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Screen Time Debate Broadens With Research (eSchool News)
Screen time remains a hot-button issue, but classifying technology use guidelines to include active versus passive use, and how the technology is used, could help redefine traditional screen time guidelines as tech tools become increasingly integrated into early childhood education settings.
Putting Students in Charge to Close the Achievement Gap (The Hechinger Report)
Educators, researchers, and policymakers at the state and national level are keeping close tabs on Pittsfield, which has become an incubator for a critical experiment in school reform. The goal: a stronger connection between academic learning and the kind of real-world experience that advocates say can translate into postsecondary success.
Report: Teachers Better at Using Tech than Digital Native Students (T.H.E. Journal)
It’s time to give up the notion that “digital natives” are more tech savvy than their teachers. According to a recent study of middle school science students and teachers, the teachers tended to have greater technology use.
With this dramatic increase in online learning programs, school administrators struggle to determine if online learning is as productive as traditional face-to-face formatted classes. Research (Heterick and Twigg, 2003) suggests there is evidence that blended learning has the potential to be more effective and efficient when compared to a traditional classroom model.
Clearing the Way for Teacher Leadership (Education Week)
It is time for a bold brand of school leadership, for principals to collaborate with expert teachers who still teach regularly, but who also have the time, space, and incentives to develop their own ideas. Sound evidence backs this shift: In their research, economists Clement (Kirabo) Jackson and Elias Bruegmann have made a strong case for how teacher-led professional learning fuels student learning.
The aim of technology may be to make processes more efficient and to expand our horizons, but unless used appropriately, it can also make life unnecessarily complicated. In the classroom, teachers are more and more often expected to show innovative and progressive thinking by integrating technological solutions into their lessons — but starting out isn’t easy. From learning how to scour YouTube for clips to working out which photos and files can be used under fair copyright terms, while trying to keep up with standard workloads, invigorating lessons with technology can fall by the wayside.
Welcome to 13th Grade! (Slate)
I did not enjoy high school. Chances are you did not either. So imagine, somewhere midway through your sophomore year, if your parents and teachers casually informed you that you’d now “get” to attend the 13thgrade before leaving. If someone had pulled that on me in 1992, I would have set my room on fire.
Classroom Technology Can Make Learning More Dangerous, and That’s a Good Thing (The Hechinger Report)
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.
How Teachers Can Motivate Students of Any Age (KQED Mind Shift)
The same subtle interplay between motivation and rewards is also at work when it comes to education and learning, say Schwartz and Wrzesniewski. Rewarding students for getting their schoolwork done with prizes, snacks and even grades, as most schools do, can have the unintended effect of dismantling a child’s drive to learn for its own sake. The intrinsic rewards that come from exploring interests in depth, and mastering difficult concepts and problems, can be smothered by a reward system that focuses on grades, say, rather than understanding. It also signals what’s important to the teachers.
As the idea of universal preschool is gaining political momentum around the country, those who oppose it are on the attack, arguing that there is little or no lasting benefits — despite evidence to the contrary. In the following post, W. Steven Barnett, director of the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University, deconstructs a new Cato Institute policy brief by David J. Armor, professor emeritus of public policy at George Mason University, who also has a piece on washingtonpost.com arguing his position under the headline “We have no idea if universal preschool actually helps kids.” Actually, we do. Here’s what the research really says.
But why? What, exactly, is curiosity and how does it work? A study published in the October issue of the journal Neuron, suggests that the brain’s chemistry changes when we become curious, helping us better learn and retain information.
The Female Pioneers Who Changed STEM Forever (The Atlantic)
Many stories about pioneering women and minorities in science focus on their intrinsic determination to carry on in spite of setbacks. But there were two major external powers at work that helped propel Yalow and Elion. These elements—changes to the predominant, male-oriented culture around them and strong relationships with mentors across gender lines—are still highly relevant today, as women forge new paths in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields.
A New Push to Get Low-Income Students Through College (New York Times)
As data has made clear how many top-performing students from poor and middle-class families fall through the cracks, a range of institutions have set out to change the situation. Dozens of school districts, across 15 states, now help every high school junior take the SAT. Delaware’s governor has started a program to advise every college-qualified student from a modest background on the application process. The president of the College Board, which administers the SAT and has a decidedly mixed record on making college more accessible, says his top priority is college access.