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When Kids Have Structure for Thinking, Better Learning Emerges

When Kids Have Structure for Thinking, Better Learning Emerges
Amidst the discussions about content standards, curriculum and teaching strategies, it’s easy to lose sight of the big goals behind education, like giving students tools to deepen their quantitative and qualitative understanding of the world. Teaching for understanding has always been a challenge, which is why Harvard’s Project Zero has been trying to figure out how great teachers do it. Some teachers discuss metacognition with students, but they often simplify the concept by describing only one of its parts — thinking about thinking. Teachers are trying to get students to slow down and take note of how and why they are thinking and to see thinking as an action they are taking. But two other core components of metacognition often get left out of these discussions — monitoring thinking and directing thinking. When a student is reading and stops to realize he’s not really understanding the meaning behind the words, that’s monitoring.

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Learner-Centered Design – The Principal of Change The things that really struck me about this post is regarding the notion of serving the end-user. Similar to the pilots, schools need to be “learner-centred”, not “learning-centred”; there is a significant difference in these statements. I recently saw a quote being shared through social media and went something along the lines of “If a teacher explains the same thing to a child 100 times, and they still don’t understand, it is not the child that is a slow learner.” That really struck a chord with me. Grammar Auction: Turn grammar review into a game – tekhnologic This is not a new activity and you can find several descriptions of a grammar auction online. You may find these descriptions Grammar Auctions useful: Clare Lavery describes a Grammar Auction for Bjorn Norstrom describes a Grammar Auction for Dave’s ESL café’s idea cookbook. Alex Case suggests some variations on Grammar Auctions for The other day, I was trying to find some inspiration because I was having a difficult time thinking of something to create for the website.

Using to Create Visual Activities for the Classroom Here I am again. Trying another tool. To be honest, the tool was suggested to me by one of the teachers (Marga Valdés) attending a talk I gave last year. It was a talk about creating activities for the classroom using free online tools, and when I finished the presentation, this teacher came up to me and said she was surprised I hadn’t mentioned I confessed to her I didn’t know the tool and promised I would give it a go.

“You Can Always Add. You Can’t Subtract.” a/k/a [Makeover] Painted Cubes (See preview.) That’s a very helpful comment from, Alyssa Boike, a recent workshop participant. Textbooks don’t have that same luxury. Getting Smart on Learner-Centered STEM Authored by Getting Smart, in partnership with Harmony Public Schools Download Smart Bundle here What do you get when you mix project-based deeper learning, STEM, college prep and personalized learning in a small supportive environment? You get the largest high performing school network you’ve probably never heard of–Harmony Public Schools. The first Harmony school opened in Houston in 2000 with just 200 students.

ESL Warm Up Activities with Free PowerPoint Download I use games and fun activities to warm up my class before the lesson begins, to break the ice or even as a time filler. Warmers bring energy to class and definitely fills the time with more learning when the lesson runs shorter than expected. Below are some of the games that I have been using in my ESL class. No More Worksheets! Here is a very simple test to determine the effectiveness of your child's mathematics teacher... Question 1: Does you your child's mathematics teacher assign a lot of worksheets for homework and classwork? If the answer is YES - Not a very effective teacher.If the answer is NO - Likely to be a more effective teachers. This idea is a major shift in thinking for a lot of people--both for teachers and for non-teacher-parents alike. Some would say, "How can you say worksheets are bad?" Or, "I used worksheets when I was in school and I turned out fine."

Tips for Teachers To Allow Students to Take Ownership of Their Learning About ETR Community EdTechReview (ETR) is a community of and for everyone involved in education technology to connect and collaborate both online and offline to discover, learn, utilize and share about the best ways technology can improve learning, teaching, and leading in the 21st century. EdTechReview spreads awareness on education technology and its role in 21st century education through best research and practices of using technology in education, and by facilitating events, training, professional development, and consultation in its adoption and implementation. Black Box Thinking for Teachers - Teaching and Learning Guru Black Box Thinking is a philosophy which allows learning to emerge from mistakes. The phrase was coined by Matthew Syed in his excellent book of the same title, where he examines performance and critical self-evaluation in sport, aviation, politics and many other fields. He took the term from the “black box” flight recorders fitted to aircraft, which contain vast amounts of data, to be used to inform future improvements, especially following the poor performance of human beings, the failure of systems and procedures, unexpected events and even complete disasters. How does black box thinking apply in education? In education, just as in aviation, we continually train ourselves and others, to help ensure consistently high performance.

25 awesome apps for teachers, recommended by teachers What are the best apps for teachers? We asked TED-Ed Innovative Educators and the TED-Ed community. Below, 25 awesome apps recommended for teachers, by teachers. For teaching students how to present, create and code TED-Ed More than 250,000 teachers use TED education tools to spark student curiosity and explore presentation literacy skills. “TED-Ed is an outstanding resource in my classroom,” says TED-Ed Innovative Educator Jennifer Hesseltine. Math Teachers Should Encourage Their Students to Count Using Their Fingers in Class A few weeks ago I (Jo Boaler) was working in my Stanford office when the silence of the room was interrupted by a phone call. A mother called me to report that her 5-year-old daughter had come home from school crying because her teacher had not allowed her to count on her fingers. This is not an isolated event—schools across the country regularly ban finger use in classrooms or communicate to students that they are babyish.

Finding the Most Creative Ways to Help Students Advance At Their Own Pace In 2005, New Hampshire’s Department of Education set a policy requiring schools to implement a competency-based system, but didn’t define the specific skills each school would be expected to master. State education leaders hoped that the policy would push schools towards a system in which students would not advance unless they could demonstrate proficiency in every core competency. But schools across the state have interpreted the directive in very different ways and set those competencies both broadly and narrowly. “There wasn’t any training nor was there funding for it,” said Ryan Kaplan, Principal of Windham High School in New Hampshire.” Every school had to figure it out on their own.”

Too many lessons, too little time – – by Mike Astbury This is a guest post written by Šárka Cox and Peter Nobbs. Here are a number of quick speaking activities that can be used to practice a range of grammatical structures using a single resource, a set of verb phrase cards. These activities are adaptable for any language structure and can help you have an interesting and creative lesson without much preparation time. You can download the cards by clicking here. You need a set for every group of three students. Enjoy! Strategies for Helping Students Motivate Themselves Editor's Note: This piece was adapted from Building a Community of Self-Motivated Learners: Strategies to Help Students Thrive in School and Beyond by Larry Ferlazzo, available March 21, 2015 from Routledge. My previous post reviewed research on extrinsic and intrinsic motivation, and described the four qualities that have been identified as critical to helping students motivate themselves: autonomy, competence, relatedness, and relevance. In this post, I'll discuss practical classroom strategies to reinforce each of these four qualities. Autonomy Providing students with freedom of choice is one strategy for promoting learner autonomy. Educators commonly view this idea of choice through the lens of organizational and procedural choice.