February 2007 Archives

Check out the latest Classroom Tech column in Teacher Magazine, "Game On," by yours truly. It touches on an issue generating quite a bit of interest lately: The power of video games to improve student learning....


Fast Company magazine has a regular feature called Best Blogs. In the March issue, the magazine focuses on education blogs. I find it heartening that their three picks go against the grain of narrow-minded bloggers who think all blogs have to be characterized by superficially short posts dripping with sarcasm and self involvement. (That's right, I'm feeling a bit of antipathy today toward self involved bloggers.) So, way to go Fast Company! Thanks for choosing substance over style. The first pick, 2 Cents Worth, is noted for being "pretty meaty; the second, Moving at the Speed of Creativity, is characterized ...


The stereotype of the highly motivated, high-achieving Asian student is hard not to buy into because Asian-Americans, as a group, outperfrom all other minorities in virtually all categories, and they beat white students on most measures too. But Education Week reporter Lesli Maxwell's story this week, "The 'Other' Gap," points out that the picture of this group of students is much more nuanced than most people would expect. There are some important lessons to be learned--about culture, teenagers, schools, and motivation--from reading this story. Here is an excerpt from the piece: "But what about closing the “top gap,” between the ...


In case you missed it, we had a fascinating online chat on edweek.org last week with local leaders from Rockland County, N.Y., which recently published a 72-page report on how the No Child Left Behind Act needs to be changed to better serve the needs of local school districts. A transcript of the chat is available on edweek.org. Throughout the discussion, concerns were raised about the federal education law's impact on students' motivation to learn and teachers' motivation to teach. Chat guests and participants also expressed serious concerns that the law looks at education too narrowly, discouraging ...


Am I a member of the lazy gender? Are three of my four kids also part of that group? The answer might be yes, suggests a recent study by a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania. The researcher examined the different levels of self-discipline between girls and boys, and my gender came up on the losing end. Education Week published a story this week about this research, and one of the people quoted in the piece simply said "girls just work harder." Some experts say girls put in more time working on homework, and are much more deliberate about making ...


"Why is everything massified in the [education] system, rather than individualized in the system? New technologies make possible customization in a way that the old system--everybody reading the same textbook at the same time--did not offer." That is the perspective of Alvin Toffler, the well-known chronicler of our nation's social and technological prospects and the author of Future Shock, as expressed in a question and answer session with edutopia magazine. To be sure, the idea of educational customization has been around for decades in different forms. But Toffler tells edutopia he thinks that technological innovations and the need to educate ...


In a Nov. 10 post about a review of Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck, I promised that I would read this book. The review was very positive, but I wanted to pass my own judgment. Well, I can tell you the review was right on target. If you are interested in helping kids see the world through a lens that values hard work and a commitment to improvement, this book is a must read. It includes common sense advice backed up by research, and a host of anecdotes about students, teachers, and parents to illustrate ...


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