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Eager to Learn or Not – Part 6/10

17 Jul

After turning 18 and gaining the freedom he wanted, my brother Richard worked long hours at low paying jobs to earn enough to pay the bills so his family could have a house in a barrio infested by street gangs, which was the best he could afford.

Without the education that Richard spurned, he could not afford a better place to live, since he could only work at unskilled jobs such as digging ditches and/or mixing concrete alongside men that spoke mostly Spanish that also did not read English.

By the ime Richard was in his fifties, his feet were ruined and he had pins holding the bones together so he could hobble about while surviving on disability from Social Security.

In his fifties, to stay out of jail after another DUI, a judge told Richard to enroll in a literacy class but my brother often fell off the wagon and skipped class to drink and chase women on the weekends while his wife stayed home to take care of their many children.

America’s community colleges offer literacy classes and American libraries offer free literacy programs but to take advantage of them, the individual must be willing to be there and learn what is taught.

In fact, finding a literacy program today is easy. All one has to do is use LINCS to find a program in his or her area or go to the nearest public library and ask for help to find the nearest literacy program.

My brother’s children, like their father, who was their role model, were not eager to learn either and mostly followed the father’s example, which helps explain one of the reasons many children and teens in America do not learn what teacher’s teach.

The reason my brother didn’t learn was because of his attitude toward work and fun and the fact that he had dyslexia, which meant Richard would have to work harder than most children. He chose to give up.

However, that is not an excuse. I also have dyslexia but that did not stop me from learning to read as it did him.

For Richard, schoolwork wasn’t fun, but drinking, hanging out in bars, smoking, and chasing women, even after he was married with children, was his “pursuit of happiness”.

The reason I am writing this series of posts is because that “old” stubborn friend that is an evangelical born again Christian that listens to too much conservative talk radio and reads too many conservative Blogs is also a neoconservative libertarian that firmly believes the public education system in the United States is corrupt, which is the reason children do not learn.

However, the truth is that between 93 to 99% of the teachers are teaching what they are supposed to teach, but too many students are not learning, and the reason these students don’t learn is because of choices made in the “pursuit of happiness”.

Continued on July 18, 2011 in Eager to Learn or Not – Part 7 or return to Part 5

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

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