Learning, Teaching & Leading Today
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15 Secrets of the Most Successful Self-Learners

15 Secrets of the Most Successful Self-Learners | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

"For many curious folks, their impassioned yearning to soak up as much of the world’s wonders as possible completely transcends the boundaries of a traditional classroom. Armed with an insatiable lust for knowledge, they set out to acquire it on their own terms, although a few pointers obviously can’t hurt before departure and landing! Not every possible technique will necessarily stick with all self-motivated learners, of course, but the only way to find out is to test them. Try some of the following and experiment with what works in a more independent educational setting.

 

Take advantage of open source and courseware

 

Learn for free via resources like iTunes U, YouTube EDU, Open Culture, MIT Open Courseware, and many, many more examples of open source and courseware. These free (or low-cost, in some cases) offerings provide everything from overviews to entire classes for self-motivated learners wanting to pick up pretty much any subject imaginable. Run searches for a particular area of interest (along with “open source” or “open coursework,” of course) and see what all is available.

 

Set clear, attainable goals

 

Because self-directed learning doesn’t involve a formalized syllabus, it’s up to the individuals themselves to whip up their own solid goals. Realistic, solid goals, of course. Make sure to outline what all needs to be done in order to achieve them and allow for some flexibility. And after crossing off the first round, start establishing more challenging follow-ups. Let them grow off one another in order to receive the most comprehensive look at the subject possible."

 

And 13 more here: http://www.onlineuniversities.com/?p=5767


Via Costas Vasiliou, JoelleYalin, Gust MEES
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A Scientist's 20-Year Quest To Defeat Dengue Fever

"Scott O'Neill's big idea to rid the world of dengue is both clever and complex: He wants to infect mosquitoes with bacteria so they can't carry the virus that causes the disease."
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On Rewarding Good Ideas That Fail

On Rewarding Good Ideas That Fail | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"Kyle Zimmer of the nonprofit First Book says that when it comes to hiring, she looks for people who have tried great new things, failed and overcome the disappointment."

"Q. Tell me more about your culture.

A. We have a very informal culture, and we also have very high standards. Some people can get confused by that, because they assume that if you have jeans on, then somehow the rigor of your work product is not the same as the work from somebody in a starched shirt. We’re also playful. It’s a very creative place. The people who do best in the environment are people who are very mission-driven but also have very significant business skills. Almost everyone in the organization is from the private sector.

We look for people who are already pretty accomplished — even young people, but they don’t have to be accomplished in the traditional sense. We want people who have tried things, and have failed, and have risen above it. Those indicators that you’re a builder are profoundly important. Because if you’re bright, and you’re a builder, and you’ve overcome the winds that blow against anybody trying to build anything, a lot of other things fall away, like defensiveness. I’ve found the people who have tried things on their own and struggled are the ones who are least protective of their work and the most collaborative.

They’ve learned that in order to put something together, you can’t do it by yourself. Anything in the world that’s been accomplished has been a team sport. And those are the people we want in the organization. If somebody gets in and doesn’t fit, the culture now is so strong that they leave pretty fast."
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Students Cite YouTube, Google, Wikipedia The Most

Students Cite YouTube, Google, Wikipedia The Most | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
When doing homework, many students turn to the same websites as they do when they're surfing the web.
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Peggy Sheehy on Exploring Identity - Immersive Technology 4 Learning

Peggy Sheehy on Exploring Identity - Immersive Technology 4 Learning | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
Peggy Sheehy speaks as her avatar, Maggie Marat, about exploring identity in virtual spaces.
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Suspended Teacher Lynden Dorval Is A Hero For Standing Up For High Standards

"Blog post by David Staples

Lynden Dorval, 61, has been a teacher for 35 years. He’d be in in the class room again today, except he’s suspended.

Why?

Because Dorval can’t in good conscience go along with a misguided new scheme cooked up by educational theorists and school administrators.

Under this scheme, it’s no longer possible for high school teachers at Ross Sheppard and numerous other Edmonton  schools to give a student a mark of zero on a test or an assignment, even if the student refuses to hand in the assignment or write the test. Instead, students are given a mark based on the work they do complete.

This policy has been in place at Edmonton junior high schools for decades, Dorval says, but it is now making its way into local high schools.

Ross Sheppard’s principal brought it in last year. Dorval refused to go along with it then and was reprimanded. He again refused this year. He was reprimanded some more.

Finally, on May 18, after a meeting with Edmonton Public School Board superintendent Edgar Schmidt, Dorval was suspended."

More here: http://goo.gl/gYncP

Via Peter Vogel
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Educators Speak Out: The Case Against The “No Zeros” Policy

Educators Speak Out: The Case Against The “No Zeros” Policy | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"On Thursday morning, since I [David Staples] first wrote about Lynden Dorval getting suspended from Ross Sheppard high school for refusing to put in place the school’s No Zeros policy, I’ve had many thoughtful responses from educators. I’ve broken the responses into two posts, one with educators in favour of the policy, the other with educators against the policy.
 
Patricia Marie Budd, author and Fort McMurray high school teacher.

I had heard, through the teacher grapevine that there was a ballsy teacher in Edmonton, someone with the kahoonas to say no to the no zero policy and stick to his guns about it. I was pleased to learn by your article that this wasn’t just an urban legend created by desperate teachers searching for some hope, some light that out there somewhere there is an individual who still stands for quality education for our youth. I am sorry to hear that he has been suspended and that his students no longer have the benefit of a man who is teaching them how to learn, work, think for themselves and grow into mature, intelligent adults.

Like Lynden, I too, have shown students their real mark, not the inflated hoopla, that comes with the averaging of one or two assignments. And, as with Lynden’s experience my students actually got off their butts and started getting the work done. As Lynden pointed out, most student will put in the extra effort needed to bring their grades up. I have learned through past experience that when you raise the bar students rise to the challenge."

More here: http://goo.gl/DFzWj
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A Taxonomy of Reflection: A Model for Critical Thinking

A Taxonomy of Reflection: A Model for Critical Thinking | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
How to create a community of learners. Reflective prompts for students, teacher and principals. Modeled on Bloom's approach to thinking.

 

Peter Pappas has developed a simple and very powerful guide to reflective thinking for students, teachers, and principals based on Bloom's new cognitive taxanomy. A marvelous tool for moving people to build their habits of higher level thinking. Links to Parts 2, 3, and 4 of his 4-part blog series, and a short Prezi presentation on this topic are included here. Impressive. -JL


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The Most Comma Mistakes

The Most Comma Mistakes | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

"As I noted in my earlier article, rules and conventions about when to use and not to use commas are legion. But certain errors keep popping up. Here are a few of them.

 

Identification Crisis


If I’ve seen it once, I’ve seen it a thousand times. I’m referring to a student’s writing a sentence like:

 

I went to see the movie, “Midnight in Paris” with my friend, Jessie.

 

Comma after “movie,” comma after “friend” and, sometimes, comma after “Paris” as well. None are correct — unless “Midnight in Paris” is the only movie in the world and Jessie is the writer’s only friend. Otherwise, the punctuation should be:

 

I went to see the movie “Midnight in Paris” with my friend Jessie.

 

If that seems wrong or weird or anything short of clearly right, bear with me a minute and take a look at another correct sentence:

 

I went to see Woody Allen’s latest movie, “Midnight in Paris,” with my oldest friend, Jessie.

 

You need a comma after “movie” because this and only this is Mr. Allen’s newest movie in theaters, and before “Jessie” because she and only she is the writer’s oldest friend."

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Despite Less Play, Children's Use Of Imagination Increases Over Two Decades

Despite Less Play, Children's Use Of Imagination Increases Over Two Decades | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

"Children today may be busier than ever, but Case Western Reserve University psychologists have found that their imagination hasn't suffered -- in fact, it appears to have increased.

 

Psychologists Jessica Dillon and Sandra Russ expected the opposite outcome when they analyzed 14 play studies that Russ conducted between 1985 and 2008.

 

But as they report in 'Changes in Children's Play Over Two Decades,' an article in the Creativity Research Journal, the data told a story contrary to common assumptions. First, children's use of imagination in play and their overall comfort and engagement with play activities actually increased over time. In addition, the results suggested that children today expressed less negative feelings in play. Finally, their capacity to express a wide range of positive emotions, to tell stories and to organize thoughts stayed consistent."

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Calling School Librarians to Action! Another Attempt to Undermine Our Jobs

Calling School Librarians to Action!  Another Attempt to Undermine Our Jobs | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

"My blood is boiling. I read this article online today after it was shared on Twitter by Rebecca Oxley (@LibrariansFTW). This excerpt is what got my dander up. And that is a dangerous thing to do with a Southern gal:

 

'The new divide is such a cause of concern for the Federal Communications Commission that it is considering a proposal to spend $200 million to create a digital literacy corps. This group of hundreds, even thousands, of trainers would fan out to schools and libraries to teach productive uses of computers for parents, students and job seekers.'

 

Looks like the FCC has no idea that our schools have a ready-made “digital literacy corps” in place."

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New ‘Digital Divide’ Seen In Wasting Time Online

New ‘Digital Divide’ Seen In Wasting Time Online | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"As access to devices has spread, children in poorer families are spending considerably more time using them for purposes other than for education."

"The new divide is such a cause of concern for the Federal Communications Commission that it is considering a proposal to spend $200 million to create a digital literacy corps. This group of hundreds, even thousands, of trainers would fan out to schools and libraries to teach productive uses of computers for parents, students and job seekers.

Separately, the commission will help send digital literacy trainers this fall to organizations like the Boys and Girls Club, the League of United Latin American Citizens, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Some of the financial support for this program, part of a broader initiative called Connect2Compete, comes from private companies like Best Buy and Microsoft.

These efforts complement a handful of private and state projects aimed at paying for digital trainers to teach everything from basic keyboard use and word processing to how to apply for jobs online or use filters to block children from seeing online pornography.

'Digital literacy is so important,' said Julius Genachowski, chairman of the commission, adding that bridging the digital divide now also means “giving parents and students the tools and know-how to use technology for education and job-skills training.'”
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7 Great Note-taking Tools For Teachers and Students

7 Great Note-taking Tools For Teachers and Students | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"This is another post that was prompted by a reader’s email. The email was looking for a list of recommended note-taking tools. I’ve reviewed a lot of note-taking tools over the last five years, but I have never made a list. So here’s my list of seven great note-taking tools for students and teachers."
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The Best 10 Free Word Cloud Tools for Teachers

The Best 10 Free Word Cloud Tools for Teachers | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

Word clouds tools have a great importance in education. Many teachers use them to perform several learning activities for their students. Generally speaking, a word cloud is a graphical representation of word frequency. It basically features the prominent words that are so often cited in a piece of text. I have already reviewed some popular word cloud generators here in Educational Technology and Mobile Learning but have not really gone into details as to how teachers can use them in education. This post, however, compensates for that shortage of information and provides you with a set of tips together with a list of free tools to help you discover and learn more about the educational uses of word clouds generators.


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Chester E. Finn, Jr.: Confessions Of A Former Luddite

Chester E. Finn, Jr.: Confessions Of A Former Luddite | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"Not so long ago, I doubted that computers, cell phones, and the internet would make any more difference in American education than television had. Ringing in my ears was a comment by the late Ralph Tyler that the sole technological advance in a century that had really affected classrooms was the overhead projector because, he wisecracked, it was “the only one that the teacher could use while still keeping an eye on her students.”


Education technology is finally moving past the overhead projector.
Photo by Marc Wathieu.
Computers, I figured, would continue to be useful to scientists and engineers and others with complex calculations to make. Cell phones would function like traditional telephones, only portable. The internet (whether or not Al Gore had anything to do with it) was for emailing and such. And “information technology” was sort of like engineering, a field for wonky college students wanting to write computer code. K-12 education might benefit marginally from bits of all this but mainly would sail on like a clipper ship of yore, powered by the same winds that had always propelled it.

Well, I was wrong. But this confession isn’t just another paean to the potential of online learning. That’s there, of course, and real. What has struck me more, however, is the number of contemporary education problems to which technology offers at least a partial solution—but only if we can picture it holistically, not simply as a tool for doing one thing or another.

Let me illustrate with five major-league challenges in today’s K-12 reform world—noting in advance that this could as easily be a list of twenty-five."
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6 Leadership Styles, And When You Should Use Them

6 Leadership Styles, And When You Should Use Them | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"Great leaders choose their leadership style like a golfer chooses his or her club, with a calculated analysis of the matter at hand, the end goal, and the best tool for the job."

"Taking a team from ordinary to extraordinary means understanding and embracing the difference between management and leadership. According to writer and consultant Peter Drucker, 'Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.'

Manager and leader are two completely different roles, although we often use the terms interchangeably. Managers are facilitators of their team members’ success. They ensure that their people have everything they need to be productive and successful; that they’re well trained, happy and have minimal roadblocks in their path; that they’re being groomed for the next level; that they are recognized for great performance and coached through their challenges.

Conversely, a leader can be anyone on the team who has a particular talent, who is creatively thinking out of the box and has a great idea, who has experience in a certain aspect of the business or project that can prove useful to the manager and the team. A leader leads based on strengths, not titles.

The best managers consistently allow different leaders to emerge and inspire their teammates (and themselves!) to the next level."
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Find Free Images Online!

Find Free Images Online! | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
Images are an important part of the creative side of any teacher’s work. We need to make use of quality image sources that are good, free, and easy to search through. The trick is to know what sources to recommend to students.
Via Cornélia Castro, Informatics
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If You're Going To Check Out The Venus Transit Try To Capture It With Your iPhone

If You're Going To Check Out The Venus Transit Try To Capture It With Your iPhone | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"On Tuesday, Venus will pass in front of the sun for the last time until 2117.

Southern Stars Group, LLC, makers of SkySafari for iOS wants people to use their iPhone or iPad cameras to capture the transit and have a chance to win an iPad, iPod touch, or a Samsung Galaxy tablet (which most of our readers would probably pass on).

To enter, here's the catch, you must own a copy of one of the editions of SkySafari, which is on sale for this event starting at US $0.99. Rules for the contest can be found on the Southern Stars website.

Contest aside, this is a good excuse to get SkySafari if you don't have it already. It's a great way to get out under the summer night skies and see what is up there. At transit time, which is of course a daytime event, you'll be able to see a simulation of what's happening in real time. Let me emphasize that just like an eclipse, you DON'T want to look at the sun. Make a pinhole camera, or get some solar viewing glasses, and don't look at the sun with a telescope or binoculars unless those devices are properly protected. Frying your eye is simply no fun and can ruin your day."
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Educators Speak Out: The Case For “No Zeros” Policy

"On Thursday morning, since I [David Staples] first wrote about Lynden Dorval getting suspended from Ross Sheppard high school for refusing to put in place the school’s No Zeros policy, I’ve had many thoughtful responses from educators. I’ve broken the responses into two posts, one with educators in favour of the policy, the other with educators against the policy.

John Scammell, Field Services Facilitator, Alberta Assessment Consortium

I used to punish students with grades. I taught high school mathematics, and I believed I was holding my students accountable and preparing them for the real world by giving them zeros when they didn’t do something I wanted them to do. I was wrong.

About ten years ago, my principal told me to stop giving zeros. I didn’t understand why she had removed something I was using to control kids. I spent the next few years trying to figure out why I shouldn’t give zeros. Because I did the research, I became a better teacher."

More here: http://goo.gl/EShLd
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Apps in Education: 12 Museum Apps from around the World

Apps in Education: 12 Museum Apps from around the World | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

Via Ana Cristina Pratas, Aki Puustinen
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World Wonders Project by Google

"From the archaeological areas of Pompeii to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, Google's World Wonders Project aims to bring to life the wonders of the modern and ancient world. Together with partners including UNESCO, the World Monument Fund and Cyark, the World Wonders Project is preserving the world heritage sites for future generations."

 

"I’ve always been fascinated by famous historic and cultural sites from around the world. When I was a child, flipping through encyclopedias while researching for school projects, the thought of exploring these sites was a distant dream. With the new Google World Wonders Project, that dream is now a little closer for students and others around the globe.

 

The World Wonders Project enables you to discover 132 historic sites from 18 countries, including Stonehenge, the archaeological areas of Pompeii and the ancient Kyoto temples. In addition to man-made sites, you can explore natural places: wander the sandy dunes of Australia’s Shark Bay or gaze up at the rock domes of Yosemite National Park in California."

 

from Google's Official Blog here: http://goo.gl/vDdkb

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Wes Fryer Shares Educational Technology Podcasts: Storytelling and Visual Literacy Activity Ideas

Wes Fryer Shares Educational Technology Podcasts: Storytelling and Visual Literacy Activity Ideas | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

"Yesterday I shared two breakout sessions in Kansas City, Kansas, at the district-wide “Inspiring Excellence Conference” to wrap up the year. I used a Sony ICD PX312 digital voice recorder (linked on the “Digital Backpack Contents” entry on the Storychasers FAQ page) to create “no-edit” recordings of these sessions, and last night published them to my secondary podcast channel, “Fuel for Educational Change Agents” powered by free/open source Podcast Generator software. I specifically setup this podcast website/channel to streamline the publication of conference audio recordings like this which I don’t want to take time to edit and can basically publish “as is.” In “Playing with Media: simple ideas for powerful sharing,” I call this kind of audio recording publication “no-edit audio podcasting.” I’ve started a workflow/resources/tool page on “Mapping Media to the Curriculum” for No-Edit Podcasting too."

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A List of Interesting Mobile Learning Links

A List of Interesting Mobile Learning Links | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it

"Mobile learning is in the air, almost everyone realizes the potential, and some companies are now taking tentative first steps.


While I [Abhijit Kadle] haven’t blogged in a while, I continue trawling through my RSS feeds, seeing more and more references to mobile learning, mlearning, performance support, ‘just-in-time’ and so many other terms that make sense in that context.


Here are some interesting links I’ve come across recently, mostly about mobile learning and some about learning in general that I found interesting. Do note some of these link up to dated articles."

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Sal Khan's 'Academy' Sparks A Tech Revolution In Education

Sal Khan's 'Academy' Sparks A Tech Revolution In Education | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"Sal Khan started Khan Academy to help teach his cousin math. Now he's using the Web to change the way we think about education."

"That bandwagon phenomenon is at the root of the grumbling, says Kevin Bushweller, executive editor of Education Week Digital Directions.

'Khan's timing is perfect, because students and parents are living in the age of YouTube, where video watching is routine,' he says. 'Certainly schools need to evaluate what's best for their kids and curriculum. That said, technology is here, and doing the same old thing just won't work.'

Suney Park agrees. The sixth-grade math teacher at Eastside College Prep in nearby East Palo Alto recently flipped her classroom using Khan Academy videos, and now feels liberated. 'I had my doubts, but now I feel like the conductor of an orchestra, and if I have to tell the violins to go on with their stuff while I help the brass catch up, I can do it,' Park says. 'I couldn't go back to the regular way of teaching.'"
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Why We Need To Teach Social Networking

Why We Need To Teach Social Networking | Learning, Teaching & Leading Today | Scoop.it
"From Venturebeat.com

'The girl, 17, had been helping her grandmother count the 72-year-old woman’s personal savings. Apparently wishing to impress her friends and the world at large, the teen snapped a picture of the cash and uploaded it to Facebook.

Within hours, masked robbers showed up at the girl’s own house with a knife and a club, breaking in and stealing cash and personal possessions from the teen’s 47-year-old mother.'

'I [Jeff Utecht ] read this the other day and was wondering if this girl ever was taught about social networking and where her information goes.'"
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