Tagged “College Career And Citizenship Readiness”

Klea Scharberg

Throughout November: Supporting Student Success and the Common Core

"Educators need to prepare kids to be career and college ready, but they also need to prepare them for their present world. The Common Core State Standards set out to do that. They're not perfect, but they are a starting point" (Peter DeWitt).

The standards are not a curriculum. Standards are targets for what students should know and be able to do. Curricula are the instructional plans and strategies that educators use to help their students reach those expectations. Central to a supportive school are teachers, administrators, and other caring adults who take a personal interest in each student and in the success of each student. Join us throughout November as we look at how we are designing course content, choosing appropriate instructional strategies, developing learning activities, continuously gauging student understanding, adjusting instruction accordingly, and involving parents and families as partners to support our students' success.

A whole child approach to education is essential to realizing the promise of the standards. Only when students are healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged will they be able to meet our highest expectations and realize their fullest potential.

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Andrew Monk

Empowering Australia’s Children Today Through Positive Education

Initially based upon the principals of positive psychology, the positive education approach has much in common with a whole child approach to education and is contributing to the paradigm shift that is accentuating the nonacademic variables of children's education for successful student outcomes.

Positive education is an approach of improving the well-being of children in schools through implicit and explicit programs. Although this approach as an idea is not something that many find groundbreaking or contemporary, what it has done is brought into light an opportunity for school leaders to initiate a response to the problems associated with physical, social, emotional, and mental well-being of both staff and students. This response is becoming collaborative amongst like-minded schools, and a wave of interest is moving across schools in Australia to implement programs that attend to the whole child and that are outside of traditional academic circles.

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Elyssa Greenberg

Learning for the Long Run

Today's world is entirely different than the one in which I was born. For context, I'm only 20 years old. Among all the advances in science and technology occurring every day are incredible advances in education and child development. We know more now than ever before about how the brain works and how that translates to learning. The research is quite clear: there are many types of learners, and the most effective ways of teaching convey the information in a variety of formats. Lessons that are engaging, interactive, and creative are best for knowledge retention.

One of my most memorable learning experiences was an 8th grade World History unit in which we researched and took on roles in a mock trial for Joan of Arc. Instead of reading a chapter in a book and answering quiz questions, we each prepared a series of statements to reevaluate the court's sentence in a modern context. Cast as Joan herself, I was quite relieved to be found "not guilty," but the real takeaway is found in the overarching lessons from this activity.

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Sean Slade

Improving Schools: The “Real World” Fallacy

First, if you haven't read Tom Whitby's post "The Big Lie in Education," do so. This post is a follow-up from what Whitby has eloquently started.

While we are reflecting, refreshing, and recharging, lets reflect on what we are trying to teach our students and why. Take the premise uttered by many that education must prepare our students for the "Real World." What is this "Real World" that is often held up as a gold standard for anything educationally relevant in a time when everything is changing so quickly and dramatically around us?

Too often this "Real World" that people propose is an antiquated idea that bears little relevance to today, yet alone tomorrow. "Real World" cannot be an education system based on last century's framework. It cannot be a system based on last century's metrics nor last century's constrained concept of knowledge.

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ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Profiles in Education: Ryan Twentey

Ryan Twentey of Parkville High School in Maryland is known as a dedicated teacher who fosters his students' artistic interests to develop the skills they need to be successful in school, in the community, and in preparation for college. His photography and multimedia students have earned a 100 percent pass rate on the AP exam.

Twentey also teaches interactive media production. He produces tutorials to help each student work at his own pace to reach understanding. He encourages his students to persevere, collaborate, and offer respectful critiques to help one another improve.

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Start Empathy

Facilitating Leadership

Post written by Laura White for Ashoka's Start Empathy Initiative, a whole child partner organization.

Amy Potsou and Elizabeth Stickley have a unique approach to educating students. As 3rd grade and 1st grade teachers at North Glendale Elementary School in Kirkwood, Missouri, they strive to help children "walk in the shoes of others, even if they are of a different background," and "assist others because it's the right thing to do,” not because there's a reward. According to Potsou and Stickley, these are the characteristics of a leader—yet these skills are difficult to teach.

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Walter McKenzie

Lots of Second Chances

My best friend often says, "People deserve lots of second chances."

"But why?" I ask, trying to grasp the concept. "At some point don't you risk people taking advantage?"

"Walter, people do the best they can. It makes no sense making it harder on them." I dedicate this blog post to my best friend and this wisdom I have come to adopt as my own.

In an age of cynicism and competition, I find the notion of second chances refreshing, intriguing even. But is it practical? Individually and collectively, how can we afford lots of second chances? Then again, are life and learning value equations? Is there some economic benefit to separating the men from the boys, so to speak? Or in reality, do we all rise to our own potential over time, given the chances and support we need to succeed?

As I look back over a lifetime of opportunities and challenges, how many times did I nail anything on a first try? Not many. How many second chances have I used? How many mentors supported me as I tried and failed and tried again? How many practice sessions? How many retests? How many mulligans? How many "I'm sorrys"? How many times redeemed by forgiveness? More times than I can count. And that's just my lifetime. How about yours?

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Start Empathy

Math, Science, Literacy, and Empathy Are Not Mutually Exclusive

Neon Tommy - Creative Commons

Post written by Sharon Lazich for Ashoka's Start Empathy Initiative, a whole child partner organization.

In February President Obama laid out an ambitious agenda to invest in our young people, calling for early childhood education for every child in America. In his own words:

"Every dollar we invest in high-quality early education can save more than seven dollars later on—by boosting graduation rates, reducing teen pregnancy, even reducing violent crime. In states that make it a priority to educate our youngest children, like Georgia or Oklahoma, studies show students grow up more likely to read and do math at grade level, graduate high school, hold a job, and form more stable families of their own."

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Klea Scharberg

When Students Own the “Why”

This clip presents several ways teachers have structured learning around big ideas and conceptual patterns so that students can connect to a compelling "why," or reason for doing something. Students design the criteria for assignments and take roles and responsibilities within each assignment to see it to its completion. Students or teachers can identify a real-world problem to work on, and technology can provide new avenues for students to collaborate and express their thinking. Learn more with ASCD Express.

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Walter McKenzie

Education’s Attention Deficit Dilemma

In the blogging era everyone can publish their ideas and opinions and grow quite a following doing so; the democratization of information in practice. This proliferating idea exchange is part and parcel of Thomas Friedman's flat earth analogy. Developing one's voice and being heard is a good thing. But it's not enough. If we carry the flat earth metaphor to its logical conclusion, opinions freely rolling across a flattened sphere clatter, collide, and ultimately roll right off the edge. (I just had a flashback to playing Crossfire circa 1970.) Why settle for a random collision of opinions deciding which ideas carry the day? Not all opinions are equal. They need to be vetted for merit.

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