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Teacher Tools and Tips
Tools, tips and practices to share with teachers
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10 Summer Learning Ideas for Teachers | Getting Smart

10 Summer Learning Ideas for Teachers | Getting Smart | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

"Summer is here, and we have some great ideas for how to “blend” your summer break time with fun and effective learning opportunities. Don’t fall down that summer slide–with these ten suggestions, you’ll have so much fun learning you’ll never want summer break to end!"


Via John Evans
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lisa gorena's curator insight, July 3, 4:40 PM
Wow! What a nice list for teachers to work on over the summer. We always talk about students and the summer slide. This article is to help teachers catch up, stay up to date, and get ahead over the summer.I particularly like 1, 5, and 9.
 
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6 Misleading But Popular Myths In Education

6 Misleading But Popular Myths In Education | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Some common beliefs about teaching and learning are nothing more than popular myths. Discover what the research really says.
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Online vs. Classroom Learning: The Ultimate Showdown

Online vs. Classroom Learning: The Ultimate Showdown | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
This article describes the pros and cons of learning in the classroom versus online. Choose the best way depending on the type of material and situation.

Via Eve Lackman, Mark E. Deschaine, PhD
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Shifting to 21st Century Thinking » Malice is in the Eye of the Beholder

We all know the story of Cinderella, the classic fairy tale of rags to riches. But I’m sure most of us have never stopped to think about why this story continues to be read to children around the world, the complexity of the characters, and the social messages that you can extrapolate from it. The illustrations alone in Cinderella: An Art Deco Love Story retold by Lynn Roberts and illustrated by David Roberts, tell a compelling story of a battle of class, gender and belief systems.

The social themes underlying the art deco version of Cinderella are important to take note of in analysing the characters, because it is the underlying socio-cultural themes that reveal their complexity. In interpreting the characters motives and actions, it becomes clear that Cinderella and her step-family are far from moral opposites because they are ultimately pursuing the same agenda by the same set of cultural rules and norms.

 

Briefly speaking, Cinderella: An Art Deco Love Story is set in a society in which women are objects whose value is determined by the men in their lives. They are not valued for their hard work or intelligence, but as a physical manifestation of a man’s material wealth. Therefore women are concerned with men, beauty, and fashion, as they play an important role as signs of class distinction and social status. The material objects in the illustrations are important signs of this relationship.

 

This thinking object evolved out of a previous thinking object based on Cinderella: An Art Deco Love Story, titled How much is Cinderella’s father to blame for her situation? which provided students with a framework to analyse the moral ambiguity of the father character.

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Young children trust kindness over expertise

Young children trust kindness over expertise | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

BPS Research Digest:

 

A follow-up study with more young children provided the crucial test of whether they'd be more trusting of kindness or expertise. This time the same two experts were either nice or nasty, as conveyed by their body language, facial expression and tone of voice. Benevolence and expertise were counterbalanced so sometimes the eagle expert was nice, sometimes the bike expert. The children showed a clear overall bias for believing the suggestions of the nicer person (70 per cent overall). They only showed a preference for listening to the man with relevant expertise if he was also nice.

A third and final study was similar but this time the researchers set up a choice between a nice or nasty relevant expert, and a nice or nasty second man who was described explicitly as lacking any relevant expertise. This was to make sure that the children weren't assuming that a nice expert could have knowledge beyond his stated field. Once again the children were swayed by niceness and this time paid even less attention to expertise (i.e. they chose the nice person's answers 62 per cent of the time, and this only rose to 65 per cent if he was also an expert).

Sharrock's insight:

When you start to question whether students should trust your expertise rather than how kind you are sharing your expertise, think again. This research suggests that saying something nicely does have an impact.

 

The research focuses on young children 3-5.

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Study provides new insight into what occurs in the brain during the learning process - PsyPost

Study provides new insight into what occurs in the brain during the learning process - PsyPost | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Why are some people able to master a new skill quickly while others require extra time or practice? That was the question posed by UC Santa Barbara's Scott ...

Via Luis Valdes
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The threshold concept and the design of learning experiences

The threshold concept and the design of learning experiences | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
The threshold concept is an important one in the development of curriculum and learning experiences in general. I came across this excellent resource provided by UCL Department of Electronic and El...
Sharrock's insight:

(excerpt) "In the Four E’s Model” for engaging teams in change efforts, education is  identified as technical work. It is not. It is both technical and adaptive and the development of any training program or informal learning experience, whether face-to-face, online, or a blended version of the two, must consider the adaptive change required to integrate learning, not just into the day-to-day of performing technical work, but into the development of new mindsets required to make this technical work successful. "

 
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Why Students Think They Understand When They Don't

Why Students Think They Understand When They Don't | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Although familiarity and recollection are different, an insidious effect of familiarity is that it can give you the feeling that you know something when you really don't. For example, it has been shown that if some key words of a question are familiar, you are more likely to think that you know the answer to the question. In one experiment demonstrating this effect (Reder, 1987), subjects were exposed to a variety of word pairs (e.g. "golf" and "par") and then asked to complete a short task that required them to think at least for a moment about the words. Next, subjects saw a set of trivia questions, some of which used words that the subjects had just been exposed to in the previous task. Subjects were asked to make a rapid judgment as to whether or not they knew the answer to the question — and then they were to provide the answer.
Sharrock's insight:

The author suggests: "teachers can help students test their own knowledge in ways that provide more accurate assessments of what they really know — which enables students to better judge when they have mastered material and when (and where) more work is required." 


Self-learning or autodidactic pursuits can suffer for a number of reasons. This articles describes one reason. We also need to be aware of rhetorical fallacies and cognitive biases. We need others--sometimes groups of others--who can challenge our fallacious beliefs and biases. As knowledge is valued for how it deals with complex issues, we also need to support our perspectives and premises rigorously and with validity. 

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Why Curiosity Enhances Learning

Why Curiosity Enhances Learning | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

"It's no secret that curiosity makes learning more effective and enjoyable. Curious students not only ask questions, but also actively seek out the answers. Without curiosity, Sir Isaac Newton would have never formulated the laws of physics, Alexander Fleming probably wouldn't have discovered penicillin, and Marie Curie's pioneering research on radioactivity may not exist. Recently, researchers from the University of California, Davis conducted a series of experiments to discover what exactly goes on in the brain when our curiosity is aroused. For the study, the researchers had participants rate how curious they were to learn the answers to more than 100 trivia questions, such as 'What Beatles single lasted longest on the charts, at 19 weeks?' or 'What does the term 'dinosaur' actually mean?' At certain points throughout the study, fMRI scans were carried out to see what was happening in the brain when participants felt particularly curious about the answer to a question. So what did these experiments reveal? 1. Curiosity prepares the brain for learning, and 2. Curiosity makes subsequent learning more rewarding." | by Marianne Stenger


Via Todd Reimer
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A 6 Step Process For Teaching Argument Analysis

A 6 Step Process For Teaching Argument Analysis | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
A 6 Step Process For Teaching Argument Analysis
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The Guardians style guide editor on putting the fears around texting into historical context

The Guardians style guide editor on putting the fears around texting into historical context | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Every minute, the worlds mobile phone users send more than 15 million text messages. There is no evidence that any of them have forgotten how to write
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Study: You Really Can 'Work Smarter, Not Harder'

Study: You Really Can 'Work Smarter, Not Harder' | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Research shows that reflecting after learning something new makes it stick in your brain.
Sharrock's insight:

excerpt:

"Learning is more effective if a lesson or experience is deliberately coupled with time spent thinking about what was just presented, a new study shows. In “Learning by Thinking: How Reflection Aids Performance,” a team of researchers from HEC Paris, Harvard Business School, and the University of North Carolina describe what they call the first empirical test of the effect of reflection on learning. By “reflection,” they mean taking time after a lesson to synthesize, abstract, or articulate the important points."

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Ivon Prefontaine, PhD's curator insight, July 30, 2014 9:06 PM

An important aspect of reflecting and learning is getting beyond what went well and, even when we think we have succeeded, look for the things that were different about this learning.

 

@ivon_ehd1

Cindy Riley Klages's curator insight, July 31, 2014 11:46 PM

Reflection is crucial.  If we don't take time to reflect, we don't take time to improve.

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Deliberate Practice

Deliberate Practice | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Deliberate practice is what makes us better at something. Most people think practice is play. By not engaging in deliberate practice they don't get better.
Sharrock's insight:

instructive quotes "Teachers, or coaches, see what you miss and make you aware of where you’re falling short."

 

“You can work on technique all you like, but if you can’t see the effects, two things will happen: You won’t get any better, and you’ll stop caring.”

  

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Students Say They Are Not as Tech Savvy as Educators Assume

Students Say They Are Not as Tech Savvy as Educators Assume | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

Students say that in order for high schools and colleges to better serve them, it is important to challenge the assumption that students are digital natives. This starts with educating professors about the technological diversity in their classrooms and providing students with workshops and engaging videos to help them learn without shame.


Via Nik Peachey
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Nik Peachey's curator insight, June 26, 3:43 AM

Well worth considering. Particularly when it comes to using tech for study purposes, I think many teenagers really need some help.

Llandrillo Library's curator insight, June 27, 5:06 AM
The idea of being a digital native has been unsubstantiated for a while but the myth still persists - this dispels some of that. Remember it's more likely to be digitally confident not competent  
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Pure Novelty Spurs The Brain

Pure Novelty Spurs The Brain | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Neurobiologists have known that a novel environment sparks exploration and learning, but very little is known about whether the brain really prefers novelty as such. Rather, the major "novelty center" of the brain--called the substantia nigra/ventral tegmental area (SN/VTA)--might be activated by the unexpectedness of a stimulus, the emotional arousal it causes, or the need to respond behaviorally. The SN/VTA exerts a major influence on learning because it is functionally linked to both the hippocampus, which is the brain's learning center, and the amygdala, the center for processing emotional information.

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English Grammar Activities App Helps Students Learn Grammar Rules | Edudemic

English Grammar Activities App Helps Students Learn Grammar Rules | Edudemic | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Compared to other grammar apps, English Grammar in Use is more authoritative and exhaustive, with 306 activities and 2,800+ questions.

Via RitaZ
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Kidsinthehouse.com - The gift of introspection

Kidsinthehouse.com - The gift of introspection | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Edwin A. Locke, PhD, is Dean's Professor (Emeritus) of Leadership and Motivation at the R.H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland, College Park. He received his BA from Harvard in 1960 and his PhD in Industrial Psychology from Cornell University in 1964.He has published over 300 chapters, notes and articles in professional journals, on such subjects as work motivation, job satisfaction, incentives, and the philosophy of science. He is also the author or editor of 12 books, including The Selfish Path to Romance: How to Love with Passion and Reason, Study Methods and Study Motivation, Goal Setting: A Motivational Technique That Works, A Theory of Goal Setting and Task Performance, Handbook of Principles of Organizational Behavior, The Prime Movers: Traits of the Great Wealth Creators  and Postmodernism and Management: Pros, Cons and the Alternative. He is internationally known for his research on goal setting. A recent survey found that Locke's goal setting theory (developed with G. Latham) was ranked #1 in importance among 73 management theories. His work has been supported by numerous research grants, and he has served as consultant to research firms and private businesses.Dr. Locke has been elected a Fellow of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, the Academy of Management, and has been a consulting editor for leading journals. He was a winner of the Outstanding Teacher-Scholar Award at the University of Maryland, the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, the Career Contribution Award from the Academy of Management (Human Resource Division), the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Management (Organizational Behavior Division), and the James McKeen Cattell Fellow Award from the Association for Psychological Science. He has been a writer and lecturer for the Ayn Rand Institute and is interested in the application of the philosophy of Objectivism to behavioral sciences.

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Building Self-Esteem, Values, Resilience and Problem Solving, Friends
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Studying the American Republic

Studying the American Republic | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
What follows is a list of the works I studied prior to launching my blog in late 2008 (it was then independent, not hosted by WordPress), and prior to posting my white papers on Scribd in late 2009 (a move inspired by the moderator of a blogging community - to which I belonged - who asked me to consider a different platform since my posts were too long, a sin which I still commit.)

You will notice that for the most part, I do not recommend specific chapters or sections. In reading courses at university, professors will undertake such recommendations, either out of consideration for the student’s time, or out of desire to guide the student to the professor’s ideologies.

The former is understandable, the latter contemptible.
Sharrock's insight:

Do historians agree with these texts? Are these texts required reading? What are some other suggested texts to add to E. L. Beck's list? Thoughts?

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Your Grandparents Spent More Of Their Money On Food Than You Do

Your Grandparents Spent More Of Their Money On Food Than You Do | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
our spending on food — proportional to our income — has actually declined dramatically since 1960, according to a chart recently published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As the chart shows, the average share of per capita income spent on food declined from 17.5 percent in 1960 to 9.6 percent in 2007. (It has since risen slightly, reaching 9.9 percent in 2013.)
Sharrock's insight:

This might be useful for teachers of Health and Social Studies classes. You can lead a discussion about influences of science and technology on our lives over time. Students can explore this in terms of history, the history of food harvesting and production, economics and disposable income, even politics, especially along the lines of "doom and gloom".

 

As a unit of presentations developed from inquiry-based model, other big topics could be explored along the lines of ethics and morality over time, poverty, war, education, and social class. Restrict the data used. Graphs and charts might be validated or may need to be validated, so school librarians can be collaborated with. The research could result in a major production: school conference the way some organizations meet for conferences on hunger, poverty, new technologies, etc. Or, it could follow the more traditional model of group presentations performed/presented within the class itself. 

 

It's a big production. These projects might be more developmentally appropriate for secondary school students, mainly high school students from 10th grade and up. 

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50 Free Animation Tools And Resources For Digital Learners

50 Free Animation Tools And Resources For Digital Learners | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
50 Free Animation Tools And Resources For Digital Learners
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What's A Learning Simulation?

What's A Learning Simulation? | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Clark Aldrich: A learning simulation is an experience designed to rigorously help users develop competence and conviction.   A learning simulation is a combination of modeling elements, entertainment (or game) elements, and instructional (or pedagogical) elements.  These can range from pure media (which do not involve any other humans), to experiences that use coaches, teammates, competitors, and communities.

Learning simulations historically have fallen into two categories.  There are educational simulations that follow the rigor and fidelity of a flight simulators.  And there are serious games, that follow the entertainment model of a SimCity.
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Many, Many Examples Of Essential Questions

Many, Many Examples Of Essential Questions | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

"Essential questions are, ask Grant Wiggins defines, “‘essential’ in the sense of signaling genuine, important and necessarily-ongoing inquiries.” These are grapple-worthy, substantive questions that not only require wrestling with, but are worth wrestling with–that could lead students to some critical insight in a 40/40/40-rule sense of the term."


Via Beth Dichter
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Beth Dichter's curator insight, October 16, 2014 9:49 PM

If you are looking for a long list of essential questions this post may be just what you are looking for. There are over 100 essential questions divided into 20 categories. Some of the categories include:

* Social Justice

* Culture: Values, Beliefs & Rituals

* Constructing Identities

* Heroes and "She-roes"

* Nature in the Balance

* Our View of the World and Ourselves

Have fun exploring this extensive list. Be aware that the focus is Humanities and the Arts. If you find it useful and would like to see more that promote STEM inquiry make sure to leave a message in the comment section at te@chthought.

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Don't Believe The Myth Of The Billionaire College Dropout

Don't Believe The Myth Of The Billionaire College Dropout | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it
Mark Zuckerberg really is the exception.

 

the major take home message is this: Nearly all American billionaires attended at least some college with the vast majority of them graduating from college. So if you want to be a billionaire, this analysis would suggest that to maximize your chances you should not drop out of college.

Unless, of course, 1. you have a Thiel Fellowship, or 2. you are the next Gates, Zuckerberg, or Jobs and the opportunities presented to you are simply too good to resist.

Sharrock's insight:

Something to share with kids who think college is useless...

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What Are The Habits Of Mind? - Te@chThought

What Are The Habits Of Mind? - Te@chThought | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

Habits of Mind are dispositions that are skillfully and mindfully employed by characteristically intelligent, successful people when they are confronted with problems, the solutions to which are not immediately apparent.  When we draw upon these mental resources, the results are more powerful, of higher quality, and of greater significance than if we fail to employ those habits."

 


Via John Evans
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LUZ DEL MAR's curator insight, August 30, 2014 12:56 AM

posibles causas del desinteres el no manejo de habilidades cognitivas

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Life of an Educator: 10 things I want all new teachers to know...

Life of an Educator: 10 things I want all new teachers to know... | Teacher Tools and Tips | Scoop.it

So here is my list of what I want all new teachers to know:

 

1) - It's Ok to look and feel like this. If being scared wasn't supposed to happen from time to time, then we wouldn't be human. Don't be afraid of what you don't know and aren't sure about. Take everything in stride and accept that you are going to make mistakes. The key is making sure you learn from those mistakes.

2) - Find time during your off period to go observe other classrooms in your building. Even if the content and/or age group are different, there is still a lot you can learn via simple observation. If possible, see if that teacher would be willing to sit and talk with you about what you saw in their classroom. Even better, invite them to observe your classroom and get feedback/input on what they saw in your classroom.

3) - Focus on building relationships with your students from day one. Don't worry about your content at first, you most likely just spent the last four years of your life learning about it. Spend the first few weeks learning about the lives of the students you have in front of you. The more you learn about your students the more they will learn about your content.

4) - Don't worry about discipline and punishing kids; worry about how to provide strong instruction and an engaging classroom environment. This is basically being proactive rather than reactive. A classroom that is engaging with strong instructional practices is a classroom with few discipline problems.

5) - Learn the names and show the utmost respect to every administrative assistant, custodial/maintenance and food service employee in your building. They will help you more than you could ever imagine... trust me on this.

6) - Don't be afraid to speak up and share an idea. You most likely weren't hired because you were the worst candidate, so at some point in time somebody saw something great about you. You bring a new perspective and a fresh set of lenses to the table, so be sure to share your thoughts and insights in a collaborative and collegial manner.

7) - Don't try to do everything on your own. Don't simply shut your door and teach. Work with those who have more experience and know the system. Find a few people whom you can trust, and lean on them.

8) - Be careful of the teacher's lounge and watch out for 'that group.' The teacher's lounge can be the type of environment that just beats you down and makes you feel like the world is a terrible place. This is not always the case, but be aware that these black holes do exist from time to time. Also, every school has 'the group.' You might not notice the group at first because they are always looking for new members (specifically new teachers). Try to avoid this group at all costs.

9) - Having fun on the weekends is all good and is frankly healthy, but be sure to keep your image clean and professional. More employees get in trouble for the silly and not so smart things they do online than for most other reasons. Be safe and have a healthy career/life balance, but don't feel the need to take a picture of every second and then share those pictures with the world.

10) - Get connected and follow the #ntchat hasht