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Yong Zhao "What Works May Hurt: Side Effects in Education" - YouTube
"Proponents of standardized testing and privatization in education have sought to prove their effectiveness in improving education with an abundance of evidence. These efforts, however, can have dangerous side effects, causing long-lasting damage to children, teachers, and schools. Yong Zhao, Foundation Distinguished Professor in the School of Education at the University of Kansas, will argue that education interventions are like medical products: They can have serious, sometimes detrimental, side effects while also providing cures. Using standardized testing and privatization as examples, Zhao, author of the internationally bestselling Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon? Why China Has the Best (and Worst) Education System in the World, will talk about his new book on why and how pursuing a narrow set of short-term outcomes causes irreparable harm in education."
yongzhao  2018  schools  schooling  pisa  education  testing  standardizedtesting  standardization  china  us  history  testscores  children  teaching  howweteach  howwelearn  sideeffects  privatization  tims  math  reading  confidence  assessment  economics  depression  diversity  entrepreneurship  japan  creativity  korea  vietnam  homogenization  intolerance  prosperity  tolerance  filtering  sorting  humans  meritocracy  effort  inheritance  numeracy  literacy  achievementgap  kindergarten  nclb  rttt  policy  data  homogeneity  selectivity  charterschools  centralization  decentralization  local  control  inequity  curriculum  autonomy  learning  memorization  directinstruction  instruction  poverty  outcomes  tfa  teachforamerica  finland  singapore  miltonfriedman  vouchers  resilience  growthmindset  motivation  psychology  research  positivepsychology  caroldweck  intrinsicmotivation  choice  neoliberalism  high-stakestesting 
6 weeks ago by robertogreco
Robbie McClintock in the Reflective Commons
"In this temper, one last hypothesis: in making the case for study, one does not denigrate the teacher's profession. To be sure, one has to speak out against exaggerating the power of instruction. But this criticism does not reject teaching; in place of a rejection, it is a quest for the mean, a celebration of the Greek sense for nothing too much, an attempt to balance an inflated version of the teacher's mission with a touch of reality. Yes—let us continue our effort to teach all as best we can, but let us do so with more humility, sobriety, and realism.

Instruction does not make the man. A teacher gains coercive power to control and mold his students only so long as they abdicate their autonomy and dignity. Such an abdication is not a good foundation for an educational system, especially since it is less common and continuous than many would seem to believe. The teacher's authority, be it as a model of excellence or of folly, is a quality his students project erotically upon him. It is an attraction or repulsion that results because students are forever suspending their interest in learning their lessons; instead they abstract, they reflect; they step back mentally and with curiously cocked heads they observe their didactic deliverer, musing with soaring hope, wonder, joy, resignation, boredom, cynicism, amusement, sad tears, despair, or cold resentment—Ecce homo!

A teacher may or may not cause learning, but he will always be an object of study. Hence the pedant so surely plays the fool. But hence too, the man teaching can often occasion achievements that far surpass his personal powers. Great teachers can be found conforming to every type—they are tall and short, shaggy and trim, timid and tough, loquacious and terse, casual and stern, clear and obscure. Great teachers are persons who repay study, and they repay study because they know with Montaigne, "My trade and my art is to live.""
teaching  learning  instruction  montaigne  1971  robbiemcclintock  lucan  training  study  howwelearn  howweteach  pedagogy  erasmus  seneca  plato 
december 2017 by robertogreco
Radical Eyes for Equity: Why Journalists Shouldn’t Write about Education | National Education Policy Center
"Over the past couple of days, I have watched almost universal praise for Dana Goldstein’s Why Kids Can’t Write*. Since those sharing this article have tended to be people and organizations that I respect, my own response has been tempered—even though I recognize in the overview of teaching writing the same problems with edujournalism I have been confronting for many years.

Other than Jim Horn’s challenge that Goldstein takes the “blame the teachers” route, many in the writing and teaching writing community have posted and shared this article without challenge, and several have added that Goldstein does a more than adequate job covering the landscape of teaching writing.

The irony here is that this article on the failures to teach students to write is a model for both typical mainstream journalism and everything wrong with mainstream journalism: the breezy recounting of a complex field within which the journalist has no real experience or expertise and the “both sides” coverage of complex issues that treats “sides” as somehow equally credible.

The key problems in this piece can be unpacked in a few claims made by Goldstein.

Early, Goldstein asserts (without any link to evidence):
Focusing on the fundamentals of grammar is one approach to teaching writing. But it’s by no means the dominant one. Many educators are concerned less with sentence-level mechanics than with helping students draw inspiration from their own lives and from literature.

What is profoundly garbled here is a conflating of what the field of teaching writing shows through research and what teachers actually do in their classrooms.

The reality of 2017 and how students are taught writing is best reflected in a comment by former NCTE president Lou LaBrant from 1947:
A brief consideration will indicate reasons for the considerable gap between the research currently available and the utilization of that research in school programs and methods. (p. 87)

Isolated grammar instruction has been shown to have almost no transfer into student writing, and George Hillocks (among others) detailed that traditional grammar exercises could even make student writing worse.

However, I invite Goldstein and others to visit classrooms and, better yet, simply read through the Connected Community’s Teaching and Learning Forum (NCTE) where weekly English teachers voice their continued commitment to “[f]ocusing on the fundamentals of grammar.”

I want to come back to this point with another example below, but next, Goldstein wanders into the fatal flaw of edujournalism with this splash of evidence:
Three-quarters of both 12th and 8th graders lack proficiency in writing, according to the most recent National Assessment of Educational Progress. And 40 percent of those who took the ACT writing exam in the high school class of 2016 lacked the reading and writing skills necessary to successfully complete a college-level English composition class, according to the company’s data.

Poor writing is nothing new, nor is concern about it. More than half of first-year students at Harvard failed an entrance exam in writing — in 1874. But the Common Core State Standards, now in use in more than two-thirds of the states, were supposed to change all this. By requiring students to learn three types of essay writing — argumentative, informational and narrative — the Core staked a claim for writing as central to the American curriculum. It represented a sea change after the era of No Child Left Behind, the 2002 federal law that largely overlooked writing in favor of reading comprehension assessed by standardized multiple-choice tests.

The relentless and uncritical faith in what standardized tests tell us is one of the great problems with edujournalism across all discussions of education, but with writing, this is particularly problematic since standardized testing of writing is universally horrible, lacking validity and itself providing the context for why the teaching of writing is in fact inadequate.

Again, Hillocks has carefully analyzed that one of the most negative influences on teaching students to write has been the high-stakes testing movement. Teachers and their students have become slaves to state-level and national tests of writing that make writing to prompts and conforming to anchor papers as well as rubrics supersede any authentic writing goals that were endorsed by important movements such as the National Writing Project (a key focus of Goldstein’s article).

As I noted earlier, the irony is that a professional journalist’s piece in the NYT fails to provide the sort of credible evidence that many would expect as essential to student writing."



"But, again, what is incredibly important about causality in Applebee and Langer’s analysis, and what is totally subsumed by Goldstein’s focus on teachers, is that the standards and high-stakes testing movement killed the path to authentic writing instruction begun by the National Writing Project in the late 1970s and early 1980s (I outline that phenomenon in a chapter on de-grading the writing classroom).

Teachers and their students are being held accountable for writing standards and high-stakes tests—and everything we know about teaching writing well be damned.

On balance, then, Goldstein fails to expose accurately why students can’t write by glossing over the field of teaching writing without the care and expertise that topic deserves and by depending on weak evidence at the exclusion of a wealth of evidence that powerfully addresses the exact problem she seeks to examine.

Writing and teaching writing are highly complex fields, but we have a great deal of research, we do know how to teach writing well, and the field of composition, like all vibrant fields, remains a living thing driving by debate and investigation.

If we need a simple statement, then, on why students can’t write, let me offer something to consider: Students can’t write well because teachers are blocked from teaching well, and thus, the wall that must be torn down so both can excel is the standards and high-stakes testing movement.

* Goldstein’s title alludes to one of the worst but also enduring works ever on literacy, Why Johnny Can’t Read. This book spurred the school-bashing movement and engrained some of the most negative attitudes about literacy still remaining in the U.S. See Revisiting Content and Direct Instruction."
education  journalism  writing  2017  reporting  danagoldstein  katewalsh  testing  standardizedtesting  reform  schoolreform  learning  teaching  howweteach  literacy  media  standardization  commoncore  data  assessment  pedagogy  lolabrant  1947  georgehillocks  ncte  nationalwritingproject  instruction  grammar  arthurapplebee  judithlanger  1970s  1980s  rudolfflesch  policy  plthomas  paulthomas  high-stakestesting 
august 2017 by robertogreco
Subjectivity, Rubrics, and Critical Pedagogy – OFFICE OF DIGITAL LEARNING
"In “Embracing Subjectivity,”مها بالي (Maha Bali) argues “that subjectivity is the human condition. Everything else that attempts to be objective or neutral is pretense. It is inauthentic. It is not even something I strive towards.”

And yet we try very hard to be objective in the way we evaluate student work. Objectivity is equated with fairness, and is a tool for efficiency.

For too long—really, since its inception—instructional design has been built upon silencing. Instructional design generally assumes that all students are duplicates of one another. Or, as Martha Burtis has said, traditional design assumes standardized features, creates standardized courses, with a goal of graduating standardized students.

Despite any stubborn claims to the contrary, instructional design assigns learners to a single seat, a single set of characteristics. One look at the LMS gradebook affirms this: students are rows in a spreadsheet. Even profile images of students are contained in all the same circles, lined up neatly along the side of a discussion forum: a raised hand, a unique identifier, signified. “This is your student,” the little picture tells the instructor. And now we know them—the LMS has personalized learning.

This design is for efficiency, a thing that online teachers—especially those who design their own courses—desperately need. Digital interfaces can feel alienating, disconcerting, and inherently chaotic already; but add to that the diversity of student bodies behind the screen (an adjunct at a community college may teach upwards of 200 students per term), and staying on top of lessons and homework and e-mail and discussions feels hopeless at worst, Sisyphean at best.

And yet this striving for efficiency enacts an erasure that is deeply problematic.

Rubrics

Sherri Spelic writes:
Inclusion is a construction project. Inclusion must be engineered. It is unlikely to “happen” on its own. Rather, those who hold the power of invitation must also consciously create the conditions for sincere engagement, where underrepresented voices receive necessary air time, where those contributing the necessary “diversity” are part of the planning process. Otherwise we recreate the very systems of habit we are seeking to avoid: the unintentional silencing of our “included” colleagues.

If we are to approach teaching from a critical pedagogical perspective, we must be conscious of the ways that “best practices” and other normal operations of education and classroom management censure and erase difference. We must also remain aware of the way in which traditional classroom management and instructional strategies have a nearly hegemonic hold on our imaginations. We see certain normalized teaching behaviors as the way learning happens, rather than as practices that were built to suit specific perspectives, institutional objectives, and responses to technology.

The rubric is one such practice that has become so automatic a part of teaching that, while its form is modified and critiqued, its existence rarely is. I have spoken with many teachers who use rubrics because:

• they make grading fair and balanced;
• they make grading easier;
• they give students clear information about what the instructor expects;
• they eliminate mystery, arbitrariness, and bias.

Teachers and students both advocate for rubrics. If they are not a loved part of teaching and learning, they are an expected part. But let’s look quickly at some of the reasons why:

Rubrics Make Grading Fair and Balanced

Rubrics may level the grading playing field, it’s true. All students are asked to walk through the same doorway to pass an assignment. However, that doorway—its height, width, shape, and the material from which it is made—was determined by the builder. مها بالي reminds us that, “Freire points out that every content choice we make needs to be questioned in terms of ‘who chooses the content…in favor of whom, against whom, in favor of what, against what.'” In other words, we need to inspect our own subjectivity—our own privilege to be arbitrary—when it comes to building rubrics. Can we create a rubric that transcends our subjective perspective on the material or work at hand? Can we create a rubric through which anyone—no matter their height, width, or shape—may pass?

Recently, collaborative rubrics are becoming a practice. Here, teachers and students sit down and design a rubric for an assignment together. This feels immediately more egalitarian. However, this practice is nonetheless founded on the assumption that 1. rubrics are necessary; 2. a rubric can be created which will encompass and account for the diversity of experience of all the students involved.

Rubrics Make Grading Easier

No objection here. Yes, rubrics make grading easier. And if easy grading is a top concern for our teaching practice, maybe rubrics are the best solution. Unless they’re not.

Rubrics (like grading and assessment) center authority on the teacher. Instead of the teacher filling the role of guide or counsel or collaborator, the rubric asks the teacher to be a judge. (Collaborative rubrics are no different, especially when students are asked by the teacher to collaborate with them on building one.) What if the problem to be solved is not whether grading should be easier, but whether grading should take the same form it always has? Self-assessment and reflection, framed by suggestions for what about their work to inspect, can offer students a far more productive kind of feedback than the quantifiable feedback of a rubric. And they also make grading easier.

Rubrics Give Clear Information about What the Instructor Expects

Again, no objection here. A well-written rubric will offer learners a framework within which to fit their work. However, even a warm, fuzzy, flexible rubric centers power and control on the instructor. Freire warned against the “banking model” of education; and in this case, the rubric becomes a pedagogical artifact that doesn’t just constrain and remove agency from the learner, it also demands that the instructor teach to its matrix. Build a rubric, build the expectations for learners in your classroom, and you also build your own practice.

The rubric doesn’t free anyone.

Rubrics Eliminate Mystery, Arbitrariness, and Bias

This is simply not true. No written work is without its nuance, complication, and mystery. Even the best technical manuals still leave us scratching our heads or calling the help desk. Rubrics raise questions; it is impossible to cover all the bases precisely because no two students are the same. That is the first and final failing of a rubric: no two students are the same, no two writing, thinking, or critical processes are the same; and yet the rubric requires that the product of these differences fall within a margin of homogeneity.

As regards arbitrariness and bias, if a human builds a rubric, it is arbitrary and biased.

Decolonizing Pedagogy

Critical Digital Pedagogy is a decolonizing effort. bell hooks quotes Samia Nehrez’s statement about decolonization at the opening of Black Looks: Race and Representation:

Decolonization … continues to be an act of confrontation with a hegemonic system of thought; it is hence a process of considerable historical and cultural liberation. As such, decolonization becomes the contestation of all dominant forms and structures, whether they be linguistic, discursive, or ideological. Moreover, decolonization comes to be understood as an act of exorcism for both the colonized and the colonizer.

For Critical Pedagogy, and Critical Digital Pedagogy, to work, we have to recognize the ways in which educational theory, especially that which establishes a hierarchy of power and knowledge, is oppressive for both teacher and student. To do this work, we have to be willing to inspect our assumptions about teaching and learning… which means leaving no stone unturned.

With regards to our immediate work, then, building assignments and such (but also building syllabi, curricula, assessments), we need to develop for ourselves a starting place. Perhaps in an unanticipated second-order move, Freire, who advocated for a problem-posing educational model, has posed a problem. A Critical Digital Pedagogy cannot profess best practices, cannot provide one-size-fits-all rubrics for its implementation, because it is itself a problem that’s been posed.

How do we confront the classrooms we learned in, our own expectations for education, learners’ acquiescence to (and seeming satisfaction with) instructor power, and re-model an education that enlists agency, decolonizes instructional practices, and also somehow meets the needs of the institution?"
seanmorris  rubrics  education  pedagogy  learning  mahabali  subjectivity  objectivity  2017  grades  grading  assessment  marthaburtis  sherrispelic  inclusion  inclusivity  diversity  criticalpedagogy  classroommanagment  fairness  paulofreire  coercion  collaboration  judgement  expectations  power  control  agency  howwelearn  homogeneity  samianehrez  race  represenation  decolonization  hierarchy  horizontality  onesizefitsall  acquiescence  instruction  syllabus  curriculum  syllabi 
august 2017 by robertogreco
The Art of Teaching
[via: "The slide deck for the workshop is superb. Such a great experience, so grateful to @tchoi8 & the other participants." https://twitter.com/dphiffer/status/879465006449909760

referencing also: "How I learn to build things. Something I created for @tchoi8’s Art of Learning workshop at @eyeofestival."
https://twitter.com/dphiffer/status/879366496354488322 ]

[video: "Absence is Presence with Distance"
https://vimeo.com/234330230

"As an artist, I work with technology and narrative – formal and relational projects. As an activist, I examine personal and political – practice and praxis. As an educator, I create feedback between plastic and elastic – learning and unlearning. My talk is set at the dawn. We are waiting for the sun to rise and we are full of questions. What’s the role of an artist as an activist now? How can we critique oppressive systems that create the sense of ‘others’ based on ability and legal status? What’s kind of pedagogy can we experiment through alternative schools? How can we create a community among those who have nothing in common? By creating art, we can give form to our intentions, contribute to making the world we want to live in.

( For a companion posting to this talk visit:

https://medium.com/@tchoi8/absence-is-presence-with-distance-c0712aada56c )]
taeyoonchoi  education  teaching  purpose  routine  ritual  silence  flow  conflict  communication  structure  nurture  authority  kojinkaratani  jean-lucnancy  community  howweteach  pedagogy  learning  howwelearn  eyeo2017  unlearning  curriculum  syllabus  sfpc  schoolforpoeticcomputation  art  craft  beauty  utility  generosity  sfsh  tcsnmy  lcproject  openstudioproject  classideas  cv  reciprocity  gifts  kant  discretion  instruction  discipline  johndewey  bmc  blackmountaincollege  justice  annialbers  stndardization  weaving  textiles  making  projectbasedlearning  materials  progress  progressive  unschooling  deschooling  control  experimentation  knowledge  fabrication  buckminsterfuller  constructivism  constructionism  georgehein  habit  freedom  democracy  paulofreire  judithbutler  sunaurataylor  walking  christinesunkim  uncertainty  representation  intervention  speculation  simulation  christopheralexander  objectives  outcomes  learningoutcomes  learningobjectives  remembering  creativity  evaluation  application  analysis  understanding  emancipation  allankaprow  judychicago  s 
june 2017 by robertogreco
What Babies Know About Physics and Foreign Languages - The New York Times
"Parents and policy makers have become obsessed with getting young children to learn more, faster. But the picture of early learning that drives them is exactly the opposite of the one that emerges from developmental science.

In the last 30 years, the United States has completed its transformation to an information economy. Knowledge is as important in the 21st century as capital was in the 19th, or land in the 18th. In the same 30 years, scientists have discovered that even very young children learn more than we once thought possible. Put those together and our preoccupation with making children learn is no surprise.

The trouble is that most people think learning is the sort of thing we do in school, and that parents should act like teachers — they should direct special lessons at children to produce particular kinds of knowledge or skill, with the help of how-to books and “parenting” apps. Studies prove that high-quality preschool helps children thrive. But policy makers and educators are still under pressure to justify their investments in early childhood education. They’ve reacted by replacing pretend corners and playground time with “school readiness” tests.

But in fact, schools are a very recent invention. Young children were learning thousands of years before we had ever even thought of schools. Children in foraging cultures learned by watching what the people around them did every day, and by playing with the tools they used. New studies show that even the youngest children’s brains are designed to learn from this simple observation and play in a remarkably sensitive way.

Young children today continue to learn best by watching the everyday things that grown-ups do, from cleaning the house to fixing a car. My grandson Augie, like most 4-year-olds, loves to watch me cook, and tries manfully to copy what I do. But how does he decide whether to just push the egg whites around the bowl, or to try to reproduce exactly the peculiar wristy beating action I learned from my own mother? How does he know that he should transfer the egg yolks to the flour bowl without accidentally dropping them in the whites, as Grandmom often does? How did he decide that green peas would be a good addition to a strawberry soufflé? (He was right, by the way.)

Experimental studies show that even the youngest children are naturally driven to imitate. Back in 1988, Andrew Meltzoff of the University of Washington did a study in which 14-month-olds saw an experimenter do something weird — she tapped her forehead on top of a box to make it light up. A week later, the babies came back to the lab and saw the box. Most of them immediately tried to tap their own foreheads on the box to make the light go on.

In 2002 Gyorgy Gergely, Harold Bekkering and Ildiko Kiraly did a different version of this study. Sometimes the experimenters’ arms were wrapped in a blanket when she tapped her forehead on the box. The babies seemed to figure out that when the experimenter’s arms were wrapped up, she couldn’t use her hands, and that must have been why she had used her head instead. So when it was the babies’ turn they took the easy route and tapped the box with their hands.

In 2013 David Buttelmann and his colleagues did yet another version. First, the babies heard the experimenter speak the same language they did or a different one. Then the experimenter tapped her head on the box. When she had spoken the same language, the babies were more likely to tap the box with their foreheads; when she spoke a different language they were more likely to use their hands.

In other words, babies don’t copy mindlessly — they take note of who you are and why you act.

Children will also use what they see to figure out intelligent new actions, like putting peas in a soufflé. For example, in our lab, Daphna Buchsbaum, some colleagues and I showed 4-year-olds a toy with lots of different handles and tabs. A grown-up said, “Hmm I wonder how this toy works” and performed nine complicated series of actions, like pulling one of the handles, shaking a tab and turning the toy over. Sometimes the toy played music and sometimes it didn’t.

The actions followed a pattern: Some of them were necessary to make the machine go and some were superfluous. For example, the children might see that the toy lit up only when the experimenter shook the tab and turned over the toy, no matter what else she did.

Then she asked the child to make the music play. The children analyzed the pattern of events, figured out which actions actually made the toy go, and immediately produced just those actions. They would just pull the tab and turn over the toy. They used their observations to create an intelligent new solution to the problem.

We take it for granted that young children “get into everything.” But new studies of “active learning” show that when children play with toys they are acting a lot like scientists doing experiments. Preschoolers prefer to play with the toys that will teach them the most, and they play with those toys in just the way that will give them the most information about how the world works.

In one recent experiment, for example, Aimee E. Stahl and Lisa Feigenson of Johns Hopkins showed 11-month-old babies a sort of magic trick. Either a ball appeared to pass through a solid wall, or a toy car appeared to roll off the end of a shelf and remain suspended in thin air. The babies apparently knew enough about everyday physics to be surprised by these strange events and paid a lot of attention to them.

Then the researchers gave the babies toys to play with. The babies who had seen the ball vanish through the wall banged it; those who’d seen the car hovering in thin air kept dropping it. It was as if they were testing to see if the ball really was solid, or if the toy car really did defy gravity.

It’s not just that young children don’t need to be taught in order to learn. In fact, studies show that explicit instruction, the sort of teaching that goes with school and “parenting,” can be limiting. When children think they are being taught, they are much more likely to simply reproduce what the adult does, instead of creating something new.

My lab tried a different version of the experiment with the complicated toy. This time, though, the experimenter acted like a teacher. She said, “I’m going to show you how my toy works,” instead of “I wonder how this toy works.” The children imitated exactly what she did, and didn’t come up with their own solutions.

The children seem to work out, quite rationally, that if a teacher shows them one particular way to do something, that must be the right technique, and there’s no point in trying something new. But as a result, the kind of teaching that comes with schools and “parenting” pushes children toward imitation and away from innovation.

There is a deep irony here. Parents and policy makers care about teaching because they recognize that learning is increasingly important in an information age. But the new information economy, as opposed to the older industrial one, demands more innovation and less imitation, more creativity and less conformity.

In fact, children’s naturally evolved learning techniques are better suited to that sort of challenge than the teaching methods of the past two centuries.

New research tells us scientifically what most preschool teachers have always known intuitively. If we want to encourage learning, innovation and creativity we should love our young children, take care of them, talk to them, let them play and let them watch what we do as we go about our everyday lives.

We don’t have to make children learn, we just have to let them learn."
alisongopnik  2016  children  learning  unschooling  deschooling  howwelearn  parenting  education  schools  scientists  science  experimentation  observation  davidbuttelmann  gyorgygergely  haroldbekkering  ildikokiraly  andrewmeltzoff  policy  imitation  howweteach  teaching  daphnabuchsbaum  babies  instruction  creativity 
august 2016 by robertogreco
dy/dan » Blog Archive » Your GPS Is Making You Dumber, and What That Means for Teaching
"Ann Shannon asks teachers to avoid “GPS-ing” their students:
When I talk about GPSing students in a mathematics class I am describing our tendency to tell students—step-by-step—how to arrive at the answer to a mathematics problem, just as a GPS device in a car tells us – step-by-step – how to arrive at some destination.

Shannon writes that when she used her GPS, “I usually arrived at my destination having learned little about my journey and with no overview of my entire route.”

True to the contested nature of education, we will now turn to someone who advocates exactly the opposite. Greg Ashman recommends novices learn new ideas and skills through explicit instruction, one facet of which is step-by-step worked examples. Ashman took up the GPS metaphor recently. He used his satellite navigation system in new environs and found himself able to re-create his route later without difficulty.

What can we do here? Shannon argues from intuition. Ashman’s study lacks a certain rigor. Luckily, researchers have actually studied what people learn and don’t learn when they use their GPS!

In a 2006 study, researchers compared two kinds of navigation. One set of participants used traditional, step-by-step GPS navigation to travel between two points in a zoo. Another group had to construct their route between those points using a map and then travel segments of that route from memory.

Afterwards, the researchers assessed the route knowledge and survey knowledge of their participants. Route knowledge helps people navigate between landmarks directly. Survey knowledge helps people understand spatial relationships between those landmarks and plan new routes. At the end of the study, the researchers found that map users had better survey knowledge than GPS users, which you might have expected, but map users outperformed the GPS users on measures of route knowledge as well.

So your GPS does an excellent job transporting you efficiently from one point to another, but a poor job helping you acquire the survey knowledge to understand the terrain and adapt to changes.

Similarly, our step-by-step instructions do an excellent job transporting students efficiently from a question to its answer, but a poor job helping them acquire the domain knowledge to understand the deep structure in a problem set and adapt old methods to new questions.

I’ll take that trade with my GPS, especially on a dull route that I travel infrequently, but that isn’t a good trade in the classroom.

The researchers explain their results from the perspective of active learning, arguing that travelers need to do something effortful and difficult while they learn in order to remember both route and survey knowledge. Designing learning for the right kind of effort and difficulty is one of the most interesting tasks in curriculum design. Too much effort and difficulty and you’ll see our travelers try to navigate a route without a GPS or a map. While blindfolded. But the GPS offers too little difficulty, with negative consequences for drivers and even worse ones for students."
education  teaching  gps  belesshelpful  instruction  math  mathematics  2016  annshannon  learning  howwelearn  navigation  attention  knowledge  curriculum  domainknowledge  problemsolving 
june 2016 by robertogreco
Databite No. 76: Neil Selwyn - live stream - YouTube
"Neil Selwyn presents (Dis)Connected Learning: the messy realities of digital schooling: In this Databite, Neil Selwyn will work through some emerging headline findings from a new three year study of digital technology use in Australian high schools. In particular Neil will highlight the ways in which schools’ actual uses of technology often contradict presumptions of ‘connected learning’, ‘digital education’ and the like. Instead Neil will consider ….

• how and why recent innovations such as maker culture, personalised learning and data-driven education are subsumed within more restrictive institutional ‘logics’;

• the tensions of ‘bring your own device’ and other permissive digital learning practices • how alternative and resistant forms of technology use by students tend to mitigate *against* educational engagement and/or learning gains;

• the ways in which digital technologies enhance (rather than disrupt) existing forms of advantage and privilege amongst groups of students;

• how the distributed nature of technology leadership and innovation throughout schools tends to restrict widespread institutional change and reform;

• the ambiguous role that digital technologies play in teachers’ work and the labor of teaching;

• the often surprising ways that technology seems to take hold throughout schools – echoing broader imperatives of accountability, surveillance and control.

The talk will provide plenty of scope to consider how technology use in schools might be ‘otherwise’, and alternate agendas to be pursued by educators, policymakers, technology developers and other stakeholders in the ed-tech space."

[via: "V interesting talk by Neil Selwyn on ed-tech and (dis)connected learning in school"
https://twitter.com/audreywatters/status/718900001271783424 ]

"the grammar of schooling"
neilselwyn  edtech  byod  via:audreywatters  logitics  technology  teaching  learning  howweteacher  power  mobile  phones  ipads  laptops  pedagogy  instruction  resistance  compliance  firewalls  making  makingdo  youth  schools  design  micromanagement  lms  application  sameoldsameold  efficiency  data  privacy  education  howweteach  regimentation  regulation  rules  flexibility  shininess  time  schooliness  assessment  engagement  evidence  resilience  knowledge  schedules  class  leadership  performativity  schooldesign  connectedlearning  surveillance  control  accountability  change  institutions  deschooling  quest2play  relationships  curriculum  monitoring  liberation  dml  liberatorytechnology  society  culture  ethnography  schooling  sorting  discipline 
april 2016 by robertogreco
The Little Professor: How to write an essay about teaching that will not be published in the NYT, Chronicle, IHE, or anywhere else
"1) There are many pedagogical techniques.

2) These techniques vary in usefulness, depending on the discipline, class size, role in the major/GE program, level of instruction, content, classroom layout, time of day, available technology, instructor's skill set, the university/college environment, and student demographics.  

3) Depending on changes to any or all of these variables, these techniques may or may not work from one course to the next.  They may or may not even work across two sections of the identical course taught during the same semester/quarter.

4) Not all techniques are suited to all instructors.  

5) The instructor's perception of a technique's efficacy may or may not match the students', and vice-versa.

6) The instructor's perception of a technique's "enlightening," "liberatory," or other X quality may or may not match the students', and vice-versa.  

7) Students may or may not agree with what pedagogical theorists think is helpful for them.

Short version: All instructors have to assemble their own pedagogical toolkit from the many resources out there and restock it (and recreate it) as necessary.  There is no one single way of being effective.  There is no magic spell (previous post on this blog to the contrary) that will make all pedagogical techniques effective all the time.  It is very difficult to generalize from one instructor's experience to the next.  One gets on with it."
teaching  education  learning  howweteach  howwelearn  pedagogy  2015  instruction  efficacy  highered  highereducation  via:audreywatters 
october 2015 by robertogreco
TEDxNYED - Mike Wesch - 03/06/10 - YouTube
"Dubbed "the explainer" by Wired magazine, Michael Wesch is a cultural anthropologist exploring the effects of new media on society and culture. After two years studying the implications of writing on a remote indigenous culture in the rain forest of Papua New Guinea, he has turned his attention to the effects of social media and digital technology on global society."
michaelwesch  2010  papuanewguinea  anthropology  culture  cultureshock  socialmedia  seeinglikeastate  measurement  recodkeeping  relationships  census  society  conflictresolution  law  legal  media  systemsthinking  themediumisthemessage  change  internet  web  online  freedom  hope  surveillance  control  transparency  deception  massdistraction  participation  participatory  learning  howwelearn  howweteach  pedagogy  instruction  authority  obedience  compliance  collaboration  highered  highereducation  themachineisus/ingus  deschooling  unschooling  avisionofstudentstoday  digitalethnography 
september 2015 by robertogreco
Seven Pathways
"Our pathways are two things: Commitments for our professional learning - how will we learn to be contemporary educators - and promises to our students - what kind of educational environment are we building.

The Seven Pathways

Choice and Comfort

It is our responsibility to provide every learner with real learning space choices based on task-based and physical comfort-based needs, which not only allow their cognitive energy to be focused on learning but helps students to develop the contemporary skills needed to alter and use spaces to initiate and accomplish collaborative and individual work. This includes the availability of multiple communication tools and contemporary technologies as well as assisting students in understanding and creating a variety of learning products which demonstrate student choices in curriculum, task, technologies, and media.

Instructional Tolerance

We will all support student learning environments where active, engaged learners routinely choose from a variety of learning spaces, collaborative and individual activities, and technology tools, including their own personal devices. Our environments will create student opportunities to learn best practices essential to entering contemporary learning and work environments and which enable students to sustain an open mindset and skillset in the use of evolving technology tools. These environments, pre-K through 12, will allow negotiated environmental rules which include and improve student individual and community decision-making.

Universal Design for Learning/Individualization of Learning

No child within the Albemarle County Public Schools should need a label or prescription in order to access the tools of learning or environments they need. Within the constraints of other laws (in particular, copyright) we will offer alternative representations of information, multiple tools, and a variety of instructional strategies to provide access for all learners to acquire lifelong learning competencies and the knowledge and skills specified in curricular standards. We will create classroom cultures that fully embrace differentiation of instruction, student work, and assessment based upon individual learners’ needs and capabilities. We will apply contemporary learning science to create accessible entry points for all students in our learning environments; and which support students in learning how to make technology choices to overcome disabilities and inabilities, and to leverage preferences and capabilities.

Maker-Infused Curriculum

Across our School Division we are committed to student construction of knowledge and skills through the processes of imagining, creating, designing, building, engineering, evaluating and communicating learning. We believe that it is essential that our students learn how to be "Makers" in all phases of their lives, rather than just consumers. We are committed to "Making" as "how we learn," and not as an "extra," and we understand that both "Learning to Make" and "Making to Learn" are essential in every day classroom practice.

Project/Problem/Passion-Based Learning

All Albemarle County Public School students will have consistent learning opportunities across the curriculum to construct knowledge and understanding through responses to authentic problems; to create projects that demonstrate higher order thinking and knowledge acquisition, and to pursue personal interests by making real choices in project forms and media, even when those choices might lie beyond pre-determined expectations. Students will always be encouraged in the use of differentiated pathways as ways to both learn and demonstrate lifelong learning competencies.

Interactive Technologies

In every classroom, every day, we strive to create open learning environments in which students make individual choices as they use technologies to develop classroom work and assignments, and to provide opportunities for our students to actively make tech-based product investigation and choice as part of their study of curriculum. Our students will, regularly during instructional time, use those contemporary technologies (both school provided and individually owned) interact with external experts and students in other communities in order to build learner competencies in the use of the technologies of this century for information access and communication.

Connectivity

We will continuously develop and use activities that engage students in learning networks, including asynchronous and synchronous communication with external experts, access to digital content including primary sources, and interaction with other learners locally and globally who represent a variety of demographically diverse communities. We will, every day, promote and value collaborative projects and knowledge development representative of principles of global and digital literacy and effective, and which demonstrate appropriate global, national, community, and digital citizenship."
albermarleschooldistrict  irasocol  pammoran  technology  connectivity  projectbasedlearning  passionbasedlearning  making  mekers  curriculum  pathways  interaction  universldesign  learning  individualization  howweteach  howwelearn  teaching  education  schools  tolerance  instruction  choice  comfort  toolbelttheory  schooldesign  communication  pbl 
march 2015 by robertogreco
Our Obsession in American Education With Ranking People - Pacific Standard: The Science of Society
"ONE OF THE KEY findings of the value-added study published by Raj Chetty and his colleagues—a finding rarely mentioned in the media—was that out-of-school factors, such as family income and neighborhood poverty, currently have a far greater effect on the achievement gap than do differences in teacher quality between schools (which, the researchers reported, accounts for only seven percent of the current gap). They also acknowledged that their study, like almost every other major value-added study ever conducted, took place in a low-stakes setting—that is, teachers were not being evaluated or paid according to their students’ test scores. In a higher-stakes setting, they warned, educators might teach to the test, or even cheat, in ways that would cause test scores to lose their predictive power. Nonetheless, they were hopeful: If the top value-added teachers in the country could somehow be moved systematically to the lowest-performing schools, they theorized, perhaps three-quarters of the current test-score achievement gap could be closed. That theory is almost impossible to test, however, given the unattractive working conditions in many low-income schools. When a Department of Education/Mathematica Policy Research trial offered more than 1,000 high-value-added teachers $20,000 to transfer to a poorer school, less than a quarter chose to apply. Inconveniently, too, those who did transfer produced test-score gains among elementary school students but not among middle schoolers—a reminder that teachers who succeed in one environment will not always succeed in another.

Contemporary education researchers, among them Andrew Butler and John Hattie, have written extensively on the most academically powerful uses of testing. And when it comes to gathering information about how teachers should actually teach, Butler and Hattie’s work suggests that value-added measurement, as useful as it is in other ways, is mostly beside the point. That’s because it’s based on standardized state tests given toward the end of the school year. Spending a lot of time preparing for those tests turns out to be counter-productive for learning. Research shows that kids learn best when classroom teaching is geared not toward high-stakes year-end tests, but toward low-stakes, unit-level quizzes, created and graded by classroom teachers who use the results to refine their instruction throughout the year. The soundest use of testing, in other words, is as an instrument to figure out what children do and do not know, so that we can teach them better along the way.

Any achievement testing attached to high stakes for educators invites teaching to the test, which often narrows the curriculum in counter-productive ways. Because of that, Jonah Rockoff, who co-authored the value-added study with Raj Chetty, suggests that we need to come up with new ways to measure teachers’ influence on students, perhaps by studying how teachers affect students’ behavior, attendance, and GPA. “Test scores are limited,” Rockoff says, “not just in their power and accuracy, but in the scope of what we want teachers and schools to be teaching our kids. … There’s not just one thing we care about our kids learning. We’re going to measure how kids do on socio-cognitive outcomes, and reward teachers on that, too.”

But is it really fair to judge teachers on their students’ attendance, given the role that, say, parenting and health play? Should a teacher be punished if a boy in her homeroom gets into a fistfight during recess? These are the kinds of questions we’ll need to grapple with as we experiment with new kinds of education science. And as we do, we’ll need to keep in mind the much bigger question suggested by the history of failed American school reforms: Should we continue to devote our limited political, financial, and human resources to measuring the performance of students and teachers, or should we devote those resources to improving instruction itself?"
standardizedtesting  testing  education  policy  history  phrenology  iq  2015  danagoldstein  nclb  anationtrisk  johnfriedman  jonahrockoff  rajchetty  economics  valueadded  assessment  instruction  teaching  learning  howweteach  howwelearn  schools  rankings  measurement  sat  robertrosenthal  lenorejacobson  tedbell  georgewbush  politics  johnhattie  andrewbutler  sorting 
january 2015 by robertogreco
CURMUDGUCATION: Students Travel in Packs
"We don't talk about this much, but one more problem with the reformster agenda is that it takes each student as an isolated unit, a human being with no context. The picture of "individualized" education often portrayed by folks like Knewton (the mad number crunching scientists at Pearson) is that we feed Pat into the Giant Data Bank and the GDB spits out Chris a student that the magic formulas claim is just like Pat. "Here's how Chris learned this stuff," says the magical computer. "Just teach Pat the same way."

This is an odd approach for many reasons, but one of the oddest reasons is that it assumes that Pat and Chris are discrete isolated student units with no real context or social setting.

In reformsterland, people are disconnected and no relationships exist. Teachers and students interact in a Strictly Business manner-- teachers deliver instruction and students respond to it by becoming capable enough to score well on standardized tests. But at least teachers and students interact in some manner; in reformsterland, students do not interact with other students at all. The relationships they form, the culture that they create in their schools-- none of this actually exists. In reformsterland, students travel in isolated bubbles, unaffected by any of the other bubbles around them.

It's ironic, because in reformsterland every one of those bubbles contains an identical data generation unit (formerly known as human children). One size fits them all, and I suppose it doesn't matter which one of the other bubbles is their "friend" because they're all interchangeable, and relationships don't affect anything anyway.

It's just one more way in which reformsterland does not resemble the real world. Because in the real world, students travel in packs, and the packs are interesting and vibrant and affecting because every person brings something unique to the table. And the possible combinations of all these humans are infinite in number, staggering in complexity, and endless in influence, whether reformsters want to recognize their existence or not."
education  policy  edreform  onesixefitsall  standardization  school  instruction  standards  individualization  relationships  howweteach  howwelearn  learning  teaching  business  standardizedtests  data  petergreene  2014 
september 2014 by robertogreco
Interface Writing: Code for Humans | Nicole Fenton
"What actions can people take? What are you asking them to do?
What are you allowing them to do? What are the rules and dead-ends?
What sort of language do you use to guide people?"

Whatever you’re building, you need to think about the content in the database and the instructions around it. I call those things interface writing. Some people call them microcopy since they’re usually short."



"With clear instructions and a warm tone, you can help them find what they need quickly, without having to ask someone for help."



"When you’re writing for the web, you’re having the same sort of conversation with your readers. You’re telling them to do something or asking them a question. Above all, you want it to make sense and feel natural to them.

Our strings have to be useful—not funny—so we need to do the extra work of figuring out what our readers need. That makes it easier to show people around, ask for more of their time, or get them to take a particular action."



"From a high level, these are my goals when I’m writing strings:

• Be clear.
• Be kind.
• Be careful.
• Be honest.

Focus on the reader’s needs. Think about the implications of what you’re asking for. Be honest about what you’re doing with the data. That’s extremely important."



"Talk to them, not at them. Use positive language and avoid yammering on about your company or your interface. The system isn’t the point."



"Don’t assume you’re the core audience. Most of the time, we’re not designing for ourselves. Think about the universe of people out there. Word choice is extremely important when you’re trying to grow.

Avoid jargon and catchphrases. Cut the bullshit. You don’t have to be hip or clever, but you do have to be nice.

Don’t assume dichotomies or binaries will do the trick. Not everything will fit into a boolean. Real life is complicated. As an example, some people are neither male nor female. They’re still people and they deserve our consideration.

Don’t interrupt. Keep things focused and make sure this is the best time to deliver this message."

[video here: https://vimeo.com/103526258 ]
interface  writing  nicolefenton  2014  tone  instruction  conversation  listening  howweteach  teaching  howto  tutorials  microcopy  interfacewriting  writingfortheweb 
august 2014 by robertogreco
Towards a More Mindful Practice | Art Museum Teaching
"Where is the family in family programs?

First, what is billed as a family program often turns out to be a program for kids but the parents/caregivers have to stay with them. Adults are rarely engaged in a meaningful way and connections within the social group are neither acknowledged nor fostered. For example, when a family program facilitator takes families into a gallery, they often sit the children on the floor and the adults (either because they don’t really know what else to do or because they don’t want to sit on the floor) stand around in a semi-circle behind the kids. For me, this is a clear example of an invisible pedagogy. We are teaching adults that this experience is for kids and adults need not participate. When I talk with family program educators, they usually say they want adults to engage in the program. Sometimes they go so far as to imply that it’s the fault of the parents, as in “They won’t get off their cell phones.” Having been one of those adults at a family program who dearly wanted some sort of diversion and thought often about pulling out my phone, I ask, “What are we offering to the adults that is more interesting than their mobile devices?”

A host of questions emerge for me that I would love some e-conversation about: Why do we repeat this model over and over again? Does our training push us towards a developmental model where we know only how to program towards children or adults, but not both at the same time? Is the skill of encouraging parent child engagement one that is better fostered through other disciplines and thus should we be looking at best practices in other disciplines such as social work or psychology?

Why do we use a school model of discussion and interaction in family programs?

I’ve watched many well-meaning facilitators sit or stand in front of a work of art and make eye contact with the children almost exclusively. Not only does this tell parents to stand back but children quickly figure out that they are supposed to look at the facilitator and most of them conform. Children are asked questions and they raise their hand to answer, just like in school. Families tend to have fluid conversations, a lot of give and take, and while we might remind a child to not interrupt we rarely ask our children to raise their hands when having a conversation around the family dinner table. Why then do we default to the school model in the museum experience?

Even more frustrating is that this school model draws attention away from the objects and instead focuses attention on the educator. I’ve taken time-lapse photos and the average time spent looking at the art when sitting in this configuration is about 2-3 seconds – total, unless of course a child is not paying attention to the facilitator and looks at the art anyway.

How does the experience leverage the uniqueness of the museum?

The most important issue for me is that too many of the activities we offer in family programs don’t maximize the value of what the museum has to offer.

Engaging people of all ages in hands-on activities in the galleries can be a wonderful way to guide them into a deeper appreciation of the artwork. Yet, I’m concerned because too often the activities don’t connect very well with the artwork or the way the artist worked. I keep asking, “Why is this activity happening in the museum?” Most of what I see could be done anywhere and, sometimes, would be more effective without the visual distraction and noise of the gallery. I wonder, do we continue to under-maximize the uniqueness of the museum because we aren’t clear on what that is? Or do we operate on the assumption that families aren’t able to grasp it?

What will be my focus at the Gardner Museum this summer?

As I continued to think about these issues I realized I was focusing only on how the educators planned and implemented programs. I began to wonder if I, too, have gone on autopilot. I know what kind of family experiences I’d like to see in the museum but, as I frequently warn my colleagues, using ourselves as a representative for the general visitor is not very smart. So, during the month of July I’ve invited families to come to the Gardner and allow me to accompany them.

I won’t have an agenda, lesson plan, protocol, notebook, or audio recorder and I plan to allow both the “educator me” and “evaluator me” to recede to the background. I want to explore facilitating “with” families rather than “for” them. I want to pay more attention to invisible pedagogies – both how the physical space itself instructs and how actions from people (me included) communicate behaviors and attitudes. I will invite the families to begin where they want to. I will have a few things with me, such as a flashlight for dark corners, some sketching materials, and magnifying glasses but I may not ever pull them out. I’m imagining, for instance, that as conversations evolve the need for things like that magnifying glass will naturally arise and I will, much like Mary Poppins, slide it out and hand it to the adults so they can facilitate the experience for their family.

Admittedly I’ve had moments of near panic just thinking about the unstructured quality of this experience. I have no idea what will happen and have to trust that if I stay mindful, sensitive, and observant that I will notice new things and be filled with wonder. I’ve invited local museum educators to come hang out with me. They can’t bring notebooks either and they have to agree to talk with me afterwards and write up a reflection of their experience."
education  museums  2014  mariannaadams  teaching  informal  unstructured  pedaogy  invisiblepedagogies  participatory  conversation  collaboration  collaborative  mindfulness  instructivism  instruction  howwelearn  howweteach  families  children  arteducation  exploration 
july 2014 by robertogreco
The education question we should be asking
"Now if you regularly read education studies, you won’t be surprised to learn that the authors of this one never questioned, or even bothered to defend, the value of the science lessons they used — whether they were developmentally appropriate or presented effectively, whether they involved anything more than reading a list of facts or were likely to hold any interest for 5-year-olds.  Nor did the researchers vouch for the quality of the assessment.  Whatever raises kids’ scores (on any test, and of any material) was simply assumed to be a good thing, and anything that lowers scores is bad.

Hence the authors’ concern that children tend to be “distracted by the visual environment.”  (Translation:  They may attend to something in the room other than the facts an adult decided to transmit to them.)  And hence my friend’s wry reductio ad absurdum response.

Alas, “sparse” classrooms had their own problems. There, we’re told, children “were more likely to be distracted by themselves or by peers.”  Even if we strip everything off the walls, those pesky kids will still engage in instructionally useless behaviors like interacting with one another or thinking about things that interest them.  The researchers referred to the latter (thinking) as being “distracted by themselves.”  Mark that phrase as the latest illustration of the principle that, in the field of education, satire has become obsolete.

 Our attention seems to be fixed relentlessly on the means by which to get students to accomplish something.  We remain undistracted by anything to do with ends — what it is they’re supposed to accomplish, and whether it’s really valuable.  Perhaps that’s why schools of education typically require “methods” classes but not goals classes.  In the latter, students might be invited to read this study and ask whether a child could reasonably regard the lesson as a distraction (from her desire to think, talk, or look at a cool drawing on the wall).  Other students might object on the grounds that it’s a teacher’s job to decide what students ought to do and to maximize their “time on task.”  But such conversations — Time on what task?  Why is it being taught?  Who gets to decide? — are shut down before they begin when all we talk about (in ed. schools, in journals, in professional development sessions) is how to maximize time on whatever is assigned.[2]"
alfiekohn  attention  curriculum  distraction  learning  children  thewhy  2014  instruction  schools  education  edreform 
june 2014 by robertogreco
Education Outrage: The top ten mistakes in education. Twenty years later.
"Twenty years have passed. Surely my writing about this and other’s re-posting and writing about this have had a big effect on education. Let’s look at them one by one:

Mistake #1: Schools act as if learning can be disassociated from doing.
Yes. Things have changed. They are worse. The latest horror is MOOCs which is just more talking and insists on the idea the education means knowledge transfer and that knowledge can be acquired by listening.

Mistake #2: Schools believe they have the job of assessment as part of their natural role
Yes. Things have really changed here. They are much worse. Before there were just a lots of bad tests. Now there are tests at every grade. Tests to get ready for the test. And now, teacher evaluations based on the tests.

Mistake #3: Schools believe they have an obligation to create standard curricula.
Wow! This one has gotten even worse than the others. Now it isn’t schools that create standard curricula it is Bill Gates, Common Core, the US Department of Education and every state Department of Education. We sure fixed that one.

Mistake #4: Teachers believe they ought to tell students what they think it is important to know.
I am not sure about this one. I don’t think teachers think much of anything anymore other than how to survive in a system where they are not valued and teaching doesn’t matter except with respect to test scores.

Mistake #5: Schools believe instruction can be independent of motivation for actual use.
No change. Still no use for algebra, physics formulae, random knowledge about history or literature. No use for anything taught in school actually after reading, writing, and arithmetic.

Mistake #6: Schools believe studying is an important part of learning.
No change.

Mistake #7: Schools believe that grading according to age group is an intrinsic part of the organization of a school.
No change.

Mistake #8: Schools believe children will accomplish things only by having grades to strive for.
No change.

Mistake #9: Schools believe discipline is an inherent part of learning.
Perhaps this has changed. There seems to be a lot less discipline.

Mistake #10: Schools believe students have a basic interest in learning whatever it is schools decide to teach to them.
Nah. No one believes that anymore.

I am not only one loudly talking into the wind. There are lots of people who agree with me and say thing similar to what I say.
Is there anyone listening?

Sure. Parents are noticing how stupid the test are and how stupid Common Core is. The kids are noticing, now more than ever. The teachers are upset.

Is anyone listening to them? No. There is big money at stake in keeping things as they are.

Well, that the report from 20 years on the front lines. We shall not retreat, but victory looks to be far away."
via:audreywatters  education  testing  standardizedtesting  2014  1994  learning  teaching  howweteach  howwelearn  commoncore  grades  grading  motivation  assessment  schools  mooc  moocs  instruction  rogerschank 
january 2014 by robertogreco
The Testing Obsession Widens the Gap - Bridging Differences - Education Week
"Once one concludes, as I did through 50 years of close observation, that the tests are measuring something other than "reading" skill—decoding and restating—our problem looks different. Yes, E.D. Hirsch is right: You can't measure reading qua reading. I not merely observed but ran little mini-focus groups to understand why some kids got "right" answers and others "wrong" ones. It had little to do with their reading skill."



"It's easier to guess the right answer if your perspective is similar to what the test-makers expect it to be, just as their forebears did when they invented IQ tests a century ago. We don't all have the same "common experience" upon which the tests are normed. Their "wrong" answers, in fact, were often far more logical and sensible than the "right" ones.

These facts also remind me of why teachers can be more powerful than TV or online schools if they use their time to build authentic relationships with their students—and join with rather than dictate to them. It's for the same reason that studies of how children learn their native language demonstrate that, even if kids spend far more time listening to TV than listening to the talk of adults at home, they will speak like their families. Schools must become second homes."



"Progressive preschools never rejected a rich reading culture or knowing facts as "developmentally inappropriate." They just didn't think you needed direct instruction to kick in this love of reading, of hobbies, of facts, of curiosity, of indefatigable and repetitive practice in subjects and skills they were fascinated by. The kids come to us with curiosity—and our job is to extend it. Progressives understood that the playful mindset that serious learning depends on is too often silenced in school. For example, I frequently step into classrooms where well-meaning teachers are doing as they are told: stopping at the end of every paragraph or page to ask didactic questions that turn great stories into "lessons" with "objectives" that can be "measured." That's hardly likely to whet children's appetite for "more, more."

Even "guided" discussions—another fad—at best lead the more teacher-pleasing kids to try to read what the teacher wants them to say, rather than discuss, argue, and maybe act out their own interpretations for each other. And indeed, you are also right that it was in low-poverty and "minority" schools like those I got to know so well in Chicago in the 1950s and 60s that the least "progressive" strategies have always been applied—even by educators who thought of themselves as "progressives." (Richer kids are sometimes getting some of this too now, under pressure to do well on tests.)

They've forgotten. Children are BORN experts at learning. Poor and rich. They couldn't survive a week if they weren't born intellectuals. They experiment over and over, until they find a pattern that "works." And then they find out that it's more complicated than that and start over again! In the first three years of life they are learning at a pace we never again achieve—unless we are, as you note, under so much stress and physical deprivation not typical of most of "the poor." Statistically, of course, it's more likely to impact those with the fewest resources—as you acknowledged.

But, Mike, it cannot be fixed by the common core. It can only be fixed by teachers who know how to join the "common core" of the children and the families they first meet, when children are 4 or 5, and use it wisely and creatively ever after."



"It is our job to use our precious public funds to increase the odds that democracy won't have to be reinvented. If the poor were less poor, their schools less poor, and bigotry less a part of our culture—it would be easier. But still not inevitable."

[via: http://www.tuttlesvc.org/2013/05/the-progressive-reading-instruction.html ]
reading  education  deborahmeier  2013  teaching  progressive  progressiveeducation  objectives  testing  commoncore  democracy  canon  learning  children  poverty  curiosity  instruction  guideddiscussions  perspective  howwelearn  howweteach 
may 2013 by robertogreco
A Late Night Chat on Assessment · willrich45 · Storify
"Proving that you can have an interesting, meaningful, civil chat on Twitter about an important topic. Next time, I hope these guys have it while I'm awake."
interruption  instruction  conversation  constuctivism  lcproject  tcsnmy  lisanielsen  heidiechternacht  standardizedtesting  schools  teaching  learning  reflection  roblyons  derekbraman  joebower  garystager  johnspencer  maryannreilly  reggioemilia  deschooling  2012  unschooling  education  willrichardson  storify  assessment 
april 2012 by robertogreco
Small School in The Big Apple - YouTube
"Urban Academy has just 150 students and is one of six small schools in the Julia Richmond complex, New York. Ann Cook, co-director, explains how it operates and what they do to appeal to young people."
curriculum  instruction  relationships  firstnamebasis  anncook  engagement  smallschools  learning  education  schools  nyc  urbanacademy 
january 2012 by robertogreco
The American Crawl : Not Quite EverythingEverything: Why Our Approach to Music Education is Kinda Awful
"And all of this is to prelude a simple question: Why did I have to wait so long for this opportunity? While I was already a music “fan” and immersed in family practices that included going to musical performances, singing at family gatherings, and enthusiastically drumming on car dashboards, it really wasn’t until college that I was able to see music as a source of study, as a place to connect passion with purpose, a place to learn new ways of listening…

we leave music instruction into the hands of people who are inclined on the production side of things (and even then in only limited ways such as marching bands and big band numbers). Why do we wait to make the study of music, its history, and the cultural meaning of it an option only for those students that eventually matriculate into universities?"
anterogarcia  2011  ofwgkta  music  education  teaching  appreciation  listening  popularculture  oddfuture  culture  culturalstudies  semiotics  engagement  classideas  instruction  academics 
december 2011 by robertogreco
Udemy - Academy of You | Find and Create Online Courses
"Udemy enables anyone to take and build courses online. Our goal is to disrupt and democratize education by enabling anyone to learn from the world's experts."
education  learning  teaching  online  instruction  onlinelearning  web  internet  udemy 
july 2011 by robertogreco
SpeEdChange: Pygmalion
"There has always been a tension in the US between expressed ideal of multi-ethnic, multi-cultural society - you know…and the reality on the political ground, which is that "our leadership" would find things "much easier" if we were all "white, protestant, straight, northern Europeans."

Actually not.

They don't want that. If everyone were "the same" the "leadership class" would not know at-a-glance who belonged and who did not. So, what they want is for everyone "else" to waste enormous effort trying to be like them, while they race comfortably ahead…

You know, there's a reason great universities crave diversity in their student bodies (exclude Harvard, Princeton, & Penn from that group because…social class finishing schools): It is because, education, like societies, work best - makes the greatest strides - when there is neither "Common Core Knowledge" nor "Common Culture."…

We don't need E.D. Hirsch, Jr, Bill Gates, and Arne Duncan making Eliza Doolittle's out of us."
commoncore  irasocol  pygmalion  2011  diversity  edhirsch  kipp  colonialism  deschooling  unschooling  schooliness  properness  identity  whiteness  history  literature  universities  colleges  learning  education  instruction  decolonization  billgates  arneduncan  elizadoolittle  georgebernardshaw  class  wealth  power  control  cities  homogeneity  language  speech  fordenglishschool 
july 2011 by robertogreco
Don’t show, don’t tell? - MIT News Office
"Cognitive scientists find that when teaching young children, there is a trade-off between direct instruction and independent exploration."
education  learning  teaching  psychology  pedagogy  instruction  inquiry  inquiry-basedlearning  play  cognition  cognitivesciences  children  humility  patience  howwelearn  howweteach  tcsnmy  toshare  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  schools  schooliness  2011  mit 
july 2011 by robertogreco
SpeEdChange: The art of seeing
"we must stop being blinded by our incredibly limited view of "science." Rather, we must learn to see again, to see widely & complexly. To build our own deep maps of the people, places, & experiences before us. You cannot describe the experience of a middle school English class w/out knowing what happened in the corridor before class began, or what happened the night before at home. You cannot describe the work coming out of a 10th grade math class w/out understanding the full experience of students and their parents with mathematics to that point…And you cannot tell me about the "performance" of any school if you have not deep-mapped it to include a million data points—most of which cannot be charted or averaged or statistically normed.

Human observation & deep mapping are hard, but hardly impossible. These are skills which we all had before school began, and which we must recapture. We'll start by putting down our checklists…& in the next post, we will start to practice…"
seeing  observation  observing  deepmapping  learning  education  unschooling  deschooling  science  progressive  administration  management  tcsnmy  lcproject  schools  irasocol  nclb  billgates  gatesfoundation  arneduncan  rttt  checklists  adhd  adhdvision  pammoran  salkhan  jebbush  matthewkugn  robertmarzano  instruction  training  gamechanging  salmankhan 
june 2011 by robertogreco
Children learning by themselves and progressive inquiry | FLOSSE Posse
"…children learn even better if they have a “granny figure” supporting them…

…good teachers is a bit like a granny: supports students, is interesting in their work and praise them. I think, however, even better teachers than a random granny is an expert of a domain acting the granny way. An excellent expert-teachers (can be a granny, too) is able to guide pupils in their inquiry by challenging their thinking and by providing new perspectives to the students inquiry. The point is to guide, not to instruct.

The progressive inquiry learning, a pedagogical model that has been widely studied, experimented and partly took in use in Finland, is close to Mitra’s way of teaching (I call it teaching, although there is very little teaching in a traditional sense). In my talk in Ankra I explained how progressive inquiry learning works and how pupils and students in all levels of education—from kindergartens to universities—can be guided to do research."

[Examples follow]

[via: http://www.downes.ca/post/55666/ ]
teemuleinonen  progressiveinquiry  tcsnmy  learning  education  pedagogy  teaching  student-centered  studentdirected  learner-centered  learner-ledcommunities  sugatamitra  grandmothers  guideontheside  2011  via:steelemaley  inquiry  inquiry-basedlearning  unschooling  deschooling  mentoring  modeling  instruction  guidance  lcproject  cv  howwelearn  howwework  informallearning  autodidacts  outdoctrination  research  toshare  unconferences  openstudio  openworkshops  prototyping 
june 2011 by robertogreco
The Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education
"We prepare K-12 school systems and their communities to educate for a sustainable future by inspiring educators and engaging students through meaningful content and learner-centered instruction."
education  sustainability  environment  via:steelemaley  cloud  learner-centered  instruction  content  schools  lcproject  curriculum  community  communities 
april 2011 by robertogreco
Born to Learn ~ You are Born to Learn
"Born to learn is a fun, thought-provoking series of animations that illustrate ground-breaking new discoveries about how humans learn."

"The findings from recent research have started to clarify the essential distinction between “learning” and “being taught”. With this better understanding (from the 1980s onwards) of how children actually learn we are able to see how their innate curiosity can all too easily be knocked out of them by insensitive schooling, unchallenging environments and poor emotional support."
learning  education  brain  via:cervus  video  toshare  unschooling  deschooling  lcproject  human  humans  instruction  constructivism  socialemotionallearning  teaching  play  formal  informallearning  independence  dependence  society  experientiallearning  socialemotional 
april 2011 by robertogreco
Khan Academy and the mythical math cure « Generation YES Blog
"There is no doubt that Khan Academy fills a perceived need that something needs to be fixed about math instruction. But at some point, when you talk about learning math, you have to define your terms. If you are a strict instructionist – you are going to love Khan Academy. If you are a constructivist, you are going to find fault with a solution that is all about instruction. So any discussion of Khan Academy in the classroom has to start with the question, how do YOU believe people learn?

I have more to say about Khan Academy and math education in the US — this post turned into 4 parts!

Part 1 – Khan Academy and the mythical math cure (this post)
Part 2 – Khan Academy – algorithms and autonomy
Part 3 – Don’t we need balance? and other questions
Part 4 – Monday… Someday"
math  learning  khanacademy  education  constructivism  instruction  memorization  algorithms  schools  teaching  sylviamartinez  2011  instructionism  mathematics  tcsnmy 
april 2011 by robertogreco
The Mavenist: "And whereever I’ve been, once it begins to shift from why to how, I simply leave: I’m gone."
"I would think that the most immoral thing one can do is to have ambitions for someone else’s mind. That’s the crux of the challenge and the responsibility of having the opportunity to deal with young people at such a crucial time in their formation. One of the hardest things to do is not to give them clues—‘Here, do it this way, it’s a lot easier’—and instead to keep them on the edge of the question… The problem with teaching full time … is that there comes a moment when there occurs a shift from why to how. I mean, people want you to be their guru, and that’s the last thing you can do for them, that’s the worst thing. And whereever I’ve been, once it begins to shift from why to how, I simply leave: I’m gone."
robertirwin  teaching  why  how  cv  responsibility  gurus  socraticmethod  instruction  pedagogy  yearoff  morality  ambitions  control  authority  thinking  philosophy  unschooling  deschooling  via:frankchimero  influence 
march 2011 by robertogreco
Tate Papers - Josef Albers, Eva Hesse, and the Imperative of Teaching
"Albers believed that one learned as a result of a direct interaction with life & required that his students become familiar w/ the physical nature of the material world. This was due, in part, to the influence of John Dewey, who advocated for laboratory-based education & coined the phase ‘learning by doing.’ For Dewey, ‘the conditions of daily life’ determined the ‘nature of experience’ & thus, art (aesthetic experience) was to be actively engaged. Indeed, he often praised Dewey, whose ideas were fundamental to the founding of Black Mountain College, where Albers first taught in America from 1933 to 1949. & like Dewey, his pedagogic emphasis lay in practical, concrete exercises: in the artist-educator’s own words ‘learning through conscious practice.’ Similar notions, including the Montessori method as well as those of Froebel, Pestalozzi, & others key to discourse on early childhood development were fundamental to the educational programme of the Bauhaus…"
josefalbers  evahesse  teaching  johndewey  pedagogy  art  education  arteducation  bauhaus  learningbydoing  blackmountaincollege  materials  color  sollewitt  learning  progressive  johannesitten  lászlómoholy-nagy  experimentation  empathy  visualempathy  form  order  aesthetics  engagement  instruction  bmc 
february 2011 by robertogreco
Think Thank Thunk » Barthes Remix: The Death of the Teacher-Professor
"I have students that come to me with fully formed ideas about the content of my courses before I even link to the syllabus. Tell me then that the teacher is not dead? Tell me that the teacher is not at least prying loose like silver skin from a roast. Tell me that my roll is not changing…

This is thrilling…I am no longer the information maven…the sole progenitor of facts & figures.

We are free to teach in an environment without fear that someone might “miss something.” Seat time is meaningless, and I love it.

[Examples here.]

And when I am dead, this student will use this information freely, still.

So, should we be preparing our students to be dependent on classroom instruction, sending the anachronistic null-space message that all other learning is somehow second-rate? Or, should we be preparing our students to use classroom time as a crucible for this learning they’re doing at nearly all hours of the day with little care for the original source of the knowledge?"
teaching  change  reform  information  pedagogy  via:lukeneff  schools  teacherasmasterlearner  teacherascollaborator  unschooling  deschooling  knowledge  technology  independence  student-centered  student-led  studentdirected  tcsnmy  policy  2011  instruction  sageonthestage  seattime  atemporality 
february 2011 by robertogreco
Education Week: Expert Issues Warning on Formative-Assessment Uses
"While summative tests can provide valuable information for decisions about programs or curriculum, she said, the most valuable assessment for instruction is the continuous, deeply engaged feedback loop of formative assessment. Channeling money into building teachers’ skills in that technique is a better investment in student achievement, she said, than paying for more test design."

"Mastering formative assessment carries profound implications for changing teaching from a top-down process to a more collaborative one, said Caroline Wylie, a research scientist with the Princeton, N.J.-based Educational Testing Service who also appeared on the panel.

“This is not a follow-the-pacing-guide sort of teaching,”…“I used to do a lot of explaining, but now I do a lot of questioning,” said the teacher. “I used to do a lot of talking, but now I do a lot of listening. I used to think about teaching the curriculum, but now I think about teaching the student.”"
formativeassessment  testing  standardizedtesting  socraticmethod  teacherascollaborator  peer-assessment  self-assessment  cv  tcsnmy  learning  pedagogy  commoncore  instruction  feedback  questioning  curriculum  student-centered 
november 2010 by robertogreco
Dean Shareski: Personalization vs. Standardization: It's Tough To Do Both
"current system & structure fights personalized learning w/ nearly every new policy & protocol it can generate…system craves standardization while we desperately need customization. These competing ideals butt heads constantly & for those teachers who do believe in personalizing learning, they live in perpetual frustration...In the end, w/out restructuring of time & current curriculum requirements best we can hope for is small pockets of success or the 0.02% of students whose passion happens to be trigonometry or Shakespeare…

While I'm busy advocating for changes that might support an education that fuels & fosters students' passions, I worry that we lose sight of what a liberal education is all about. They don't know what they don't know. Providing students w/ broad experiences that invites them to develop a variety of skills, understand & appreciate diverse perspectives & potentially uncover hidden talents & interests speaks to a fairly well accepted purpose of school..."
deanshareski  education  standardization  learning  schools  teaching  customization  liberalarts  policy  unschooling  deschooling  schooliness  onesizefitsall  change  restructuring  personalization  tcsnmy  instruction  exams  standardizedtesting 
october 2010 by robertogreco
A university's soul is its freedom of ideas | Michael McGhee | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk
"Instruction leaves a person trained & better informed—but otherwise unaltered. To stand at the threshold of an education, by contrast, is to stand poised before the possibility of an achieved formation & temper of mind which widens perspectives & matures the power of critical judgment. It is this that we commend when we commend education for itself. To be educated is to stand in a critical & creative relationship to ideas, crucially through contact with teachers, who exemplify in their words & demeanour the life of the mind.

If a university has a soul it is to be found here, in the engagement of teachers w/ their students, in the critical transmission of ideas, including ideas about human nature, that their students have to struggle w/ & grasp, a struggle that shapes their souls. But this education is becoming more fugitive & teachers less available through a terrible absence of mind, as the ideas that inform the policy & practice of universities slowly eat into their soul."

[via: http://ayjay.tumblr.com/post/1343587180/instruction-leaves-a-person-trained-and-better ]
habitsofmind  education  learning  schools  universities  instruction  training  information  mindset  temperment  tcsnmy  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  criticism  ideas  criticalthinking  human  humannature 
october 2010 by robertogreco
10 Ways to Develop Expository Writing Skills With The New York Times - The Learning Network Blog - NYTimes.com
"Have you been knocking your head against the proverbial wall trying to teach – or learn – expository writing skills? New York Times models can help writers learn how to write an expository essay that is compelling, convincing and authoritative as well as engaging to read – not to mention authentic. Try a fresh approach with these 10 tips.

1. Ditch the five-paragraph essay and embrace authentic essay structure. New York Times news and feature articles are excellent models for structure, including transitions and organization. Look at the guide to forms of Times news coverage to get started, and then deconstruct some articles to get a feel for how they are organized. …"
composition  education  english  writing  teaching  tips  nytimes  journalism  instruction  howto  classideas  via:lukeneff 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Nonformality | The Learning Revolution
"We will learn in the future by

* following rhythms of inquiry and learning rather than rhythms of compartmentalised structures and times,
* moving away from memorising and teaching towards exploring and learning by doing,
* turning away from sitting and listening passively to constructing and collaborating actively,
* facilitating learning from failure instead of punishing every little mistake,
* accepting uncertainty as the only certainty there is within the complexity of learning,
* relating learning and living in ways that are fruitful and enriching both ways,
* not teaching what to learn and think, but by teaching how to learn and think,
* inventing and facilitating new and integrated learning formats, combining subjects and approaches,
* turning away from instruction and control towards facilitation and support,
* moving away from spaces controlled by educators towards spaces controlled by learners,
* providing encouragement and support instead of criticism and barriers.

Admittedly, this list is generic—quite possibly, too generic—but it’s a start. Wir fangen schon mal an."

[via: http://twitter.com/cervus/status/16081012365 ]
education  future  tcsnmy  lcproject  learning  teaching  schools  schooling  unschooling  deschooling  instruction  facilitators  facilitating  interdisciplinary  multidisciplinary  crossdisciplinary  crosspollination  collaboration  complexity  uncertainty  adaptability  doing  making  exploration  memorization  control  support  hierarchy 
june 2010 by robertogreco
Mimi Ito - Statics: Peer-Based Learning in a Networked Age
"Today's young people are growing up in a radically different media environment from the one that we grew up in. It's a media environment that keeps them connected 24/7 to their peers, information, and entertainment. It's a media environment that captures kids attentions through visual media, participation and interaction, challenging educators to reconsider traditional models of instruction. It's a media environment that captures kids attentions through visual media, participation and interaction, challenging educators to reconsider traditional models of instruction."
mimiito  pedagogy  learning  education  disruption  socialnetworking  socialmedia  2010  social  tcsnmy  lcproject  informallearning  schools  academia  instruction  participatoryculture  participatory  attention  media 
may 2010 by robertogreco
How to Use Google Reader: Video Series | eHow Videos
"How to use Google Reader; get professional tips and advice on using web-based aggregators for reading Atom or RSS feeds while you're online or offline in this free instructional video series."
tutorials  googlereader  video  instruction  howto 
april 2010 by robertogreco
Genetic and environmental influences on prereading skills and early reading and spelling development in the United States, Australia, and Scandinavia [.pdf]
"Genetic & environmental influences on prereading skills in preschool & on early reading & spelling development at the end of kindergarten were compared among samples of identical & fraternal twins from the US, Australia, & Scandinavia. Mean comparisons revealed significantly lower preschool print knowledge in Scandinavia, consistent with the relatively lower amount of shared book reading & letter-based activities w/ parents, & lack of emphasis on print knowledge in Scandinavian preschools. The patterns of correlations between all preschool environment measures & prereading skills within the samples were remarkably similar, as were the patterns of genetic, shared environment, & non-shared environment estimates: in all samples, genetic influence was substantial & shared environment influence was relatively weak for phonological awareness, rapid naming, & verbal memory..."
literacy  learning  reading  scandinavia  us  australia  instruction  preschool  spelling  filetype:pdf  media:document 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Handbook of early literacy research - Google Books
Chapter 8: Connecting Early Language and Literacy to Later Reading (Dis)Abilities: Evidence, Theory, and Practice
reading  learning  learningdisabilities  dyslexia  teaching  schools  instruction  language  literacy 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Letter to NYT Magazine
"Notice that this kind of instruction does nothing to help children think critically, understand ideas, or (heaven knows) become excited about learning. Notice, too, that it’s an approach mostly applied to poor kids of color. As Jonathan Kozol has observed, “Children of the suburbs learn to interrogate reality,” while “inner-city kids are trained for nonreflective acquiescence.” What we’re being asked to celebrate here are 49 techniques for enforcing that acquiescence. So why is Lemov’s recipe described in breathless terms and billed as a better way to educate? Because success these days – everywhere, but particularly in the inner city – has nothing to do with thinking and everything to do with high scores on fill-in-the-bubble tests. As long as the objective is to pump up those scores, techniques for tightly controlling children will continue to seem impressive."
alfiekohn  schools  education  standardizedtesting  assessment  schooling  lemov  teaching  criticism  criticalthinking  rttt  nclb  instruction  learning  tcsnmy 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Newspapers, Universities and the Internet « Esko Kilpi on Interactive Value Creation
"People in the traditional print media have dismissed online writing because of its low average quality. The average quality of the writing online isn’t what the print media are competing against. They’re competing against the best writing online. And often, they’re losing. This is what is going to happen next with teaching. Universities are going to compete against the best bloggers and the very best aggregators of learning content. The sad truth, both when it comes to the newspapers and to the universities, is that if you are used to being a monopoly, you create habits that are hard to overcome when you suddenly face competition. The Internet is now transforming the consumption habits of newspaper customers. There is an even bigger change happening in the learning related habits of people. Hopefully, the universities won’t fight as much against their customers’ new habits as the newspapers do!"
universities  monopolies  newspapers  online  instruction  lectures  teaching  colleges  change  competition  press  media 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Un-Facebook Yourself - Wired How-To Wiki
"Sometimes, social networking is just a bit too social. If you're feeling vulnerable on Facebook, the web's biggest social hangout, you can easily take control over who can see your information.
howto  facebook  sharing  privacy  socialnetworking  via:hrheingold  instruction  socialmedia  security  tutorials  socialnetworks 
december 2009 by robertogreco
Why are Classrooms so Powerful?
"I look at modern classrooms as a learning technology that was first developed in 18th century Prussia & then spread out throughout the world. We will look at school architecture before the emergence of classrooms & see how the classroom is one of several state institutions that developed during the period that Michel Foucault has called “the great confinement.” Like prisons & mental hospitals, classrooms captured & constricted bodies in order to render them as docile subjects. Their purpose was as much disciplinary as educational, developed as part of the new bureaucratic state apparatus that brought unruly people under social control. The power of the classroom as a technology gave teachers the ability to better regulate large groups of students, in order to inculcate them w/ a standardized curriculum. Pushed to the extreme, monitorial classrooms of the 19th century could hold 1000+ pupils, all performing the same acts, under the watchful eyes of senior students & the instructor."
schooldesign  history  control  power  classrooms  schools  schooling  education  learning  instruction  prussia  lcproject  tcsnmy  gamechanging  society  prisons  unschooling  deschooling  schooliness  conformity  classroom 
august 2009 by robertogreco
Inversions - Practical Theory [see also coversation in the comments]
"I've been thinking a lot about math class. How many students would learn math more efficiently if they could watch math videos, narrated by a teacher with problems done "on the board" as they watched with multiple examples of concepts (think geometry here, as an example) that speak to different learning modalities.

So what of class, then?

Then, class, rather than being a time when all kids sat and received the instruction, could be the time when they reinforce skills by doing problem sets, worked on real-world application projects, collaborated with teachers to reinforce concepts, etc... in some ways, it's an inversion of what we traditionally think of as a math class. Right now, in traditional classrooms, class is where the teacher demonstrates concepts (often with some time for individual reinforcement and work), but the bulk of application / practice / etc... is done at home where there isn't much chance for help."
math  teaching  inversion  instruction  classtime  tcsnmy  chrislehmann  education  learning  video 
july 2009 by robertogreco
The Edurati Review: 10 Principles for the Future of Learning [via: http://www.downes.ca/cgi-bin/page.cgi?post=49506]
"1. Self Learning 2. Horizontal Structures 3. From Presumed Authority to Collective Credibility 4. A De-Centered Pedagogy 5. Networked Learning 6. Open Source Education 7. Learning as Connectivity and Interactivity 8. Lifelong Learning 9. Learning Institutions as Mobilizing Networks 10. Flexible Scalability and Simulation"
education  learning  tcsnmy  instruction  leadership  pedagogy  connectivity  technology  highereducation  elearning  networkedlearning  opensource  change  lcproject 
july 2009 by robertogreco
Education - Change.org: Simple Math [see also: http://www.tuttlesvc.org/2009/06/kipp-and-sudbury-schools-find-common.html]
"It's legendary in the Sudbury literature: the five-month math class. As Sudbury Valley co-founder Daniel Greenberg reports in the above article, it took twenty weeks—a mere twenty contact hours—for a group of twelve kids ages 9 to 12 to cover all six years of elementary-school math.

A miracle? Hardly.

Greenberg's friend Alan White, a longtime elementary school math specialist, wasn't surprised. "Everyone knows," he said, "that the subject matter itself isn't that hard. What's hard...is beating it into the heads of youngsters who hate every step. The only chance we have is to hammer away at the stuff bit by bit every day for years. Even then it does not work...Give me a kid who wants to learn the stuff—well, twenty hours or so makes sense.""
education  math  teaching  instruction  learning  schools  sudburyschools  unschooling  deschooling  tcsnmy  schooliness 
june 2009 by robertogreco
Unschooling - Jon's Homeschool Resources - Quote from Carl Sagan, The Dragons of Eden (Ballantine, 1977)"
"Britain has produced a range of remarkably gifted multidisciplinary scientists & scholars...polymaths...the development of such gifted individuals required a childhood period in which there was little or no pressure for conformity, a time in which the child could develop & pursue his own interests no matter how unusual or bizzare. Because of the strong pressures for social conformity both by the government & by peer groups in US - & even more so in USSR, Japan & China - I think that such countries are producing proportionately fewer polymaths...Particularly today, when so many difficult & complex problems face the human species, the development of broad & powerful thinking is desperately needed. There should be a way...to encourage, in a humane & caring context, the intellectual development of especially promising youngsters. Instead we find, in the instructional & examination systems of most of these countries, an almost reptilian ritualization of the educational process"
teaching  learning  polymaths  generalists  problemsolving  carlsagan  unschooling  deschooling  childhood  freedom  tcsnmy  schools  schooling  us  uk  china  japan  ussr  childcenteredlearning  instruction  assessment  humanity 
june 2009 by robertogreco
Charters, Tests, and the Tiresome Achievement Debate
"When looking inside many of the classrooms in these schools, we found a remarkably low level of cognitive demand being placed on students. The instructional emphasis frequently was on procedure, not on conceptual understanding. Students were not being asked to think for themselves, nor were they being asked to conjecture, evaluate, or assess. Why? Because the tests that hold these charter schools accountable do not measure higher-order thinking.
testing  assessment  learning  higherorderskills  criticalthinking  conjecture  evaluation  conceptual  understanding  instruction  schools  publicschools  charterschools 
june 2009 by robertogreco
Students Covering Bigger Share of Costs of College - NYTimes.com
"College students are covering more of what it costs to educate them, even as most colleges are spending less on students, according to a new study. The study, based on data that colleges and universities report to the federal government, also found that the share of higher education budgets that goes to instruction has declined, while the portion spent on administrative costs has increased."
colleges  universities  money  tuition  administration  administrativebloat  education  teaching  instruction  misspentdollars 
january 2009 by robertogreco
Adams 50 skips grades, lets kids be pacesetters - The Denver Post
"Adams 50 will eliminate grade levels and instead group students based on what they know, allowing them to advance to the next level after they have proved proficiency. "If they can pull this off, it will be a lighthouse for America's challenged school districts," said Richard DeLorenzo, the consultant who implemented a standards-based model in Alaska and is working with Adams 50. "It will change the face of American education."
alternative  education  schools  change  reform  assessment  gradelevels  agesegregation  schoolreform  grades  grading  instruction  deschooling  lcproject 
january 2009 by robertogreco
Bridging Differences: Good Intentions, Ignorant Elites, and Scoundrels
"We live in a dangerous and dark time for schools. In many districts, the gears of power are controlled by non-educators who don't have a clue. They madly embrace testing and data and data-driven instruction because they have not a single idea about how kids learn and how teachers teach and what conditions are necessary to promote teaching and learning. This new breed also populates some of our nation's leading think tanks. Most of them have never taught; have never been in a classroom since they were students; know nothing of the history of education and nothing about research, but they know how to fix the nation's schools."
education  policy  schools  us  experts  teaching  learning  curriculum  data-driveninstruction  instruction 
november 2008 by robertogreco
TeachStreet | Find Local Teachers, Learn New Things
"Our goal is to encourage life-long learning by connecting inquiring minds with quality instructors. We built TeachStreet to be a headache-free place for insatiable learners to quickly find great local instructors—whether they want to learn photography

[via: http://www.springwise.com/education/local_lessons_advertised_revie/ ]
education  learning  local  teachstreet  lessons  unschooling  johnholt  hyperlocal  courses  instruction  maps  mapping  search  seattle  teaching  tutoring  socialnetworks  lcproject  gamechanging  freelance  freelanceteaching  socialnetworking  classes 
june 2008 by robertogreco
Computer Literacy 3.0: What today's students know (and don't know) about information technology
"Few have thought about the implications of information technology for individuals, organizations and society, leaving them poorly prepared to make political judgements. Finally, as Ivan Illich has pointed out, working with poorly understood technology ca
literacy  information  informationliteracy  instruction  students  technology  web  internet  online  digitalnatives 
may 2008 by robertogreco
Wired Campus: A Sociologist Says Students Aren't So Web-Wise After All - Chronicle.com
"Eszter Hargittai, an assistant professor in Northwestern University’s sociology department, has discovered that students aren’t nearly as Web-savvy as they, or their elders, assume."
informationliteracy  literacy  technology  education  students  digitalnatives  highereducation  instruction  internet  youth  teens  edtech  research  digital  information 
may 2008 by robertogreco
Boolify Project: An Educational Boolean Search Tool
"Boolify makes it easier to for students to understand their web search by illustrating the logic of their search, and by showing them how each change to their search instantly changes their results."
children  classroom  boolean  search  education  library  elearning  technology  students  instruction  teaching  computing  libraries  classrooms 
april 2008 by robertogreco
Are wired kids well served by schools? | Tech news blog - CNET News.com
"Are schools disconnected from real-world tech skills?...during the panel that his team asked an audience of programmers where they learned to write code. Only 15 percent said that they learned programming at school."
education  learning  disconnect  technology  coding  programming  children  students  engagement  instruction  networking  socialsoftware  content  contentcreation  creativity  social  schools  web  teaching 
april 2008 by robertogreco
Doug Johnson's Blue Skunk Blog - Blue Skunk Blog - Changing how we teach copyright Pt 1
"Change the focus of copyright instruction from what is forbidden to what is permitted: we have as great an obligation to see that staff and students get as complete access and use from copyrighted materials as possible, as we do in helping make sure they
copyright  education  information  instruction  pedagogy  teaching  law  learning  online  internet  web  ip 
april 2008 by robertogreco
Art Education 2.0
"for art educators...interested in using digital technologies to enhance & transform art teaching & learning...explore ways of using technology to promote effective art education practices, encourage cultural exchanges & joint creative work, and support a
via:grahamje  art  education  digital  technology  learning  pedagogy  web2.0  instruction  socialnetworks  community 
march 2008 by robertogreco
Howcast
"brings together personality of user-generated content with quality of professional video studio to create engaging, informative, & free how-to videos for consumers...offers emerging filmmakers opportunity to gain experience, exposure, and income"
advice  google  wiki  wikis  youtube  video  tutorials  information  instruction  teaching  film  multimedia  online  elearning  education  learning  socialmedia  social  howto  guides 
february 2008 by robertogreco
Classroom Technology as an Expensive Distraction « On the Tenure Track
"Good teachers teach well and technology can only help. Bad teachers don’t teach well and technology will only make them worse...Technology adds many desirable things, but benefits will only be felt once in good hands. That should be our priority."
technology  education  teaching  learning  policy  administration  management  instruction  schools 
january 2008 by robertogreco
Will at Work Learning: People remember 10%, 20%...Oh Really?
"It will seem obvious, but each and every one of us must take responsibility for the information we transmit to ensure its integrity. More importantly, we must be actively skeptical of the information we receive."
myths  myth  cognition  coneofexperience  pseudoscience  pedagogy  education  statistics  learning  teaching  training  memory  trust  information  literacy  reading  knowledge  instruction  learningstyles  experience  research  media  retention  debunking  coneoflearning 
january 2008 by robertogreco
Skip the Tuition: 100 Free Podcasts from the Best Colleges in the World | OEDb
"hese courses let you take your classroom with you, so you can get an education while you're sitting in traffic or just hanging out in the park. Check out these courses from some of the best colleges and universities out there to get a high quality educat
education  colleges  universities  free  academia  opencourseware  homeschool  instruction  learning 
january 2008 by robertogreco
La Tercera - Sólo una de cada cinco personas que estudia inglés logra aprender el idioma
"Pese a que la demanda por cursos y exámenes para acreditar competencias en esta lengua han aumentado, gran parte de los chilenos no llega a buen término en su afán."
language  english  schools  learning  success  chile  instruction 
january 2008 by robertogreco
At 71, Physics Professor Is a Web Star - New York Times
"Walter H. G. Lewin, 71, a physics professor, has long had a cult following at M.I.T. And he has now emerged as an international Internet guru, thanks to the global classroom the institute created to spread knowledge through cyberspace."
mit  physics  open  opencourseware  education  colleges  universities  science  lectures  teaching  learning  instruction 
december 2007 by robertogreco
A Big List of Sites That Teach You How To Do Stuff
"In this horribly-titled, but hopefully useful round-up we will specifically focus on such general purpose sites that include some sort of rich media instruction (generally video). We also might throw in a tech-focused site or two, since this is after all
advice  craft  diy  education  everyday  fun  howto  instruction  learning  lifehacks  lists  reference  onlinetoolkit  research  resources  tutorials  video  tips 
november 2007 by robertogreco
Main Page - Free-reading
"Free-Reading is an ongoing, collaborative, teacher-based, curriculum-sharing experiment. We're looking to provide a reliable forum where teachers can openly and freely share their successful and effective methods for teaching reading in grades K-1."
reading  instruction  activities  curriculum  books  free  kids  literacy  children  teaching  wiki  schools  opensource  phonics  elearning  ebooks  audio  lessons  spelling  education  preschool  elementary  english  writing 
november 2007 by robertogreco
5min - Life Videopedia
"a place to find short video solutions for every practical question and is also a place for people who want to share their knowledge. 5min's vision is simple: any solution can be visually explained in 5 minutes. Show us your skills! Join 5min and spread y
video  online  learning  education  howto  tutorials  elearning  freeware  community  collaboration  homeschool  instruction  information  lifehacks  web  internet  solutions 
november 2007 by robertogreco
Ipseity :: E-Learning Myth #1: The “Net Gen” Myth :: August :: 2006
"Recent sociological and governmental studies paint quite a different picture of this same generation. Often focusing specifically on the Internet, they report –similar to the sources above– that “children and young people [are generally] claiming g
digitalnatives  marcprensky  debunked  education  future  technology  myth  facts  web2.0  digital  children  videogames  gaming  games  media  television  teaching  learning  schools  pedagogy  policy  critique  critical  culture  e-learning  instruction  millennials  publishing  trends  youth  net 
october 2007 by robertogreco
ScienceDaily: Music Training Linked To Enhanced Verbal Skills
"Music training, with its pervasive effects on the nervous system's ability to process sight and sound, may be more important for enhancing verbal communication skills than learning phonics, according to a new Northwestern University study."
music  reading  learning  verbal  communication  children  teaching  instruction 
october 2007 by robertogreco
Marginal Revolution: Heroes are not Replicable
"these stories...depress me. If it takes a hero to save an inner city school then there is no hope. Heroes are not replicable. What we need...is a method that works when the teachers aren't heroes. Even better if the method works when teachers are ordinar
education  heroes  leadership  management  organization  teaching  schools  instruction  directinstruction  policy  administration  money  economics  research 
september 2007 by robertogreco
Learn a foreign language – over the Web | csmonitor.com
"Internet phone programs and webcams give students daily practice with native speakers."
skype  foreign  language  instruction  learning  conversation  education  online  internet  technology 
august 2007 by robertogreco
Twitchr :: Portfolio :: Products :: Future Platforms 2007
"a game for Nokia Series 60 MIDP 2.0 handsets which teases players into learning to do more with their phones. Played on its own, with friends, or with the world, it's an open-ended community game which has no beginning, no end, no winners and no losers."
mobile  games  learning  instruction  arg  phones  technology  play  social  community  socialsoftware  nokia 
august 2007 by robertogreco
Top 100 Tools for Learning
"This list (together with the collection of Top 10 Tools list ) is proving to be a popular resource (see reviews) to find out about the wide range of tools that can be used in a learning context - whether it be for personal learning or for creating learni
blogging  computers  onlinetoolkit  online  software  tools  internet  interactive  firefox  wiki  webdesign  rss  social  socialnetworking  socialsoftware  students  learning  education  pedagogy  productivity  reference  instruction  webdev 
august 2007 by robertogreco
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