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Michelle Kassorla

Flocabulary Year in Rap 2012 - 95 views

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    A rap of all the big news stories of 2012
Tracy Tuten

Khan Academy: The future of education? - CBS News - 1 views

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    Discussion of Khan Academy with links to Khan's videos
Tracy Tuten

The Irascible Professor on "The SAT that isn't (the death of aptitude.)" - 2 views

  • It used to be that the SAT was distinguished from its competitor the ACT by the fact that the former was seen as measuring aptitude and being effectively un-coachable, while the latter was a gauge of achievement in learning.
  • At the risk of sounding pejorative, I'd say that I was expecting the test to be a measure of who I was, while some of my fellow students and their parents treated it more as a test of how they could present themselves to admissions officers.  And while I wouldn't suggest that people tend to think of it in these terms, I believe that the latter perception relies on the academically damaging belief that an individual student's capabilities need not matter to what goals he sets for himself.  That perception leads people to believe that there is something inherently unfair about a test that you can't study for.
  • And if after four years of high school they haven't developed much skill for reasoning, that's okay – they can take preparatory courses to learn how to fake it for an exam, and let that be their stepping stone toward academic accomplishment.  As a society that values the promise of formal education more than the satisfaction of actual learning, we have precipitated the death of aptitude.  We are afraid to acknowledge that it exists, because aptitude, whether the product of inborn talent or effective rearing, makes some people better suited than others for certain goals.
  • ...4 more annotations...
  • Lori Gottlieb, writing in The Atlantic last year, claimed that child-rearing in the current generation has been excessively focused on preserving self-esteem.  As an illustration of one symptom of this, Gottlieb quoted clinical psychologist Wendy Mogel as saying that parents are actually relieved to be told that their struggling children are learning disabled, so that today "every child is either learning disabled, gifted, or both – there's no curve left, no average."  To claim a learning disability is the only way to set legitimate lower benchmarks for performance.  Kids are never just bad at anything anymore, because that's seen as being more harmful to self-esteem.
  • But my worries about the individual effects of the death of aptitude are dwarfed by my concern for its effect on the institutions of higher learning that those individuals are entering.  College is not a one-directional relationship of dispensing knowledge to young people.  The entire institution gains or loses value on the basis of what its students put into it.  By telling students with low aptitude and low interest that they can, should, and must strive to accomplish the same things as their higher-achieving peers, I fear that we're saturating higher education with people who subtract value from their institutions by committing minimum effort and lowering whatever curve still exists for the measurement of performance.
  • We all seem to agree that standards for college readiness need to improve, but you'll hear virtually no one asserting that when those standards are not met, the student ought to leave off college altogether, or to defer it until they have acquired, by sheer will or by natural intellectual growth, the aptitude to be successful at the proper level.  Indeed, just as common in criticism of education is the sentiment that we must see to it that more children enter and complete college.  But if those children don't have the aptitude to do so, the goal of improving college curriculum contradicts the goal of college-for-all.
  • We can't keep pretending that there is no such thing as aptitude and that every child has equal cause to vie for the topmost positions of intellectual esteem.  It does a disservice to the student and the school in kind.
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    An essay on what the SAT says about society's view of education, accomplishments, aptitude, and self-esteem. 
Roland Gesthuizen

The Ed Techie: Innovating Pedagogy report - 0 views

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    Here at IET in the OU, a bunch of us, led by Mike Sharples, were asked to produce an annual report on how changes in teaching and learning (related to technology) were changing the current landscape. ... Think of it as like a Horizon's report with more focus on pedagogy. We adopted the same methodology as the Horizon report also.
Leona Walker

Photoseed - 4 views

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    Webbie Award for 2012
taconi12

Five Reasons to Stop Saying "Good Job!" - 118 views

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    Thought-provoking article on possible harms of praise if motive is simply to get child to repeat behavior.  Should focus more on how child's actions made others feel.
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