Daniel Koretz on Parental Responsibility

Daniel Koretz: It’s not an accident that children from certain cultures, for instance, perform very well.  There’s a tremendous interest in the performance of developed East Asian countries, which in mathematics is consistently very high, much higher than performance here.  It’s also true that children from those cultures in this country, going to our educational system, outperform [whites] as well, on average.  What we don’t have, I think, is we don’t have a consistent press by parents on students to perform well on ways that matter.  So, for example, there’s a very commonly… a very commonly discussed problem with the attitude toward mathematics in this country.  In this country, it’s considered perfectly acceptable to be incompetent in mathematics.  And, in fact, some people are rather proud of being incompetent in mathematics. It’s not considered acceptable to be incompetent in Mathematics in East Asian countries that score very well on standardized tests.  And, in fact, what anthropologist have said is that in those cultures, the assumption is that much of the variation on how well you do, how well a student does in mathematics is a function of effort.  Many parents in United States assume that it’s just some kind of aptitude, some kids have it, some kids don’t.  Result is our kids really don’t do very well in mathematics by international standards.  And I think part of the problem is those [parental] attitudes

Parents wrongfully assume some kids are good at math and others are not, Daniel Koretz notes.

7 fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Sites

Here are 7 often-overlooked World Heritage Sites, each with its own history.

Photo by Raunaq Patel on Unsplash
Culture & Religion
  • UNESCO World Heritage Sites are locations of high value to humanity, either for their cultural, historical, or natural significance.
  • Some are even designated as World Heritage Sites because humans don't go there at all, while others have felt the effects of too much human influence.
  • These 7 UNESCO World Heritage Sites each represent an overlooked or at-risk facet of humanity's collective cultural heritage.
Keep reading Show less

Scientists create a "lifelike" material that has metabolism and can self-reproduce

An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.

Shogo Hamada/Cornell University
Surprising Science
  • Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
  • The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
  • The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
Keep reading Show less
Big Think
Sponsored by Lumina Foundation

Upvote/downvote each of the videos below!

As you vote, keep in mind that we are looking for a winner with the most engaging social venture pitch - an idea you would want to invest in.

Keep reading Show less