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Teaching the teachers

Teaching the teachers
TO THE 11- and 12-year-olds in his maths class, Jimmy Cavanagh seems like a born teacher. He is warm but firm. His voice is strong. Correct answers make him smile. And yet it is not his pep that explains why his pupils at North Star Academy in Newark, New Jersey, can expect to go to university, despite 80% of their families needing help to pay for school meals. Mr Cavanagh is the product of a new way of training teachers. Like many of his North Star colleagues are or have been, Mr Cavanagh is enrolled at the Relay Graduate School of Education. Hello, Mr Chips There can be few crafts more necessary. Eric Hanushek, an economist at Stanford University, has estimated that during an academic year pupils taught by teachers at the 90th percentile for effectiveness learn 1.5 years’ worth of material. Rich families find it easier to compensate for bad teachers, so good teaching helps poor kids the most. Such studies emphasise the power of good teaching. There is a good deal of sense in this.

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Dagger in Tutankhamun's tomb was made with iron from a meteorite A dagger entombed with King Tutankhamun was made with iron from a meteorite, a new analysis on the metal composition shows. In 1925, archaeologist Howard Carter found two daggers, one iron and one with a blade of gold, within the wrapping of the teenage king, who was mummified more than 3,300 years ago. The iron blade, which had a gold handle, rock crystal pommel and lily and jackal-decorated sheath, has puzzled researchers in the decades since Carter’s discovery: ironwork was rare in ancient Egypt, and the dagger’s metal had not rusted. Italian and Egyptian researchers analysed the metal with an x-ray fluorescence spectrometer to determine its chemical composition, and found its high nickel content, along with its levels of cobalt, “strongly suggests an extraterrestrial origin”. They compared the composition to known meteorites within 2,000km around the Red Sea coast of Egypt, and found similar levels in one meteorite.

10 Team-Building Games That Promote Collaborative Critical Thinking One of education’s primary goals is to groom the next generation of little humans to succeed in the “real world.” Yes, there are mounds of curricula they must master in a wide breadth of subjects, but education does not begin and end with a textbook or test. Other skills must be honed, too, not the least of which is how to get along with their peers and work well with others. Ancient Egyptian coffin found to hold youngest known mummified foetus A miniature coffin from ancient Egypt that was thought to contain an individual’s preserved organs has been found to hold the youngest known mummified human foetus to be embalmed and buried by the civilisation. The 44cm-long coffin fell into the hands of the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge in 1907, after it was excavated from Giza in Egypt the same year. And while the cedar wood coffin from 600BC had deteriorated, the small, black bundle inside remained intact. Curators at the museum assumed the contents of the coffin were organs, traditionally removed and preserved during the embalming of bodies. But when x-ray imaging proved inconclusive, they turned to a more detailed micro-CT scan to examine the tiny bundle.

22 Powerful Closure Activities Too many university supervisors and administrators criticize the absence of lesson closure, a dubious assessment practice likely caused by the improper use of Madeline Hunter’s lesson plan model (PDF) as a de facto checklist of eight mandatory teaching practices -- anticipatory set, objective and purpose, input, modeling, checking for understanding, guided practice, independent practice, and closure -- a custom that Hunter decried in 1985 (PDF). Although it offers multiple benefits, please don't view closure as a professional must-do. What Is Closure? Closure is the activity that ends a lesson and creates a lasting impression, a phenomenon that Colorado State University professor Rod Lucero calls the recency effect. Teachers use closure to:

How to Be a Better Writer: 6 Tips From Harvard’s Steven Pinker U want 2B a better writer? Good writing is often looked at as an art and, frankly, that can be intimidating. No need to worry. There are rules — even science — behind writing well. Our brain works a particular way; so what rules do we need to know to write the way the brain best understands? Open Educational Resources (OER): Resource Roundup Resources by Topic: OER, a part of the global open content movement, are shared teaching, learning, and research resources available under legally recognized open licenses -- free for people to reuse, revise, remix, and redistribute. Why are OER important? High-quality OER can save teachers significant time and effort on resource development and advance student learning inside and outside the classroom. Further, open sharing of resources has the potential to fuel collaboration, encourage the improvement of available materials, and aid in the dissemination of best practices. For more about the potential of OER, check out "5-Minute Film Festival: Why Open Education Matters," by Edutopia's VideoAmy.

Teacher Librarian Help This research guide is under construction (I haven’t had time to fully hyperlink). You are welcome to use what I have done below and/or look at my on Ancient China Photo: Terra-Cotta warriors, China. 5 Tips for Making Group Work Manageable When teachers ask students to work on a task in groups, they issue an invitation for engagement and, potentially, for chaos! Here are five tips that can help encourage productivity and keep mayhem at bay. 1.

The Egyptian Book of the Dead: A guidebook for the underworld - Tejal Gala Ani’s Book of the Dead, found in his tomb in Thebes, is lauded for its vivid illustrations and colorful vignettes. Sir Wallis Budge purchased the papyrus in 1888 for the British Museum’s collection and divided the 78-foot scroll into 37 sheets for easier reading. You can read Budge’s translation of the Papyrus of Ani here.Though the name is a bit confusing, the Egyptian Book of the Dead is not a bound book but rather a collection of funerary texts written on papyrus scroll. The scrolls were individualized based on people’s wealth and personal preferences. Though the most expensive ones included customized texts and images, people could also purchase cheaper pre-made Books and scribes would only write the name in.

Strategies to Help Struggling Writers It's the day that my first-year college students are sharing the outlines/rough drafts of their final essays with their peers. As I walk around the classroom, a few students put their hands up for me to take a look at their work and give feedback. I look at 5-7 students' work and feel so proud that their outlines are detailed, meticulous, and clearly structured. I pause and think, "This is amazing. They're writing really well and even enjoying it!" I look at other students' work, the ones who are sadly gazing down at their outlines or laptop screens, and the ones still reviewing the stories to pick a topic to write about.