Blogs on Comprehensive Assessment

Blogs on Comprehensive AssessmentRSS
Tony WagnerApril 20, 2012

The "DNA" of innovators might be considered a set of skills that are essential elements in design thinking. One cannot have empathy without having practiced the skills of listening and observing. And integrative thinking begins with the ability to ask good questions and to make associations. There is also a kinship between collaboration and networking. [At the root of innovation is] the importance of experimenting -- an activity that, at its root, requires a kind of optimism, a belief that through trial and error a deeper understanding and better approaches can be discovered.

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Rick WinterApril 12, 2012

How does a school go from struggling to success? My goal in this blog is to share success stories and resources to help you make a difference in all the schools with whom you make contact. There is a role for everyone here: principal, superintendent, teacher, parent, school board member, politician, community member and taxpayer.

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Shelly Blake-PlockApril 5, 2012

"The internet is made for questions," says Sean Wheeler.

It wasn't long ago that language arts teacher Wheeler and his Lakewood City School District biology-teaching colleague Ken Kozar -- along with a class of eager 10th graders -- realized that certain questions weren't being asked online. And one question above all resonated with teacher and student alike: How did school do?

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Dr. Richard CurwinMarch 23, 2012

The tragic death of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida reminded me of an incident that happened four years ago in the San Francisco Bay Area where racism reared its ugly head to a black teenager on his way to school.

The tragic death of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida reminded me of an incident that happened four years ago in the San Francisco Bay Area where racism reared its ugly head to a black teenager on his way to school. Read More

Kevin D. WashburnMarch 22, 2012

British archaeologist Mary Leakey described her own learning as being "compelled by curiosity." Curiosity is the name we give to the state of having unanswered questions. And unanswered questions, by their nature, help us maintain a learning mindset. When we realize that we do not know all there is to know about something in which we are interested, we thirst. We pursue. We act as though what we do not know is more important than what we do, as though what we do not possess is worth the chase to own it. How do we help students discover this drive?

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Judy Willis MDMarch 22, 2012

A selective attentive focus and the ability to block out distraction are seminal executive functions that are minimally developed in youngsters. These functions gradually become stronger throughout the years of prefrontal cortex maturation, which last into the twenties. It is with regard to these executive functions that research about the "bilingual brain" is particularly exciting.

A selective attentive focus and the ability to block out distraction are seminal executive functions that are minimally developed in youngsters. These functions gradually become stronger throughout the years of prefrontal cortex maturation, which last into the twenties. It is with regard to these executive functions that research about the "bilingual brain" is particularly exciting. Read More

John LarmerMarch 21, 2012
David Ross

It was September 13, 2011, and we were just about to hear a talk by James Paul Gee, author of What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy. The talk was part of our annual community meeting of the Buck Institute for Education. Here's a summary of our conversations -- before and after watching Gee speak. (Please scroll down for a video of highlights from Gee's presentation.)

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Mark PhillipsMarch 20, 2012

Some of you may remember the scene in The Dead Poets Society in which Robin Williams' Mr. Keating mocks the approach to poetry of Dr. J. Evans Pritchard. In a nutshell, Pritchard has a method for mathematically calculating the measure of a poem's greatness. "If the poem's score for perfection is plotted along the horizontal of a graph, and its importance is plotted on the vertical, then calculating the total area of the poem yields the measure of its greatness." Keating has students rip the pages out of their books, sardonically exclaiming, " . . . we're not laying pipe, we're talking about poetry . . . I like Byron, I give him a 42 . . . "

Some of you may remember the scene in The Dead Poets Society in which Robin Williams' Mr. Keating mocks the approach to poetry of Dr. J. Evans Pritchard. In a nutshell, Pritchard has a method for mathematically calculating the measure of a poem's greatness. "If the poem's score for perfection is plotted along the horizontal of a graph, and its importance is plotted on the vertical, then calculating the total area of the poem yields the measure of its greatness." Keating has students rip the pages out of their books, sardonically exclaiming, " . . . we're not laying pipe, we're talking about poetry . . . I like Byron, I give him a 42 . . . " Read More

Larry FerlazzoMarch 12, 2012

The number of English-Language Learners in the United States is growing rapidly, including many states that have not previously had large immigrant populations. As teachers try to respond to the needs of these students, here are a few basic best practices that might help. We have found that consistently using these practices makes our lessons more efficient and effective. We also feel it is important to include a few "worst" practices in the hope that they will not be repeated!

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Hollee FreemanFebruary 29, 2012

The burden is heavy for educators who are parents -- and, I dare say, even heavier for those of us who consider ourselves progressive educators in this age of heavy standardized testing and tight curriculum calendars that leave little room for exploration of ideas. Traditional, progressive or somewhere between, all of us who are (simply) educators and parents of school-aged students have to think about when, how and for what reason we interact with teachers.

The burden is heavy for educators who are parents -- and, I dare say, even heavier for those of us who consider ourselves progressive educators in this age of heavy standardized testing and tight curriculum calendars that leave little room for exploration of ideas. Traditional, progressive or somewhere between, all of us who are (simply) educators and parents of school-aged students have to think about when, how and for what reason we interact with teachers. Read More