Education

Stories related to teaching on all levels, from pre-K through college.

In his 1978 novel The Stand, author Stephen King wrote about a viral pandemic that decimated the world's population. And he gets it when fans say experiencing the COVID-19 outbreak feels like stepping into one of his horror stories.

"I keep having people say, 'Gee, it's like we're living in a Stephen King story,'" he says. "And my only response to that is, 'I'm sorry.' "

With most schools closed nationwide because of the coronavirus pandemic, a national poll of young people ages 13 to 17 suggests distance learning has been far from a universal substitute.

The poll of 849 teenagers, by Common Sense Media, conducted with SurveyMonkey, found that as schools across the country transition to some form of online learning, 41% of teenagers overall, including 47% of public school students, say they haven't attended a single online or virtual class.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

"This story begins with the Adderall," opens Casey Schwartz's Attention: A Love Story. In 2000, Schwartz was in college, struggling to write an essay, when a friend offered her a pill "the deep bright blue of a cartoon sky" and her hand "shot out to receive it."

Here already are the seeds of what is coming: It is not "Adderall" but "the Adderall," not the serviceable "take" or "grab" but the sacramental "receive."

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Indian Sun is a new authoritative biography of the Indian musician Ravi Shankar's life, published to coincide with this year's centenary of his birth.

As billions of people around the world face stay-at-home orders because of COVID-19, family dinners — and breakfasts and lunches — are resurgent. Former New York Times food editor Sam Sifton calls the shift to family meals one of the "precious few good things" happening as a result of the pandemic.

"A lot of us are really experiencing the joys of eating together with family regularly," he says. "For me, it's been kind of joyful amid all the sorrow."

Anne Tyler's latest novel is heartwarming balm for jangled nerves. Once again, she burrows so convincingly into the quotidian details of her main character's life, home, and head that you have to wonder if she's some sort of Alexa-gone-rogue.

Redhead by the Side of the Road has a lot going for it, beginning with its alluring title. But I'm not going to give away anything about that roadside presence except to say that the redhead is a lovely metaphor for the protagonist's inability to see clearly, which causes him to misread the relationships in his life.

Chelsea Bieker's mother left when she was 9 years old. "Growing up, I was hungry for narratives that were tackling some of the things that I was experiencing and feeling," she recalls. Whenever she found those stories, she says it felt healing, cathartic — a release.

"It didn't feel like I was so isolated — it made my experience feel more universal," she says.

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