What can teachers learn from science-fiction media? | Research: Student engagement key to higher achievement | Flipped instruction gains following among Ky. teachers
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March 15, 2013
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What can teachers learn from science-fiction media?
A cable television channel is developing a game and TV show concurrently and collaboratively in which game players can interact with the television characters, writes Fred Ende, director of SCIENCE 21 and regional science coordinator for Putnam/Northern Westchester BOCES. Ende writes in this blog post that he envisions the idea translating to the classroom lessons about storytelling, in which students could write persuasive essays that can then be used to develop computer games, or create card games with rules written as it is played. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Education (3/12)
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SimCityEDU aligns gaming with common core
The creators of the new SimCityEDU, designed for sixth-grade students, expect it to be a powerful tool for teaching and learning -- helping to engage students and provide a type of formative assessment aligned with the Common Core State Standards. Students will be challenged to decide what kind of power plant to build in the town while the game assesses their choices, providing a tool for teachers to see how students' knowledge matches up with the standards. KQED.org/Mind/Shift blog (3/14)
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Research: Student engagement key to higher achievement
The strategies educators traditionally have used to increase student engagement -- raising standards and administering high-stakes tests -- have not addressed the root causes of student disengagement, according to a review of current research. Effective strategies to increase student engagement include connecting assignments to outcomes important to them and letting students have more choice in how to complete tasks. Research indicates increased engagement yields higher achievement. Forbes (3/13)
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Schools Today
Will common core's more rigorous standards hurt at-risk students?
Many math teachers see the Common Core State Standards as a positive development -- bringing higher expectations and a greater focus on deeper learning to the math curriculum -- but some educators are concerned that the new standards may present challenges for students who already are struggling in math. "Every time I talk to other teachers, this issue comes up," said Silvestre Arcos, founding math teacher at KIPP Washington Heights Middle School, which is a charter school in New York City. "The big question is, how do we build up these advanced skills with kids who come in behind?" Education Week Teacher (premium article access compliments of EdWeek.org) (3/13)
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Developing Leaders
Improving school climate begins with each individual
Teachers seeking a good school environment should start by giving and seeking positive feedback themselves, writes education consultant Allen Mendler in this blog post. Mendler shares six ideas, such as asking a colleague to observe a class or keeping a daily log of accomplishments, to help teachers feel more appreciated. "You won't be able to influence everyone or affect everything, but you may have more power than you think to make your school more of what you want it to be for yourself and others," Mendler writes. Edutopia.org/Allen Mendler's blog (3/14)
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Policy News
Will the common core inhibit education reform?
Middle-school teacher Mark Barnes wonders in this blog post whether Common Core State Standards and education reform can happen at the same time. Barnes, a member of his school's Common Core Transition Team, writes that the rigid standards do not foster true education reform, which would call for the abolition of standardized testing and accountability, and instead allow teachers to "create vibrant, chaotic, collaborative, technology-rich classrooms that encourage a thirst for learning." SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Education (3/14)
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Adventure is not outside man; it is within."
-- George Eliot,
British writer
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