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Why Boys Fail is a sweeping survey of one of the most misunderstood and sometimes totally ignored problems of our day - the precipitous slide in boys' academic achievement, which cuts across racial and economic divides and affects boys around the English-speaking world. Richard Whitmire draws on extensive journalistic skill and experience to pick apart the prevailing theories of what is causing boys to fail - feminized classrooms, toxic boy cultures, mind-numbing video games - and shows how each contributes to the problem but fails to wholly explain it.
Instead, the author reverses course from the usual finger-pointing to uncover what is actually working in schools to bring boys up to speed, and draws his conclusions from there. The answer is simple yet monumental: the world has become increasingly verbal, but boys have not. From heightened kindergarten reading expectations to language-dense math problems, many boys lack the reading and writing skills needed to keep pace. Their lagging literacy skills snowball through the school years and ultimately derail ambitions and prospects.
Why Boys Fail is not simply a depressing assessment of the fate of our nation's boys; it also offers suggestions for what works. Packed with inspiring case studies of schools that have successfully implemented programs for improving literacy - such as intensive phonics instruction and ongoing reading instruction in the middle years - this extensively researched, persuasive book is a must-read for parents and educators alike.