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Tony Richards

The Atlantic Online | January/February 2010 | What Makes a Great Teacher? | Amanda Ripley - 12 views

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    "What Makes a Great Teacher? Image credit: Veronika Lukasova Also in our Special Report: National: "How America Can Rise Again" Is the nation in terminal decline? Not necessarily. But securing the future will require fixing a system that has become a joke. Video: "One Nation, On Edge" James Fallows talks to Atlantic editor James Bennet about a uniquely American tradition-cycles of despair followed by triumphant rebirths. Interactive Graphic: "The State of the Union Is ..." ... thrifty, overextended, admired, twitchy, filthy, and clean: the nation in numbers. By Rachael Brown Chart: "The Happiness Index" Times were tough in 2009. But according to a cool Facebook app, people were happier. By Justin Miller On August 25, 2008, two little boys walked into public elementary schools in Southeast Washington, D.C. Both boys were African American fifth-graders. The previous spring, both had tested below grade level in math. One walked into Kimball Elementary School and climbed the stairs to Mr. William Taylor's math classroom, a tidy, powder-blue space in which neither the clocks nor most of the electrical outlets worked. The other walked into a very similar classroom a mile away at Plummer Elementary School. In both schools, more than 80 percent of the children received free or reduced-price lunches. At night, all the children went home to the same urban ecosystem, a zip code in which almost a quarter of the families lived below the poverty line and a police district in which somebody was murdered every week or so. Video: Four teachers in Four different classrooms demonstrate methods that work (Courtesy of Teach for America's video archive, available in February at teachingasleadership.org) At the end of the school year, both little boys took the same standardized test given at all D.C. public schools-not a perfect test of their learning, to be sure, but a relatively objective one (and, it's worth noting, not a very hard one). After a year in Mr. Taylo
Julie Altmark

iLearn Technology » Blog Archive » The Pre-Raph Pack - 3 views

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    Featured Post Scholastic's The First Thanksgiving What it is: Scholastic has amazing resources all year long but the interactive on The First Thanksgiving is topnotch!  Students learn about how the Pilgrims reached America, and what daily life was before the First Thanksgiving.  Students can take a tour of the Mayflower, take the virtual journey to America, compare and contrast modern life with when the Pilgrims lived (housing, clothes, food, chores, school, games), and the Thanksgiving feast.  There is a great slideshow and play a webquest feature where kids can learn more about the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag and the famous harvest feast.  The site includes audio for every page and activity.  This is great for younger students. How to integrate Scholastic's The First Thanksgiving into the classroom: The First Thanksgiving is a collection of great activities for students to learn about Thanksgiving and the Pilgrims.  Students can use this site independently as young as first grade because of the audio features on The First Thanksgiving.  The site can be used as a center activity that a few students can explore together, independently in the computer lab setting, or as a whole class with a projector or interactive whiteboard.  The webquest at the end of the activity checks for student understanding with a quiz.  Increase students participation further with some The First Thanksgiving bonus features and extras.  Print out a Thanksgiving Readers theater, door signs, a fact hunt, a vocabulary quiz, and some letters from historical figures.  There are also research and historical fiction journals that students can continue learning with.  These range from a Plymoth Colony research starter to Our America: Colonial period. Tips: Check out Scholastic's Teaching resources for The First Thanksgiving as well as the literature connections that are available. Leave a comment and share how you are using The First Thanksgiving  in your classroom. Read More
Ed Webb

Web-monitoring software gathers data on kid chats by AP: Yahoo! Tech - 0 views

  • Parents who install a leading brand of software to monitor their kids' online activities may be unwittingly allowing the company to read their children's chat messages — and sell the marketing data gathered.
  • Software sold under the Sentry and FamilySafe brands can read private chats conducted through Yahoo, MSN, AOL and other services, and send back data on what kids are saying about such things as movies, music or video games. The information is then offered to businesses seeking ways to tailor their marketing messages to kids.
  • a separate data-mining service called Pulse that taps into the data gathered by Sentry software to give businesses a glimpse of youth chatter online. While other services read publicly available teen chatter, Pulse also can read private chats. It gathers information from instant messages, blogs, social networking sites, forums and chat rooms.
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  • Parents who don't want the company to share their child's information to businesses can check a box to opt out. But that option can be found only by visiting the company's Web site, accessible through a control panel that appears after the program has been installed. It was not in the agreement contained in the Sentry Total Home Protection program The Associated Press downloaded and installed Friday.
Martin Burrett

My Reading Tool - 7 views

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    An English language adventure game. Seek out the correct words and other English activities. http://ictmagic.wikispaces.com/English
Martin Burrett

Teach Your Monster to Read - 19 views

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    This is an amazing, beautifully made and entertaining site for young children to learn phonic sounds. Design a monster and take it on an adventure around a magic area to find the letter sounds and fix a spaceship. The storyline is good and the activities are educational and motivational. http://ictmagic.wikispaces.com/English
Marisa P

John Dewey: School and Society: Chapter 4: The Psychology of Elementary Education - 0 views

  • To refuse to try, to stick (97) blindly to tradition, because the search for the truth involves experimentation in the region of the unknown, is to refuse the only step which can introduce rational conviction into education.
    • Marisa P
       
      great quote
  • It should also be stated that practically it has not as yet been possible, in many cases, to act adequately upon the best ideas obtained, because of administrative difficulties, due to lack of funds —difficulties centering in the lack of a proper building and appliances, and in inability to pay the amounts necessary to secure the complete time of teachers in some important lines. Indeed, with the growth of the school in numbers, and in the age and maturity of pupils, it is becoming a grave question how long it is fair to the experiment to carry it on without more adequate facilities.
  • The aim, then, is not for the child to go to school as a place apart, but rather in the school so to recapitulate typical phases of his experience outside of school, as to enlarge, enrich, and gradually formulate it.
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  • Since the aim is not "covering the ground," but knowledge of social processes used to secure social results, no attempt is made to go over the entire history, in chronological order, of America
  • His experiments are modes of active doing—almost as much so as his play and games. Later he tries to find out how various materials or agencies are manipulated in order to give certain results. It is thus clearly distinguished from experimentation in the scientific sense—such as is appropriate to the secondary period —where the aim is the discovery of facts and verification of principles.
  • means to ends
  • These subjects are social in a double sense. They represent the tools which society has evolved in the past as the instruments of its intellectual pursuits. They represent the keys which will unlock to the child the wealth of social capital which lies beyond the possible range of his limited individual experience. While these two points of view must always give these arts a highly important place in education, they also make it necessary that certain conditions should be observed in their introduction and use. In a wholesale and direct application of the studies no account is taken of these conditions. The chief problem at present relating to the three R's is recognition of these conditions and the adaptation of work to them.
  • 1) The need that the child shall have in his own personal (105) and vital experience a varied background of contact and acquaintance with realities, social and physical. This is necessary to prevent symbols from becoming a purely second-hand and conventional substitute for reality.
  • The need that the more ordinary, direct, and personal experience of the child shall furnish problems, motives, and interests that necessitate recourse to books for their solution, satisfaction, and pursuit. Otherwise, the child approaches the book without intellectual hunger, without alertness, without a questioning attitude, and the result is the one so deplorably common: such abject dependence upon books as weakens and cripples vigor of thought and inquiry, combined with reading for mere random stimulation of fancy, emotional indulgence, and flight from the world of reality into a make-belief land.
  • The final use of the symbols, whether in reading, calculation, or composition, is more intelligent, less mechanical; more active, less passively receptive; more an increase of power, less a mere mode of enjoyment.
  • third period of elementary education
  • the second period
Bill Montana

Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, and Lately, Coding - NYTimes.com - 4 views

  • Since December, 20,000 teachers from kindergarten through 12th grade have introduced coding lessons, according to Code.org, a group backed by the tech industry that offers free curriculums. In addition, some 30 school districts, including New York City and Chicago, have agreed to add coding classes in the fall, mainly in high schools but in lower grades, too. And policy makers in nine states have begun awarding the same credits for computer science classes that they do for basic math and science courses, rather than treating them as electives.
  • coding looks less like an extracurricular activity and more like a basic life skill, one that might someday lead to a great job or even instant riches.
  • But the momentum for early coding comes with caveats, too. It is not clear that teaching basic computer science in grade school will beget future jobs or foster broader creativity and logical thinking, as some champions of the movement are projecting. And particularly for younger children, Dr. Soloway said, the activity is more like a video game — better than simulated gunplay, but not likely to impart actual programming skills.
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  • “There’s a big demand for these skills in both the tech sector and across all sectors,” said Britt Neuhaus, the director of special projects at the office of innovation for New York City schools.
  • Then, in 2013, came Code.org, which borrowed basic Scratch ideas and aimed to spread the concept among schools and policy makers. Computer programming should be taught in every school, said Hadi Partovi, the founder of Code.org and a former executive at Microsoft. He called it as essential as “learning about gravity or molecules, electricity or photosynthesis.”
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    NYT article on coding movement, focusing on Mill Valley, CA. Coding should be taught in all schools.
Brian C. Smith

The Creativity Crisis - Newsweek - 15 views

    • anonymous
       
      If you've ever seen or heard Raif Esquith speak then you know how much he values music with young children. Watch this clip: http://www.tubechop.com/watch/79846
  • The lore of pop psychology is that creativity occurs on the right side of the brain. But we now know that if you tried to be creative using only the right side of your brain, it’d be like living with ideas perpetually at the tip of your tongue, just beyond reach
    • Brian C. Smith
       
      Hello, Mr. Pink. Are you reading?
  • those who diligently practice creative activities learn to recruit their brains’ creative networks quicker and better. A lifetime of consistent habits gradually changes the neurological pattern.
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  • The home-game version of this means no longer encouraging kids to spring straight ahead to the right answer
  • The new view is that creativity is part of normal brain function.
  • “As a child, I never had an identity as a ‘creative person,’ ” Schwarzrock recalls. “But now that I know, it helps explain a lot of what I felt and went through.”
  • In China there has been widespread education reform to extinguish the drill-and-kill teaching style. Instead, Chinese schools are also adopting a problem-based learning approach.
  • fact-finding
  • problem-finding
  • Next, idea-finding
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    Very interesting article from Newsweek about how creativity works in the brain, and how it can be trained in an educational setting. It describes a "crisis" trend where creativity scores in America are decreasing.
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