There’s more to a good grade than the right answer. There’s the thought process that led to it. Lauren John has this Perspective.
I teach English at a local college where this week a student asked for help with what we used to call a book report. Now it is called a critical essay.
“I showed this essay to three different classmates,” she said. “Each one made different changes. Now I’m really confused.”
Why had she come to me for a fourth opinion? She thought that since I was a teacher, I would instinctively know what her professor wanted her to write. If you teach or tutor, you are likely to hear the plea “just tell me the right answer so that I can get a good grade.” Parents may pay thousands to a company or coach that promises to teach kids the right way to “get schoolwork over with” and get into Stanford.
What happened to critical thinking? These days, our sports coaches are the best advocates for such analysis, because there is actually a game to win, in real time. Coaches are the ones asking tough questions with no easy answers. Why did we win? Why did we lose? What should we do next time?