...and not just the left-brainers, perhaps:
How often have we heard professional educators claim that children are bored by drills, prefer projects to tests, prefer working with classmates to working on their own, and prefer sitting in groups with classmates to sitting in rows facing their teachers?
One reminder of how questionable such claims are comes from an anecdote recently shared on kitchentablemath.
Perhaps this boy is an outlier. But his words echo those of the children I interviewed for my book.
Well, perhaps it's only the hard-core left-brainers who feel this way. But even this I question. When I did after-school math enrichment with 1/6 of our school's 2nd and 3rd graders, I always let them to choose between working on their own and working in groups, and a surprising number (at least half, as I recall) would opt for the former. They also loved our rapid-fire, teacher-directed multiplication drills.
Of course educators shouldn't let children's preferences be the only thing that guides their teaching. But they should avoid making faulty assumptions about these preferences, and ensure that when they avoid the things that children prefer, they are doing so for a good reason.