I thoroughly disagree with the assertion that children cannot understand the structure and workings of a cell until High School, though I do really dislike the whole, "build a model with Jell-O" lesson.
We started with drawing a cell, then making detailed flash cards of each part. After about two months of this, and really being certain Danny understood cell division-we went ahead and pulled out the microscope. The Human Anatomy Coloring Book is a helpful cheat for teachers, and you really don't need to colour, unless of course you want to.
After reading this article a few times, I have to wonder if the reason Earth science is so neglected has to do with parents calling to complain textbooks need to be pulled for mentioning global warming, or if the idea of the Earth being older than 10,000 years would need to be presented as an, "alternative theory?" Given that sort of an environment, I wouldn't want to bother with Earth science either. Or human origins.
Still, children can master taking their pulse long before High School. I guess it is a good way of funneling children into the trade schools that supply the medical service industry. I don't like the idea that science is only relevant if you're going along a certain career path, but with limited resources I suppose that's the decision they need to make. How this new approach will improve test scores, I cannot imagine unless they are improved by not being tested for in the earlier grades. Imagine me slapping my forehead. Imagine me doing it again.