The other night, my wife and I went to an open house at a local private school, on the theory that we might (or might not) have our 4-year-old son go to kindergarten a couple of days a week next year. One of the kindergarten teachers made a comment during her speech that caused me some puzzlement. I paraphrase from memory: "Kids learn so much these days. Did you know that today a schoolchild learns more between the freshman and senior years of high school than our grandparents learned in their entire lives?" She said this as if she had read it in some authoritative source. I wanted to raise my hand and say something like this:
That can't possibly be true. For one thing, there is no meaningful way to measure the total sum of the knowledge that our grandparents learned in their entire lives. And just think about it: Do you really think that our grandparents learned less about the world in 70 or 80 years than today's high-schooler does in 4? Have you met any current high-schoolers? Do they really seem more knowledgable than their grandparents about anything beyond computers and cell phones and Eminem?
Read the entire thing and then see this related post at Chicagoboyz.