Basic communication skills pdf skills can be compared to higher order thinking skills. Facts and methods are highly valued under the back-to-basics approach to education. Facts are learned one at a time, in isolation, as compared to an integrated curriculum which combines fields of learning.
They are learned from a book or teacher as compared to constructivism or student-centered learning where the learner constructs his or her own knowledge. Direct Instruction is based on teaching basic skills. They are learned for academics sake rather than in context or “real life” as compared to project-based learning.
A basic skills test is generally a multiple choice which tests for one area of knowledge, as compared to a standards based assessment which requires an open response that requires integrating many different areas of knowledge such as communication, problem solving, mathematics and science on a science item. Mathematical skills such as borrowing or long division are learned without adding cultural context such as multiculturalism or ethnic heritage or issues of social justice.
Facts are learned in sequence, rather than spiraling. Some curriculum frameworks specify that students in all grade levels as early as Kindergarten will learn elements of number sense, algebra, geometry, statistics, mathematical communication, problem solving in nearly identical wording between grade levels. Teaching methods that emphasize basic skills tend to be compatible with traditional education rather than student-centered standards based education reform.
Materials that are primarily marketed to homeschoolers such as Saxon math and Modern Curriculum Press are based on emphasis on basic skills. Such curricula typically require much less teacher training, less expensive and smaller books, and do not require purchasing expensive expendable materials such as scissors, paste, paint, beads as is required by reform mathematics curricula such as Investigations in Number, Data, and Space. Most local, state and federal education agencies are committed to standards based education reform, which is based on beliefs which conflict with the outcomes of traditional education.