Professional Learning for Busy Educators
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Girls Gone Engineering - Marcia Connor

Girls Gone Engineering - Marcia Connor | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Perhaps the reason only 7% of engineers are women is because rather than persevering, we interpret early failures to mean we need to change our interests to increase the likelihood we'll succeed. A new book, Rosie Revere, Engineer, can offer girls anot...
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Professional Learning for Busy Educators
Professional learning in a glance (or two)!
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Innovate My School - 5 ways to boost your wellbeing this year 

Innovate My School - 5 ways to boost your wellbeing this year  | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Why did you go into teaching? Most of us came into it because we had a vision of how we thought education should be. We loved children, believed that we could affect change, had an enthusiasm for our subject, and we wanted to make a difference. Sadly, many of us have lost sight of that vision.

Consider this: On a scale of 1-10, how stressful is your job? Too often, we do not listen to our bodies, ending up with distress, which manifests physically as pain, muscle tension, injury or disease; emotionally with symptoms of jealousy, insecurity, feelings of inferiority, inability to concentrate, poor decision making, mental disorientation, depression, anxiety and so on.

In this article, I’m going to outline five steps to create delicious habits that will make you positively flourish at work!
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A Simple Tool for Fostering Growth Mindset - Edutopia

A Simple Tool for Fostering Growth Mindset - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Our second-grade team works hard to nurture a growth mindset in our students. We begin the year with morning messages about how our brains can grow and change. We read and discuss books about characters who learn from their mistakes. In our classroom makerspaces, we explicitly teach lessons on persistence and flexibility, and in math class our students work collaboratively to solve problems with multiple solutions or multiple paths to the solution.

Despite these efforts, there are still kids who hate to have a mistake on their paper. They will go to great lengths to eliminate any trace of an abandoned math strategy or the first attempt at an ending to a story. They will erase and erase, trying to make the paper clean again. Sometimes they erase so much that the friction from the eraser wears a hole right through the paper.
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What is MathsJam? | MathsJam

What is MathsJam? | MathsJam | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

MathsJam is a monthly opportunity for like-minded self-confessed maths enthusiasts to get together in a pub and share stuff they like. Puzzles, games, problems, or just anything they think is cool or interesting. We don't have organised talks, planned activities or even strict timings - just turn up and join in.

We meet on the second to last Tuesday of every month, from 7pm or 7.30pm in the evening. Events happen simultaneously (where possible) in locations all over the world. For more details of local events, use the menu to navigate. You can follow our activity by looking at the @MathsJam twitter feed."

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What's Going On In the Brain Of A Child Who Has Experienced Trauma? | MindShift | KQED News

What's Going On In the Brain Of A Child Who Has Experienced Trauma? | MindShift | KQED News | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Educators are increasingly recognizing that students often have complicated lives outside of school that affect how ready they are to learn. Many students experience some kind of trauma in their lives, whether it's a health problem, divorce, violence in their neighborhood, or a combination of experiences. Research shows these experiences affect kids' brains and behavior -- a challenge for teachers expecting to arrive in class and only focus on content.
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Five Proven Benefits Of Play | MindShift | KQED News

Five Proven Benefits Of Play | MindShift | KQED News | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
It may be a new school year, yet I come to sing the praises of trampolines and bubble-blowing, pillow forts and peekaboo, Monopoly and Marco Polo.

A new paper in the journal Pediatrics summarizes the evidence for letting kids let loose. "Play is not frivolous," the paper insists, twice. "It is brain building." The authors — Michael Yogman, Andrew Garner, Jeffrey Hutchinson, Kathy Hirsh-Pasek and Roberta Michnick Golinkoff — ask pediatricians to take an active role by writing a "prescription for play" for their young patients in the first two years of life.

"Play is disappearing," says Hirsh-Pasek, a developmental psychologist who is a professor at Temple University and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution. By targeting doctors, she explains, the paper hopes to build on the success of a literacy initiative called Reach Out and Read. That program reaches nearly 5 million children annually by giving out children's books at doctor visits. "You have an opportunity there" to change behavior, she says.

Prescribing play for kids? Really?

It's a sign that "we're living in different times," comments Anthony DeBenedet, a doctor, and co-author of The Art of Roughhousing and the author of Playful Intelligence, who was not involved in the paper. But he calls the article "beautiful" in the way it marshals the hard evidence in favor of climbing trees and talking on banana phones.
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Five Simple Strategies That Can Help Any Student Learn - TeachThought

Five Simple Strategies That Can Help Any Student Learn - TeachThought | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Empowered with some basic information about how the mind and brain work during learning, teachers can plan to use some new strategies for supporting high student achievement.

Through the years we have facilitated the use of brain-based strategies that help foster growth mindsets through the internalization of learning successes, individual choice, positive self-talk, and teacher modeling. Teachers tell us that using these teacher-friendly tools can jumpstart the learning process early in the year.
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Math Teachers Should Encourage Their Students to Count Using Their Fingers in Class - The Atlantic

Math Teachers Should Encourage Their Students to Count Using Their Fingers in Class - The Atlantic | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
A few weeks ago I (Jo Boaler) was working in my Stanford office when the silence of the room was interrupted by a phone call. A mother called me to report that her 5-year-old daughter had come home from school crying because her teacher had not allowed her to count on her fingers. This is not an isolated event—schools across the country regularly ban finger use in classrooms or communicate to students that they are babyish. This is despite a compelling and rather surprising branch of neuroscience that shows the importance of an area of our brain that “sees” fingers, well beyond the time and age that people use their fingers to count.
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Discovering Better Ways to Learn as an Adult | MindShift | KQED News

Discovering Better Ways to Learn as an Adult | MindShift | KQED News | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
If you’d met Ulrich Boser while he was still in school, you might not have tagged him as a guy who would one day write a book about learning. Early in his life, at least, learning was a struggle. “School was tough for me from the very start—I repeated kindergarten,” Boser tells me ruefully. All these years, he’s kept a piece of paper with him: the school psychologist’s report on his learning problems. He elaborates further in a new book: 

“Different theories about the cause of my difficulties floated around, vague potential explanations. One account held that I was slow to learn because my immigrant parents spoke German at home. Others claimed that I had an auditory problem, that my brain wasn’t wired correctly when it came to listening. Still others believed I lacked intelligence, that almost magical ability to think through issues and solve problems.”
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Let's teach students why math matters in the real world

Let's teach students why math matters in the real world | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
"When will I ever use this?" It's a question math and science teachers hear all the time from their high school students.


Teaching science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills is more important than ever, but it's often difficult for students to understand the practical applications of such fundamental learning and how it will help them down the road.

Classroom activities should be relevant, meaningful and connected to students' prior knowledge and experiences. Learning must be based on lived experiences within both formal and informal educational settings.

Increasingly, teacher educators are realizing that we must break away from traditional silos of courses, disciplines and formal schooling. Educators must lead by example and provide students with opportunities to explore interdisciplinary approaches to learning.
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'Nothing short of remarkable': Study finds parents' chats with their toddlers pay off 10 years later | CBC News

'Nothing short of remarkable': Study finds parents' chats with their toddlers pay off 10 years later | CBC News | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Attention exhausted parents: The next time your toddler starts making strange noises or babbling about Paw Patrol, try to strike up a conversation — it could make a big difference later, researchers say.  

A study published this week in Pediatrics found that toddlers with parents who spend lots of time listening and chatting with them are more likely to have better language skills and higher IQs a decade later than youngsters left hanging in silence. 

"If you knew that children who were fed a certain nutritional diet at age two were not only far healthier as toddlers, but much more likely to be in a healthy weight range at age 12, you'd want to pursue those findings, wouldn't you?" said study author Jill Gilkerson, senior director of research and evaluation at the LENA Foundation, a non-profit charity in Boulder, Col. 

"Conversational turns are that diet, that nutrition, for the brain."
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Celeste Headlee: 10 ways to have a better conversation | TED Talk

Celeste Headlee: 10 ways to have a better conversation | TED Talk | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
When your job hinges on how well you talk to people, you learn a lot about how to have conversations -- and that most of us don't converse very well. Celeste Headlee has worked as a radio host for decades, and she knows the ingredients of a great conversation: Honesty, brevity, clarity and a healthy amount of listening. In this insightful talk, she shares 10 useful rules for having better conversations. "Go out, talk to people, listen to people," she says. "And, most importantly, be prepared to be amazed."
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Smart Strategies for Student Success - Edutopia

Smart Strategies for Student Success - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Even students who’ve had years of active involvement in learning activities don’t automatically use strategies that best foster learning. However, working smarter through the use of specific success strategies can have a profound influence on learning outcomes. In this article, we share practical strategies teachers can use with students to help them learn smarter and with greater independence.
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What Putting Teachers in Charge of Personalized Learning Can Look Like | MindShift | KQED News

What Putting Teachers in Charge of Personalized Learning Can Look Like | MindShift | KQED News | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
In what now looks prescient – years before the “personalized learning” craze ignited a new national interest in tailoring schooling with the student at its center – a group of teachers saw trouble with the lockstep approach to progress.
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Doodling Makes Learning More Sticky for Students

Doodling Makes Learning More Sticky for Students | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
We can all doodle, says Susan Daniels. When students doodle to represent concepts and ideas, they synthesize information, encoding it in memory for easy recall.

Via Elaine J Roberts, Ph.D.
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Elaine J Roberts, Ph.D.'s curator insight, September 16, 7:53 PM

Call it doodling, call it sketchnoting. Purists will insist there is a difference but the point is that students are ENCOURAGED to effect visual learning. Why? Because they will retain more information and it's entirely possible they will begin to learn to make connections with what they know and what they're learning. I personally wouldn't spend too much time on a doodle (or sketchnoting) dictionary because that seems to formalize it too much and I think the whole point is to make connections, to deepen learning, not to follow a specific format of doodles. I mean, it's doodling. Requiring them to make it too structured means it no longer belongs to the student and it's less meaningful as they continue to learn and grow.

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31 things your kids should be doing instead of homework

31 things your kids should be doing instead of homework | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
There are many aspects of my more than decade-long career as a teacher that I'm proud of. My reputation for giving lots and lots of homework is not one of them.
For most of my teaching career, I taught fifth or sixth grade. Sometimes I gave more than two hours of homework. Kids complained a lot, though parents rarely did, at least not to my face. I think parents mostly felt the same way I did: that homework was the best way to practice new skills, that it teaches responsibility and helps to develop a strong work ethic, and that it's an opportunity to reflect on new learning.

But most of all, my students' parents and I were more than a little afraid that our kids would fall behind—behind their classmates in the next classroom, behind the kids in a neighboring school, behind the kids in other countries. Homework was considered one of many ways to prevent that from happening.

I wasn't entirely wrong about all of that, and I still believe a lot of those things. But only for middle and high school students (and not hours of assignments). Not for elementary students, and certainly not for kindergarteners or preschoolers.
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5 ways to simplify prep for substitutes - The Cornerstone for Teachers - Angela Watson @Angela_Watson

5 ways to simplify prep for substitutes - The Cornerstone for Teachers - Angela Watson @Angela_Watson | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
I don’t need to tell you how many teachers feel like it’s less work to go into school sick than to write plans for a sub. If I wasn’t contagious, I showed up to my classroom every day, because planning lessons for six subject areas and prepping/organizing all the materials was a massive job. Not to mention, I’d come back after an absence to see our beautifully organized classroom looking like a tornado tore through, and be faced with a complex web of reported behavioral issues and interpersonal disputes between students that I now needed to deal with.

Depending on my class in any given year, it was sometimes really hard to fully relax or disconnect from what was happening in the classroom during a sick day, and I know I’m not alone in that. I’ve heard from teachers who will Skype with their classes multiple times a day when they’re out in order to keep things on track. They say moms and dads never get a day off, and I feel like it’s the same for teachers: If your students are in the classroom that day, you still feel a bit of responsibility for what’s happening, even when you’re not there.

So what’s the solution?

Unexpected absences aren’t really unexpected: We know they’re going to happen from time to time. So even though you don’t know when, you can still do the bulk of your preparation in advance, and set up your expectations and routines to make things go more smoothly. Here are 5 tips to help.
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Free Technology for Teachers: Find Free Photos by Searching on Every Stock Photo

Free Technology for Teachers: Find Free Photos by Searching on Every Stock Photo | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Regular readers of this blog probably know that my go-to places for free images are Photos for Class, Pixabay, and Unsplash. But those aren't the only places that you can find free images to use multimedia projects. Rather than lucky-dipping through other sites you can just head to Every Stock Photo for find a picture. Every Stock Photo is a search engine for public domain and Creative Commons licensed pictures. When you search on Every Stock Photo it pulls images from dozens of sources across the web. If you click on an image in your search results you will be taken to a larger version of the image, a link to the source, and the attribution requirements for using that picture.
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GwynethJones's curator insight, September 17, 7:01 PM

Free Technology for Teachers by @rmbyrne: Find Free Photos by Searching on Every Stock Photo  - Always great things from Richard!

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When Helping Hurts - Edutopia

When Helping Hurts - Edutopia | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
It's never easy seeing a student experience distress, but well-meaning adults (myself included) too quickly and too often rush to the rescue. There are times to intervene, but we must be more judicious in knowing when to let students cope with failure on their own. Otherwise, we will raise a risk-averse generation whose members lack resilience and the crucial ability to rebound from failure. To prevent that outcome, teachers and educational leaders alike must be mindful of several situations where helping hurts.
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Nine Colors - YouCubed

Nine Colors - YouCubed | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it

"Are you a fan of Rubik’s Cube? Do you like to build something to solve a problem? Here is one of our favorite puzzles!"

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Forget flashcards, play with sticks. An expert explains how children learn

Forget flashcards, play with sticks. An expert explains how children learn | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
How do children learn; and how can their environment help or hurt that process? The answer to both may lie in the first years of our lives. Casey Lew-Williams is on the faculty at Princeton University and co-Director of the Princeton Baby Lab. He talks to us about the best ways to support children’s growth, the impact of poverty on early learning, and why the most sophisticated educational toys are often less effective than simply playing, talking, singing, and cuddling.
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What Do We Mean When We Say 'Social And Emotional Skills'? | MindShift | KQED News

What Do We Mean When We Say 'Social And Emotional Skills'? | MindShift | KQED News | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Social-emotional learning. Grit. Resilience. Agency. Empathy. Executive function. Education experts agree these are all crucial for student success, but the agreement stops there.
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Victor Ventura's curator insight, September 14, 8:29 AM
“SKILLS FOR SUCCESS”
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Picular: Google, but for color — @joycevalenza NeverEndingSearch

Picular: Google, but for color — @joycevalenza NeverEndingSearch | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
Pick a color, literally any color.

Search engines come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Now there’s one for those of us who are lovers (or seekers) of color.

Simple and elegant and particularly speedy, Picular returns results in swatches. a palette of colors associated with your search terms. Select one of the swatches and you immediately copy the RGB color code to your clipboard.
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Free Technology for Teachers: Seterra - Hundreds of Interactive Geography Games in More Than 30 Languages

Free Technology for Teachers: Seterra - Hundreds of Interactive Geography Games in More Than 30 Languages | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
The best way to explore Seterra's offerings is to head to the online games page. On that page you can browse for games according to continent and country. On Seterra's online games page you will find games that students can play to learn and quiz themselves about capitals, bodies of water, waterways, flags, country names, states, provinces, regions, and notable cities. And if you need an offline activity, Seterra lists some printables below all of the games on their individual pages.
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Welcoming Students With a Smile - Edutopia 

Welcoming Students With a Smile - Edutopia  | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
A widely cited 2007 study claimed that teachers greeting students at the classroom door led to a 27 percent increase in academic engagement. The problem? It included just three students.

Now a new, much larger and more credible study—comprising 203 students in 10 classrooms—validates that claim: Greeting students at the door sets a positive tone and can increase engagement and reduce disruptive behavior. Spending a few moments welcoming students promotes a sense of belonging, giving them social and emotional support that helps them feel invested in their learning.
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What I really want to know from my child’s teacher on back to school night. Hint: It has nothing to do with curriculum. – Katie Martin

What I really want to know from my child’s teacher on back to school night. Hint: It has nothing to do with curriculum. – Katie Martin | Professional Learning for Busy Educators | Scoop.it
I remember being so nervous as a teacher at back to school night as I prepared to meet the families of my students. It was a big deal as it was the first impression that I would make on many of the families that I would interact with. Although I felt at ease with the kids, the families somehow put me on edge.  I wanted them to feel excited about having their child in my class. I also wanted them to trust me and see that I was a good teacher.

I have had many teachers share these same feelings with me as well. More often than not, they also have shared that they feel the need to give an overview of the year and cover all the things that they assume the families want to hear. What this often translates to is sharing a list of supplies needed, the standards that will be covered, the textbooks that the students would be using, and classroom expectations.

Now that I am on the other end as a parent I have a different perspective and what I care about and want to hear on back to school night has very little to do with the supply list or the textbooks. As I think about what I have appreciated as a parent and what matters to me most, there are 5 things I want to know from my child’s teacher at the beginning of the year (and throughout the year too).
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Vicki Moro's curator insight, September 11, 9:06 AM
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