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Michael O'Connor

In Maine, a laptop for every middle-schooler - Technology & science - Back to School | NBC News - 0 views

  • Statewide test scores haven’t changed much.
  • “Maybe the full potential of the laptop isn’t being realized,”" he said.
  • How to offer every child the same opportunity at a quality education
  • ...7 more annotations...
  • The laptops might help breach the economic barrier to school success. Silvernail found that on statewide writing exams, economically disadvantaged students using laptops did outperform advantaged students who didn’t use their computers.
  • Still, the laptop program has faced setbacks. Maine wanted to expand its laptop program to all high schools four years ago, but state budget cuts have prevented that.
    • Michael O'Connor
       
      At the higher levels, do a BYOT program.
  • Still
  • “What we need to look at is the broader impact on student improvement,” said Timothy Magner, the director of the Office of Education Technology, a branch of the U.S. Department of Education. “One of the key metrics is test scores. We’re keenly interested in that.”
    • Michael O'Connor
       
      They are keenly intrested in ... test scores! What a suprise! You would think this initative would have the backing of the US government and all its Allies! But no, we are worried about test scores...
  • Some schools’ programs around the country have faced widespread computer glitches, teachers not knowing how to teach with laptops — and to a much lesser degree, yet way more publicized — the issue of students using the Web to cyberslack, cheat and view porn.
    • Michael O'Connor
       
      yep, this is the down side. Kids mishandle internet or tech devices. or a pencil, or a book...nothing very new here...constant monitoring/good filter systme should be used
  • spawning original ideas.
  • But whether its program can measure up to the federal government’s key yardstick — improvement in standardized test scores — is another question.
Michael O'Connor

As Children's Freedom Has Declined, So Has Their Creativity | Psychology Today - 0 views

  • In Kim’s words, the data indicate that “children have become less emotionally expressive, less energetic, less talkative and verbally expressive, less humorous, less imaginative, less unconventional, less lively and passionate, less perceptive, less apt to connect seemingly irrelevant things, less synthesizing, and less likely to see things from a different angle.”
  • During the immediate post-Sputnik period, the U.S. government was concerned with identifying and fostering giftedness among American schoolchildren, so as to catch up with the RU.Sians (whom we mistakenly thought were ahead of us in scientific innovation). 
  • creativity is the central variable underlying personal achievement and ability to adapt to unusual conditions.
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  • The Torrance Tests were developed by E. Paul Torrance in the late 1950s, when he was an education professor at the University of Minnesota.
  • Well, surprise, surprise.  For several decades we as a society have been suppressing children’s freedom to ever-greater extents, and now we find that their creativity is declining.
  • Creativity is nurtured by freedom and stifled by the continuous monitoring, evaluation, adult-direction, and pressure to conform that restrict children’s lives today.  In the real world few questions have one right answer, few problems have one right solution; that’s why creativity is crucial to success in the real world.  But more and more we are subjecting children to an educational system that assumes one right answer to every question and one correct solution to every problem, a system that punishes children (and their teachers too) for daring to try different routes.  We are also, as I documented in a previous essay, increasingly depriving children of free time outside of school to play, explore, be bored, overcome boredom, fail, overcome failure—that is, to do all that they must do in order to develop their full creative potential.
    • Michael O'Connor
       
      I know of several local school districts that believe that their students cannot fail. How does this prepare a student for his/her real life? It does them great harm to continue to pass them on. They will never learn to overcome the impediments that occurs in life. You will also have an apathetic student on your hands! It is necessary to allow students to fail. Not to make them feel bad about themselves...but to allow them to understand there are second chances in life (sometimes) and that they are not beyond redemption.
  • In the next essay in this series, I will present research evidence that creativity really does bloom in the soil of freedom and die in the hands of overdirective, overprotective, ov
  • If anything makes Americans stand tall internationally it is creativity.  “American ingenuity” is admired everywhere. We are not the richest country (at least not as measured by smallest percentage in poverty), nor the healthiest (far from it), nor the country whose kids score highest on standardized tests (despite our politicians’ misguided intentions to get us there), but we are the most inventive country.  We are the great innovators, specialists in figuring out new ways of doing things and new things to do. Perhaps this derives from our frontier beginnings, or from our unique form of democracy with its emphasis on individual freedom and respect for nonconformity.  In the business world as well as in academia and the arts and elsewhere, creativity is our number one asset.  In a recent IBM poll, 1,500 CEOs acknowledged this when they identified creativity as the best predictor of future success.[1] 
  • judgmental teachers and parents.
Jonathan McClure

William Bradford - History.com Articles, Video, Pictures and Facts - 0 views

  • Born in 1590, William Bradford was one of the founders of Plymouth colony in 1620 and a signer of the Mayflower Compact. He served as the colony's governor for more than thirty years, and wrote "Of Plymouth Plantation," one of the first histories of European settlement in the New World, before his death in 1657.
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