Thursday, August 13, 2009

Editorial: Different animals

Editorial: Different animals
Policy makers shouldn't confuse schools with businesses 

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Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Incorrect facts

Very interesting article by Cognitive psychologist Gordon H. Bower of Stanford University who looks at: Why is it hard to "unlearn" an incorrect fact?

Building on the correct information can help you learn new associations to it: add something to change how you retrieve the item from your memory. You might replace your question “Name of John’s wife?” with “Name of John’s second wife?”; or use an elaboration that contains the accurate information, such as “We are weird” or “My niece is nice”; or convert 7 X 9 into 7 X (10 – 1) = 70 – 7 = 63. As you practice the elaborated association, the simpler direct association (7 X 9 = 63) eventually replaces the earlier one, which weakens without rehearsals. Labeling and rehearsing the wrong association (for example, saying to yourself, “7 X 9 is not 63”), however, are distinctly counterproductive.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Next Draft of Common Standards Due in Early September

Next Draft of Common Standards Due in Early September

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Schools Need Teachers Like Me. I Just Can't Stay

A wonderful article in the Aug 9 Washington Post by Sarah Pine entitled: Schools Need Teachers Like Me. I Just Can't Stay. She list several factors why she left teaching – one particular factor is below:
There is yet another factor that played a part in my choice, something that I rarely mention. It has to do with the way that some people, mostly nonteachers, talk about the profession.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Education Week: Experts Hope Federal Funds Lead to Better Tests

Education Week: Experts Hope Federal Funds Lead to Better Tests

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The anti-reformists often demand that probability and statistics be removed from state standards.  They ignore the vital place that statistics plays in today's world.   An article by Steve Lohr in the August 5th edition of the NY Times entitled:  "For Today’s Graduate, Just One Word: Statistics" discusses the great need for Statistics in today's curriculum.  
“I keep saying that the sexy job in the next 10 years will be statisticians,” said Hal Varian, chief economist at Google. “And I’m not kidding.”

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Common Core & Federal Dollars LInked?

An interesting editorial in the NY Times (July 30th).  It clearly linked states' adoption of the Common Core Standards to Federal Government funds.  See below:

The president and the secretary are rightly interested in replacing a wild patchwork of standards with coherent common standards and tests that would allow parents to compare their schools with others. The government cannot and should not write those standards.  But states that have committed to joining, say, the standards consortium started by the National Governors Association will be favored in the funding competition over states that have not. More consideration will eventually be given to states that develop plans for adopting internationally benchmarked K-through-12 standards that build toward college and career readiness.