Important article! My husband and I were just discussing the over-diagnosis of ADHD in boys (something that is increasingly coming up in psychological research data). The public system is focused on docile, quiescent students and boys who move too much or have risky play get spotted and labelled as 'problem' students. This is very emasculating as normal boy-type behaviour is simply not desirable or tolerated at school. When these same boys are placed in the forest, allowed to play with sticks, learn to make and tend fires, whittle wood, find their way through tickets, their attention is keen. Integrating Common Arts curriculum (involving agriculture, building, archery, woodworking etc.) into education meets boys in their desire for hands-on active learning (see https://classicaleducationbooks.ca/product/common-arts-education/)

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This is excellent. I am a teacher and a coach at a high school and so much of what you said I see on a daily basis. So much of what we do doesn’t meet the needs of boys or provide them the types of challenges that they thrive upon, which is one of the reasons I coach. I can be a role model and help those young men grow up.

The boys are completely different people when they’re around the team and their coaches.

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As the mom of an 11-year old boy, I found this piece powerful. In my 20+ years as a k-12 teacher and principal, I saw so many boys struggle in a system that didn’t work for them. They were often disciplined and medicated to help them be “successful.” I’m encouraged by the microschool movement and its focus on unstructured play and self-directed learning and with options like forest schools and modular learning. I see hope for boys in these innovative models.

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It must be so difficult being a teenage boy today.

Navigating adolescence is difficult enough but add in todays world of demonising boys and it’s impossible.

Think through those awkward moments with girls. Worrying they might not like you.

One wrong move. One misinterpretation of a signal and you’re demonised.

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"If boys need to be drugged to comply with the education system, then perhaps it is not working for them." 🎯

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Mar 15, 2023Liked by rebelEducator

Fantastic and insightful, thank you very much. As a female secondary school teacher, I'm always trying to find a way to better connect to and understand my male students. I've long understood that, while I can be a mentor and model for them in a general way, I cannot provide them a model for how to be a man (for obvious reasons). We urgently need more male educators, that's for sure.

Your article also shows that what we actually need - acknowledging the obvious biological differences between boys and girls, especially in puberty - is not at all what society is now promoting. We are living in the era of gender ideology, where those differences are negated and made diffuse, to the detriment of our children.

An important part you also mention is appreciation for men: I strongly believe we need more of that!


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