Maria F. Álvarez
Ms. Al Askari
ESL 13, Composition III
October 2nd /06
Revised Summary Response Essay Final Draft
Are single-sex schools the best way to increase academic achievement?
Laird Harrison’s article, “A Classroom in which you can speak your mind,” shows an overview of how single-sex education could encourage boys and girls to focus their attention on the academic activities. Harrison states that girls and boys learn differently and how girls may learn better without the presence of boys because they can speak out and ask questions, feeling then more confident. He also affirms that from the middle-school through the high-school years, social distractions of the so called “opposite sex” affect their concentration in class and, as a consequence, their academic achievement. At the end of the article, he points out that there can be different factors other than single-sex education for the achievement of good result. I agree with Harrison when he states that factors such as small group or teachers’ preparation affect the achievement of good academic results. However, I also think that children’s ways of learning are different, whether they are boys or girls; and I also believe that segregation doesn’t build self-confidence in girls nor single-sex education is the best way to focus the kids’ attention to their academic goals.
According to the author, girls and boys learn differently and girls may learn better without the presence of boys, because they can speak out and ask questions feeling more confident. In my experience as a teacher, every child has his o her learning process, they learn differently despite of their sex. In most cases, girls seem to be more reserved, but if we have a majority of girls in the classroom the ones that will prefer small groups in a current discussion will be the boys. It is also said that girls seem more confident in a single-sex classroom, but as a parent or as a teacher it will be important to...
Cited: Harrison, Laird. “A Classroom in Which You Can Speak Your Mind.” Growing Ideas: A Reader for writers. Ed. Michelle Christopherson. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001. 77-78.
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