million copies of McGuffey's Readers were sold between 1836 and 1960, placing its sales in a category with the Bible and Webster's Dictionary. Since 1961 they have continued to sell at a rate of some 30,000 copies a year. No other textbook bearing a single person's name has come close to that mark.

    There are science books that are part of the Eclectic Education Series, but I don't think they are adverse to all things science. Perhaps just evolution.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 3:34 PM GMT
    Red_Vespa said
    heckyeah09 said...but it doesn't surprise me that most home schooled kids are learning anti-evolution theories, i mean, most of them probably come from middle america where they grow up on farms and live miles and miles away from their neighbors or that their parents don't let them go to public school because the school teaches "radical" things.

    I don't know how home schooling breaks down demographically, and geographically, but some thoughts from when I lived 11 years in North Dakota, one of the most sparsely populated states in the US:

    The first time I judged a regional high school science fair, 1984 in Minot, I was blown away by how smart these kids were. Around 400 exhibits, far too many for me to see in detail in a single day, I had to devise a way to quickly scan as I walked, and decide which ones I'd visit and those I'd pass by. I wasn't the only judge, and interestingly, the others did the same thing, and we independently made the same selections in most cases.

    And the student projects heavily reflected their lives on the northern Great Plains: agriculture, cattle, soil conservation, oil drilling, even tornadoes, a phenomenon I myself encountered quite a few times over the years. These kids came from a vast area around Minot, many living on isolated farmsteads.

    But none of them home-schooled, for my understanding was that only schools could sponsor students at the fair. And later, when I taught senior high in that state, I knew some of my students traveled many miles by school bus, across whole counties.

    One of the projects that most impressed me dealt with dairy cows. Here a 15-year old girl is showing me computerized spreadsheets and graphs of her family's dairy herd, indicating individual milk volume for each animal, fat content, and other data relevant to having a productive dairy herd, and what means were applied to increase yield for each cow.

    Computerized cows??? In the middle of nowhere in 1984? And I had just gotten my own first home computer a few months earlier, and this high-schooler has already been charting their dairy herd for years? Don't ever assume that physical isolation means technological isolation in today's world.

    Nor did these students seem adverse to evolution and other aspects of science. There were plenty of project dealing with fossils (many found in the eroding Badlands of North and South Dakota), no attempts to claim this all happened in the last 5,000 years, per the Old Testament.

    So I have to wonder if this radical Christian fundamentalism and creationism is a mostly recent thing, because I never saw it much before the last 10 or 15 years. And who is responsible for it? Why is education taking a backwards step, when 25 years ago I saw kids living on remote farms who were as knowledgeable of science as any others in this country.


    i'm not saying all of middle america is home schooled or that students their are less intelligent in any way. that would be ridiculous. but if you think of the reasons why people would want to home school their children it probably has something to with the fact that the parents are in some way, shape, or form unhappy with the public schooling their children would receive. whether this would be because of the curriculum or because of "bad influences" of other kids (i.e. secular teachings, etc.), or whatever, the main reason probably has something to do with a difference in belief in certain teachings. i'm not saying home schooled kids aren't intelligent, but i'm saying when parents decide to home school their children they're increasing the risk that they will enforce their own personal beliefs on what their kids will learn. and where are most of the conservatives living? middle america. there are liberals out there, but for the most part it's conservative. it's not too challenging to make an inference that most of the people who home school and teach their children anti-evolution theories are coming from middle america.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 4:04 PM GMT
    heckyeah09 said...but if you think of the reasons why people would want to home school their children it probably has something to with the fact that the parents are in some way, shape, or form unhappy with the public schooling their children would receive. whether this would be because of the curriculum or because of "bad influences" of other kids...

    I understand some aspects of this very well myself. My own parents had a horror of the public school system, and sent both my sister and myself to private schools (my sister even attending a girls "finishing school" in Switzerland in her senior year of high school, taught in French).

    But we never were home schooled, except in the sense that our home was always a school in its own way, thanks to our enlightened parents, where I really think I learned more than in any classroom. I could learn more in 10 minutes of listening to either of my parents, than in hours of dreary classroom dreck.

    A tradition I continued with my own sons, though not without some rebellion. I remember one of them saying during a car trip: "Dad, can't we just go somewhere without it being a field trip?" LOL! I laughed so hard, and promised in the future I'd try not to play tour guide wherever we went.

    But rebellion is also a family tradition, and I flunked myself out of those exclusive boys prep schools, finishing up in a public high school my parents dreaded. It was OK, since I'd learned years earlier, I think in 4th grade, that no school teaches me -- I teach MYSELF. The school merely provides some of the means, and makes it official with a graduation certificate. But no one ever TAUGHT me; I taught myself.

    As for this home schooling, I recognize much of it as not being instruction, but indoctrination. Controlling parents who want their children to not only learn, but to think in a certain narrow way. And I suppose it often works, pity the children, exposed to few outside ideas & concepts.

    There were pre-Columbian Native American tribes in both North & South America, who applied wooden boards to the heads of their infants, to distort the growing skulls into unnatural shapes considered attractive in their societies. I see Republicans and Christian fundamentalists doing the same thing with the INSIDE of their children's skulls.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 4:20 PM GMT
    Parents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 4:42 PM GMT
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 5:04 PM GMT
    Red_Vespa said
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.


    What about people who teach Darwin's Theory of evolution as 100% truth with 100% certainty? Do they deserve the charge of intellectual child abuse as well?

    I swear, you guys spout at least six hypocritical things before breakfast. icon_rolleyes.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 5:16 PM GMT
    RyanReBoRn said
    Red_Vespa said
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.

    What about people who teach Darwin's Theory of evolution as 100% truth with 100% certainty? Do they deserve the charge of intellectual child abuse as well?

    I swear, you guys spout at least six hypocritical things before breakfast. icon_rolleyes.gif

    I beg your pardon? And what exactly do YOU believe, regarding evolution?

    As for myself, I have no doubt that evolution exists, and continues to this day. Whether or not Darwin correctly described it is another issue, however. Strict Darwinian evolution has some problems.

    But the key element of Darwin is the very concept of dynamic evolution, as opposed to a Divine fixed creation. What precise mechanisms are involved can be examined & debated. But evolution, as a process in Nature, cannot be denied.

    Unless you get your science from the tribal writings of a minor people from some 3000 years ago. You might as well base your science on ancient Egyptian or Sumerian writings, which predate them.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 5:31 PM GMT
    RyanReBoRn said
    Red_Vespa said
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.


    What about people who teach Darwin's Theory of evolution as 100% truth with 100% certainty? Do they deserve the charge of intellectual child abuse as well?

    I swear, you guys spout at least six hypocritical things before breakfast. icon_rolleyes.gif



    sure, darwin's "theory" is just that, a theory. but at least his theory can account for carbon dating of fossils that go beyond what the creationist theory can account for.

    i saw professor behe from lehigh university speak at my school when he was arguing for creationism as a reasonable theory to explain what we see in our world today. i went with an open mind to see what he had to say, but he only presented one experiment that, in his mind, proved how bacteria were "divinely created." (i'll get back to that.) the rest of his presentation was an assault against the reputations of respected scientists who studied evolution, genetics, fossil records, etc. he tried to dispute their theories by bashing their reputations for something in their personal lives. does that make any sense for a reasonable deduction that their theories and scientific data were wrong? i don't think so.

    as for the one and only experiment he presented, he showed that when you took this one kind of bacteria and grew it up in culture and allowed the cells to multiply, they lost some of the "essential" genes. he argued that this showed that evolution is wrong because organisms don't lose their essential genes in order to advance and "evolve." alright, sure, that's one explanation for it, i'll give him that. but when you grow bacteria in a culture, unless their is a "selective pressure" acting on the bacteria to keep those genes, they become disposable. what's the point to investing time and energy to replicate and pass on genes that are useless? thus, the bacteria evolve to their new environment. you see this everyday when working with recombinant dna. if you transform a bacteria with a plasmid containing some gene you want it to copy for you, you also put a gene for resistance on that plasmid. so when you grow the bacteria, you put the selective component into the medium so that the bacteria are pressured to keep the plasmid and replicate it rather than spit it out and grow and divide without it. so while behe was trying to argue that the experiment proved evolution was wrong, he actually showed data that argued for evolution. also there are loads and loads of other scientific experiments that confirm darwin's theory is the correct theory. these are just some of the reasons why people who argue for creationism are often disregarded as nuts and fanatics.

    school's should really be teaching kids to take in information and data and analyze it for themselves and draw their own conclusions. i feel like most places teach creationism as another explanation, but if you argue for creationism you're pretty much deducting the wrong conclusion from the data presented. that's not just bad to do on a touchy subject such as evolution, but in any study. it's like coming up with the conclusion first and then twisting the data to fit your hypothesis. doing that in the scientific community will get you shut down.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 5:31 PM GMT
    Yeah, man, and God is real, and The Moon is made of cheese.

    Some things just aren't true. They're false. Such is the way of false belief systems and their weak minded followers.
  • NickoftheNort...

    Posts: 1416

    Mar 07, 2010 5:41 PM GMT
    RyanReBoRn said
    Red_Vespa said
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.


    What about people who teach Darwin's Theory of evolution as 100% truth with 100% certainty? Do they deserve the charge of intellectual child abuse as well?

    I swear, you guys spout at least six hypocritical things before breakfast. icon_rolleyes.gif

    No, and your comparison fails because they are fundamentally different.

    Charles Darwin's scientific theory of evolution is his attempt at honestly describing observed phenomena; he looked at the world and then offered an explanation for what he saw. His subsequent description, his theory, has held up ever since; however, should the data change and the theory no longer hold water, it will be put aside.

    Creationism is not an honest description of an observed reality; it has a pre-determined interest (giving the Jewish mythological account of the universe's creation and Earth's subsequent development scientific legitimacy) that it then forces onto its observations. Even if the data were to change, its narrative would force itself on those data as opposed to letting those data inform a new narrative.

    The insecure clinging to Creationism and similar superstitions plays a large part in the decline of the USAmerica in this coming century. It's just sad (or pathetic) that it's done voluntarily.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 5:55 PM GMT
    heckyeah09 said...it's like coming up with the conclusion first and then twisting the data to fit your hypothesis. doing that in the scientific community will get you shut down.

    Hence science is threatened by Christianity, as it has been since Galileo, and before. If you want to be a scientist, don't be a Christian. They are fundamentality incompatible.
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Mar 07, 2010 6:48 PM GMT
    RyanReBoRn said
    Red_Vespa said
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.


    What about people who teach Darwin's Theory of evolution as 100% truth with 100% certainty? Do they deserve the charge of intellectual child abuse as well?

    I swear, you guys spout at least six hypocritical things before breakfast. icon_rolleyes.gif




    We accept the concept of gravity as fact, even though it's still a theory. The evidence in support of the theory of evolution far outweighs any "evidence" in support of creationism.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 8:54 PM GMT
    RyanReBoRn said
    Red_Vespa said
    conscienti1984 saidParents who teach their children Creationism, amoung other thing, as 100% truth with 100% certainty should be charged with intellectual child abuse.

    Agreed, they should. But that'll never happen in the US.


    What about people who teach Darwin's Theory of evolution as 100% truth with 100% certainty? Do they deserve the charge of intellectual child abuse as well?

    I swear, you guys spout at least six hypocritical things before breakfast. icon_rolleyes.gif


    IF your will re-read my post, you will see I never said anything about evolution.

    I advocate teaching science--there is hardly ever certainty in science, but that doesn't mean we give equal intellectual weight to every other non-scienctific idea.

    Creationism is not science.

    And it is funny that you underlined the word 'Theory.' You clearly have no concept of scientific ideas as theories are VERY important to science. They are no factless guesses.

    Many scientists have even said that theories are more important that laws and facts.

    But yes, Fundie Christian parents are doing a disservice to this country by raising their childern up to disregard main-stream scientists, the scientific method, the peer-review process and replace them with a fairy tale god with a fairy tale creation story.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 9:08 PM GMT
    'But Evolution is just a theory!'


    Bitch! Listen up! icon_biggrin.gif

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Mar 07, 2010 9:36 PM GMT
    Good lord, creationism? In a school book? What's next, the Earth is flat?

    This is the first I've ever heard of this, and will check out the Canadian home-schooling program ( my cousin homeschooled her three kids)...


    OMG, I just checked one of my fav websites..Here: http://richarddawkins.net/
    I highly recommend it.

    And ugh, turns out the religious rot is invading home-schooling up here too.

    While I know that parents have the right to teach their kids about thier religion, mixing it up with science is nuts.

    There's one post about a book that stated Noah's ark happened right after the pre-Cambrian era....that was millions of years ago! In the same sweeping idiocy they state the Earth is 6000 years old.


    eye rolls are insufficient -Doug