I wish I could say I have some sort of connection to the number 95. But I don’t. Do you? Well, I guess we should just get on with the show. What I do have a nice reading list for this week’s 95th Carnival of Education. So welcome to the midway, I hope you enjoy yourself, or at least you learn a thing or two along the way. I had planned to spend the day coming up with a clever approach, but essays and my kids got in my way. So here we go, textbook style (which really contradicts my whole philosophy of teaching, but this is not the time…).
Chapter 1: Teaching and Learning
Creating life long learners is one of the primary goals of hopefully all educators, ChemJerk provides his students with a short tutorial on how to be an educated person. I’ll give one part away – surround yourself with smart people.
Aquiram at Teaching in the 21st Century is doing some great projects but is still concerned about covering the standards. It doesn’t help that an experienced colleague has scrutinized Aquiram’s curricular choices, but offers no real advice or help.
It seems that students either love or hate math. Some students just don’t put in the effort – even when the concepts are actually pretty basic (even for a history teacher like myself). IB a Math Teacher documents the frustration math teachers at his school face when trying to teach the basics of geometry. Denise over at a Home for Homeschoolers gives some practical advice on how to figure out percentages – these concepts actually apply to more then just math!
Have you ever had a student who thinks they understand the topic you are discussing, but doesn’t really have a clue? This college student looks at misconceptions in science education.
Like the rest of the world, trivial and serious distractions take our focus from those pesky lesson plans and state standards. Janet at the Art of Getting By details all of the interuptions to the learning process during the last few months – when is the learning supposed to be taking place?
Homeschooling one’s children is an overwhelming task, but Stephanie of Life Without School gives an insightful and practical look at the process of transitioning from a traditional school setting to homeschooling.
Chapter 2: Aren’t they cute? Stories from the inside.
Apparently the 8 – 12 year olds of the world are starting to act like teenagers – what could be worse??? The Science Goddess talks a little science and a little culture to explain this scarey effect of the modern world.
Those little rascals that grace our classrooms each and every day sometimes surprise us with their words and actions. Elementary History Teacher relates a thoughtful discussion she had with her students about early American colonies and discovers that even a student with his head in his bookbag can actively participate. Ms. Cornelius at A Shrewdness of Apes extracts the dreaded “H” word from a student involved in a verbal altercation. Mister Teacher then creates his own easy button in a short rant about the “holiday” season and the little lovelies who call his classroom home for the day.
Mrs. Bluebird does what every teacher has done at some point or another – bribed her students! Not so fast, she didn’t use the usual fare of candy or extra credit, instead she let them look at anything they wanted under the microscope – how cool is she?
In a bit of a bizarre situation, Education Wonk – the father of our little carnival here, shares the story of a student who is suspended and then expelled for an exchange with another student where he denied the existance of leprechauns. I can’t imagine walking into that conversation or trying to stop that argument.
Chapter 3: Student Achievement (or lack there of)
There comes a time when parents need to cut the cord. Let’s say that in college, the students should probably take on own some of their own responsibilities and leave mom out of it, right? If you are looking for the right way to express this, Mamacita at Scheiss Weekly has some choice words for just such a student..
Many students live and die by their grades, but often they don’t quite get how or why grades are given. Darren at Right on the Left Coast reflects on just that.
In an educational world that is becoming more and more dominated by tests, what do we do with the student who is simply not a good test taker? Who needs to take that responsibility? Right Wing Prof looks at some of the answers.
Chapter 4: Educational Policy Studies
This chapter seems to be packed full, so we are going to take the bulleted list approach to promote efficiency (I know, a concept rarely found when discussing educational policy – call me a visionary :).
- Maisie McAdoo and Eric Osberg debate weighted student funding over at Edspresso.
- New Orleans is experimenting with two districts – one for public schools and one for charter schools. Let’s Get It Right looks at the debate surrounding this approach.
- Solve the problems that cause poverty or work to improve the system as it is? That the issue being discussed at This Week in Education.
- How do the public schools in Washington D.C. hope to get more students asks Matt at Going to the Mat? The American way, of course, marketing!
- Looks like adminstrators in Chicago Public Schools are going to see the same performance pay standards as the teachers.
- How about building a school on site that has been contaminated and deemed unfit for development? NYC Educator points out the new land use plan for New York City.
- Dr. Homeslice (what a name) gives us a round-up of union issues for the week.
- What would the Carnival be without looking at a NCLB flaw? This week Dr. P of EduInsights compares board exams proficiency rates for Colorado and Alabama. You will be surprised.
- Ever wonder what the founding fathers thought of public education? Dana at Principled Discovery explores what was probably their original intent.
Chapter 5: Educational Technology
OK, this chapter is one of my creation and as the host for this week, I am hijacking this final section. I have a strong interest in bringing technology tools into the classroom. All of the educators who have participated in this Carnival or the Carnivals of the past use blogs for themselves, but do they bring this tool to their students? If not, why? Our students are using it and will be expected to use it when they leave us for the “real world.” The Internet has become significantly more user friendly in the last couple of years. Web 2.0 or the read/write web has really opened up what we can do instructionally with our students. In one of my recent posts, I share a great explanation of Web 2.0. In the spirit of Web 2.0, I am going to start sharing practical ways to use technology. Please come back and check it out. The first cool tool I’ll be demostrating will be using WordPress for a classroom web site.
If you haven’t read the The World is Flat, you probably should. Two teachers are in the midst of working collaboratively with students across the world. Vicki Davis has just started her Classroom is Flat project where her students in Georgia are working with students in Bangladesh. Chris Craft is doing a similar project with another school in Peru. Both are using wikis as the collaborative tool to connect the students. Should be interesting to watch these two projects evolve.
Finally, I’ll leave you with a post from David Warlick who looks at some testing we need to be paying attention to.
If you are interested in hosting a future edition of the Carnival of Education, please contact EdWonk at edwonk [at] educationwonks [dot] org.
Deadline for submissions for next weeks Carnival of Education will be Tues. Dec. 5 by midnight eastern standard time.
Submissions should be sent to historyiselementary [at] yahoo [dot] com or the carnival submission form.