STARR Design and
The principal goal of education is to create (people) who are capable of do-
ing new things, not simply of repeating what other generations have
done—(people) who are creative, inventive, and discoverers. The second
goal of education is to form minds which can be critical, can verify, and
not accept everything they are offered.… So we need pupils who are active,
who learn early to find out for themselves, partly by their own selves, partly
by their own spontaneous activity and partly through material we set up for
them; who learn early to tell what is verifiable and what is simply the first
idea to come to them.
—Jean Piaget, The Origins of Intelligence in Children, 1952.
OF THE STARR CURRICULUM
STARR—Speaking, Technology, Analysis, and Reading through Research—is an inquiry-based reading program designed for middle-school students, but adaptable to multiple levels of learners. It was inspired by the words of Piaget and was designed based on the input from the faculty of a middle school, the information presented in the Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS) report, and the research available on best teaching practices. The selection of the five basic elements that form the integrated STARR curriculum resulted from conversations among and feedback from the faculty about what students needed to learn, along with the faculty's concern about the lack of time they had to teach all that was required of them. Research to support these elements came from the foundation skills and competencies presented in SCANS (What Work Requires of Schools 1991). Integral to this program, SCANS verifies what is termed [workplace know-how.]