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Shannon Knight

Smart Exchange - 14 views

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    Smart Exchange for Smart. A training, content, and community site.
marcmancinelli

Think Again: Education - By Ben Wildavsky | Foreign Policy - 31 views

  • But when the results from the first major international math test came out in 1967, the effort did not seem to have made much of a difference. Japan took first place out of 12 countries, while the United States finished near the bottom.
  • By the early 1970s, American students were ranking last among industrialized countries in seven of 19 tests of academic achievement and never made it to first or even second place in any of them. A decade later, "A Nation at Risk," the landmark 1983 report by the National Commission on Excellence in Education, cited these and other academic failings to buttress its stark claim that "if an unfriendly foreign power had attempted to impose on America the mediocre Educational performance that exists today, we might well have viewed it as an act of war."
    • marcmancinelli
       
      US has long been mediocre or at the bottom of international comparisons, but it's not a zer-sum game
  • ...7 more annotations...
  • But don't expect any of them to bring the country back to its educational golden age -- there wasn't one.
    • marcmancinelli
       
      People use crises to advance their own agendas...
  • J. Michael Shaughnessy, president of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, argues that the latest PISA test "underscores the need for integrating reasoning and sense making in our teaching of Mathematics." Randi Weingarten, head of the American Federation of Teachers, claims that the same results "tell us … that if you don't make Math investments in teachers, respect them, or involve them in decision-making, as the top-performing countries do, students pay a price."
  • According to the most recent statistics, the U.S. share of foreign students fell from 24 percent in 2000 to just below 19 percent in 2008. Meanwhile, countries like Australia, Canada, and Japan saw increased market shares from their 2000 levels, though they are still far below the American numbers.
  • And even with its declining share, the United States still commands 9 percentage points more of the market than its nearest competitor, Britain.
  • A 2008 Rand Corp. report found that nearly two-thirds of the most highly cited articles in science and technology come from the United States, and seven in 10 Nobel Prize winners are employed by American universities. And the United States spends about 2.9 percent of its GDP on postsecondary education, about twice the percentage spent by China, the European Union, and Japan in 2006.
  • But over the long term, exactly where countries sit in the university hierarchy will be less and less relevant, as Americans' understanding of who is "us" and who is "them" gradually changes. Already, a historically unprecedented level of student and faculty mobility has become a defining characteristic of global higher education. Cross-border scientific collaboration, as measured by the volume of publications by co-authors from different countries, has more than doubled in two decades.
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    A great perspective piece on American education compared to the world.
Brianna Crowley

Teachers Can Do Harm | transformED - 51 views

  • Teaching is a professional craft. Thinking that any high-scoring college student could come in and excel demeans it as a profession. No one would consider letting smart English majors perform surgery on low-income patients, or allowing cum laude smart majors to do legal work for poor clients.
  • Stuffing under-prepared rookies’ ears with confidence and sending them into the fray doesn’t have a net neutral impact on our students or our national conversation on education.
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    Teaching is a professional craft. Thinking that any high-scoring college student could come in and excel demeans it as a profession. No one would consider letting smart English majors perform surgery on low-income patients, or allowing cum laude smart majors to do legal work for poor clients.
anonymous

Technology in Schools Faces Questions on Value - NYTimes.com - 70 views

  • When it comes to showing results, he said, “We better put up or shut up.”
  • Critics counter that, absent clear proof, schools are being motivated by a blind faith in technology and an overemphasis on digital skills — like using PowerPoint and multimedia tools — at the expense of math, reading and writing fundamentals. They say the technology advocates have it backward when they press to upgrade first and ask questions later.
  • how the district was innovating.
  • ...24 more annotations...
  • district was innovating
  • there is no good way to quantify those achievements — putting them in a tough spot with voters deciding whether to bankroll this approach again
  • “We’ve jumped on bandwagons for different eras without knowing fully what we’re doing. This might just be the new bandwagon,” he said. “I hope not.”
  • $46.3 million for laptops, classroom projectors, networking gear and other technology for teachers and administrators.
  • If we know something works
  • it is hard to separate the effect of the laptops from the effect of the teacher training
  • The high-level analyses that sum up these various studies, not surprisingly, give researchers pause about whether big investments in technology make sense.
  • Good teachers, he said, can make good use of computers, while bad teachers won’t, and they and their students could wind up becoming distracted by the technology.
    • anonymous
       
      yep - so where does leadership come in?
  • “Test scores are the same, but look at all the other things students are doing: learning to use the Internet to research, learning to organize their work, learning to use professional writing tools, learning to collaborate with others.”
  • “It’s not the stuff that counts — it’s what you do with it that matters.”
  • “There is a connection between the physical hand on the paper and the words on the page,” she said. “It’s intimate.”
  • “They’re inundated with 24/7 media, so they expect it,”
  • The 30 students in the classroom held wireless clickers into which they punched their answers. Seconds later, a pie chart appeared on the screen: 23 percent answered “True,” 70 percent “False,” and 6 percent didn’t know.
  • rofessor Cuban at Stanford argues that keeping children engaged requires an environment of constant novelty, which cannot be sustained.
  • engagement is a “fluffy
  • term” that can slide past critical analysis.
  • creating an impetus to rethink education entirely
    • Steve Ransom
       
      Like teaching powerpoint is "rethinking education". Right.
  • guide on the side.
  • Professor Cuban at Stanford
  • But she loves the fact that her two children, a fourth-grader and first-grader, are learning technology, including PowerPoint
  • that computers can distract and not instruct.
  • Mr. Share bases his buying decisions on two main factors: what his teachers tell him they need, and his experience. For instance, he said he resisted getting the interactive whiteboards sold as Smart Boards until, one day in 2008, he saw a teacher trying to mimic the product with a jury-rigged projector setup. “It was an ‘Aha!’ moment,” he said, leading him to buy Smart Boards, made by a company called Smart Technologies.
  • This is big business.
  • “Do we really need technology to learn?” she said. “It’s a very valid time to ask the question, right before this goes on the ballot.”
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    Shallow (still important) analysis of the major issues regarding technology integration in schools.
Michael Hylton

Quality Homework - A Smart Idea - NYTimes.com - 70 views

  • The studying that middle school and high school students do after the dismissal bell rings is either an unreasonable burden or a crucial activity that needs beefing up. Which is it? Do American students have too much homework or too little? Neither, I’d say. We ought to be asking a different question altogether. What should matter to parents and educators is this: How effectively do children’s after-school assignments advance learning?
  • The quantity of students’ homework is a lot less important than its quality. And evidence suggests that as of now, homework isn’t making the grade. Although surveys show that the amount of time our children spend on homework has risen over the last three decades, American students are mired in the middle of international academic rankings: 17th in reading, 23rd in science and 31st in math, according to results from the Program for International Student Assessment released last December.
  • “Spaced repetition” is one example of the kind of evidence-based techniques that researchers have found have a positive impact on learning. Here’s how it works: instead of concentrating the study of information in single blocks, as many homework assignments currently do — reading about, say, the Civil War one evening and Reconstruction the next — learners encounter the same material in briefer sessions spread over a longer period of time. With this approach, students are re-exposed to information about the Civil War and Reconstruction throughout the semester.
Nancy White

50 Ways to Use Wikis for a More Collaborative and Interactive Classroom | Smart Teaching - 129 views

  • Track participation: Assign a wiki page to a group project, and then individual pages for each student to show their participation.
    • Nancy White
       
      I like this idea. Moves towards student ownership of learning. This is an easy formative assessment piece to put in place.
  • Solving wiki: Post difficult math problems, such as calculus, so that the class can collaboratively solve them.
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    great ideas for multiple uses of wikis - with examples of each, however some of these links don't work.
jojomitty

Reshma Saujani Makes the Case for Girls Who Code -- THE Journal - 12 views

    • jojomitty
       
      We have to make sure this changes!!!
  • Why do we let our girls say they hate math
  • "I just have to show them being smart is cool."
  • ...3 more annotations...
  • educators should encourage girls to learn to write computer code.
    • jojomitty
       
      We need to keep incorporating programs like Hour of Code to encourage ALL students.
  • I think we can close the gender gap in our lifetime
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