Sunday, February 28, 2010

Muslim Redundancy


Even the Old Gray Lady, the New York Times itself, is not immune to the lack of sharp-eyed copy editors.

In its opinion section today, we find an article by Efraim Karsh headlined "Muslims Won't Play Together," about the Arab boycott of the Islamic Solidarity Games scheduled to take place in April in Iran.

About a third of the way through the article, we find these two sentences:
It took a mere 24 years after the Prophet’s death for the head of the universal Islamic community, the caliph Uthman, to be murdered by political rivals. This opened the floodgates to incessant infighting within the House of Islam, which has never ceased.
Doesn't it go without saying that "incessant infighting" will be something that has "never ceased"?

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

How Not to Help Our Childrens Learn

Educators who purport to know how best to teach children the fundamentals should first learn to write in complete sentences.

From an article in yesterday's New York Times by Susan Engel, identified as "a senior lecturer in psychology and director of the teaching program at Williams College" (emphasis added):
In order to design a curriculum that teaches what truly matters, educators should remember a basic precept of modern developmental science: developmental precursors don’t always resemble the skill to which they are leading. For example, saying the alphabet does not particularly help children learn to read. But having extended and complex conversations during toddlerhood does.
The OpEd piece is entitled "Playing to Learn."  There's no indication whether Dr. Engel passed sixth-grade grammar -- or whether her copy editor missed the class completely.