Blogs on Education Reform

Blogs on Education ReformRSS
Melanie KahlAugust 20, 2013

At my design consultancy, TheThirdTeacher+, we believe that, whether it is a large-scale transformation or a small-scale hack, redesigning your classroom is a fun and empowering adventure. When you involve your students, colleagues and community, you can create a powerful conversation about the role of the environment in the student learning experience.

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Ainissa RamirezJuly 17, 2013

Every year, millions of students are struggling in algebra class. And, despite what the pundits say, the answer is not to get rid of math education; the answer is to fix it.

Math teachers in the U.S. have the world's hardest job, because opinions about the subject are already stacked against it. Over the years, the humanness and relevancy of math have been squeezed out, and students no longer see its significance. To get students engaged in math again, we have to add the human element back.

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Laura Morgan, Ed. D.July 16, 2013

When I was introduced to the term "social-emotional learning" and began to understand its meaning, I recognized it as a ray of hope. Hope for my community, which, seemingly unbeknownst to me, had changed dramatically over the years.

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Suzie BossJuly 1, 2013

If your school or district is thinking strategically about preparing students for the future, it's almost certain that you've been having deep conversations about how teaching and learning need to shift. But which shifts matter most? Do you have to invent the future of education for yourself, or are there examples you can consider to help you imagine success?

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José VilsonJune 28, 2013

Summer is the time when new teachers learn and when veteran teachers relax and then learn. Whether at the beach watching over your kid who is flinging the beach ball too hard, or at home with your face right on the full-power air conditioner, here's hoping the following five books give you something to enjoy and discuss. These books fall into three categories: leadership, race, or math (and in one case, all three). I'm recommending them all, and feel free to let me know what you think in the comments section below.

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Terry HeickJune 27, 2013

As academic standards shift, as technology evolves, and as student habits change, schools are being forced to consider new ways of framing curriculum and engaging students in the classroom. Project-based learning is among the most successful and powerful of these possibilities.

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A.J. JulianiJune 25, 2013

Have you ever met an adult who doesn't really love what they do, but just goes through the motions in their job and everyday life? Have you spoken with men and women who constantly complain, showing no visible passion for anything in the world? I'm sure that, like me, you have met those people. I've also seen the making of these adults in schools across our country: students who are consistently being "prepared" for the next test, assessment, or grade level . . . only to find out after graduation that they don't really know what they are passionate about. These are the same students who are never allowed to learn what they want in school. Forced down a curriculum path that we believe is "best for them," they discover it is a path that offers very little choice in subject matter and learning outcomes.

Enter 20% time.

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Ainissa RamirezJune 24, 2013

We love to organize things into boxes: black or white; red state or blue state; mustard or ketchup. We like to categorize subject matter, too, and teach it in discrete bits. We silo subjects. In one class period we teach one subject, followed by another subject in the following period. While subjects might be taught by the same teacher and in the same space, we never see their connections. We never see the links.

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Andrea SaveriJune 19, 2013

As summer reflections on the past school year turn into aspirations for the next year, it's important to keep in mind the big picture of change in education. Five shifts in how we think about schools and education in general will help to regenerate the learning ecosystem, and will provoke our imagination about new possibilities for teaching and learning.

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Dr. Allen MendlerJune 7, 2013

In watching the NFL draft recently, I was struck at how much attention and money is spent "breaking down" every player: how they run, jump, throw and move. Even the size of virtually every body part is fully analyzed. They are interviewed, as are their previous coaches and other important adults, to learn as much as possible about flaws and strengths. Much depends on getting things right for both the team and the player. The stakes are high. Yet with all the analysis, there are plenty of mistakes. Some "can't miss" prospects do miss, and others who weren't even drafted become stars. Most fall somewhere in between. Having standards that try to measure the likelihood of a player's success on a football field is inexact at best -- as much art as it is science.

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