As educators, parents (and grandparents), it’s never too early to start our kids on the path to global learning within our own communities. Even in preschool, our children are learning valuable attributes such as compassion, respect for others, teamwork and versatile thinking.
Relevant Tags: FROM THE PUBLISHER
Great Leaps is a mission driven company fueled by a passion for equipping students for success through simple, effective and fun educational interventions. We have effective language and math interventions but are best known for our one-on-one Reading Intervention. For 20+ years, hundreds of thousands of students with a range of challenges including dyslexia have been to the independent reading level in 15 minutes a day with Great Leaps.
Relevant Tags: PROFILES
I’ve been talking for a number of years about the preparation of teachers. Most of us came through a wonderful tradition of programs at an accredited university that technically trained us and prepared us for a credential to teach. Then we all hit the real world of teaching.
It’s a bit different out there in the real classroom with children watching and waiting than it is in a classroom taking a test on what those children should be learning.
Relevant Tags: FAMILY ENGAGEMENT
When my school implemented a new literacy curriculum in the start of the 2015-16 school year, I remember laughing. Not a, “Here we go again with yet another curriculum” laugh, but a, “It wouldn’t be right to cry in front of my principal” laugh. I was a fifth-grade literacy teacher, having chosen to return to the classroom after serving in school leadership roles. While I was worried about implementing a new curriculum, I had faith in my school leaders’ decisions. So I took a deep breath and a closer look.
Speaking at a conference at a school in Arkansas, I heard a saying that has great application to our educational system in the United States:
“Weighing the hog does not improve the taste of the pork.”
We over test and under-teach.
We overwork and under-pay our staffulty.
We overwhelm and under-appreciate the single profession that develops all other professions.
Relevant Tags: CELEBRATING IMPROVEMENT
The opportunity for education to lead rather than follow innovative, breakthrough applications of technology is within reach. Educational leadership can leverage these technologies to advance teaching and learning for each learner.
Schools with a strong sense of community are positive places where children, parents, and staff all work together in an environment that has the potential to help each individual find success. Creating that sense of community is similar to building a bridge, and the principal is the primary architect.
For students to participate effectively in this changing world, they must understand it. The 21st century student will sell to the world, buy from the world, work for international companies, compete with people from other countries, manage employees from other cultures, collaborate with people all over the world, and solve global problems.
The mission of the United States Department of Education is “to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access.” Few would disagree that achievement, preparation, competitiveness, excellence and equal access are worthy aspirations for the educational systems serving students today.
Relevant Tags: GLOBAL EDUCATION
What should schools have in common with hospitals, commercial airlines and even nuclear power plants? In this article I will assert that all should strive toward higher reliability, or toward becoming high reliability organizations (HROs).
Any educator who has been in the profession long enough remembers the numerous and well-intentioned curriculum programs and instruction initiatives that have appeared, faded, and even disappeared over the last few decades. Names such as Learning Styles, Cooperative Learning, New Math, Whole Language, Teacher Expectations and Student Achievement (TESA), Discipline with Dignity, and Multiple Intelligences, conjure up memories of what we used to call staff development. Many school districts ran one-day workshops conducted by outside consultants, purportedly designed to train teachers adequately to successfully implement these initiatives. However, because there was little or no sustained follow-up or support for implementation, most of these programs faded, and teachers went back to their previous instructional methods. Over time, teachers inevitably grew suspicious---some might even say cynical---of any new reform. The mantra in faculty rooms was, “This, too, shall pass.”
An innovative approach to holistic professional development for all school district employees to improve student outcomes
I’ve spent over 15 years talking to school districts around the country about how they support their employees’ professional growth. It’s a complicated process, with different departments and schools within the district attempting to accomplish different objectives; from improving teaching practice to maintaining compliance with district policy.
Editor’s note: This is the first of a three part series.
The innovation academic literature and international data consistently show that innovation moves from North to South rather than South to North. There are many reasons for that flow. Most of them are related to economic development and knowledge creation theories. There are few examples of innovational education models flowing from South to North. I will review three models that are recognized as innovative by scholars and international organizations looking into new ways of teaching and learning.
Let’s start with a challenge: I challenge each of you as school administrators to walk into a small classroom of students and ask how many of them have a personal brand.Take count as to how many students raise their hands. Will it be one, two, zero even?
I’m willing to bet that you get a bunch of blank stares.These students probably don’trealize they already have a personal brand that is being developed every day. My focus and goal for each of you is to understand the importance of personal branding for your students and assist you in creating a game plan to mentor your young students on differentiating themselves through personal branding.
Let’s take a moment to think about what we used to mean by “good teaching.”
It’s a question I often ask myself as I walk classrooms across the U.S., consulting with educators. And it’s an especially important question now, as teachers and school leaders begin to understand why it’s so vital to make the shift to standards-based classrooms that develop the “new economy” skills students need in the 21st century. We have moved rapidly from a manufacturing-centric economy to a global, technologically advanced, knowledge-based economy. Twenty-first century employers are searching for workers who can analyze, problem-solve, communicate effectively and work in autonomous teams. We are preparing students for a world we can’t even imagine.
My first day as a high school English teacher introduced me to 174 sophomores. I was only a few years’ older than they. I had an imposing desk waiting for me in each of the rooms I shuttled through. They filed into rows of uncomfortable chairs with writing arms attached. Blackboard. Mimeograph machine in the English office. No air conditioning. 16 mm films. Filmstrips.
In the era of ed reform, redefining the Three R’s is a political pastime. “Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships” seems to be a common favorite. This reframing is well-intended, and sometimes enlightening, but it doesn’t translate well from catchphrase to classroom.
Moderated by Charles Sosnik, Editor in Chief at Southeast Education Network
Following is a round table discussion with board members of the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE).
Included are Dr. Ron Thomas, a retired community college president from Minnesota and former Chair of NACCE, Dr. Angeline Godwin, President of Patrick Henry Community College in Virginia and current NACCE Board member and Dr. Larry Ferguson, President of Bevill State Community College in Alabama, a current NACCE Board member and new college president.
Purchasing Quality Instructional Materials
Selecting the right curriculum is a high-stakes, legacy decision. Some districts adopt as often as every few years while others wait decades before making new procurement decisions. Too often we at EdReports.org hear of districts and schools that experience buyer’s remorse as soon as the materials begin to be implemented. They learn the hard way that while many products appear to have the same or similar characteristics, not all materials are created equally despite the same claims of academic rigor and standards alignment.
Relevant Tags: CHOOSING CURRICULUM
It’s amazing what digital tools can learn about us by simply watching what we do —whether that is shopping for books or music on Amazon, searching Expedia for hotel rooms or checking out at the local supermarket. Those observations are often used to deliver reading and listening recommendations, targeted advertisements and the coupons printed with our grocery receipts — all customized and miraculously germane to our interests.
Parents around the country say the math their children are bringing looks vastly different from what they themselves learned as students, but they are starting to see the benefits.
In Freeport, Ill., parent Ron Halter recently put it this way in his hometown paper, “When they first brought it (math) home, it looked so foreign,” said the father to fifth- and sixth-grade children. But, on a positive note, he said, “It actually teaches the students multiple ways to solve a problem. It helps with more real-world math.”
There are a few key reasons the math students are doing today looks very little like the math of the past. Among those is that most states have shifted to new college- and career-ready standards aimed at getting students to think critically, solve complex problems using a variety of methods, and apply what they know toward solving real-world problems.
Reading is a complex skill and it’s not unexpected to find that different groups of experts focus on different aspects of the behavior.
Relevant Tags: BETTER TEACHING
“The future belongs to a different kind of person with a different kind of mind: designers, inventors, teachers, storytellers: creative and empathic ‘right-brain’ thinkers whose abilities mark the fault line between who gets ahead and who doesn’t.”
— Daniel Pink
Relevant Tags: EARLY CHILDHOOD
My brother, who teaches economics at Texas A&M once asked me, “Why is it that some of my students don’t recognize massive mistakes in their computations? Numbers will be going up when they should be going down. Sometimes answers are off by orders of magnitude, and the whole idea slips unnoticed.” It all comes down to what we think of as number sense - making sense of numbers.
In theory, the choice is simple. We can continue to utilize a time-bound, age-based, one-size-fits-all curriculum-driven instructional model or choose to develop a personalized competency based learning system which identifies crucial learning outcomes, gives students the instruction and practice they need at their level of readiness, and monitors and adjusts instruction for as long as needed until competency is fully achieved.
Soundtrap is the future of education. It is a cloud-based program that allows composers, musicians, music students, teachers and others to collaborate and learn using music as the backdrop for a truly worldwide educational experience.
The University of the Ozarks is a small liberal arts university that allows students the opportunity to receive a world class education while being nurtured by both staff and the student body. First generation college students, aspiring athletes and those with learning disabilities all thrive in this remarkable institution tucked away in beautiful Clarkesville, Arkansas - located in the shadow of the Ozark and Ouachita Mountains with the Ozark National Forest, the Arkansas River and Lake Dardanelle providing a setting of breathtaking scenery
Young children learn differently from older children. Their Early experiences like play have a deep impact on their development and create the foundation for a lifetime of learning. Children develop their problem solving skills as well as their collaborative working ability through these play experiences.
EMPOWERED is a vastly different, nonlinear learning solution that offers students a way to learn that is best suited to them. After more than three years of development by a team of 500 developers, teachers and education experts, EMPOWERED is now available to districts nationwide.
There’s no question that education is changing.
Students have increased opportunities to learn any time, in school, throughout the community and on the web. There is growing interest in learning through virtual reality, digital games and social media platforms. Stakeholders are placing more importance on immediate student-level data to help adjust learning in real-time.
Relevant Tags: PREPARING TEACHERS
When used well by teachers, data can be an accelerant to change!
Teachers agree that our students can’t wait the 3 to 5 years normally associated with the time it takes for a new district or school-wide program to produce results. New Jersey teachers have taken action. Underlying all their discussions is the desire to identify opportunities for improving day-to-day instruction in ways that accelerate the pace of steady gains in achievement. They agreed that using data to plan instruction represents a major cultural shift in how lessons are planned, how progress is monitored, and how the sheer volume of available data is overwhelming to teachers.
Education and corporate culture have a long history together. Sir Ken Robinson describes the relationship quite succinctly, “Public schools were not only created in the interests of industrialism — they were created in the image of industrialism.”
Relevant Tags: FACILITIES
Colleges and universities that have a global presence and a network of multiple campuses worldwide have a unique set of challenges. These challenges are not unlike a business operating offices in several different locations. The concerns can range from an “out of sight, out of mind” individual mentality and reduced productivity to a cohesive team and consistent cultural/ team identity. Beyond the employees, other obstacles such as product availability and the need to understand labor hiring practices/regulations add to the already arduous task of managing campuses globally.These obstacles may become magnified and overwhelming for smaller individual departments within the university like academic technology and AV (audio video).
Cyberbullying — the use of technology to threaten, harass, humiliate or target another person — is a serious problem at schools nationwide. In several high-profile cases, cyberbullying was cited as a key factor in teen suicides, prompting parents, educators and peers to consider new ways to address the issue and reach out to targeted students. But preventing cyberbullying remains a challenge because of the pervasive use of technology and children’s reluctance to report online harassment.
Relevant Tags: SECURITY
Schools are built to educate children, but the business of running a school involves much more than what happens in the classroom. While schools must adhere to state and federal regulations, creating a safe environment conducive to learning is more than simply being in compliance. It’s about creating a culture of safety.
Across the country classroom instruction is being “flipped.” Instruction is infused with technology as a tool used by students to individualize their learning. At the core of this flip is the individualization of instruction where the students are able to be a more active participant in their learning rather than a passive recipient. The use of technology allows the teacher to provide instruction and resources not provided in the traditional model driven by a single entity — the teacher. The teacher acts largely alone in responsibility for distribution of instructional decisions. In current school system leadership models superintendents and principals also are alone to follow a distribution model of system leadership. There is a more effective way. System leadership must flip from a distribution leadership model to one that is distributive, focused on creating a continuous improvement culture of the collective.
Relevant Tags: ADMINISTRATOR RESOURCES
In this era of new accountability brought by pushback against No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and the signing of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), it is important to consider: What levers do superintendents and their central offices have that will ensure success?
I have 10 email addresses and counting. I can view them on any of my many devices, regardless of my connection. Modern convenience is great, except when it breaks.
Or when a password changes
Or a Wi-Fi router resets
Or I shift my work location
Now think about a classroom. During the day, either the students change or the subjects change, which means in one classroom you might have 6 to 8 different subjects for 28 to 35 students or 6 to 8 different periods for 28 to 35 students.
Relevant Tags: TECHNOLOGY
If you have been paying attention at all, you know K-12 education is undergoing a revolution in technology and teaching techniques not seen since pencil and paper replaced slate; the introduction of digital technology in the classroom.
It is difficult to find any school related article which doesn’t discuss technology and its use in the classroom. Ed tech is purported to be necessary in helping teachers educate students in 21st century skills. This change necessitates new teaching strategies. The teacher is no longer the fount of knowledge but the guide.
Who do you think about when you worry about meeting student needs? I’ll bet you think about those students who are struggling in one way or another to keep up or catch up. So, when you think about differentiating to meet student needs, you think of ways that will work for these students.
Relevant Tags: LEARNING DIFFERENCES
There is a long history of private organizations caring for and educating many of the most handicapped children in the United States. Today there are approximately 1,500 to 2,000 private special education schools, many of which accept students from public school districts under the Individualized Education Program (IEP) process.
Meeting the needs of learners with special needs is a complex process. The uniqueness of each individual’s strengths and challenges merits a fully individualized assessment. Furthermore, designed interventions are as diverse as the individuals themselves. When working with individuals on the autism spectrum, that diversity is even more pronounced, as the ways in which the individual is impacted by ASD vary widely.
Changing perspectives changes lives. As one of the many pioneers in the field of visual literacy, I have travelled throughout the world observing the universal visual expression that crosses all cultural boundaries. Humans are hard-wired for learning and what we learn is not nearly as important as how we learn. By opening our eyes and ears, we open our minds.
Heroin use in our society today has reached considerable numbers. In 2015, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released figures indicating a 63 percent increase in heroin use within a decade and a near quadrupling of heroin-related overdose deaths.
Relevant Tags: WELLNESS
Substance abuse and relapse into substance abuse and addiction has become more prevalent in the younger teen, school aged children.
Active teenagers are increasingly focused on their weight, physique, athletic ability and body image. While this could be considered a step in the right direction for cultivating a healthier generation, many teens are willing to do whatever it takes to achieve their body image goals.
Norfolk is the ideal destination for action-packed and affordable, educational tours. With an abundance of outdoor activities, historical and cultural attractions, Norfolk offers exciting choices for new learning.
Relevant Tags: EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING: Virginia
Discover a world of imagination and fun at the Virginia Air & Space Center in Hampton, located in the heart of Coastal Virginia! The world-class science and learning facility, and official visitor center for NASA Langley Research Center, immerses guests into a full throttle space and aviation experience.
Two permanent galleries, Space Quest and Adventures in Flight, showcase everything from a full-size Air Tran DC-9 to a three-billion-year old moon rock. Learn how America’s first astronauts, The Mercury Seven, trained right here in Hampton! With over 100-hands on exhibits, families will spend a whole day soaring through space and time, exploring all the center has to offer.
History, Entertainment and Adventure abound in the Fredericksburg, Virginia Region, located just fifty miles south of Washington, D. C. Combine a dose of drama with a dash of curiosity and inspire your students!
Henricus Historical Park has offered education programs to grades Pre-K – 12 for nearly 20 years. Each program covers not only history and social studies, but also includes math, technology and sciences -- STEM Education. Our newest programs meld the history of 17th century Virginia, with an understanding of the incredible changes in not only religion, education and politics, but in science and technology that took place some 400+ years ago in Europe; many of these changes helped make “the Age of Exploration” possible to the New World.
Virginia Beach is an ideal coastal city destination for student group travelers thanks to its three distinct beaches, well-known and off-the-beaten-path attractions and opportunities to explore its 18,600 acres of parks and wildlife refuges in addition to the city’s great restaurants and shops.
American poet, writer and scholar Mark Van Doren says, “The art of teaching is the art of assisting discovery.”
Relevant Tags: EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING
Loggerhead Marinelife Center (LMC) is one of Florida’s most unique non-profit cultural destinations focused on ocean and sea turtle conservation.
On Dec. 1, 1955, the act of one courageous woman sparked a movement that brought change not only to the city of Montgomery, Alabama but throughout the United States.
At Historic Camden, the Colonial world and the American Revolution come to life for students during school tours offered all year round.
Carowinds is the place where the Carolinas come together. Located off I-77 (Exit 90) at the NC/SC border, the premier entertainment destination of the Carolinas touts world-class thrill rides, live entertainment, authentic Carolina cuisine and more. Feel the sting of Fury 325, the world’s tallest and fastest giga coaster. Winner of the 2015 Golden Ticket Award for “Best New Ride” by the readers of Amusement Today, this steel behemoth reaches heights of 325 feet tall and breathtaking speeds of 95 miles per hour - it’s full throttle all the way. This historic expansion includes new attractions and amenities for all members of the family – from mild to wild! Plus, it’s included with admission. Plants vs. Zombies™ Garden Warfare 3Z Arena is the world’s first intra-active 3-D digital experience. Guests are immersed in the Plants vs. Zombies™ Garden Warfare 2 universe and compete in an epic battle to find the Golden Gnome.
If your school is looking for a great way to spend the day while in Atlanta, get in the game at the College Football Hall of Fame and Chick-fil-A Fan Experience.
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Our Goal: to reinvigorate the spirit of American education. The Southeast Education Network, through SEEN Magazine and www.SEENmagazine.us, presents resources, ideas and techniques to help educators become more effective while growing personally and professionally. SEEN Magazine is dedicated to educators, school administrators, and the education community.
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