September 2012 Archives

If you don't grade it, students won't do it. That's what many educators (and parents) think, and for good reason. Here's a clip from a coaching session where I recall my students' reactions when they found out I wouldn't be grading their work: Reactions like this would seem to validate the motivational power of grades. But what they really validate is the coercive power of grades. The power to compel some students to do something by giving them points for it. And the power to compel other students to not do something, since kids who lack confidence often blow off ...

Tweeting. Texting. Messaging. Friending. Skyping. Technology has brought people together when they couldn't be further apart. Yet it has also pushed people apart when they couldn't be closer together. It's not that we've become less interested in each other, but rather less capable of paying attention to each other. That's because our attention is being divided--if not dominated--by whatever gadgets are within our grasp, giving new meaning to the term "digital divide." And even when common courtesy tells us to focus on the people in our presence, many of us can't do it. That's right, can't do it. The lure ...


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