Flowers For Algernon -- What Term Paper

Flowers for Algernon thus argues for mainstreaming, with added support, when viewed in the real-world context of childhood education of gifted or special needs children alike. It is not enough to look at a child's IQ when designing an appropriate curriculum. The child's temperament and emotional developmental milestones must be considered as well. Finally, another danger the story highlights is the tendency to expect too much of children with high intelligence, which can create a sense of perfectionism within them, as demonstrated when Charlie fears (in his case, justifiably) that his intelligence is faltering. Conversely, setting too low expectations for lower I.Q. children can be a problem. One must not make assumptions that everything comes easily to a child. In the book, Charlie resents being given his gifts, and that his talents come without great effort. Rather, because he remembers what life was like before, he feels he must make special efforts to strive to develop his genius. One shock comes when he hears one of the scientists at work upon...


As if he were trying on the mantle of his teachers." (Keyes, p.110)
Charlie sees himself not just as a subject of an experiment, but also as a subjective being, regardless of his level of intellect. Like every other child, regardless of I.Q., Charlie wishes to be fulfilled, rather than lopsided, in all the areas of existence. He wishes to be fully human, not just a mouse trapped in a maze or a person quantified by a number. The educational system, and the support network provided to all exceptional students must answer the same craving at the heart of every child, to feel both specially regarded in terms of their individual needs, yet also normal and part of a normal peer group and family.

Works Cited

Keyes, Daniel. Flowers for Algernon. London: Millennium Masterworks SF, 2000.

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

Keyes, Daniel. Flowers for Algernon. London: Millennium Masterworks SF, 2000.

Cite this Document:

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