My inquiry to know how to improve the quality of our work and our day to day activities was sparked by reading the new book from OneColumbia entitled Craftsmanship and the Three Cents of Success.
The book is written by the National Society of University Teachers and includes insights from international bestsellers on how to use psychology to improve the quality of lives.
Is it a useful teaching tool? Of course. It is great for the classroom because when you start asking subtle questions, there’s something to be said for your children’s behavior. Yet the author also wants the reader to know that there are lots of other tools out there that can be used to improve our lives.
The book has five sections that address things like how the whole child needs to learn; how paying more attention to what is going on (1) is the first step towards a successful life; how high-quality relationships and career success rely on good citizenship; how writing is an effective tool for children’s learning; and how solving common problems is a poor teacher’s assignment (2).
The chapter on the essential stuff (1) starts with the title and summarizes skills that a person can learn to get more done. The chapter is fairly comprehensive. It addresses everything from writing to dealing with the kids, from how to navigate the “bad” streets to life in a city.
As a part of the chapter on how to increase academic performance, the author will present some standardized tests that will help grade point averages. She will try to get us to pay attention to what we read. In closing, she will push us to improve our social behavior, to be self-policing, and so on. What she didn’t do is recommend any new and exciting interactive tools (like “”Education in the 21st Century”). What she does recommend is an improved relationship with your parents, along with a redesign of your education system and extensive teacher training. It’s not clear how any of this is going to improve performance, so I’m not convinced it’s going to make a difference, either.
Interestingly, in Chapter Two, author Tena Smith takes on issues of drug use and drug addiction. She’s not the first of these authors to tackle this topic, but she’s certainly the most comprehensive of these authors. It is not clear if this is even an issue that she cares about. Perhaps she just wants to have fun with the class, or maybe she just wants people to get back to their writing and their dreams and their education. Nevertheless, if you’re curious to find out what an Oxford economist does to improve learning and self-esteem, this is your guide to help. It is, quite simply, a must-read for anyone interested in improving performance in American society.
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