This kind of almost willful neglect is not limited to Cole's school. In a working paper titled "Is Kindergarten the New First Grade? The Changing Nature of Kindergarten in the Age of Accountability," University of Virginia researchers track our national obsession to crank out better test-takers. We're ratcheting up homework, worksheets, and pressure to learn earlier, while cutting back on stupid, non-quantifiable stuff like art, music, play, and physical activity. See the sad details here.