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Ten Steps to Better Student Engagement

Ten Steps to Better Student Engagement
Tristan de Frondeville As a teacher, my goal was to go home at the end of each day with more energy than I had at the beginning of the day. Seriously. Now, as I travel the country coaching teachers on how to successfully use project learning, my goal remains the same. And I try to teach educators the strategies they need to achieve this goal in their own classrooms. A teacher in one of my workshops said, "When my students and I are in the flow, then I don't feel like I have to work as hard." Project-based classrooms with an active-learning environment make such in-the-flow moments more common. The good news is that the strategies for creating and managing high-quality project-learning environments are productive in any classroom, whether project learning is a central part of the curriculum or not. Create an Emotionally Safe Classroom Students who have been shamed or belittled by the teacher or another student will not effectively engage in challenging tasks. Cultivate Your Engagement Meter

Using Positive Student Engagement to Increase Student Achievement Teachers and school-based administrators alike have searched to find ways to increase student achievement in their schools. Several widely known and discussed strategies include using data to drive instruction, employing highly qualified teachers, and improving school leadership. Additionally, positive student engagement in the classroom is another compelling factor—but not as widely discussed—that research has reported to be critical in enhancing student achievement (Akey, 2006; Heller, Calderon, & Medrich, 2003; Garcia-Reid, Reid, & Peterson, 2005). Positive student engagement is not an easy term to define, yet we know it when we see it. Students are engaged when they “devote substantial time and effort to a task, when they care about the quality of their work, and when they commit themselves because the work seems to have significance beyond its personal instrumental value” (Newmann, 1986, p. 242). Engaged students also are more likely to perform well academically. Conclusion

"Of pedantry" by Michel de Montaigne I was often, when a boy, wonderfully concerned to see, in the Italian farces, a pedant always brought in for the fool of the play, and that the title of Magister was in no greater reverence amongst us: for being delivered up to their tuition, what could I do less than be jealous of their honour and reputation? I sought indeed to excuse them by the natural incompatibility betwixt the vulgar sort and men of a finer thread, both in judgment and knowledge, forasmuch as they go a quite contrary way to one another: but in this, the thing I most stumbled at was, that the finest gentlemen were those who most despised them; witness our famous poet Du Bellay — Mais je hay par sur tout un scavoir pedantesque. [“Of all things I hate pedantic learning.” — Du Bellay] And ‘twas so in former times; for Plutarch says that Greek and Scholar were terms of reproach and contempt amongst the Romans. Magis magnos clericos non sunt magis magnos sapientes. Odi ignava opera, philosopha sententia. Whence Ennius:

J'Lit | News & Updates : Coloring books for seniors: keep your hands busy and your brain will thank you | Books from Japan Japanese has many idioms and sayings that refer to te—the hands. Back-scratchers, for example—those long skinny devices typically made of wood that allow us to scratch itchy spots we could not otherwise reach—are known as mago no te, "grandchild's hand." The expression neko no te mo karitai—literally, "we'd like to borrow even the hands of cats"—implies things are so busy that there aren't enough workers to keep up. On the other hand, if you're an idle senior with neither grandchild nor cat, you might have to take things into your own hands. Coloring books, which have traditionally been regarded as strictly for children, are gaining traction as a pastime for adults—especially among the elderly. Compact and simple, and high quality to boot—all at a low price: Japanese manufacturing is known for being able to make these seemingly contradictory elements coexist. Also behind the boom is Japan's position at the leading edge of rapidly aging societies across the developed world.

10 Fun Activities for Children with Autism Craft activities are fun for everyone, but for children on the autism spectrum, the opportunity to explore color, shape, and sensory experiences can stimulate attention, foster calm, and create loads of fun! Here are 10 activities that teachers and parents love to do with their special needs children. 1. Create a Shredded Flower Bouquet. Who knew shredded paper could be so beautiful? 2. Sparkly, glittery water is sure to attract curious eyes! 3. Kids love to swirl the melting paint over paper, creating beautiful designs. 4. A sensory table is a place designed for squishing, sifting, sorting, digging and pouring! 5. Telling a story is like painting a picture, using words instead of paint. 6. This matching activity is a great way to introduce children to the concept of puzzles, and to satisfy many special needs kids who crave order and simplicity. 7. You don't have to brave the chill to enjoy the beauty of winter. 8. 9. Can something be solid and liquid at the same time? 10.

10 Ways to Promote Student Engagement Student engagement is another of those buzz phrases popular in higher education. As with many regularly used terms, everyone assumes we are talking about the same thing; but when asked for definitions, either we are hard pressed to come up one or what’s offered is a decidedly different collection of definitions. Here’s an article that includes clear definitions and, based on a creative synthesis of research, offers 10 ways to promote student engagement. The authors propose definitions broad enough to include more specific descriptions. Based on this synthesis of research, student engagement can be promoted in the following ways: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. Reference: Zepke, N., and Leach, L. (2010). Excerpted from Ways to Achieve Student Engagement.

Agency by Design Website: Twitter: @agencybydesignInstagram: @agencybydesign What does it mean to see the world like a designer? What is “maker thinking?” Sponsored by the Abundance Foundation, the focus of this project is to investigate the teaching and learning of design thinking and maker thinking. Educational initiatives that target these forms of thinking are becoming increasingly popular in K-12 education, from design thinking contests and curricula to school-based hacker spaces and fab labs. The second strand of activity involves a partnership with a group of K-12 educators from several schools in the Temescal region of Oakland, California. Throughout this research we hope to connect with a broader community of educators and makers by sharing our experiences through a variety of social media platforms. Funding: The Abundance Foundation Project Zero staff: Shari Tishman Edward P. Graduate Student Assistant: Raquel Jimenez

Creative Classroom Project "Although most people might look for signs of creativity in the appearance of the bulletin boards, student made projects, centers, and displays in a classroom, I feel that the truly creative classroom goes way beyond what can be seen with the eyes. It is a place where bodies and minds actively pursue new knowledge. Having a creative classroom means that the teacher takes risks on a daily basis and encourages his/her students to do the same." —Pann Baltz, 1993 ATA Teacher of the Year as quoted in Creativity in the Classroom: An Exploration The Creative Classroom Project was a collaboration between Project Zero and Disney Worldwide Outreach to produce materials that help teachers explore and understand: The role of creativity and innovation in teaching and learning. In the project, we take the stance that creative teaching must build on a foundation of solid pedagogy. Principal Investigator: Ron Ritchhart Project Team: Tina Blythe Seana Moran Jim Reese Carol Yourman

Project Co-Arts Project Co-Arts began in 1991 and completed its work in 1996. At the Manchester Craftsmen's Guild in Pittsburgh, Bill Strickland not only offers inner city teenagers apprentice-style training in photography and ceramics, but also helps them apply and get into college. At Plaza de la Raza in East Los Angeles, Gema Sandoval teaches students traditional Mexican art forms like ballet folklorico (folk dance) and migajon (sculpture) to help them build self-esteem and develop a keener understanding of their cultural identity. At MollyOlga Neighborhood Art Classes in Buffalo, Molly Bethel and Olga Lownie offer free painting and drawing classes so that students of all ages can acquire visual arts skills, regardless of their income. Project Co-Arts has developed a framework that will enable community art centers and other educational institutions to document and assess for themselves their educational effectiveness, whatever their mission may be. Davis, J. (1992, February). Davis, J. (1993).

Patterns of Thinking The recently completed Patterns of Thinking project was a multi-year investigation into the nature of critical and creative thinking. The project's focus is the understanding, teaching, and assessment of thinking dispositions. Traditionally, good thinking has been defined as a matter of cognitive ability or skill. Hence the term, "thinking skills." The Patterns of Thinking project has investigated several key thinking dispositions that support high-level thinking in and across subject matters. The project has identified three logically distinct components that are necessary for dispositional behavior: ability, inclination, and sensitivity. Research has shown that inclination and sensitivity make unique contributions to intellectual behavior that are empirically separable from the contribution of ability. Project Zero's Patterns of Thinking Project was supported by The John D. and Catherine T. Principal Investigators: David Perkins Shari Tishman