Contrary to popular belief, high achievement isn’t merely a product of talent and ability.In fact, our internal beliefs about our own abilities, skills, and potential actually fuel behavioral patterns and predict success. Leading Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck argues that the pivotal quality sepa
Mel Riddile's insight:
1. Think about setting achievable micro-goals to encourage students’ consistent, incremental progress.
2. When students succeed, praise their efforts and strategies as opposed to their intelligence.
'It is time to end the advancement of policies and ideas that largely omit the critical supports and services necessary for children and families to access equal educational opportunity in diverse settings and to promote positive educational outcomes.'
"If you’re mentoring new teachers and observe that their classes lack interacting or engaging activities, here are some suggestions that I have found easy to implement and wildly successful. Many new teachers erroneously believe that elementary, middle school and even high school students learn in the same manner as adults.They don’t."
What makes a great leader? Management theorist Simon Sinek suggests, it’s someone who makes their employees feel secure, who draws staffers into a circle of trust. But creating trust and safety — especially in an uneven economy — means taking on big responsibility.
"Designing the classroom of the future is no easy task, mostly because it's difficult to know what the future will look like. As little as five years ago, few could have predicted the ubiquity of tablets and their accompanying need for more and more WiFi capabilities. Even the maker movement's reliance on "creative spaces" is a relatively new phenomenon. "
In Japanese classrooms, teachers consciously design tasks that are slightly beyond the capabilities of the students they teach, so the students can actually experience struggling with something just outside their reach.
Technology has revolutionized education, but asking how it can improve learning may be the wrong question.
Consider How, Rather Than What, Education Technology Is Used.
Nick Morrison argues in Forbes (10/22) for an attention to how technology is used in education, rather than simply what is used. The pieces features conversations with Bob Harris, chair of the UK’s Department for Education’s computing group, education adviser to Toshiba, and former teacher, lecturer, and college principal. Harris cites a lack of evidence supporting the push for education technology, stressing the importance of teachers and the damage of “the pedagogy of teachers standing at the front.” The piece highlights the 5 E’s of Martin Blows, former director of the UK’s National College for School Leadership, which call for empowering students with information and communication technology.
Nearly All Louisiana Teachers Subjectively Rated “Effective” Or “Highly Effective.”
The AP (10/23, AP) reports 92% of Louisiana public school teachers were rated either effective or highly effective in this second year of state evaluations, up from 89% the prior year. State Education Superintendent John White expressed concerns over a lack of consistency, with teachers rated largely on principals’ subjective classroom observations and local student achievement goals. Further, the new Compass system has delayed the weighing of student achievement as Common Core is implemented. The state’s Department of Education stated eight of the top 10 (19 of the top 25) schools showing the most improvement had lower “highly-effective” numbers than the state’s 38% average. The department outlined plans to improve the evaluation process, including a special state education commission to develop recommendations for student achievement gains.
The New Orleans Times-Picayune (10/23, Williams) reports on the higher teacher scores (3%) within a context of modest student achievement gains (under 1%). The Times adds that although the state provided some student growth data in “value-added” subjects, many systems didn’t use the data. Doug Harris, director of the Education Research Alliance for New Orleans, argues much of what makes teachers effective has little to do with student test scores, adding they don’t exist in a “one to one relationship.” The piece details the effective teacher percentages of New Orleans and Baton Rouge systems before closing on the state’s intent to raise standardized test standards from basic to mastery, expected recommendations to the school board on how to utilize data, and plans to expand the Believe and Prepare year-long apprenticeship program for incoming teachers.
The New Orleans Times-Picayune (10/23, Samuels) reports similarly, with more detailed reporting of teacher and principal ratings in Baton Rouge districts, as well as highlighting of districts with notably high standards for scoring.
Most of us assume that intelligence is immutable, set by our genetic inheritance or by our upbringing. Writer and reporter Annie Murphy Paul explodes that myth by revealing the impact of the microenvironment. This podcast is available for download on iTunes
As a teacher and parent, I've been on both sides of the desk for conferences. Some have been more successful than others, and I've come to the conclusion that it's the preparation beforehand that makes the difference....
"Fairfax County’s plan to give more than 55,000 teens extra sleep next fall by delaying the first class of the day until 8 a.m. could set a trend for large school districts across the country as experts and educators seek to improve the health and well-being of high school students.
Health advocates hailed the county School Board’s 11-to-1 vote late Thursday as a major victory in a two-decade effort for later start times in Fairfax, whose 185,000 students make up the largest school district in Virginia and the 10th largest in the nation. The measure is part of a nationwide movement to help sleepy students benefit from more rest, which experts say could jolt performance in the classroom, lead to fewer teen traffic fatalities and improve mental health."
Education accountability should focus more on helping students, teachers and schools improve.
"The nation's two largest teachers unions – along with school administration organizations, business advocacy groups and school equity leaders – on Tuesday announced a new framework for accountabilitythat focuses more on a holistic "support-and-improve" model than the longstanding "test-and-punish" mindset that's commonplace in schools nationwide."
Mel Riddile's insight:
The New Accountability framework centers around making changes to three central concepts in educational accountability:
MathChat is an interesting new iPad app that I discovered recently. As its name indicate, MathChat is an app that allows students to collaborate and work together on math problems. This collaboration takes place in group chats where members get to exchange messages, use pointers to show how to solve a problem, or draw and add arrows to provide illustration and guidance on Math concepts. This collaborative feature of MathChat resembles to a great extent the work Whiteboard apps do.
Neuroscientists have known for a long time that regular quizzing on information helps make it stick, but students and teachers don't always know how to apply that research to classroom practice or study habits.
Mel Riddile's insight:
“The actual act of retrieving the information over and over, that’s what makes it retrievable when you need it.”
Even on the difficult days, remember that you are never forgotten. Students who read this letter will think of you. They think of you all the time. We all will talk about the stories of teachers that we adored for decades. We will laugh, cry and appr...