The Missing Piece
Educating New Kids for a New World
Perfect Bound Softcover
We are in an education crisis. We need to restore the teaching profession to one of respect and support and provide effective education to enable current students, the “new kids,” to rise to their full potential
“What a fabulous book. Herm and Dolores have written a truly inspirational resource for teachers. This should be required reading for anyone preparing to enter the classroom—and for anyone who needs to step back and rethink, think through, or reconsider their practice. They speak to the reader’s heart as well as the head, and Herm’s poetry is the best medicine I know for preventing teacher burnout.”
—Carol Jago, president of the National Council of Teachers of English and long-time middle and high school teacher in Santa Monica, California
“The Missing Piece by Dolores and Hermon Card is the book we’ve all been waiting for about how to educate the ‘new kids,’ this evolutionary bunch of uniquely different individuals known variously by labels as quirky as they are. You name it and this book covers it, and in a style as usable as it is advanced. Dolores and Hermon encourage students to make connections to themselves and then work beyond themselves to extend their reach—‘to work with us, not for us.’
“The raw truth about our current education system and how to fix it is covered, with poetry, with solutions and with expansive teaching styles that include meditation, Reiki, chakras, the higher self, and the importance of spirituality. No, this isn’t new age; it is new thought, in its most courageous form—a balanced and realistic way to educate the whole child.
“I was blown away by The Missing Piece. No one else has looked at our educational system today, and the various proposals to fix what’s wrong, with eyes and hearts broad enough to recognize what was and is still missing, what the ‘new kids’ must have—a holistic approach. Thank you, Dolores and Hermon Card, for giving us a miracle.”
—P. M. H. Atwater, L.H.D., author of Children of the Fifth World, Future Memory, and Near Death Experiences: The Rest of the Story
The Missing Piece is that spirit and energy that teachers, parents and students must embrace if we are to overcome our nation’s epic education crisis.
We have written The Missing Piece based on our shared expertise and personal experiences in our respective fields. It reflects our passion for making education, and the people we educate, better.
Our diverse, yet similar backgrounds allow us to speak to you in different voices but in the common language of commitment to students, teachers, and the future they will create.
Things with warranties
are designed to fail;
light bulbs, mowers, cars and TVs.
Things without warranties
are not designed to fail;
rivers, mountains, trees, children.
…or else it’s only a job.
Herm Card, 2006
"There is always a door that opens in childhood to let the future in."
- Barton Gregorian
We are in the midst of an education crisis.
Education, in its broadest sense, is the means through which patterns and beliefs of a collective group sustains from one generation to the next. The Etymology of the word education is derived from the Latin word educatio: a breeding, a bringing up, a rearing.
Education can form the way we think, feel and behave. It helps to establish our ethics and our perspective of the world. We continue to pass our knowledge, skills and customs as well as our societal and family values to each succeeding generation, in large part, through instructions in school. How often do we assess if what we are forwarding on to the next generation is what is needed in conjunction with changing trends and advances we become aware of?
To merely pass on our own standards and attitudes can result in impeding and delaying social and economic changes needed. It is our responsibility to not make clones of ourselves to feed our egos, but to try to anticipate the obligations of future generations. While it is not wrong to project some of the qualities that we have deemed positive for creating a purposeful life, we must allow for adjustment of these values as they fit into future circumstances. “Our way, or no way” does not work.
When examining the purpose of schools, which includes developing reasoning, mastering methods of scientific exploration and cultivating the intellect, the primary purpose is to teach students how to think. Not teaching them a certain way or what to think, but to use their thinking as a method to reach conclusions about their life experiences, first about their individual world and then to extend their thinking to global issues.
We are failing to recognize that the past two generations are wired differently. They do not relate to the “one size fits all” model. We are failing them by forcing them to fit into an education approach that no longer works. These are young people of technology and purpose. We are neglecting to provide them with the tools to become the individuals they need to be in order to reach their full potential.
Every twenty years or so, “new” ways of learning are introduced, but they invariably fail to address the multi-layered needs of the children. New concepts are mostly based on numbers and accomplishments of school districts that need to measure up to standards set by state and national directives. We have lost the human element in teaching, which is what these exceptional students need the most.
There is an education revolution in progress. These new kind of students will not tolerate being forced into doing much of anything, most of all a system that does not encourage their creativity and unique personal expression. They are much too bright and aware to allow suppression of their own methods of thinking and reaching conclusions. If pushed, they will opt out, many already have. Data for 2010-2011shows that 26 states reported lower graduation rates with at least seven states reporting a double digit decline.
Current developers of education mandates have not accepted the truth of who we are as a human race or as individuals, both in our innate talents and capabilities. The roots of curriculum refer to the course of expression through which children become mature adults. Curricula are based on a general syllabus which specifies what topics must be understood and to what level to achieve a particular grade or standard. When did we last look at the topics to determine what would be most beneficial to build life skills in addition to pertinent information for each subject?
Current education laws and mandates have not been adjusted to the changing characteristics of present day students. We must be willing to revise and, in some instances, discard current curricula being imposed upon these new thinkers or the battle for meaningful education will never be won. If we are to pass the baton to this generation, we must make sure that we have a solid foundation to pass to them to help prepare them for the demands that lie ahead.
There is a prevailing fear that permeates the human race that to deviate from what has been established will result in chaotic failure. “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” philosophy does not allow for assessment of current practices and how effective they still are. To blindly trust that a system is still working is a recipe for disaster. If our ancestors believed that eating raw meat was the only way to go, the discovery of fire would have only served to keep them warm.
The human race is moving forward in ways never before experienced. A new way of life is dawning on this planet. If we are to benefit from these changes, we must attend to those beautiful young people who are sitting in our classrooms, as this opportunity will not come again.
The Missing Piece offers, through philosophies, poetry and practical applications, insight into building a better world by empowering our children with the resources, life skills and self confidence that can only be endowed to them through effective education.
Herm Card is a retired English Teacher from the Marcellus, New York, Central School District.
He is a former baseball player and coach at Syracuse University, NCAA baseball umpire and an education consultant to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown, New York.
His background in education is extensive—32 years of classroom teaching, along with over 20 years of professional development consulting and motivational speaking. He is well versed in the state of education today, and has written extensively on the topic as education columnist for the Eagle Newspapers.
He has received numerous awards and grants for his teaching, innovative classroom programs, poetry and photography. He is a New York State Educator of Excellence, and his Celebration of Poetry program was named a New York State English Council Program of Excellence.
He has published three books of his poetry and has credits for numerous articles, poetry and photography in education journals throughout the country, and received a cover photography award from the National Council of Teachers of English.
He served 10 years each on the boards of New York State English Council and the Central New York Teacher Center. He is a former editor of The English Record, the professional journal of the New York State English Council.
For five years he served as a consultant with CTB-McGraw Hill and the New York State Education Department on the development, evaluation, implementation and scoring of the current series of New York State ELA assessment tests, and authored Barron’s New York State Grade 5 Test Preparation Manual.
Despite the textbook irony of those last associations, he is an activist for the cause of minimizing the burden of assessment testing and government in education, in the quest to return teaching to teachers.
Dolores Card has taught metaphysical principles and doctrines through classes, seminars and workshops as well as Reiki practitioner certification for 25 years. She is a Reiki Master, ecumenical minister and spiritual advisor.
She worked as a core subject tutor with special education students for twelve years at the elementary and middle school levels. Even then, she could see the negative effects of mislabeling unique abilities as deficiencies.
As Director of the Syracuse University Rape Center she founded ICASA, the International Intercollegiate Coalition Against Sexual Assault as well as implementing relationship violence prevention programs across the United States, Ireland, England and Wales.
She acted as New York State’s primary trainer of police agencies and medical personnel on protocols for medical/legal intervention with victims of sexual assault.
Prior to working at Syracuse University, she provided direct services to child victims of sexual assault and incest for 15 years at the city of Syracuse’s Rape Crisis Center. She also administered and supervised school-based prevention education programs, K-12, reaching over 30,000 students a year.
She has been interviewed on numerous TV programs and newscasts, including CNN, National Public Radio and the BBC and authored numerous articles in magazines and journals. She has been a keynote speaker at national and international conferences throughout her career.
In 2002 she testified before the United States Congress regarding date rape drugs and in London, England, was a catalyst in the founding of Femnet, the International Violence Against Women website, an interactive informational, resource for advocating for women’s rights.
Her professional awards include: Eleanor Roosevelt award for rape prevention programs, New York State Governor’s award for crime prevention and Crime Prevention Practitioner of the Year, awarded by the New York State Crime Prevention Coalition, a Citation from the New York State Senate in honor of her contributions to crime prevention.
She loves to travel, and loves dogs, her family, cooking, shopping and the New York Yankees.
Herm and Dolores live in Syracuse, New York, with their 16 year old Border Collie, Molly Rose, a new kid of the animal kingdom.
Perfect Bound Softcover
Dust Jacket Hardcover