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Wash Post: “single most important factor in helping children learn is the quality of their teachers” – WRONG!

The Washington Post began an editorial yesterday supporting the Obama Administration’s misguided attempt to “reform” teacher prep programs with a blatantly false statement: “RESEARCH HAS shown that the single most important factor in helping children learn is the quality of … Continue reading →
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Video: A Rube Goldberg Machine With A Storyline

I have a lot of videos on the The Best Resources For Learning About Rube Goldberg Machines list, but this is the first one I've seen that has characters and a storyline:

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Important NY Times Column On Importance Of African-American Teachers

There has been a lot of media coverage about the new study demonstrating the impact having one African-American teacher can have on African-American young people.

You can see links to that coverage at Another Study Highlights Importance Of Teacher Diversity.

The New York Times, though, may have just published the best piece on it by New York City teacher David Jackson. It's titled The Real Reason Black Kids Benefit From Black Teachers.

Here's an excerpt:

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Nice Video For ELLs: “Hop It: Easter Eggstravaganza – Simon's Cat”

I'm adding this video to The Best Sites For Learning About Easter & Passover.  English Language Learners can view it and then write/talk about what they saw:

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“It's About 'Quality, not Quantity, of School Time'”

It's About 'Quality, not Quantity, of School Time' is the headline of my latest Education Week Teacher column.

In it, Elliot Y. Merenbloom, Barbara A. Kalina, Thomas R. Hoerr, Erik M. Francis, Andrew Miller, and Effuah Sam contribute their ideas on extending or not extending the school year/day.

Here are some excerpts:

I'm adding it to The Best Resources On The Idea Of Extending The School Day.

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“Author Interview: 'Understanding Key Education Issues'”

Over at my Education Week Teacher blog, Matthew Lynch, author of the new book Understanding Key Education Issues: How We Goe Here And Where We Go From Here, agreed to answer a few questions.

Here are a couple of excerpts:

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Awful Attack In Syria – Here Are Resources For Learning About Horror Of Chemical Weapons

By now, everyone has heard about the chemical weapons attacked launched by the Syrian government earlier today.

I had created The Best Resources For Learning About Chemical Weapons after the earlier chemical attacks in Syria a few years ago. Unfortunately, I've now had reason to update that list.

You might also be interested in The Best Resources For Learning About What's Happening In Syria.

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House Democrats Ask Trump Administration To Safeguard Educational Rights Of Undocumented

Though I'm not holding my breath that the Trump Administration will respond, several Congresspeople sent a letter today requesting that it reinforce the message to our nation's schools that undocumented students must also be educated.

You can read more about it at The Washington Post article, House Democrats ask Trump administration to remind schools that they must educate undocumented children.

Ed Week also ran a piece on the letter, Top Democrats Tell DeVos: Immigrant Student Rights Must Be Protected.

You might be interested in The Best Practical Resources For Helping Teachers, Students & Families Respond To Immigration Challenges.

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Nice Article On Metacognition

I've written and shared many articles on metacognition and its use in the classroom (see Best Posts On Metacognition).

Cognitive Machine Learning (2): Uncertain Thoughts is a post at The Spectator which talks about, and defines, metacognition in slightly different ways than I've seen in other places.

I think you'll find it interesting. Here's an excerpt:

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“Do's & Don'ts of Implementing New Ideas in Education”

Do's & Don'ts of Implementing New Ideas in Education is the headline of my latest Education Week Teacher column.

In it, Cathy Beck, Dr. Heidi Pace, Dan Rothstein, Kathleen Neagle Sokolowski, Jaime Aquino and Jeff Bradbury share their ideas on how to move good ideas to effective implementation.

Here are some excerpts:

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New National Geographic Video: “Inventing Graphics on Cave Walls”

I'm adding this new video to The Best Sites For Learning About Prehistoric Cave Paintings:

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New Natural History Museum Video: “Climate Change in the Marshall Islands”

We have a fair number of Marshallese students at our school, and I have previously posted The Best Sites For Learning About The Marshall Islands.

That list includes lessons I've done related to climate change in the Marshall Islands.  The American Museum of Natural History just posted this video that I'm adding to the list:

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New PBS News Hour Segment: “Are school vouchers good for education? That debate is playing out in Indiana”

The PBS News Hour just aired this segment.

I'm adding it to The Best Resources For Learning Why School Vouchers Are A Bad Idea.

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Video: “The Doomsday Clock, explained”

I'm adding this new video from Vox to The Best Sites For Learning About Nuclear Weapons:

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Two Good Sites For Accessible Science Resources

Here are two new (to me) sites providing very accessible science resources to teachers and students:

Reachout Reporter (you can learn more about it at Richard Byrne's blog)

Young Person's Trust For the Environment (you can more about it at TopMarks).

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Just Updated & Revised “The Best Online Geography Games”

I've just completely updated and revised The Best Online Geography Games.

Let me know what I'm missing!

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The Best Resources Showing Conflicts Around The World

The excellent blog Google Maps Mania today shared some good interactive sites mapping conflicts around the world.

I thought I'd share the three included in that list (you should visit there to get more detailed descriptions of those sites), as well as including additional related sites that I've bookmarked over time:

An organization called IRIN has a useful interactive called Mapped: A World At War.

The Global Conflict Tracker comes from The Council on Foreign Relations.

ConflictMap.org

Bloomberg has an interactive called The Ungoverned World.

The Global Dashboard is the coolest-looking of this bunch, but I'm not sure how useful it is.

Here's an interactive focusing exclusively on conflicts related to water.

Of course, you can identify hotspots of conflict based on where refugees are fleeing. Here some tools that identify those flows:

The Refugee Project.

Visualizing the Flow of Asylum Seekers Into the Industrialized World is from Metrocosm.

The Flight of Refugees Around the Globe is from The New York Times.

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The Titantic Set Sail On This Day In 1912 – Here Are Related Resources

The Titanic set sail on this day in 1912.

I've just updated and revised The Best Sites For Learning About The Titanic.

The Titanic begins its tragic voyage on this day in 1912. https://t.co/vNCZthALBQ pic.twitter.com/hzNl2RKR1n

- NYT Archives (@NYTArchives) April 10, 2017

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Frank Lloyd Wright Died On This Day In 1959 – Here Are Related Resources


Famed architect Frank Loyd Wright died on this day in 1959.

I have a number of resources about him and his work at The Best Images Of Weird, Cool & Neat-Looking Buildings (& Ways To Design Your Own).

Frank Lloyd Wright, regarded by many as the greatest architect of the twentieth century, died this day in 1959. https://t.co/CSqTg1Kd3d pic.twitter.com/HnY3kly3zd

- NYT Archives (@NYTArchives) April 9, 2017

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Maya Angelou Was Born On This Day In 1928 – Here Are Resources On Her Life & Work

Maya Angelou was born on this day in 1928.

You might be interested in The Best Resources About Maya Angelou.

Born #otd in 1928, Maya Angelou was a civil rights activist, critically acclaimed poet & author whose career spanned over 50 years. #NPM17 pic.twitter.com/sMYUuoWQ4L

- Smithsonian NMAAHC (@NMAAHC) April 4, 2017

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Video: “Origin of April Fools' Day is still a mystery”

I'm adding this new video from Newsy to The Best Sites For Learning About St. Patrick's Day (and April Fool's Day):

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New TED-Ed Video & Lesson: “Why do people get so anxious about math?”

Here's a brand-new TED-Ed lesson and video:

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Video: “Ancient Egyptian History for Kids”

I'm adding this new video to my World History class blog post on ancient civilizations:

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Video: “These are the biggest myths about refugees coming to the US”

Here's a new video from Business Insider with the head of the International Rescue Committee.

I'm adding it to The Best Sites For Learning About World Refugee Day:

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Teaching Critical Thinking In History Reduces Belief In Pseudoscience

A new study has been released showing that teaching critical thinking in a history course makes those same students more skeptical of pseudoscience (see Critical thinking instruction in humanities reduces belief in pseudoscience).

It sounds like a fair amount of what they taught in that history class is similar to what we teach in Theory of Knowledge, including fallacies (The Best Multimedia Resources For Learning About Fallacies - Help Me Find More) and historical frauds.

If found this study particularly interesting because of other research discussed last week by Daniel Willingham (Better ELA teaching yields better math performance. But not vice versa). It suggests that Social Emotional Learning Skills and reading skills that students learn in English improve students' math performance, but that not much is learned in math that helps in English.

Perhaps both math and science teachers might want to consider incorporating more critical thinking, SEL, and reading instruction in their courses?

You might be interested in The Best Resources On Teaching & Learning Critical Thinking In The Classroom, which includes my British Council piece on integrating critical thinking skills into English Language Learner instruction.

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Justice Sonia Sotomayor's Stanford Speech Is Filled With Useful Quotes For Students

Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotmayor spoke at Stanford Friday night. Based on media accounts of her talk, it was a blockbuster filled with quotes that I plan on using with my students in lessons. I heard about it on Twitter via Washington Post reporter Emma Brown.

Supreme Court's Sotomayor, at Stanford, talks of success, failure and resiliency is an article from The San Jose Mercury News that provides great excerpts. I'm hoping that a transcript or video will show up, but I haven't been able to find either one yet.

Here's one:

The article also has nice excerpts on the importance of reading and how to recover from mistakes.

Here's a TV news report on her speech:

I'm adding this info to The Best Sites To Learn About The U.S. Supreme Court.

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