According to PISA, which is an organization interested in the education of the most intelligent people in the world, Hong Kong is numero uno when it comes to mathematics. Finland cannot be beat when it comes to Reading Literacy and Science. Interestingly, South Korea is at the top of the heap when it comes to Problem Solving.
So, the question is, are these countries scoring high with PISA because they are superbly meeting the needs of their students, or are the students some of the most intelligent people in the world? A bit of both, I'd wager.
Yet, why is it that students in South Korea are such great Problem Solvers? Further, why is Finland so superior when it comes to Reading Literacy?
According to PISA, Finland adopted a program called LUMA to enrich students understanding of Mathematics and Science. The results being they tested high in Reading Literacy and Science, but not Math.
Why is it that Asians are so adept at Math? What is it about Asians and Math?
Most usually, Asian children are not given choices to be good at Math. Asian culture is oppressive and demanding. Their children are expected to produce and when they don't, they are disciplined. Imagine fear as a brain motivator. Incredible. I feared much as a child and learned little. But then, I was involved in a reverse operation of what Asian children are. I was a victim of hick warfare and mentally ill adults who should have been picking cotton instead of teaching school and having children and becoming pediatricians.
I am quite sure, though, that Asians have a strong strain of spatial intelligence in their collective gene pool.
While I am quite sure that Celts tend to be strong in the literacy department and Great Britain has produced many a great philosopher and Ireland has produced many great novelists and poets, Asians kick the pants off of the universe when it comes to Math. Africans cannot be equaled in rhythm and music and their rich contributions to entertainment have increased the wealth of art of America dramatically. Of course, there are many talented African writers as well.
Because America has such a diversity of nationalities, I am tempted to state that this nation contains the most intelligent people in the world. But then I think of China and all that mathematical brain power they are producing.
China could take over the United States easily. China is a bigger country and when it comes to Math, it is superior. So, you might ask, how does Math figure in? Math is essential to the scientist, militarist and physicist.