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A Mom's Perspective on Mental Illness

Written by Liza Long, republished from The Blue Review

I live with a son who is mentally ill. I love my son. But he terrifies me.

Friday’s horrific national tragedy -- the murder of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut -- has ignited a new discussion on violence in America.Liza Long, a writer based in Boise, says it’s easy to talk about guns. But it’s time to talk about mental illness.
Mel Riddile's insight:

1. Schools are not mental health facilities nor do school staff practice medicine, but, like every part of our society, mental illness is an issue with which we must all deal.

2. Schools make a big mistake when they assume that they are the first to identify a problem. In fact, family members have most likely been suffering for quite a while before abberant behaviors are manifested in school. The workplace is usually the last place to see an adult problem. Likewise, schools may be the last to witness the effects of mental illness on student behavior. By the time we, in schools, recognize the problem it is usually in a progressed state.

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Formative Assessment Works

by Mel Riddile


Formative assessment or assessment for learning is a proven strategy to improve student achievement.

Mel Riddile's insight:

“Formative assessment is a planned process in which teachers or students use assessment-based evidence to adjust what they're currently doing.

• Formative assessment is a planned process in which assessment-elicited evidence of students' status is used by teachers to adjust their ongoing instructional procedures or by students to adjust their current learning tactics.

• Because formative assessment has been shown to improve students' in-class learning, many educators have adopted it in the hope that it will also raise their students' performances on accountability tests.

• The expanded use of formative assessment is supported not only by instructional logic but also by the conclusions of a well-conceived and skillfully implemented meta-analysis by Paul Black and Dylan Wiliam.” (Popham, 2008)After synthesizing over 250 publications, Black and Wiliam, concluded that formative assessment is perhaps the most effective educational practice when it comes to improving academic achievement. In addition, formative assessment has a disproportionately beneficial impact on low‐achieving students. http://www.hanoverresearch.com/media/The-Impact-of-Formative-Assessment-and-Learning-Intentions-on-Student-Achievement.pdfIn 


In 2009, John Hattie published a meta-meta-analysis of education research called Visible Learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. In that study, Hattie found that formative assessment, when done correctly, had the highest effect size on student learning compared with other classroom strategies.


In recent years, neuroscientists have reported that retrieval practice—recalling and applying previously learning—had a huge impact (as much as 50%) on student retention of learned content. Combining retrieval practice and formative assessment can significantly reduce forgetting and increase retention of lesson content.


Each school’s instructional framework provides teachers with numerous opportunities to use formative assessments in the beginning and ending of a lesson as well as when engaging students and during student practice in the body of the lesson. Teachers use formative assessment to see if the students have mastered the content of the lesson—did they get it?


Note that mastery means that the students can demonstrate both that they ‘know’ the content and that they can apply what they learned to future or past learning.


Formative Assessment in the Beginning and Ending of the Lesson


• Purposeful Learning – The expectation that all activities be purposeful means that teachers always have something to check on or assess for understanding.

• Focusing (Beginning) – Ask students to demonstrate mastery of the previous lesson through bell ringer, do now, or warm up.

• Knowing the Lesson’s Purpose (Beginning) – Ask students to repeat the learning target or essential question in their own words

• Ask students to predict (“prediction effect”) the “why” of the learning target/essential question (Beginning).

• Use a closure activity or ‘exit ticket’ that asks more than comprehension level, regurgitation questions. Ask students to both recall (retrieval practice) and apply what they learned to future or past learning (Ending).

• Purposeful reading, writing, and discussion - Reflection of some kind that addresses learning using evidence from the lesson that connects the learning to something else (Ending).


Formative Assessment in the Body of the Lesson (Practicing and Engagement)


• Connection activities that ask students to link new learning to older learning• Visualization activities where students draw some concept that has been learned

• Question design - ask kids to write their own questions with different levels of Bloom's involved

• Game play where appropriate can be a great tool as well• Blog writing as a reflective or questioning tool

• Mentor activities that ask the student to create something original using the learning as a model

• Problem solving activities where students apply skills to arrive at a solutionIf students can complete any or all of the above, then we know they have demonstrated proficiency on some level. As we seek to move kids to mastery, we need to be acutely aware of their progress.


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LET Team's curator insight, March 19, 2016 6:44 PM

“Formative assessment is a planned process in which teachers or students use assessment-based evidence to adjust what they're currently doing.


• Formative assessment is a planned process in which assessment-elicited evidence of students' status is used by teachers to adjust their ongoing instructional procedures or by students to adjust their current learning tactics.


• Because formative assessment has been shown to improve students' in-class learning, many educators have adopted it in the hope that it will also raise their students' performances on accountability tests.


• The expanded use of formative assessment is supported not only by instructional logic but also by the conclusions of a well-conceived and skillfully implemented meta-analysis by Paul Black and Dylan Wiliam.” (Popham, 2008)After synthesizing over 250 publications, Black and Wiliam, concluded that formative assessment is perhaps the most effective educational practice when it comes to improving academic achievement. In addition, formative assessment has a disproportionately beneficial impact on low‐achieving students. http://www.hanoverresearch.com/media/The-Impact-of-Formative-Assessment-and-Learning-Intentions-on-Student-Achievement.pdfIn 


 


In 2009, John Hattie published a meta-meta-analysis of education research called Visible Learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. In that study, Hattie found that formative assessment, when done correctly, had the highest effect size on student learning compared with other classroom strategies.


 


In recent years, neuroscientists have reported that retrieval practice—recalling and applying previously learning—had a huge impact (as much as 50%) on student retention of learned content. Combining retrieval practice and formative assessment can significantly reduce forgetting and increase retention of lesson content.


 


Each school’s instructional framework provides teachers with numerous opportunities to use formative assessments in the beginning and ending of a lesson as well as when engaging students and during student practice in the body of the lesson. Teachers use formative assessment to see if the students have mastered the content of the lesson—did they get it?


 


Note that mastery means that the students can demonstrate both that they ‘know’ the content and that they can apply what they learned to future or past learning.


 


Formative Assessment in the Beginning and Ending of the Lesson


 


• Purposeful Learning – The expectation that all activities be purposeful means that teachers always have something to check on or assess for understanding.


• Focusing (Beginning) – Ask students to demonstrate mastery of the previous lesson through bell ringer, do now, or warm up.


• Knowing the Lesson’s Purpose (Beginning) – Ask students to repeat the learning target or essential question in their own words


• Ask students to predict (“prediction effect”) the “why” of the learning target/essential question (Beginning).


• Use a closure activity or ‘exit ticket’ that asks more than comprehension level, regurgitation questions. Ask students to both recall (retrieval practice) and apply what they learned to future or past learning (Ending).


• Purposeful reading, writing, and discussion - Reflection of some kind that addresses learning using evidence from the lesson that connects the learning to something else (Ending).


 


Formative Assessment in the Body of the Lesson (Practicing and Engagement)


 


• Connection activities that ask students to link new learning to older learning• Visualization activities where students draw some concept that has been learned


• Question design - ask kids to write their own questions with different levels of Bloom's involved


• Game play where appropriate can be a great tool as well• Blog writing as a reflective or questioning tool


• Mentor activities that ask the student to create something original using the learning as a model


• Problem solving activities where students apply skills to arrive at a solutionIf students can complete any or all of the above, then we know they have demonstrated proficiency on some level. As we seek to move kids to mastery, we need to be acutely aware of their progress.


Andy Fetchik's curator insight, March 21, 2016 11:34 AM

“Formative assessment is a planned process in which teachers or students use assessment-based evidence to adjust what they're currently doing.

• Formative assessment is a planned process in which assessment-elicited evidence of students' status is used by teachers to adjust their ongoing instructional procedures or by students to adjust their current learning tactics.

• Because formative assessment has been shown to improve students' in-class learning, many educators have adopted it in the hope that it will also raise their students' performances on accountability tests.

• The expanded use of formative assessment is supported not only by instructional logic but also by the conclusions of a well-conceived and skillfully implemented meta-analysis by Paul Black and Dylan Wiliam.” (Popham, 2008)After synthesizing over 250 publications, Black and Wiliam, concluded that formative assessment is perhaps the most effective educational practice when it comes to improving academic achievement. In addition, formative assessment has a disproportionately beneficial impact on low‐achieving students. http://www.hanoverresearch.com/media/The-Impact-of-Formative-Assessment-and-Learning-Intentions-on-Student-Achievement.pdfIn ;


In 2009, John Hattie published a meta-meta-analysis of education research called Visible Learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. In that study, Hattie found that formative assessment, when done correctly, had the highest effect size on student learning compared with other classroom strategies.


In recent years, neuroscientists have reported that retrieval practice—recalling and applying previously learning—had a huge impact (as much as 50%) on student retention of learned content. Combining retrieval practice and formative assessment can significantly reduce forgetting and increase retention of lesson content.


Each school’s instructional framework provides teachers with numerous opportunities to use formative assessments in the beginning and ending of a lesson as well as when engaging students and during student practice in the body of the lesson. Teachers use formative assessment to see if the students have mastered the content of the lesson—did they get it?


Note that mastery means that the students can demonstrate both that they ‘know’ the content and that they can apply what they learned to future or past learning.


Formative Assessment in the Beginning and Ending of the Lesson


• Purposeful Learning – The expectation that all activities be purposeful means that teachers always have something to check on or assess for understanding.

• Focusing (Beginning) – Ask students to demonstrate mastery of the previous lesson through bell ringer, do now, or warm up.

• Knowing the Lesson’s Purpose (Beginning) – Ask students to repeat the learning target or essential question in their own words

• Ask students to predict (“prediction effect”) the “why” of the learning target/essential question (Beginning).

• Use a closure activity or ‘exit ticket’ that asks more than comprehension level, regurgitation questions. Ask students to both recall (retrieval practice) and apply what they learned to future or past learning (Ending).

• Purposeful reading, writing, and discussion - Reflection of some kind that addresses learning using evidence from the lesson that connects the learning to something else (Ending).


Formative Assessment in the Body of the Lesson (Practicing and Engagement)


• Connection activities that ask students to link new learning to older learning• Visualization activities where students draw some concept that has been learned

• Question design - ask kids to write their own questions with different levels of Bloom's involved

• Game play where appropriate can be a great tool as well• Blog writing as a reflective or questioning tool

• Mentor activities that ask the student to create something original using the learning as a model

• Problem solving activities where students apply skills to arrive at a solutionIf students can complete any or all of the above, then we know they have demonstrated proficiency on some level. As we seek to move kids to mastery, we need to be acutely aware of their progress.


Dorothy Retha Cook's curator insight, April 24, 6:20 AM

Lord God bless these words and their messengers allow it to be understood by man in the manner that is benefitual and for the good purpose of those that read it and bless them even the more that has is or will share it. Lord God have mercy reveal all those things that need be in Jesus name. Amen


 

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What Google Management Understands that Many Schools Don’t | Free Range Kids

What Google Management Understands that Many Schools Don’t | Free Range Kids | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Most adults understand that a sedentary work day is far from ideal, and leads to
reduced output. Cutting edge corporations like Google design their work
campuses to include gymnasiums, swimming pools, volleyball courts, and
walking paths. Businesses provide gym memberships to their employees for use
during the workday. With more movement comes more focus, less boredom,
fewer absences, better attitudes, and more positive outlooks.

.
The trend in public school, though, has been the opposite. As the emphasis on
attaining high scores in math and ELA grows, the reaction has been to increase
classroom time, on the assumption that the more time spent on the subjects will
correlate with better performance. All too often, that extra classroom time is
pulled from recess time, or from physical education time.
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Teachers Are Quitting Because They're Dissatisfied

Teacher turnover hurts student achievement, is expensive for schools and districts, and leads to teacher shortages, Darling-Hammond said. 

And both teachers who leave the profession and teachers who change schools are most commonly leaving because they are dissatisfied, according to the analysis. See the below graph breaking down why teachers left the profession in 2012-13. (Percentages do not add up to 100 since teachers were allowed to select more than one reason.)
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Ivon Prefontaine, PhD's curator insight, September 22, 2:20 PM
I think this is one of the underlying issues in why teachers leave. Teacher agency and voice are silenced. Teachers are the closest to their students, but, often, are excluded from the conversations that are essential to their students.

I experienced working for (not with) administrators who had not been in the classroom for years and others who fled the classroom after only a few years. Too often, the joy I found in teaching was squelched by the oppression I experienced.
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No, you aren't a 'visual' learner

No, you aren't a 'visual' learner | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
The idea that people have different styles of learning — that the visually inclined do best by seeing new information, for example, or others by hearing it — has been around since the 1950s, and recent research suggests it's still widely believed by teachers and laypeople alike. But is there scientific evidence that learning styles exist?

"The short answer is no," says Daniel Willingham, a psychology professor at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Learning styles should be easy to prove through science, he explains — for instance, by taking 50 auditory learners and 50 visual learners and exposing them to a mix of learning experiences. Some people would be told a story using their preferred learning method, like a slideshow or an audio story, and others not. Later, they'd all be tested on their memory and comprehension of the story.

"So, a very obvious prediction here," Willingham says. "If I get the story in my preferred modality, I should remember it better later. And that's been tested, and we don't see any evidence that that's true."
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The Pareto Principle Can Save You Time And Help You ...

The Pareto Principle Can Save You Time And Help You ... | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
You've probably heard of the 80/20 rule, right? This concept states that, in general, 80 percent of the results come from 20 percent of the actions. Philosopher and economist Vilfredo Federico Damaso Pareto, born in Italy in 1848, coined this idea.

Legend has it, Pareto peeked at his pea plants one day and noticed that only 20 percent of the plants in the garden generated 80 percent of the healthy pea pods. Then he looked at all of Italy, and, what do you know, 20 percent of the population owned 80 percent of the country's land. This magic little ratio kept popping up, and voilà, Pareto's namesake principle was born. The underlying lesson of this principle (also known as "law of the vital few") is that input does not always equal output.
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Later School Start Times For Teenagers Benefit Everyone — So Why Aren’t We Doing It?

Later School Start Times For Teenagers Benefit Everyone — So Why Aren’t We Doing It? | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
According to a new study, delaying start times until after 8:30am for all ages has major benefits – not only for our kid’s mental and physical well-being, but for the economy overall.
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What Is The Cognitive Load Theory? A Definition For Teachers -

What Is The Cognitive Load Theory? A Definition For Teachers - | Leading Schools | Scoop.it

Generally, the Cognitive Load Theory is a theory about learning built on the premise that since the brain can only do so many things at once, we should be intentional about what we ask it to do.


It was developed in 1998 by psychologist John Sweller, and the School of Education at New South Wales University released a paper in August of 2017 that delved into theory. The paper has a great overview–and even stronger list of citations–of the theory. They also, obviously, define and explain it:


‘Cognitive load theory is based on a number of widely accepted theories about how human brains process and store information (Gerjets, Scheiter & Cierniak 2009, p. 44). These assumptions include: that human memory can be divided into working memory and long-term memory; that information is stored in the long-term memory in the form of schemas; and that processing new information results in ‘cognitive load’ on working memory which can affect learning outcomes (Anderson 1977; Atkinson & Shiffrin 1968; Baddeley 1983).’

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Response: Mistakes new Teachers Make & How to Avoid Them

Response: Mistakes new Teachers Make & How to Avoid Them | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
What are the biggest mistakes new teachers make and what should they do instead?

All teachers, including those of us who are veterans, make lots of mistakes.   New teachers, however, tend to make some common ones.  This three-part series will explore what those might be and how to avoid them.  Perhaps those new teachers who are reading can, instead, make more creative ones!
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School Consortium Proposes a Better High School Transcript

School Consortium Proposes a Better High School Transcript | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
For well over a century we've recorded the high school experience as a series of courses and grades, showing activity but not necessarily growth and accomplishment. Here is how the Mastery Transcript Consortium is working to change this approach for the better.
Mel Riddile's insight:

For 125 years we’ve recorded the high school experience as a series of courses and grades. It’s a record of activity but not a very good measure of knowledge, skills and dispositions; it doesn’t capture experiences or work products that provide evidence of growth and accomplishment.


Scott Looney, head at the Hawken School in Cleveland since 2006, is an advocate for advanced student-centered and authentic learning. He knew there was a better way to signal student success but realized it was both a supply and demand problem--high schools needed to update the transcript and colleges needed to agree to accept the new evidence of learning.


Looney launched the Mastery Transcript Consortium (@MastTranscript) in 2017. The new nonprofit started by defining the problem: current transcripts mark time not learning--they value information regurgitation over making meaning, disciplines over integration, extrinsic over intrinsic rewards, and encourage grade inflation. The whole charade is based on the premise that grades are replicable, validated and meaningful.

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Note Taking: my most popular “innovative” topic

Of all the things that I have written, my posts on note taking have received the most attention!
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Timeless Note-Taking Systems for Students

Timeless Note-Taking Systems for Students | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
In classrooms and lecture halls around the world, millions of students—from elementary schools to the highest levels of collegiate research—bear the torch as our most consistent note-takers. While we’ve experienced massive shifts in technology over the course of the past four decades, the essence and methodology of note-taking remain largely intact. Same purpose. Different medium.

Whether scribbling shorthand in a notebook or capturing lecture notes on a laptop or mobile device, students still need to find ways to remember what they are taught.  Note-taking is essential to the learning process.

Organizing Information
For centuries, we’ve been distracted.

No matter your profession or pursuits, interpreting and capturing information is more challenging than it seems. Students experience this every day. Research shows us that overcoming information overload begins with organization. For students, this starts with having a system for organizing their notes. How students organize notes can have an enormous impact on how well they can recall it later.
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The Economic Case for Letting Teenagers Sleep a Little Later

The Economic Case for Letting Teenagers Sleep a Little Later | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
A Brookings Institution policy brief investigated the trade-offs between costs and benefits of pushing back the start times of high school in 2011. It estimated that increased transportation costs would most likely be about $150 per student per year. But more sleep has been shown to lead to higher academic achievement. They found that the added academic benefit of later start times would be equivalent to about two additional months of schooling, which they calculated would add about $17,500 to a student’s earnings over the course of a lifetime. Thus, the benefits outweighed the costs.
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Why 'Learning Styles' and Other Education Neuromyths Won't Go Away

Why 'Learning Styles' and Other Education Neuromyths Won't Go Away | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
From the K-12 curriculum standpoint, what's troubling about neuromyths is that teacher-training workshops and curricula perpetuate some of them, most notably the idea that students learn best when taught in a "learning style" that best suits them, such as visual, auditory, or kinesthetic.

So what's the best way to counter neuromyths? The root of the problem, new research finds, is that the myths are persistent even when people have had some training in neuroscience. So, while efforts to counter neuromyths can help, they probably won't eliminate them entirely.

The research appeared last month in the journal Frontiers in Psychology. A team of five researchers, led by the University of Houston's Kelly Macdonald, surveyed more than 3,000 members of the general public, asking them to give "true" or "false" answers to 32 statements about the brain and learning. They also surveyed nearly 600 educators, and 234 individuals who reported taking "many" college or university courses on the brian or neuroscience.
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6 simple ways to infuse #growthmindset into daily classroom routines

6 simple ways to infuse #growthmindset into daily classroom routines | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Growth mindset has been a buzzword in education for quite awhile and I think a lot of teachers and kids are already familiar with it. But I’ve noticed a pitfall that seems to occur fairly often.

Growth mindset is introduced to students near the beginning of the year and then the curriculum demands seem to take precedent. When you have so many skills you have to teach and so many standards for kids to master, it’s hard to remember, much less make time to talk about growth mindset.

Fortunately, there are some simple ways you can infuse growth mindset into what you do on a daily basis. These are regular practices that help you ensure students will:

Be willing to try new things
Stick with hard tasks and not give up
Push themselves to do their best work, not just what’s “good enough”
Believe in themselves and their own ability to learn
All of these traits are things we can help develop in our students by teaching them about how their brains work.
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States Looking Beyond Test Scores to Attendance + College-Career Readiness

States Looking Beyond Test Scores to Attendance + College-Career Readiness | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
School officials: Get ready to figure out whether your students have a problem with chronic absenteeism. And while you're at it, see if you're getting them ready for college and the workplace. 

Attendance—particularily chronic absenteeism—and college-and-career readiness are by far the most popular new areas of focus for accountability among the 40-plus states that have filed their plans to implement the Every Student Success Act, an Education Week review shows.

At least 33 states are looking at chronic absenteeism or attendance in some form to hold schools accountable under the new law. And some states chose factors that are related to attendance. California, for instance, is looking at suspensions and discipline rates.  

At least 33 states are incorporating some kind of postsecondary-readiness measure, whether that's ACT scores, SAT scores, dual enrollment, Advanced Placement, career and technical education pathways, a mix of those factors, or something else. For instance New York is looking at whether students enroll and pass advanced courses, or earn college credit through dual enrollment. And Georgia is considering whether students earn credit through Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate courses, or a CTE certification. 
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More Periods Of Instruction That Didn’t Work In First Place Doesn’t Help High School Readers

More Periods Of Instruction That Didn’t Work In First Place Doesn’t Help High School Readers | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
I will always remember interpreting for a colleague who was telling a student and his mother that he offered tutoring after school everyday. “But, Mr. ____, you teach the same way then that I…
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How Some Neuromyths Just Don’t Go Away

How Some Neuromyths Just Don’t Go Away | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Dispelling the Myth: Training in Education or Neuroscience Decreases but Does Not Eliminate Beliefs in Neuromyths, recently published in Frontiers in Psychology, reveals how hard it is to stamp out these popular untruths. Its authors, led by Kelly Macdonald of the University of Houston, handed out true/false questionnaires to 3,000 members of the general public, 600 educators, and 234 people who had taken a substantial number of higher-education courses on the brain or neuroscience. Participants didn’t do as well as one might hope, especially the more “expert” among them. Every group had people who believed falsehoods about neuroscience, in about the ratios you’d expect.

Some of the most common neuromyths that just won’t let go are these, along with the percentage of people who get them wrong, broken down into the general public, educators, and people knowledgeable in neuroscience:
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Paul Pienaar's curator insight, September 18, 11:49 PM

Quite interesting

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The most important step in teaching fluency is...


Fluency instruction can be valuable with fourth-graders (and with lots of other kids in grades 1-12)—it can help them to decode better, read more fluently, and improve reading comprehension.


What you describe is not likely to have much impact on kids’ learning. Fluency instruction requires, well, instruction.

Text selection. Good reading instruction requires appropriate texts. On this, it sounds like you’re doing fine—that often isn't the case. Fluency practice is best carried out with texts that students will struggle with, and with fourth-graders this is most likely to mean that the kids won’t recognize all the words.
Mel Riddile's insight:

Your letter does not mention it, but research suggests that the single most important step in fluency practice is rereading. Your students are reading a text badly, and your lesson seems to go on.

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How Reading Rewires Your Brain for More Intelligence and Empathy

How Reading Rewires Your Brain for More Intelligence and Empathy | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Fitness headlines promise staggering physical results: a firmer butt, ripped abs, bulging biceps. Nutritional breakthroughs are similar clickbait, with attention-grabbing, if often inauthentic—what, really, is a “superfood?”—means of achieving better health. Strangely, one topic usually escaping discussion has been shown, time and again, to make us healthier, smarter, and more empathic animals: reading.1 

Reading, of course, requires patience, diligence, and determination. Scanning headlines and retweeting quips is not going to make much cognitive difference. If anything, such sweet nothings are dangerous, the literary equivalent of sugar addiction. Information gathering in under 140 characters is lazy. The benefits of contemplation through narrative offer another story.
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A Whole School Approach to Behavior Issues

A Whole School Approach to Behavior Issues | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
When Michael Essien became an administrator at Martin Luther King, Jr. Academic Middle School in San Francisco it was immediately apparent that he needed to help teachers get behavior issues under control. If students acted out in class, teachers sent them to an in-school detention, where they waited for disciplinary action. Pretty soon, any kid who struggled with a lesson was trying to get sent to detention, thus avoiding challenging work that might be embarrassing. Essien could see too many kids were not learning in this dysfunctional system.

In his first few years, Essien tried everything he could think of, including training teachers to deal with disruptions more effectively in the classroom, but nothing seemed to work. He quickly found that this “restorative” approach to classroom management was too much for individual teachers to handle on their own.

“Teachers are actually paid to teach and the behaviors were happening so frequent, if we’re expecting teachers to hold restorative conversations that means they’re not teaching,” Essien said.

That’s when Essien had an “ah ha” moment that is helping to turn this school around. Listen to the first episode of the MindShift podcast’s new season, “A Whole School Approach to Behavior Issues,” to learn how Essien and his staff are leveraging the relationship building expertise of support staff to support teachers in the classroom. Listen on Google Play, iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts.
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Research: How the Best School Leaders Create Enduring Change

Research: How the Best School Leaders Create Enduring Change | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Based on a study of 411 leaders of UK academies.

 


Transforming a school is a long, hard, and often lonely task. Some people want change, others don’t, and some simply aren’t prepared to wait for results to show. As a school leader sets off on this journey, how do they know what to do, when to do it, who to listen to, and how to manage critics along the way?


Our study of the actions and impact of 411 leaders of UK academies found that only 62 of them managed their turnaround successfully and sustainably transformed their school. While other leaders managed to create a school that looked good while they were there, but then went backwards, these 62 leaders built a school that continued to improve long after they’d left. We call them Architects, because they systematically redesign the school and transform the community it serves.


We studied them over eight years, using 64 investment and 24 performance variables to identify what they did, when they did it, and the impact they had. We visited the schools to see first-hand their actions and results. And we interviewed the leaders and their teams to understand the challenges they faced, when they occurred, and how they overcame them.


We found the Architects sustainably transformed a school by challenging how it operated, engaging its community, and improving its teaching. They took nine key steps over three years, in a particular order. Each step represented a different building block in the school performance pyramid. But it was a bumpy ride, with 90% almost fired at the end of their second year. Here’s what they did, and how they did it.

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Sleepy teenage brains need school to start later in the morning

Sleepy teenage brains need school to start later in the morning | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
According to the National Sleep Foundation, the sleep requirement for teenagers is eight to 10 hours per night. Yet, the average teen in America obtains less than seven hours of sleep on a school night. A big part of the reason why is that nearly half of all high schools in the U.S. start before 8:00 a.m., and over 85 percent are starting before 8:30 a.m.
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Paul Pienaar's curator insight, September 19, 2:30 AM

About to do a review of our school's schedules, this article appears to make a strong argument for a later start to the school day.

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Kids praised for being smart are more likely to cheat, new studies find

Kids praised for being smart are more likely to cheat, new studies find | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
TORONTO, ON - Kids who are praised for being smart, or who are told they have a reputation for being smart, are more likely to be dishonest and cheat, a pair of studies from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE) at the University of Toronto and researchers in the U.S. and China has found.

OISE's Jackman Institute of Child Studies (JICS) Professor Kang Lee and study co-authors say that while praise is one of the most commonly used forms of reward by parents and educators around the world, studies show that when used incorrectly, it can backfire: "Giving children wrong kind of praise makes them dishonest," said Professor Lee.
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Americans Have Given Up on Public Schools. That’s a Mistake.

Americans Have Given Up on Public Schools. That’s a Mistake. | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
The current debate over public education underestimates its value—and forgets its purpose.

 


Few people care more about individual students than public-school teachers do, but what’s really missing in this dystopian narrative is a hearty helping of reality: 21st-century public schools, with their record numbers of graduates and expanded missions, are nothing close to the cesspools portrayed by political hyperbole. This hyperbole was not invented by Trump or DeVos, but their words and proposals have brought to a boil something that’s been simmering for a while—the denigration of our public schools, and a growing neglect of their role as an incubator of citizens.

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Key: Differences in Performance WITHIN Schools NOT Between Schools

Key: Differences in Performance WITHIN Schools NOT Between Schools | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
We rush to look at what the data say about the United States.  It turns out that between-school variation accounts for 20 percent of the variation in student performance in the United States, but within-school variation accounts for about 80 percent.  In fact, out of the 68 countries studied, only eight countries have as much within-school variation as the United States.  Not only is what we know to be true not true; it turns out that it is less true in the United States than in most other countries.

This is excellent news!  Why?  Because it is really hard for school authorities to change the distribution of poor people and minorities among schools, for a whole host of reasons.  It should be a lot easier for school authorities to change what happens within the schools for which they are responsible.

But what, exactly, should they do?  What could explain this kind of variation in outcomes within schools?

May I suggest a couple of possibilities?

First, expectations.  The United States has a long and nearly unique history of assigning students to ability groups from the first grade on.  Nothing, I submit, is more likely to beget big differences in student performance than different expectations for student performance.  See my recent blog on special education for a discussion of this hypothesis.

Second, school organization.  The United States is among the world leaders in the amount of time teachers are expected to be standing in front of a class of students teaching.  There is very little time left for them to do anything else.  A recent large-scale international comparative study by Linda Darling-Hammond that NCEE funded titled Empowered Educators makes it clear that the top performers organize their schools very differently.  In those countries, teachers spend less time teaching and much more time working in teams to systematically improve their lessons and the way they are taught.  They are constantly observing each other teaching, in order to critique each other's teaching or simply to learn something from their colleagues.  They are meeting with other teachers to discuss the problems of individual students whom they all teach and to work as a group both to understand the problems those students face and to collaborate on the development of a plan to address those problems and then on the implementation of that plan. 
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 What to Do When Your Kid's Homework Is Too Hard 

 What to Do When Your Kid's Homework Is Too Hard  | Leading Schools | Scoop.it
Helping with homework is part of everyday life once your kid hits school age. For the first couple years it isn’t hard stuff, but you know that one day your kid will have an assignment that stumps them and you. Luckily, you have other options besides furtively googling the answer while your kid isn’t looking.

There’s no shame in turning to others to help your kid understand their homework. Forcing yourself to try to help them when you’re not equipped can lead to frustration for you and your child. Using the resources you have available takes the pressure off everyone and helps your kid learn the material.
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Lemon's curator insight, September 13, 4:02 AM

The communication  between parents and teachers is necessary.And pareents reach out to a guide can help childern.