Creativity follows mastery, so mastery of skills is the first priority for young talent.
The normal curve is a distribution most appropriate to chance and random activity. Education is a purposeful activity and we seek to have students learn what we would teach. Therefore, if we are effective, the distribution of grades will be anything but a normal curve. In fact, a normal curve is evidence of our failure to teach.
After forty years of intensive research on school learning in the United States as well as abroad, my major conclusion is: What any person in the world can learn, almost all persons can learn if provided with appropriate prior and current conditions of learning.
Education must be increasingly concerned about the fullest development of all children and youth, and it will be the responsibility of the schools to seek learning conditions which will enable each individual to reach the highest level of learning possible.
...a student attains 'higher order thinking' when he no longer believes in right or wrong". "A large part of what we call good teaching is a teacher´s ability to obtain affective objectives by challenging the student's fixed beliefs. ...a large part of what we call teaching is that the teacher should be able to use education to reorganize a child's thoughts, attitudes, and feelings.
We need to be much clearer about what we do and do not know so that we don't continually confuse the two. If I could have one wish for education, it would be the systematic ordering of our basic knowledge in such a way that what is known and true can be acted on, while what is superstition, fad, and myth can be recognized as such and used only when there is nothing else to support us in our frustration and despair.
What any person in the world can learn, almost all persons can learn if provided with appropriate prior and current conditions of learning.