Tagged “Critical Thinking”

Paula Mirk

The Ethical Core of Common Core

Both the whole child approach and the Common Core State Standards "compel school instructional staff to develop and deliver effective, engaging instruction reflective of individual student needs and strengths." That's what we all want for our students, and we should expect nothing less. But the standards are undergirded by an "ethical core," and all educators should keep in mind that our ultimate purpose in teaching—indeed in creating schools in the first place—remains preparing the next generation to contribute to and improve our society. The Common Core State Standards are one dimension of reaching the goal of healthy students ready to be competent, thoughtful, and informed citizens.

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ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Our Top 10 Blog Posts in 2012

In the past year, experts and practitioners in the field, whole child partners, and ASCD staff have shared their stories, ideas, and resources to help you ensure that each child, in each school, in each community is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged and prepared for success in higher education, employment, and civic life. These are the top 10 posts you read in 2012.

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Thom Markham

Ten Reasons Why Common Core Standards Require a Whole Teacher

When teachers and parents hear the term Common Core State Standards, many have a tendency to think of the new standards as a simple upgrade. In fact, the standards represent an entirely new operating system.

This is good news for the whole child movement. The Common Core standards focus on an inquiry approach to education. Inquiry can't be done through direct instruction alone; it requires student cooperation, engagement, and persistence—all attributes drawn from a pool of social and emotional resources. Without addressing this aspect of human performance, the standards will fail.

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ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Transitioning to Standards-Based Learning

Cathy Vatterott began her ASCD Conference on Teaching and Learning session, "Not Your Mother's Gradebook: Transitioning to Standards-Based Learning," by asking participants to think about the reasons that conventional tests may not be the best method to assess student learning.

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Paula Mirk

Evaluating Teachers on the Hidden Curriculum

Teachers should be evaluated on the atmosphere they create in their classrooms and the degree of trust they have established with their students. Several findings from the Schools of Integrity and other research literature support examining both classroom culture and teacher-student relationships.

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Sean Slade

Do We Need to Burn Our Violins and Close Our Swimming Pools?

"To compete with China in education we will need to burn our violins and close our swimming pools."

Author Yong Zhao said this last week in Melbourne, Australia, at the 2012 Joint Australian Primary Principals Association and New Zealand Federation of Principals Trans-Tasman Conference. Zhao presented a keynote at the conference, as did ASCD Board of Directors member Pasi Sahlberg and author Andy Hargreaves. Interestingly, the themes each speaker touched on have relevance to not only Australian audiences, but also those around the world who are going through similar discussions.

Call them the Global Education Reform Movement (GERM) discussions.

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ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Student Advisory: A Model for the 21st Century

William J Tolley

Post written by William J. Tolley, instructional coach and head of history at the International School of Curitiba in Brazil. A graduate of Teachers College, Columbia University, he is a member of the current cohort in the Johns Hopkins/ISTE Supervision and Administration graduate certificate program. Connect with Tolley by e-mail at idealjetsam@gmail.com. This post was originally featured in ASCD Express.

"Advisory" is often a catch-all phrase for a space and time set aside for faculty and staff to help students face academic, social, psychological, and perhaps physical challenges. Unfortunately, schools seldom give such programs the space, time, and resources needed to accomplish all this. Moreover, advisories are often ill-defined or poorly designed and end up as well-intentioned tangents to the school mission. Nonetheless, the need for effective advisories is especially important in the 21st century because, as never before, students with different abilities and intelligences all need to know how to learn without us and build their shared future. A 21st century advisory is the perfect place to help them do this.

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Whole Child Virtual Conference

Your Summer PD: Whole Child Education and Society

2012 ASCD Whole Child Virtual Conference

ASCD conducted its second Whole Child Virtual Conference in May 2012. This free conference showcases schools, authors, and research about implementing a whole child approach for a worldwide audience. View and share archived session recordings, presenter handouts, and related resources at www.ascd.org/wcvirtualconference.

Gain insight into the role of education in society, the purpose of schools in that society, and what we all can do to ensure that each child, in each school, and in each community is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged through these presentations:

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ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Enlightening Minds: Preparing Critical Thinkers for Life After High School

Post written by Karen McDaniels, an associate regional executive director for the Florida Department of Education where she provides literacy support to the most struggling schools in the South Florida area. Connect with McDaniels by e-mail at Karen.mcdaniels@fldoe.org. This post was originally featured in ASCD Express.

One of the greatest joys for parents is to see their child graduate from high school and head off to college. However, realizing their child's first semester of college is provisional and may consist of remedial courses may rob a parent of their joy, not to mention their dollars. Unfortunately, for many high school graduates, remediation, at least, is the short-term reality: "One out of every three college freshman in four-year institutions needs remedial classes" (Goldman, House, & Livingston, 2011, p.3). As K–12 educators, we have an obligation to adequately prepare students to meet the demands of college upon entering. High schools especially must create a scholarly climate where sophisticated thinking is routinely stimulated through reading, writing, and discussion.

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ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Educators Strive to Provide Students a Well-Rounded Education

Post written by Matthew Swift and originally featured in Policy Priorities.

Teachers, students, and administrators are aware that any major changes to ESEA could have a huge effect on their school districts. Issues such as common core state standards and waivers are among the many policies that could be affected. Even without reauthorization, ESEA (currently known as No Child Left Behind, or NCLB) affects districts across the nation in numerous ways. Despite the issues ESEA presents, educators are still doing their part to ensure students get a good education.

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