DEN Trend Report: 5/4/2016

DEN Trend Report FeaturedLooking to learn more about what’s trending in education?!? Here’s a recap of this week’s news. Let us know what you think about this week’s news in the comments below.

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Seeing Is More Than Believing (Scholastic)
By Diane Lauer
Consider these facts:
·         A national survey from Scholastic reveals eight of ten teachers say they need more quality professional development to be successful.
·         TNTP estimates that teachers spend the equivalent of 19 school days per year on training activities.
·         A national report on professional learning found fewer than 50 percent of teachers rated their professional development as useful.

By my calculations that’s an astronomical amount of time spent on potentially fruitless activities! Furthermore, it leaves the education system with an urgent problem—districts need to provide effective, collaborative professional development that supports teachers through the implementation stages and addresses the specific obstacles to changing classroom practice (Gulamhussein, 2013).

Teachers come together on Twitter for professional development and inspiration (Huffington Post)
Brad Spirrison
Although Nikki Vradenburg is the only K-1 teacher in her Bozeman, Montana-based school, her personal learning network includes fellow educators from across the region, country and globe.

“Our state is so spread out that teachers do not often have the opportunity to meet and work with other teachers,” said Vradenburg, who has spent 15 years in the classroom. “I use Twitter to share ideas and get information from other K-1 teachers. It keeps me from working on an island.”

Will giving greater student access to smartphones improve learning? (The Hechinger Report)
Paul Barnwell
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Walking the hallways between classes at Fern Creek High School in Louisville, Kentucky, I dodge students whose heads are turned down to glowing screens. Earbuds and brightly colored headphones are everywhere. And when I peer into classrooms, I see students tuning out their peers and teachers and focusing instead on YouTube and social media.

These are issues I deal with as an English teacher at Fern Creek. I have guidelines for cellphone and smartphone use, but it’s a constant struggle to keep kids engaged in lessons and off their phones. Even when I know I’ve created a well-structured and well-paced lesson plan, it seems as if no topic, debate or activity will ever trump the allure of the phone.

Even In Equal Societies Girls Have Higher Math Anxiety Than Boys (Huffington Post)
Rebecca Klein
Math anxiety — the phenomenon of having such negative emotions about math that one avoids the subject — affects females at higher rates than males, but only in developed nations, according to a new study.

The researchers from the University of Missouri, the University of California-Irvine and the University of Glasgow in Scotland found that in less developed countries all students — both male and female — have high levels of math anxiety.

Career Education Making a Comeback in US High Schools (Associated Press)
By Lisa Leff
There was an emergency in Room 14. Three girls injured, one with a broken thighbone and maybe something more serious. Snapping on sterile gloves and kneeling before the worst-off patient, two 17-year-olds went to work.

The pair cut open the girl’s pant leg, pinched her toes to see if she had feeling and fit her with a neck brace. Sweat flecked their faces by the time they had the patient — a perfectly healthy classmate — strapped to a back board 12 minutes later.

“You are acting like professionals and you haven’t even finished this class yet!” Gretchen Medel, an EMT who oversaw the mock exercise during the first responder course she teaches at a health care-focused high school east of San Francisco, told the students.

Top business leaders, 27 governors, urge Congress to boost computer science education (The Washington Post)
By Emma Brown
Leaders of dozens of the nation’s top businesses — from Apple and Facebook to Target, Walmart and AT&T — are calling on Congress to help provide computer science education in all K-12 schools, arguing that the United States needs far more students who are literate in the technologies that are transforming nearly every industry.

They worry that the United States could lose its competitive edge without significant efforts to boost computer science among the nation’s youth. A bipartisan coalition of 27 governors has joined the effort, saying they see teaching coding and programming as a way to draw middle-class jobs to their states, and dozens of school system superintendents and nonprofit leaders say they see computer science courses as essential for giving children the skills they’ll need to be successful in the modern economy.

Can More Money Fix America’s Schools? (NPR)
This winter, Jameria Miller would often run to her high school Spanish class, though not to get a good seat.

She wanted a good blanket.

“The cold is definitely a distraction,” Jameria says of her classroom’s uninsulated, metal walls.

Her teacher provided the blankets. First come, first served. Such is life in the William Penn School District in an inner-ring suburb of Philadelphia.

Watch 4 ed-tech trailblazers discuss disruptive change for the future (eSchool News)
by Meris Stansbury
“These are not infomercials,” is perhaps the best way to describe the reinvented interview lineup recently part of ASU GSV 2016’s Innovation Summit held in San Diego April 18-20, according to Casey Green, host of the interactive interviews and founding director of Campus Computing.

In what could be considered a remodel of the education conference to reflect the disruptive change occurring throughout education, ASU GSV’s Innovation Summit hosted a diverse mix of educators, corporate executives, public officials, education entrepreneurs, and foundation officials—and Green, in partnership with eSchool News, was there to capture the invaluable advice and thought leadership from some of the most notable attendees.


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