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The Importance of Transfer: Why Don't Students Apply What They've Learned?

The Importance of Transfer: Why Don't Students Apply What They've Learned? | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Getting students to transfer knowledge from one context to another is a much more complicated process than many of us expect. In their excellent book, How Learning Works: Seven Research-Based Principles for Smart Teaching, Susan Ambrose and her co-authors describe the cognitive activity of applying learned material from one course to another and beyond as 'far transfer.' They note correctly that it might be the most fundamental expectation we have for our students. 'Far transfer is, arguably,' they point out, 'the central goal of education: We want our students to be able to apply what they learn beyond the classroom.' However 'Most research has found that (a) transfer occurs neither often nor automatically, and (b) the more dissimilar the learning and transfer contexts, the less likely successful transfer will occur. In other words, much as we would like them to, students often do not successfully apply relevant skills or knowledge in novel contexts.' In short, the further we move students away from the very specific context in which they have learned some information or skill, the less transfer we should expect to see." | by James M. Lang

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The Game Believes In You: Making Our Kids Smarter

The Game Believes In You: Making Our Kids Smarter | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Steve Jobs once called the personal computer “a bicycle for our minds,” a tool that helps us go farther with the same amount of energy. But for many teachers, it has been a bumpy ride. Educators have long held new technology at arm’s length, and probably for good reason: For more than a century, they have looked on as reformers pushed a series of mostly ill-fated technical innovations, each touted as the Next Big Thing. The latest movement to add more technology into classrooms is repeating the same mistakes, focusing on how tech can help teachers by churning out more data about students, saving time, and raising test scores. Here’s a crazy idea: What if we focused less on selling technology to teachers by convincing them it makes learning more efficient and more on how computers, like a bicycle, might make learning a little more dangerous? I’ve been working for the past few years on a book about games and learning, and I’ve begun to see that part of their appeal for teachers is how games persuade kids to take risks" | by Greg Toppo

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Students Benefit from Learning That Intelligence Is Not Fixed

Students Benefit from Learning That Intelligence Is Not Fixed | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Teaching students that intelligence can grow and blossom with effort – rather than being a fixed trait they’re just born with – is gaining traction in progressive education circles. And new research from Stanford is helping to build the case that nurturing a 'growth mindset' can help many kids understand their true potential. The new research involves larger, more rigorous field trials that provide some of the first evidence that the social psychology strategy can be effective when implemented in schools on a wide scale. Even a one-time, 30-minute online intervention can spur academic gains for many students, particularly those with poor grades. The premise is that these positive effects can stick over years, leading for example to higher graduation rates; but long-term data is still needed to confirm that. Earlier, well-designed tests of simple and relatively inexpensive growth-mindset interventions had surprisingly shown improvements in students’ grades over weeks or months. For instance, promising results from one famous experiment – an eight-session workshop in 91 seventh graders in a New York City school – led psychology researchers Carol Dweck and Lisa Blackwell to start up Mindset Works, a company that offers a computer-based program called Brainology." | by Ingfei Chen

 

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How to Teach the Standards Without Becoming Standardized

How to Teach the Standards Without Becoming Standardized | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Is it possible for teachers to meet standards without teaching in a standardized way? This question is at the heart of the ambivalence around Common Core State Standards for many educators. Supporters of the Common Core, including the developers and many educators, maintain that the new standards are a move away from No Child Left Behind because they focus on developing students’ skills rather than specific content areas that teachers should cover. But because a standardized test will be used to evaluate how effectively students are learning those skills, the temptation to try and teach to the test still exists. Teaching standards doesn't necessitate a standardized approach to teaching. Teachers share ideas for providing a standards-based, but authentic learning experience for all students. Still, it often seems easier or safer to standardize instruction instead of trusting educators to engage and challenge students. But Laufenberg says there’s another way. 'Teach past the test to this other meaningful, creative work and you will get the test, but you’ll get all this other stuff too,' Laufenberg said. 'If you only teach to the test that’s all you’ll get.'" | by Katrina Schwartz

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Crystal Delatorre's curator insight, October 29, 1:35 AM

A helpful tool to use in the classroom. This article gives some insight on how to teach common core standards.

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The Science Of Why We Don't Believe Science

The Science Of Why We Don't Believe Science | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"'A man without conviction is hard to change'. Tell him you disagree and he turns away. Show him facts or figures and he questions your sources. Appeal to logic and he fails to see your point." So wrote the celebrated Stanford University psychologist Leon Festinger (PDF), in a passage that might have been referring to climate change denial—the persistent rejection, on the part of so many Americans today, of what we know about global warming and its human causes. But it was too early for that—this was the 1950s—and Festinger was actually describing a famous case study in psychology. The theory of motivated reasoning builds on a key insight of modern neuroscience(PDF): Reasoning is actually suffused with emotion (or what researchers often call 'affect'). Not only are the two inseparable, but our positive or negative feelings about people, things, and ideas arise much more rapidly than our conscious thoughts, in a matter of milliseconds—fast enough to detect with an EEG device, but long before we're aware of it. That shouldn't be surprising: Evolution required us to react very quickly to stimuli in our environment. It's a 'basic human survival skill,' explains political scientist Arthur Lupia of the University of Michigan. We push threatening information away; we pull friendly information close. We apply fight-or-flight reflexes not only to predators, but to data itself.'" | by Chris Mooney

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What It Takes To Become An All Project-Based School

What It Takes To Become An All Project-Based School | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"In many schools, project-based learning happens in isolated cases: in certain teachers’ classrooms here and there, or in the contexts of specific subjects. But for students to benefit from project-based learning, ideally it’s part of a school’s infrastructure — a way to approach learning holistically. New Tech Network, which was founded 15 years ago, is taking its school-wide project-based model to national scale. The organization, which offers a paid program for schools to use its model, began with a flagship school in Napa and has grown to 120 schools in 18 states, most of which are public schools. For one quickly growing network of schools, project-based learning is the crux of the entire ecosystem. New Tech Network, which was founded 15 years ago, is taking its school-wide project-based model to national scale. The organization, which offers a paid program for schools to use its model, began with a flagship school in Napa and has grown to 120 schools in 18 states, most of which are public schools. The network has not only grown in size, but also in notoriety. President Obama visited Manor New Tech High School in Texas last week, as part of an effort to promote an education agenda focused on producing graduates that can compete in today’s global economy. The nod from the president comes at a time when New Tech is attempting to position itself as a successful model to follow. But rather than relying on test scores and such quantifiable numbers to prove its value, New Tech’s own 2013 annual report frames success by focusing on deeper learning that can’t be measured by standardized test scores and their college readiness. Yet it’s that lack of emphasis on test scores, an all-consuming worry for many districts, that makes it more difficult for the organization to pin point numbers to tell its story." | by Katrina Schwartz

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Curiosity Is as Important as Intelligence

Curiosity Is as Important as Intelligence | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"There seems to be wide support for the idea that we are living in an “age of complexity”, which implies that the world has never been more intricate. This idea is based on the rapid pace of technological changes, and the vast amount of information that we are generating (the two are related). So why are some people more able to manage complexity?Although complexity is context-dependent, it is also determined by a person’s disposition. In particular, there are three key psychological qualities that enhance our ability to manage complexity: intelligence quotient (IQ), emotional quotient (EQ), & curiosity quotient (CQ). " | via Harvard Business Review

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Why Sleeping May Be More Important Than Studying

Why Sleeping May Be More Important Than Studying | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Getting enough sleep is an under-valued but crucial part of learning. Contrary to students’ belief that staying up all night to cram for an exam will lead to higher scores, truth is, the need for a good night’s rest is even more important than finishing homework or studying for a test. A recent study in the journal Child Development showed that sacrificing sleep in order to study will actually backfire. The study followed 535 Los Angeles high school students for 14 days, tracking how long they slept, as well as how well they understood material being taught in class and how they performed on a test, quiz, or homework. 'Although the researchers expected that extra hours of studying that ate into sleep time might create problems in terms of students’ understanding of what they were taught in class, they were surprised to find that diminishing sleep in order to study was actually associated with doing more poorly on a test, quiz, or homework,' Science Daily wrote. 'Reduced sleep … accounts for the increase in academic problems that occurs after days of increased studying,' said UCLA scientist Andrew Fuligni. 'Although these nights of extra studying may seem necessary, they can come at a cost.' | by Katrina Schwartz

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McStudy Spots's curator insight, October 16, 11:16 PM

Maximizing study time is one thing having good study spaces is good for. It can also be good for maximizing sleep time, since less time studying can mean more time sleeping. This article examines why sleep is important to learning, based upon a two week study on 535 Los Angeles high school students. They discovered that staying up to cram often resulted in reduced test scores, whereas getting sufficient sleep led to better understanding of the material being learned. Therefore, your sleep spaces are just as important as your study spaces, so think about both of them equally critically to maximize your learning ability.


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Smart Robots Will Take Over A Third Of Jobs By 2025

Smart Robots Will Take Over A Third Of Jobs By 2025 | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"At its Symposium/ITxpo conference in Orlando, Florida, the technology research firm’s forecast pointed toward a future of not only automated physical work, but cognitive tasks as well. 'Gartner predicts one in three jobs will be converted to software, robots and smart machines by 2025,' said Gartner research director Peter Sondergaard. 'New digital businesses require less labor; machines will make sense of data faster than humans can.' In February, PBS NewsHour’s Making Sense talked to authors Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee of 'The Second Machine Age' about what was different with this new wave of technological advancement: 'We are at an inflection point. The first big inflection point in human history was about 200 years ago, when the steam engine started the industrial revolution,' Brynjolfsson said. 'That was a period that saw a whole set of new machines come along that could automate muscle power, physical work. In recent years, we are seeing a wave of technologies that can augment, automate all sorts of cognitive tasks and we think, ultimately, those will have as big, or an even bigger effect on humanity as the first industrial revolution.'” | by Joshua Barajas

 

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Why Charters Cause Fiscal Havoc in Local Districts

Why Charters Cause Fiscal Havoc in Local Districts | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Charter proponents such as the Thomas Fordham Institute and others often cite rhetoric about charters being less expensive. The facts presented in this report suggest something quite different.  The reality is that total costs to a community for the same total number of students rises, quite substantially, when charter schools open. When charter proponents try to argue that charter schools cost less, they are using very selective figures concerning where the costs lie. This report will take you step-by-step through the impact of charter schools on the fiscal health of a school system." | by Noel Hammatt

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The Plot Against Public Education

The Plot Against Public Education | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

Bill Gates had an idea. He was passionate about it, absolutely sure he had a winner. His idea? America’s high schools were too big. When a multibillionaire gets an idea, just about everybody leans in to listen. And when that idea has to do with matters of important public policy and the billionaire is willing to back it up with hard cash, public officials tend to reach for the money with one hand and their marching orders with the other. Gates backed his small-schools initiative with enormous amounts of cash. So, without a great deal of thought, one school district after another signed on to the notion that large public high schools should be broken up and new, smaller schools should be created. That was Bill Gates’s grand idea. From 2000 to 2009, he spent $2 billion and disrupted 8 percent of the nation’s public high schools before acknowledging that his experiment was a flop. The size of a high school proved to have little or no effect on the achievement of its students. At the same time, fewer students made it more difficult to field athletic teams. Extracurricular activities withered. And the number of electives offered dwindled. Gates said it himself in the fall of 2008, 'Simply breaking up existing schools into smaller units often did not generate the gains we were hoping for.' There was very little media coverage of this experiment gone terribly wrong." | by Bob Herbert

 



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Widespread Standardized Test Cheating in 39 States

Widespread Standardized Test Cheating in 39 States | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"According to the National Center for Fair & Open Testing (FairTest), it’s time to prepare to be shocked. The organization has recently compiled data indicating that the scandal in Atlanta is 'just the tip of the iceberg.' when it comes to cheating on standardized tests in our nation’s schools. Specifically, FairTest has found documented cases of cheating, and in some cases, systematic manipulation of scores, in 39 states and the District of Columbia, over the last five years alone. The organization has also identified more than 60 methods administrators and teachers have used to alter student scores on these tests, from urging low-scorers to be absent the day of the test, to shouting out and otherwise indicating correct answers during testing." | by Elizabeth Hines

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Sobering Lessons: Shadow Your Students For The Day

Sobering Lessons: Shadow Your Students For The Day | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"The following account comes from a veteran HS teacher who just became a Coach in her building. Because her experience is so vivid and sobering I have kept her identity anonymous. But nothing she describes is any different than my own experience in sitting in HS classes for long periods of time. And this report of course accords fully with the results of our student surveys. 'I have made a terrible mistake.I waited fourteen years to do something that I should have done my first year of teaching: shadow a student for a day. It was so eye-opening that I wish I could go back to every class of students I ever had right now and change a minimum of ten things – the layout, the lesson plan, the checks for understanding.'" | via Grant Wiggins 


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This Is Your Brain On Money: Why The Wealthy Think Differently

This Is Your Brain On Money: Why The Wealthy Think Differently | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Nobody's perfect. But only the rich get away with thinking that their luck and their flaws are actually strengths. Paul Piff and his co-authors, who have done extended research on the behaviors of the wealthy, find that lower class individuals are more generous, charitable, trusting and helpful than upper class individuals. Further, in laboratory experiments, wealthy participants were more likely to take valued goods, cheat, lie and endorse such behavior. This effect is reinforced further by the 'just-world' bias, which leads us to believe that the rich and powerful deserve their positions. In a famous study, Melvin Lerner found that when students were informed that another student had randomly won a prize, they attributed positive characteristics to the student who had won. Studies have also shown that people attribute negative characteristics to victims — from Kent State students shot by the National Guard, to young black men shot by police, to low-wage workers. A more recent study by Justus Heuer, Christoph Merkle and Martin Weber finds rather the same thing: Investors are fooled into believing risk-taking is based in skill, rather than chance. Like the students in the experiment, investors believe managers who are simply reaping returns from risky bets are, in fact, oracles. Another study by Arvid Hoffmann and Thomas Post finds that 'the higher the returns in a previous period are, the more investors agree with a statement claiming that their recent performance accurately reflects their investment skills (and vice versa).' Research by Charles O’Reilly and others finds that narcissistic CEOs are better paid than other CEOs. Another study finds that employees that spend more time grooming make more than workers who do not. (The effect is particularly strong for men of color.) All of this should leave us skeptical of the idea, promoted by many free-market fundamentalists, that compensation is set by objective market factors. As Christopher Lasch notes, 'Nothing succeeds like the appearance of success.' | by Sean McElwee

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What I Wish I'd Known as a New Teacher After 20 Years

What I Wish I'd Known as a New Teacher After 20 Years | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Now, almost two decades later, I wish I'd known a few things about myself, about teaching, and about my students. Some of what I wish I'd known could have been shared with me -- some I just had to live and learn from. So I offer this reflection both for new teachers as well as for those who support them. And so if you work with a new teacher, I'm hoping you might stop by their room in the next few days and share some insights from your own experience. And if you are a new teacher, then I'm hoping these reflections might help you feel validated, hopeful, and resourceful." | by Elena Aguilar

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Why The Myers-Briggs Test Is Totally Meaningless

Why The Myers-Briggs Test Is Totally Meaningless | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is probably the most widely used personality test in the world. An estimated 2 million people take it annually, at the behest of corporate HR departments, colleges, and even government agencies. The company that makes and markets the test makes somewhere around $20 million each year. The only problem? The test is completely meaningless 'There's just no evidence behind it,' says Adam Grant, an organizational psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania who's written about the shortcomings of the Myers-Briggs previously. 'The characteristics measured by the test have almost no predictive power on how happy you'll be in a situation, how you'll perform at your job, or how happy you'll be in your marriage.' It's no more scientifically valid than a BuzzFeed quiz." | by Joseph Stromberg

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The Neuroscience Behind Stress and Learning

The Neuroscience Behind Stress and Learning | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Neuroimaging and EEG studies provide a scientific basis for the sometimes controversial belief that children become better learners when they actually enjoy learning. The realities of standardized tests and increasingly structured, if not synchronized, curriculum continue to build classroom stress levels. Neuroimaging research reveals the disturbances in the brain's learning circuits and neurotransmitters that accompany stressful learning environments. The neuroscientific research about learning has revealed the negative impact of stress and anxiety and the qualitative improvement of the brain circuitry involved in memory and executive function that accompanies positive motivation and engagement." | by Judy Willis

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What Does Inequality Do To Our Bodies And Minds?

What Does Inequality Do To Our Bodies And Minds? | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Does money make you mean? Does lack of money make you sick? Epidemiologist Richard Wilkinson and social psychologist Paul Piff discuss the human effects of economic and social inequality." | via TED Ideas

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Students Learn More If They'll Need To Teach Others

Students Learn More If They'll Need To Teach Others | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Students learn better and recall more when they think they will soon need to teach the material to someone else. 'When compared to learners expecting a test, learners expecting to teach recalled more material correctly, they organized their recall more effectively, and they had better memory for especially important information,' says John Nestojko, a researcher in psychology at Washington University in St. Louis. The study, published in the journal Memory & Cognition, is based on a series of reading-and-recall experiments in which one group of students is told they will be tested on a selection of written material, and another group is led to believe they are preparing to teach the passage to another student. In reality, all participants were tested, and no one actually engaged in teaching. Findings suggest that simply telling learners that they would later teach another student changes their mindset enough so that they engage in more effective approaches to learning than did their peers who simply expected a test.

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When Memorization Gets in the Way of Learning

When Memorization Gets in the Way of Learning | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Some things are worth memorizing--addresses, PINs, your parents' birthdays. The sine of π/2 is not among them. It's a fact that matters only insofar as it connects to other ideas. To learn it in isolation is like learning the sentence 'Hamlet kills Claudius' without the faintest idea of who either gentleman is--or, for what matter, of what 'kill' means. Memorization is a frontage road: It runs parallel to the best parts of learning, never intersecting. It's a detour around all the action, a way of knowing without learning, of answering without understanding. Memorization has enjoyed a surge of defenders recently. They argue that memorization exercises the brain and even fuels deep insights. They say our haste to purge old-school skills-driven teaching from our schools has stranded a generation of students upriver without a paddle. They recommend new apps aiming to make drills fun instead of tedious. Most of all, they complain that rote learning has become taboo, rather than accepted as a healthy part of a balanced scholastic diet." | by Ben Orlin

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IBM 's Watson: Is Artificial Intelligence The Future of Work?

IBM 's Watson: Is Artificial Intelligence The Future of Work? | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Armed with $1 billion in financing, an unprecedented degree of autonomy within IBM, and an entire Manhattan city block, IBM launched its media blitz to show the world its vision of a future enhanced and enabled by Watson, its artificial intelligence technology. IBM has staked a lot on Watson, and this distributed model of selling artificial intelligence to the masses, but the company’s employees are true believers in the transformative power of Watson to change the ways human interact with computers. For the company it’s a step-change in the evolution of technology in the same way that the machine age brought a new relationship between humanity and its tools. 'Working with cognitive computing is a dialogue,' said Gil in his presentation on Watson’s ability to heal the sick. '[It has] the capacity to enhance and scale our minds in a partnership.' | by Jonathan Shieber

 

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The Teenage Brain

The Teenage Brain | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

What is going on in the heads of teenagers? Surprisingly or not, when teenagers go about their daily lives, especially when they communicate with others, their teenage brains do not function in the same way that adult brains do. This video segment from FRONTLINE: 'Inside the Teenage Brain' explores some of the more striking differences between the brains of kids and the brains of their parents and teachers. | via PBS Learning

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The 10K Hour Rule: Deliberate Practice DOES Lead to Expertise

The 10K Hour Rule: Deliberate Practice DOES Lead to Expertise | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"A recent article in Slate suggests that practice may not lead to expertise, that the '10,000 hour rule' is wrong. The '10,000 hour rule' was popularized by Malcolm Gladwell in his book Outliers, but really comes from an important paper by K. Anders Ericsson and colleagues, 'The Role of Deliberate Practice in the Acquisition of Expert Performance.' Ericsson claimed that 10,000 hours of deliberate practice results in expert-level performance. The Slate article is based mostly on a new meta-analysis (see here) by Macnamara, Hambrick (also a co-author on the Slate article), and Oswald which reviewed and combined studies on expertise. They found that practice always was positively correlated with better performance, but did not explain all of (or even most of) the difference in expertise between study participants. The Slate article authors suggest, then, that deliberate practice is not as important as genetics or innate talent. The paper and article make two big mistakes that leave the '10,000 hour rule' as valid and valuable. The first is that practice is not the same as deliberate practice, and the second is that the fallback position can’t be genetics/innate talent. In general, their argument hinges on practice hours all being of equal value, which shows a lack of appreciation for the role of teaching." | by Mark Guzdial

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How Stress Affects the Brain During Learning

How Stress Affects the Brain During Learning | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"A fight or flight reaction may be useful in some situations, but it is highly detrimental in the classroom. Whether anxiety stems from test taking or from an unstable home environment, the brains of students experiencing high levels of stress look different than those who are not — and those brains behave differently, too. In this article, we’ll take a look at the neural and hormonal responses that underpin a student’s stress response, and make a few suggestions for continuing to teach through the challenges it presents." | by Leah Levy

 
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The Maker Movement: The Future Of Meaningful Learning

The Maker Movement: The Future Of Meaningful Learning | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"Many teachers know that children learn best by doing. In recent years, the Maker movement has generated a new following in education with many teachers adding interesting new tools and materials like robots, 3D printing, e-textiles, and more. The idea that interesting materials and opportunities for students to work independently on in-depth projects dovetails nicely into what we know about creating optimal learning environments for children. One of the first people to understand the potential of computers in education was Seymour Papert, a mathematician who worked with Piaget and helped found the MIT Media Lab. Papert defined a learning theory, constructionism, that holds the key to understanding the educational potential of the Maker movement: 'From constructivist theories of psychology, we take a view of learning as a reconstruction rather than as a transmission of knowledge. Then we extend the idea of manipulative materials to the idea that learning is most effective when part of an activity the learner experiences is constructing a meaningful product.'" | by Sylvia Martinez

 

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All Children Are Supposed To Be Proficient. What Happened?

All Children Are Supposed To Be Proficient. What Happened? | Spaces Between | Scoop.it

"In the midst of war, terrorism, fear and mourning, one bill passed 87-10 in the Senate and by a similar margin in the House — with equal support from both sides of the aisle. It was signed into law in January 2002 by George W. Bush, with the liberal lion of the Senate, Ted Kennedy, by his side. The law set a simple if daunting goal: All of the nation's students would perform at grade level on state tests. Every single one. 100 percent. Or as the name of the law put it, there would be No Child Left Behind. So here it is, 12 years later, 2014. And the law, NCLB, is still in effect. All children, under federal law, are supposed to be at grade level. Spoiler alert: They're not. According to the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the 'Nation's Report Card,' 'proficiency' rates last year were below 50 percent for every racial and ethnic group, in both reading and math, in both 4th and 8th grade. The exceptions? Asians, in all subjects (51-64 percent) and whites in 4th grade math only (54 percent)." | by Anya Kamenetz

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