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Challenging the status quo - David Truss :: Pair-a-dimes for Your Thoughts

Challenging the status quo - David Truss :: Pair-a-dimes for Your Thoughts | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"Educational bloggers blogging about things that need to be changed… This isn’t a post to read from start to finish. Instead, pick a topic that may challenge the status quo in your school or district and dig in. Read, tweet, share, write your own post, comment… it is fodder for YOU to challenge the status quo!"

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Professional Learning for Busy Educators
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Beginning the School Year With Connections: 2018 - Jackie Gerstein @JackieGerstein

Beginning the School Year With Connections: 2018 - Jackie Gerstein @JackieGerstein | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"I have written before about the beginning of the school year, Beginning the School Year: It’s About Connections Not Content.

I begin all classes focusing on having the students make connections between each other and with me.  I want students to learn about one another in a personal way. I want to learn about my students so my instructional strategies can be more personalized and tailored to their needs and interests.

As we begin this new school year, I want to share my own ideas for what I believe represent best practices for doing so. I have the following goals for beginning the school year:

* To have the learners get to know one another and if they do know one another, to deepen that understanding.
* To have the learners get to know me as an educator.
*  set the climate that the classroom will experiential, engaging, fun, and student-centric.
* To begin the process of having learners learn to solve problems as a group and work cooperatively with one another.
* To begin creating a supportive climate – where learners support one another and I support their learning efforts.
* To give the message that social-emotional learning is important.
* To give the message that we will use our bodies, art, team building, problem solving, and interactions with classmates in the classroom.
* To have the learners take ownership of their classroom.
* What should also be obvious from this list is what is not on it – namely a focus on content-driven instruction during the first days of school.

These are the activities I used on the first day of school with my 2018 gifted classes of 2nd to 6th grade students (some similar to past beginning of the year activities and some new ones):"

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Trying it out… Investigating… Testing… Researching… Practice what I Preach… Modeling | Silvia Tolisano- Langwitches Blog

Trying it out… Investigating… Testing… Researching… Practice what I Preach… Modeling | Silvia Tolisano- Langwitches Blog | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
I believe in trying things out… investigating… testing… researching… practice what I preach… modeling…

So, when George Couros announced, he was trying out an #instagrambookstudy of his book The Innovator’s Mindset, I had to step up to participate
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How To Develop a Culture of "Can" In Your Classroom

How To Develop a Culture of "Can" In Your Classroom | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
It’s an age-old saying, “Give a man a fish, and feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and feed him for a lifetime.”

What separates good teachers from the excellent ones? The excellent ones are handing out fishing poles; creating a culture in the classroom of independence and self-reliance. These students don’t just recite facts or regurgitate information- they have learned how to learn. They know that if the answer isn’t in front of them, they have the tools to do the investigation and research.

So how do you cultivate a culture of “I can…” in your classroom?

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On Teaching: How to Make Students Good Writers - The Atlantic

On Teaching: How to Make Students Good Writers - The Atlantic | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Editor's Note: In the next five years, most of America’s most experienced teachers will retire. The Baby Boomers are leaving behind a nation of novice educators. In 1988, a teacher most commonly had 15 years of experience. Less than three decades later, that number had fallen to just five years leading a classroom. The Atlantic’s “On Teaching” project is crisscrossing the country to talk to veteran educators. This story is the second in our series. Read the first one here.

“I want to say something important about writing,” Pirette McKamey told 25 seniors in her English class at San Francisco’s Mission High School one fall afternoon in 2012. It’s incredibly hard, and always incomplete, she explained. “I’ve reread some of my essays 20 times and I still go, ‘I can’t believe I made this mistake or that mistake.’”
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Dennis T OConnor's curator insight, August 13, 10:26 AM

So many of my best moments as a teacher happened in the writer's workshop. Kids finding their voices. Stories flowing as they discovered they could write -- despite the defeats handed up regularly by conventional classroom practices.  

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How Student Talk Saved My Teaching - ASCD.org

How Student Talk Saved My Teaching - ASCD.org | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"Last September I had 14 students staring at me, waiting for me to teach them how to solve a word problem. "Well, the operation is subtraction because the key word is difference," I would say. I found myself spoon-feeding 8-year-olds the answers because I was unsure of how to help this particular group of children solve difficult word problems. Seven months later, I am the one staring at my students, listening to them teach each other different ways to correctly solve the word problem. "Classroom discussion facilitator" is my new favorite title.

Not only was I doing all the talking in math at the beginning of the year, but I also found myself creating all the dialogue in English language arts. After observing my class, my supervisor guided me to "do less!" Such a simple phrase, but it really resonated with me. I realized I was doing too much talking, explaining, and assisting. How were my students supposed to take ownership of their learning if I never gave them the chance?"

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Opinion | Make Your Daughter Practice Math. She’ll Thank You Later. - The New York Times

Opinion | Make Your Daughter Practice Math. She’ll Thank You Later. - The New York Times | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
For parents who want to encourage their daughters in STEM subjects, it’s crucial to remember this: Math is the sine qua non.

You and your daughter can have fun throwing eggs off a building and making papier-mâché volcanoes, but the only way to create a full set of options for her in STEM is to ensure she has a solid foundation in math. Math is the language of science, engineering and technology. And like any language, it is best acquired through lengthy, in-depth practice.

But for girls, this can be trickier than it looks. This is because many girls can have a special advantage over boys — an advantage that can steer them away from this all-important building block.
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15 Brain Games for Kids that Will Make Them Smarter

15 Brain Games for Kids that Will Make Them Smarter | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
What if I told you there is a way for your children to become better thinkers, keep their eyeballs healthy and build social skills all at the same time?

Brain games will do just that!
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5 Tips for Improving Students’ Success in Math - Edutopia

5 Tips for Improving Students’ Success in Math - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
What does it take to improve student success and interest in math? The Philadelphia-based Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM) asked more than 400 U.S. high school math teachers for their advice related to teaching and learning mathematics.

“The good news is that students can have success in math class with the right effort, attitude, and behavior, regardless of a natural affinity or being ‘good at math,’” said Michelle Montgomery, project director of the MathWorks Math Modeling (M3) Challenge at SIAM. “Using quantitative skills to solve real, open-ended problems by employing the mathematical modeling process is a great way to get started.” 
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Paper Tweets Build SEL Skills - Edutopia

Paper Tweets Build SEL Skills - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Creating a Twitter board is simple. Make a template with space for a profile picture, the student’s real name, a Twitter-style handle, a short bio, and a list of followers. That takes about a quarter of a page, leaving room for tweets. Have students fill out profiles—some of mine drew a profile picture, but most used a photo—and slip the profiles into clear sheet protectors. When we do this exercise, I display the profiles on a whiteboard for a few days, using magnets to hold them in place. When we’re done, I store the profiles in a folder—they don’t take up much space and are ready for next time.

Cut some paper into small slips that students can use for tweets, which they can tape onto the appropriate profile.
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Improving Reading Skills Through Talking - Edutopia

Improving Reading Skills Through Talking - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Partnering on note taking, a strategy developed for struggling readers, helps middle and high school students process what they read.
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Mind-Body Math: Manipulatives in the Digital Age [Infographic]

Mind-Body Math: Manipulatives in the Digital Age [Infographic] | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
The mind-body connection is widely accepted in health and wellness, inspiring people to practice yoga or meditation, and for competitive athletes to seek sports psychologists.  But what role does the mind-body connection play in the math classroom?

Recently, a MIND Research Institute psychologist, mathematician and education researcher teamed up to explore decades of research into how our bodies can be involved in learning, and the ways that technology makes it easier than ever to put these powers to use in the classroom. This infographic presents highlights of what they found.
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7 Lessons for Teachers From Dumbledore - Edutopia

7 Lessons for Teachers From Dumbledore - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
One of my favorite times of the day is when I settle in with my two young daughters for read-aloud time. For several years, we’ve been working our way through the Harry Potter series. I had read them all before, but it’s been a delight to read them again with my girls, using as many voices as possible and seeing the incredible story through their eyes. 

This second reading has also revealed many secrets about teaching and living, especially when it comes to Dumbledore. The way he interacts with Harry, fellow teachers, muggles, and various magical creatures has lessons for all of us—especially teachers and parents. Whether you’ve read the Harry Potter series or not, there’s wisdom in this character we can all learn from.
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GwynethJones's curator insight, August 1, 8:28 AM

Dumbledore, wise sage, has lessons for us all.

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Project: Every Kid Has a Story to Tell - Edutopia

Project: Every Kid Has a Story to Tell - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
A video project helps students hone their multimedia storytelling skills, while developing greater self-awareness and empathy for their peers.
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The Manifesto We Should Read to Students Every Day

The Manifesto We Should Read to Students Every Day | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
The Holstee Manifesto is a reminder of what life is about. As we continue to help students prepare themselves for anything, let’s not forget about their lives right now. It is easy to get caught up in the grind for both teachers and students. But this Manifesto can bring everyone back to what we should truly care about:
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Read Smarter #1: Developing Kids Who WANT to Read Starts with Filling Your Bookshelves with the Right Titles. - Bill Ferriter @plugusin

Read Smarter #1: Developing Kids Who WANT to Read Starts with Filling Your Bookshelves with the Right Titles. - Bill Ferriter @plugusin | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
OK, Radical Nation, here’s a simple question for you:  Do you believe that there is a fundamental difference between developing kids who CAN read and kids who WANT to read?

And here’s another question:  Which of those two buckets would YOUR district, school or classroom fall into?  Are your practices and processes around reading instruction sparking a love of reading in kids — or have your practices and processes become so directive and scripted that kids might master the skills necessary to read and then never willingly pick up a book again?

Those ideas have been roiling through my professional circles lately, sparked originally by this Kylene Beers quote:
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12 LinkedIn Accounts That Will Make You Smarter

12 LinkedIn Accounts That Will Make You Smarter | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Your brain is a muscle (or so I’ve been told). Just like your workout routine, if you neglect intellectual pursuits, you won’t see any improvements.

Luckily, with so many influential people and organizations sharing their expertise on social, it’s easy to keep your brain sharp. We’ve created a list of LinkedIn accounts to follow for when you’re on that quest for knowledge.
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Victor Ventura's curator insight, August 14, 2:55 PM
Lifelong learning opportunities 
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Learning NEXT: Social Emotional Learning (SEL) isn't just another edutrend

Learning NEXT: Social Emotional Learning (SEL) isn't just another edutrend | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
A couple of years ago I would have scoffed at myself. I would have said that SEL is a new touch-feely trend in education destined just to add one more thing to the already overcrowded plates of teachers and administrators. And then I started paying closer attention to students and to teachers, and to the interactions of students and teachers.
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First Days of School: It's Always Awkward in the Beginning

First Days of School: It's Always Awkward in the Beginning | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
First days of school are always so idyllic in my mind. Full of hope and promise and potential. I can’t wait to meet the people who will make their way to our classroom. I’m anxious to discover who they are, what makes them laugh, and how they learn.

I look forward to the days in the semester when we've built enough trust to have compelling discussions about what we’re reading and honest discussions about what we’re writing. I can’t wait for the days when their personalities emerge and we see each other clearly.

But I always forget (and rightly so) how much work it is in the beginning. I forget how awkward the silences are, how emotionless their faces are on those first days. I forget and then I remember that every year starts with the hard work of building trust and shared purpose. It starts with a hesitation to think independently and all kinds of being uncomfortable with authentic learning experiences.

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Victor Ventura's curator insight, August 12, 2:52 PM
Helps you remember.
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A Classroom Where Everyone Feels Welcome - Edutopia

A Classroom Where Everyone Feels Welcome - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Six strategies for building the strong relationships with students that are the heart of a culturally inclusive classroom community.
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400 Educators to Follow on Twitter: Crowd-Sourced List for Educators by Educators – Mr. Kempnz

400 Educators to Follow on Twitter: Crowd-Sourced List for Educators by Educators – Mr. Kempnz | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Ready to start off the 2018-2019 school year with a Professional Learning Network (PLN) of highly recommended educators from around the world? Crowd-sourced and set to go, we’ve curated a list of highly recommended educators to follow as shared by educators just like you! In a matter of 60 minutes this past week in the #whatisschool Twitter chat, we asked classroom teachers, administrators, tech coaches, librarians, and more to share individuals that positively influence and inform practice and that make a difference in education through their work and support within our PLN.
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A Classroom Library: If You Build It, They Will Read by Jim Bailey - Nerdy Book Club

A Classroom Library: If You Build It, They Will Read by Jim Bailey - Nerdy Book Club | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
I had just finished sharing the latest research about classroom libraries with my teachers at a staff meeting.  The research didn’t surprise anyone.  Students who are able to utilize a well-stocked, diverse classroom library spend 60% more time reading compared to those that don’t.  These same students are also more likely to talk about the books they are reading and make recommendations to other students.  Classroom libraries are essential in order to provide students with access to books and motivation to read.  There is a direct link between classroom libraries and reading motivation, reading achievement, and reading engagement.
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Trauma can make it hard for kids to learn. Here’s how teachers learn to deal with that.

Trauma can make it hard for kids to learn. Here’s how teachers learn to deal with that. | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"There’s no debating that childhood trauma seriously impacts how students learn. Researchers have tied stressful events such as divorces, deportations, neglect, sexual abuse and gun violence to behavioral problems, lower math and reading scores, and poor health. The latest research, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, finds that children who endure severe stress are more likely to suffer heart attacks and mental health disorders.

So, we know trauma affects kids, but how do we teach educators to confront it? That’s where Dr. Colleen Cicchetti comes in.

A child psychologist at Lurie Children’s Hospital and an assistant professor at Northwestern University’s medical school, she helps lead the hospital’s efforts to improve how local schools handle trauma. The goal: to train teachers to spot and respond to warning signs in kids. Last Tuesday and Wednesday, about 150 aspiring teachers with Golden Apple’s scholars program attended day-long training sessions.

It’s not the job of a teacher to become a mental health provider, said Cicchetti, who earlier this year was named Public Educator of the Year by the National Alliance on Mental Illness. “It’s really their job to try to understand what barriers are making it hard for them to do their job.”

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What Happens to Student Behavior When Schools Prioritize Art -  MindShift - Sir Ken Robinson

What Happens to Student Behavior When Schools Prioritize Art -  MindShift - Sir Ken Robinson | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"There’s more room to make changes within the current education system than many people think. Schools operate as they do not because they have to but because they choose to. They don’t need to be that way; they can change and many do. Innovative schools everywhere are breaking the mold of convention to meet the best interests of their students, families, and communities. As well as great teachers, what they have in common is visionary leadership. They have principals who are willing to make the changes that are needed to promote the success of all their students, whatever their circumstances and talents. A creative principal with the right powers of leadership can take a failing school and turn it into a hot spot of innovation and inclusion that benefits everyone it touches.

"Take Orchard Gardens elementary school in Roxbury, Massachusetts. Ten years ago Orchard Gardens was in the doldrums. By most measures, it was one of the most troubled schools in the state. The school had five principals in its first seven years. Each fall, half the teachers did not return. Test scores were in the bottom 5 percent of all Massachusetts schools. The students were disaffected and unruly and there was a constant threat of violence. Students weren’t allowed to carry backpacks to school for fear that they might use them to conceal weapons, and there was an expensive staff of security guards, costing more than $250,000 a year, to make sure they didn’t. Remember, this was an elementary school."


Via Jim Lerman
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8 Truths About Teaching Writing to Middle Schoolers - Edutopia

8 Truths About Teaching Writing to Middle Schoolers - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Middle school writers are full of imagination and creativity, and teachers can honor that while teaching writing conventions.
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Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The danger of a single story | TED Talk

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The danger of a single story | TED Talk | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice -- and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.
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GwynethJones's curator insight, August 1, 8:32 AM

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: The danger of a single story or finding your authentic cultural voice