Tag Archives: S3

April 20 Journalizing




Taking Sides

Issue 17:  Is the Practice of Providing Accommodations to Children in Special Education a Good Idea?

MaryAnn Byrnes, from “Accommodations for Students with Disabilities:  Removing Barriers to Learning”.  National Association of Secondary School Principals Bulletin (2000)

James M. Kauffman,
Kathleen McGee, and
Michele Brigham, from “Enabling or Disabling?  Observations on Changes in Special Education,”  Phil Delta Kappan (April 2004)

Accommodations “can be used to create equal access, not excuses (p.317),” where an accommodation is defined as “an adjustment to an activity or setting that removes a barrier presented by a disability so a person can have access equal to that of a person without a disability (p.317).”

“It all comes down to deciding what is important.  Think about assignment and expectations.  Think about the student’s disability.  If the combination creates a barrier, the accommodation removes it.  The accommodation does not release a student from participating or demonstrating knowledge.  It allows the student to participate equitably and demonstrate knowledge.  And isn’t that what school is about (p.323)?”

“The emphasis in special education has shifted away from normalization, independence and competence.  The result has been students’ dependence on whatever special programs, modifications, and accommodations are possible, particularly in general education settings.  The goal seems to have become the appearance of normalization without the expectation of competence (p.324).”

“The full inclusion movement did have some desirable outcomes.  It helped overcome some of the unnecessary removal of students with disabilities from general education.  However, the movement also has had some unintended negative consequences.  One of these is that special education has come to be viewed in very negative terms to be seen as second-class and discriminatory systems that does more harm than good.  Rather than being seen as helpful, as a way of creating opportunity, special education is often portrayed as a means of shunting students into dead-end programs and killing opportunity. (p.327)”

Personal Opinion (before reading):  Since we used a book by Kauffman in our class EDSP6644 Exceptional Learners, I am curious why he is on the on the “No” side here.  I think the point that will probably come out in this debate is the real value of any type of special treatment of the special needs  student, when we desire to show that they are capable of much more than we initially might expect of them.  Thus, I could see where accommodations become a crutch and prevent a truly equitable classroom.  Can’t wait to read this one.

Personal Opinion (after reading):  I see now that Kauffman is not arguing against accommodations in principle, but he is arguing that this special ed system (like any system) can be abused. I think Byrnes side is a well-written summary of accommodations and the general process of IEP and 504.

Kauffman states:  “Like general education, special education must push students to become all they can be.  Special education must countenance neither the pretense of learning nor the avoidance of reasonable demands (p. 332).”

I think this is an good article to accompany the detracking chapter from Oakes & Lipton (2007).  I agree that special education cannot be a holding area for students of whome we have low expectations, or through inequities in the system have lost a sense of wonder and expectation themselves.

[BONUS]  Issue 14:  Does Homework Serve Useful Purposes?

Robert J. Marzano and
Debra J. Pickering, from “The Case for and against Homework”.  Educational Leadership (March 2007)

Diane W. Dunn, from “Homework Takes a Hit!”  Education World. (2005).

The authors quote Cooper, Robinson, and Patall (2006) “With only rare exceptions, the relationship between the amount of homework students do and their achievement outcomes was found to be positive and statistically significant.  Therefore, we think it would not be imprudent, based on the evidence in hand, to conclude that doing homework causes improved academic achievement.  (p. 48).”

Although teachers across the K-12 spectrum commonly assign homework, research has produced no clear-cut consensus on the benefits of homework at the early elementary grade levels (p. 264).

Although research has established that the overall viability of homework as a tool to enhance student achievement, for the most part the research does not provide recommendations that are specific enough to help busy practitioners.  (p. 266).

Article is an interview with John Buell, co-author with Etta Kralovec of The End of Homework:  How Homework Disrupts Families, Overburdens Children and Limits Learning  (Beacon Press, 2000).

“Buell:  We are not suggesting that students shouldn’t work hard or that there shouldn’t be rewards for hard work, but even work has its limits.  hard work is most effective when it is done in the context of appropriate support and assistance for that work. (pg 271).”

Personal Opinion (before reading):  I am personally of the opinion that we might want to turn the model on its head.  Students should view lecture and content based media presentations or do reading at home, and then the class should come in and do exercises and problem solving together.  I wonder how many days of a teacher finding that the next day a student hadn’t viewed the content from the previous night, before launching into the problems that were to be covered that day.  The crushing load of mindless homework without some real learning or group work going on just seems problematic.

Personal Opinion (after reading):  I remain convinced that homework is appropriate, that it should be taken seriously by the teacher, i.e. rich comments if not fully graded, and that it should complement the course and not be an afterthought in lesson planning.

Evans, D. (2008).  Taking sides:  Clashing views in teaching and educational practice.  (3rd ed.).  New York, NY:  McGraw Hill.

Cooper, H., Robinson, J.C., & Patall, E.A. (2006).  Does homework improve academic achievement?  A synthesis of research, 1987-2003.  Review of Educational Research. 76(1). pp. 1-62



Teaching to Change the World

Chapter 7:  Classroom Management:  Caring, Respectful, and Democratic Relationships

Personal Opinion (before reading):  I think that if we hope to prepare students for full participation in a democratic society, we ought to practice democratic principles and processes in the classroom.  As far as caring goes, I do think that it is possible for those who understand a concept to help those who don’t yet understand.  I think that it is also good for a student to admire or recognize a good contribution from their fellow students, which is the basis of respect.

Personal Opinion (after reading):

[I didn’t have time to do this chapter justice, let me come back to it momentarily.]

Chapter 8:  Grouping, Tracking, and Categorical Programs:  Can Schools Teach All Students Well?

Personal Opinion (before reading):  It is essential that students learn that there are high standards and expectations of them at *every* level.  The minute you group or track without the express goal of bringing them up to the level of their peers or back on the cadence of the school, then you are shunting those students of on a siding and hoping they eventually go away (graduate).  Schools must raise all boats.  Schools must exercise creativity and resources to teach and keep students integrated.  The alternative is degrading of standards or degrading separation of students.  Neither of those alternatives are acceptable.

Personal Opinion (after reading):  I was pleased to find ample support in this chapter of my theory that keeping students together allows the struggling student to strive to meet a high bar, and allows the proficient students to get even better by helping out their colleagues.  The quotes that spoke most powerfully in the chapter were the ones that reminded me that we want a society where all can contribute, and all can succeed and get better.  By building a segregated classroom (grouping, tracking, specializing) how do we expect anything different in society. 

Key Quotes

Spear-Swerling and Sternberg (1996) “believe that LD students and others would be better served if teachers and other learning specialists were allowed to address students’ specific cognitive difficulties, such as in reading, and not become distracted by labels (p. 305).”  I like this quote since it drives home that I as mathematics/science teacher need to master my curriculum and then strive consistently to differentiate those lessons for a diverse classroom.  That is the key first and foremost, labels help but this is the key.

“Homogeneous grouping is not necessarily good for high achievers, either.  In fact, students can become destructively competitive among a very small population of the highest-achieving students—particularly in classrooms that stress individual achievement and grades (p. 315).”  I found this quote as powerful as the case study that was reported from Rockville Centre School District in 1990 where the achievement gap was narrowed dramatically by detracking reform.  I think I will need many examples like this to be armed for parents and others that are inclined to oppose detracking.

Speaking of resistance…”if resistance to end tracking is not caused by racial attitudes, it is indisputable that most resistance has racial consequences (p. 316).”  That is the ugly underbelly of tracking, that students on color and traditionally marginalized populations are disproportionately represented in the tracked classrooms.

And finally I have another idea that I am thinking about pursuing which is asking my principal, school board, superintendent if one teacher could teach pretty much the same kids through a sequence of classes from arithmetic to algebra so that they were all on a track to get to calculus in high school.  I need to know what an innovation like that might be called, but it occurs to me that it has some real advantages.

Oakes, J. and Lipton, M. (2008).  Teaching to change the world.  (3rd ed.).  New York, NY:  McGraw Hill.

Spear-Swerling, L. & Sternberg, R.J. (1996)  Off track:  when poor readers become learning disabled.  Boulder, CO:  Westview Press.


April 06 Journalizing

A new quarter has begun and although I wasn’t ready in time for the first class, this is my catch-up journalizing for week 1.  Here’s what the syllabus says:



Issue 1:  Is it Time for National Standards in Education?

Chester E. Finn Jr.,
Liam Julian,
Michael J. Perilli, from
”To Dream the Impossible Dream:  Four Approaches to National Standards and Tests for America’s Schools”.  The Thomas B. Fordham Institute (August 2006)

Lawrence Uzzell, from
”No Child Left Behind:  The Dangers of Centralized Education Policy”.  Cato Institute (May 31, 2005)

The authors make a claim that there are only really 4 approaches that can be taken once you assume that we need national standards.

1.  “The whole enchilada”  the fed controls all
2.  “If you build it they will come”  the fed sets the standards, and provides incentives.
3.  “Let’s all hold hands”  The states build the standards and tests together.
4.  “Sunshine and shame”  Current state standards and tests need to be comparable to the NAEP.

The author compares centrally-controlled education to a soviet command economy.  The author’s solution is to enable parents to exercise more choice in where their children attend school. 

Personal Opinion (before reading):  It is probably naïve to think this way, but I regard national standards as merely an attempt to optimize the planning of what must be done for every student in this whole country for 180 days each school year.  Likewise when it comes to testing, I start from the position that tests are unavoidable for most careers and we should be helping students with test-taking skills.  I have zero faith in other assessments that are not individual, time-based, and summative.

Personal Opinion (after reading):  The argument around unconstitutionality of Federal control of education has some pull on me.  Fundamentally I do not believe that Federal oversight will translate into better standards or more quality instruction in our schools.  I also am not opposed to NCLB especially as it is a driving function of getting data on student performance.  I think the Fed needs to set a high bar, and then enforce methods of measuring AYP or percent of students passing and failing and then empower parents to act on that information.  I think dollar-for-dollar states need to be independent of federal funding so as to drive accountability and efficiency.  That means the DOE probably needs to scale back its presence so that the states end their dependence on federal education dollars.

Issue 16:  Will Increased Use of Computer Technology and Games Be Beneficial to Students?

Shaffer, D., Squire, K. R., Halverson, R., & Gee, J. P. (2005). Video Games and The Future of Learning. (cover story). Phi Delta Kappan, 87(2), 105-111. Retrieved from EBSCOhost.

Lowell W. Monke, from “The Overdominance of Computers,” Educational Leadership (December 2005 / January 2006)

Argues that schools have to catch up with corporations, the government, and the military in recognizing and harnessing the tremendous educative power of video games. Role of video games in providing a glimpse into how we might create new and more powerful ways to learn in schools, communities, and workplaces; Use of video games because they can create new social and cultural worlds; Warning that video games are inherently simplifications of reality and can be based on violent and sometimes misogynistic themes; Question as to how to use the power of video games as a constructive force in schools, homes, and workplaces; Importance of viewing games as activities that are most powerful when they are personally meaningful, experiential, social, and epistemological all at the same time.

Skeptical of the quick and unexamined adoption of computers in education, Monke writes:

“But we don’t prepare children for an automobile-dependent society by finding ways for 10-year-olds to drive cars, or prepare people to use alcohol responsibly by teaching them how to drink when they are 6. My point is that preparation does not necessarily warrant early participation.”

Monke also fears that computers stunt the growth of moral development and the experience of authentic situations.  He writes: 

“Indeed, as advanced technology increasingly draws us toward a mechanical way of thinking and acting, it becomes crucial that schools help students develop their distinctly human capacities. What we need from schools is not balance in using high technology, but an effort to balance children’s machine-dominated lives.”

Monke describes how computer use should be phased in gradually and *after* elementary school and concludes thus:

“I am not suggesting that we indiscriminately throw computers out of classrooms. But I do believe it’s time to rethink the past decision to indiscriminately throw them in. The result of that rethinking would be, I hope, some much-needed technological modesty, both in school and eventually in society in general. By compensating for the dominance of technology in students’ everyday lives, schools might help restore the balance we need to create a more humane society.”

Personal Opinion (before reading):  As a firm believer in the power of technology.  I was mostly interested in what the CON side would have to say to this question.  I was also interested in seeing how much evidence the PRO side could bring to bear on proving the point in question.

Personal Opinion (after reading):  It has been very interesting researching some other publications by Gee and Shaffer.  Their focus is primarily on what they call Epistemic Games, i.e. games that teach thinking and reasoning, not just faster hand-eye coordination.  Of course, neither side would dispute that there are games that are wholly inappropriate for the classroom due to graphic violence or adult themes.  However, Epistemic games on the other hand have a component of realism and use simulated situations that build a players confidence and knowledge which then transfers to other subjects.  And most of all, play as a route to learning, is a powerful thing, I don’t think Monke would disagree with that, he would just caution against using computers all day instead of kicking a soccer ball around in the sun.

For further reading see “Epistemic Frames for Epistemic Games” by Shaffer, and then see their web site for examples of games that they have been testing on students for at least the past 5 years.

I also would like to refer the reader to a New York Times article “Learning by Playing Video Games in the Classroom” which is actually more than just playing games, but students actually learn by designing and building the games first.  That I think is incredibly powerful and would like to see the results for their students.

Evans, D. (2008).  Taking sides:  Clashing views in teaching and educational practice.  (3rd ed.).  New York, NY:  McGraw Hill.



Teaching to Change the World

Note:  see the web resources for students on this book (chapter by chapter) here

Part I:  The Foundations of American Schooling

Chapter 1:  The American Schooling Dilemma:  Diversity, Inequality, and Democratic Values

Personal Observations:  I am looking forward to following Judy Smith through the book as she has a similar background,i.e. having switched to teaching from a high tech job.

Chapter 3:  Philosophy and Politics:  The Struggle for the American Curriculum

Personal Observations: 


Oakes, J. and Lipton, M. (2008).  Teaching to change the world.  (3rd ed.).  New York, NY:  McGraw Hill.

Some Final Items for EDU6133

Here are links to my Sample Lesson Plan Packet, and the Powerpoint for my Presentation in fulfillment of classroom requirements for EDU6133.

Showcase Lesson Packet (Lesson Justification, Lesson Plan, Unit Plan, Classroom and Student Characteristics)

Class Presentation (120 MB PowerPoint, has the movie in it)

Hey Cohort, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and See You in Class!


Achieve.org and Common Core Standards for Mathematics

A great overview here.  (Taken from a meeting of PhysTEC/Noyce)

Plenary Panel B — Kaye Forgione, Jean Slattery
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics:  An Overview of the Standards, How They Were Developed, and Their Potential Impacts on Teaching, Learning, Assessment and Professional Development

July 2010 NSF Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program Conference in Washington, DC

Here’s a link to the presentations made at the conference.  Below is a mash-up of presentations that I took a look at.

Presentations made at the July 2010 NSF Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program Conference in Washington, DC, are listed below, by session number. Links are provided for presentations that are downloadable.

Sessions / Presentations

July 7, New Awardees Session

New Awardees Session – NSF Staff
NSF Staff Presentation


July 8, Morning Sessions

1.1.A — Patricia Friedrichsen, Marilyn Soucie, Heather Worsham
From Billboards to Facebook: Recruitment Strategies for Undergraduate and Post-Baccalaureate Programs

University of Missouri has a program (SMAR2T) targeting Career Changers (like me) and others. (Click slide below to see whole presentation.)


1.1.B — Monica Plisch
Know Your Audience: Marketing Strategies to Recruit Teachers

(Click slide below to see whole presentation.)


(Click slide below to see whole presentation.)


(Click slide below to see whole presentation.)


1.2 — David Andrews, Lienne Medford, et al.
Noyce Regional Conferences: 2009-2010 Regional Conference Reports

Evidently there was a Western Regional Noyce Conference (WRNC) this past April 9-11, 2010 in Fresno.  Here’s what attendees most appreciated from the conference.  (Click slide below to see whole presentation.)


1.3.A — Jacqueline T. McDonnough
Using a Residency Model to Prepare Teachers for High Need Schools
(no presentation on the web)

1.3.B — Rabia Shahbaz, Ariel McIntyre, Angelle Whittington
The Power of an Online Learning Community:  By and For Noyce Scholars

Folks at Georgia State University have started an online professional learning community (PLC) for Noyce Scholars.  Group has online meetings (nice idea!) and utilizes resources such as Second Life, Google Group and Wikispace to share ideas and best practices.  (Click slide below to see whole presentation.)


1.4.A — Davida Fischman
Good Resources for Math Teaching
(no presentation on the web)

1.4.B — Elsa Medina (Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo)
Learning Mathematics in a Second Language

It looks like Elsa used a mathematics lesson in Spanish (to a predominantly non-Spanish-speaking audience) to illustrate her talk.  Interesting idea!

1.5.A — Julie Luft
Building Induction Programs for Content  Specialists: Research on Beginning Teachers
(no presentation on the web)

1.5.B — Gail Richmond, Angela Calabrese-Barton, Amal Ibourk
Using a Wiki to Support Noyce Scholar Development and to Serve as a Research and Evaluation Tool

The folks at Michigan State University are using a Wiki to support their Noyce Scholars.


1.6 — Eileen McIlvain, Laura Moen
Making the Most of Digital Learning Resources for STEM with the National Science Digital Library (NSDL)

Hooray for online resources for teachers!


1.7.A — Margarita Cummings
Understanding the Varied Perspectives of Stakeholders in a Collaborative Partnership for Mathematics Teacher Preparation


1.7.B — Barbara Edwards
Math for America San Diego: A Multi-Institutional Regional Approach to Improving Mathematics Education


1.8.A — Victor Donnay
Building on a Baseline Survey to Strengthen Program Design

1.8.B — Lisa M. Gonsalves, Tricia Kress
Navigating the Socio-Cultural Web: Introducing a Theoretical Model for Evaluating Teacher Preparation Residency Programs


1.9 — Michael S. Calzi, Joseph A. Henderson, Christopher Young
New Eyes:  Developing and Sustaining Reform-Minded Community through Innovative Use of Whatcha Already Got


1.10 — Suzanne Thurston, Tim Gerber
Partnerships and Resources for Secondary Pre-Service Teacher Preparation


1.11 — Michelle Stachurski
Essential Components of Student-Centered Physics Curricula

1.12 — Anna Heyer, Rachel Zenuk
BioME:  Making DNA Relevant and Exciting in the High School Classroom


July 8, Afternoon Sessions

2.1.A — Paul Bischoff
Recruiting Incoming Freshman Science Majors as Potential Noyce Scholars

2.1.B — Robert Ferdinand
Recruitment of Robert Noyce Teacher Scholar Cohorts at East Central University, Ada, OK

2.2.A — Jaime Arvizu
The MERLOT Content Builder: Managing Teaching and Learning Resources with a Powerful Online Tool

2.2.B — Edward Rock
The NSTA Learning Center: Online Content Building Resources for Teachers of Science

Pretty cool, you should check it out http://learningcenter.nsta.org

2.3.A — Pamela Fraser-Abder
Secondary School Teachers Think They Know Good Teaching:  Do Their Students Agree?

2.3.B — Sheila R. Vaidya
Teachers Who Meet the Challenges of Teaching in High Need Schools


2.4 — Adrienne G. Spina
Instructional Strategies Using Posters in Mathematics

2.5 — John Keller
Science Teacher and Researcher (STAR) Program: Developing “Teacher-Researchers” Through Paid Summer Research Experiences at National Laboratories

2.6 — Ted Fowler
Improving Science Instruction Using the AAAS Atlas of Science Literacy and the National Science Digital Library

2.7 — Carol Cronk
Productive Classroom Culture

2.8.A — Christopher Halter
Purposeful School Partnerships Within an Innovative Credential Program


2.8.B — Tammy J. Ladwig
Alternative Math and Science Teacher Licensure Parnership: The University of Wisconsin’s collective experiences from a Noyce Co-PI, Noyce Student Scholars and program assistant, what we now know about the process and the different stages we have worked through

Check out the average age for Noyce recipients in Wisconsin.


2.9.A — Eric Brewe
GEMS: Changing the Educational Paradigm at a Hispanic-Serving Institution in South Florida

2.9.B — Valerie K. Otero
The Colorado Learning Assistant Model and Its role in a Synergistic Program for Institutional Change

2.10 — Angela Webb
Learning to Teach, Teaching to Learn: Negotiating the Labyrinth of Secondary Science Teaching

2.11 — Christine D. Thomas, Fred Dillon
Teaching Strategies for a Reasoning and Sense Making Approach to Student  Learning in High School Mathematics Classrooms


2.12 — Daree Yancey
GK-12 Fellow / Teacher Applied Mathematics

2.13 — Monica Plisch
National Task Force on Teacher Education in Physics


July 9, Morning Sessions

3.1.A — Laveria Hutchison
Recruiting and Selecting High Caliber Mathematics and Science Students:  Successes, Formative Changes and Lessons Learned

3.1.B — Greg Rushton
Harvesting the ‘Not-So-Low Hanging Fruit’ into the Noyce Program: Strategies and Opportunities

Check out the billboard that Kennesaw State University (GA) also did!


3.2.A — Pamela E. Harrell,  Colleen M. Eddy (University of North Texas)
Using Learning Progressions to Sequence and Assess Learning


3.2.B — Enrique Ortiz
Using a Teaching Goals Inventory to Analyze Noyce Scholars’ Development of Teaching and Assessment Practices


3.3 — Patricia Trina Crowley (sent e-mail requesting presentation 12/4/2010)
Noyce Scholars: Perceptions of Teaching as a Profession

3.4 — Louis Nadelson
Preparing STEM Education Majors to Teach Using Inquiry-Based Instruction

3.5 — Laura Henriques
Real and Virtual Physics Activities for the Secondary Classroom

3.6 — T. Lord
Using Scientific Teaching with General Biology Students: Designing Lessons with the 5E Planning Format of Instruction

3.7.A — Linda Cooper Foreman
The Mathematics Studio Program:  A Promising Context for Transforming Mathematics Learning, Teaching, Coaching, and Leadership

3.7.B — Karen Symms Gallagher
NSF Robert Noyce Math for America Los Angeles Project

3.8.A — Christine Drew
Using Public Representations of Students’ Thinking to Drive Evidence-Based Reasoning

3.8.B — Gaoyin Qian (Lehman College)
Scientists in Action: Learning and Teaching Mathematics and Science by Using Community Resources


3.9 — Steven Fletcher
You Just Don’t understand: Discourse and Communication in a Fledgling Noyce Partnership

3.10 — Jana Bouwma-Gearhart
Engaging Aspiring Educators in Inquiry and Related Curriculum Development Through an Interdisciplinary Field Course

3.11 — Suzanne E. Eckes (Indiana University)
Emerging Legal Issues in Education


3.12 — John Soule
Building Engineers for the Future: Changing Perceptions of Math and Science in Rural Washington

3.13 — Melanie Smith
Ping-Pong Balls and Lipstick: Teaching Problem Solving Using Complex Estimation

July 9, Keynote & Mini Plenary Sessions

Keynote — Bruce Alberts
Perspectives on K-12 Science Education


Plenary Panel A — Thomas Keller
Developing a Conceptural Framework for New Science Education Standards


Plenary Panel B — Kaye Forgione, Jean Slattery
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for Mathematics:  An Overview of the Standards, How They Were Developed, and Their Potential Impacts on Teaching, Learning, Assessment and Professional Development


Plenary Panel C — Frances Lawrenz, Ellen Bobronnikov
Overview of Noyce Program Evaluation


WASA Presentation on PESB: Cool Interactive Google Docs

Here’s the link to the main presentation.


Number of new teachers hired by STEM endorsement declined across all STEM categories from 2008 to 2009.  Here’s a link for you to use to go investigate your endorsement.


Production of STEM endorsements by SPU, 2003-2009.  link


Which institutions are producing physics endorsements, 2003-2009.  link

Garrett Keizer, No Place But Here, last paragraph from the chapter “Souls in Prison”

Dr Samuel Johnson 1709 - 84, John Opie RA




Opie’s portrait of Dr Johnson shows the brooding intensity and uncompromising directness of the celebrated lexicographer. His original compositions are seldom read these days, but his observations on life, his contemporaries and English literary have become gnomic and he occupies a central a position in the development of English literary criticism. He was also, of course, a superb conversationalist, and the members of his Club included some of the foremost figures of the mid-georgian intellegentsia, men such a Sir Joshua Reynolds and David Garrick.


Dr Samuel Johnson
1709 –84 

John Opie RA 
1761 – 1807


Keizer, G. (1988). No Place But Here. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England. 159

Rosie, the Dutch Belt, of Brownington Vermont.

well not really, but at least a reasonable facsimile

A good read, left me wishing for more, or more of me left wishing for time to read it all again and be struck as I was the first time.

STEM Workgroup on OSPI web.

There’s a STEM Workgroup which meets monthly from 10am to 4pm.

From their website this is their plan:

The STEM Workgroup will:

  • Develop a plan with shared vision, goals, and measurable objectives
  • Ensure that a K – STEM careers pathway is established, including:
    • recruiting, preparing, hiring, retraining, and supporting teachers and instructors
    • creating pathways to boost student success
    • closing the achievement gap, and
    • preparing every student to be college and career ready

The workgroup was created by ESSB 6444 501 (1) (c), signed 5/4/2010.

It has a deadline:

ESSB 6444 wording web site wording

The working group shall develop a comprehensive plan and a
report with recommendations, including a timeline for specific actions to be taken, which is due to the governor and the appropriate committees of the legislature by December 1, 2010.

The workgroup will develop a

report with recommendations, including a timeline for specific actions to be taken. The report is due to the Governor and the appropriate committees of the legislature by December 1, 2010.

Here are the members of the workgroup, taken from the web page above.

OSPI’s STEM supervisor, Dennis Milliken, chairs the workgroup. The workgroup also includes at least one representative from the State Board of Education, the Professional Educator Standards Board, the State Board of Community and Technical Colleges, the Higher Education Coordinating Board, the Achievement Gap Oversight and Accountability Committee, and others with appropriate expertise.

  • Jonelle Adams, Executive Director, Washington Alliance for Better Schools (STEM Workgroup Facilitator)
  • SusanEllen Bacon, PhD, Associate Dean of Professional Development Continuing Education, Seattle University
  • Rudi Bertschi, Principal Researcher, OSPI/Center for the Improvement of Student Learning
  • Greta Bornemann, Director, Mathematics, OSPI
  • Bruce Cannard, Principal, Edison Elementary School, Kennewick School District
  • James Dorsey, Director, Washington MESA
  • Jeff Estes, Manager, Science and Engineering Education, Organizational Development, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
  • Jane Field, M.A., Labor Market and Economic Analysis, Washington State Employment Security
  • Peter D. Finch, Ed.D. Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning, West Valley School District 208
  • Dave Gering, Executive Director, Seattle Manufacturing Industrial Council
  • Susan Jung, Principal, Central Kitsap Junior High, Central Kitsap School District
  • Catherine Kernan, President, Mukilteo Education Association
  • Carolyn Landel, Education First Consulting
  • Kevin Laverty, President, Washington State School Directors Association
  • John Lederer, Associate Director, Washington Higher Education Coordinating Board
  • Kathleen Lopp, Assistant Superintendent, Career and College Readiness, OSPI
  • Dennis Milliken, Supervisor, STEM Education, OSPI (STEM Workgroup Leader)
  • Trish Millines Dziko, Executive Director/CEO, Technology Access Foundation
  • Bill Moore, Coordinator, Assessment, Learning, Teaching, State Board for Community and Technical Colleges
  • Mea Moore, Director of Educator Pathways, Professional Educator Standards Board
  • Rebecca Porter, Career Counselor, Bothell High School, Northshore School District
  • Wes Pruitt, Policy Analyst/Legislative Liaison,Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board
  • Representative Sharon Tomiko Santos, Washington State Legislature
  • James Sullivan, Teacher, Sci-Ma-Tech, Brier Terrance Middle School, Edmonds School District
  • Kathe Taylor, Policy Director, Washington State Board of Education
  • Gilda Wheeler, Program Supervisor, Environmental and Sustainability, OSPI

Learning Illustrated: Step Aside Superman, Waiting for a Better Paradigm

Sir Ken Robinson

Changing Educational Paradigms, a talk given by Sir Ken Robinson at the RSA.

Points that resonated with me:

  1. schools have not kept pace with massive changes in society in the past 50 years.
  2. enlightenment + industrial revolution gave us our current system, and in particular an intellectual model of the mind, smart people or non-smart people, which has caused chaos (social and educational)
  3. modern epidemic of ADHD seems to be concentrated on eastern seaboard?
  4. children are living in a most stimulating age, and yet school is not capitalizing on these stimulations
  5. Education system is built for industrialization, by industrialists.  Bells, batches by years, standardized tests, standardized curricula, all about conformity.
  6. Education seems to (Breakpoint and Beyond, 1998, George Land and Beth Jarman) drive divergent thinking out of students over time.  And divergent thinking is a pre-requisite for creativity, and creativity drives an economy.
  7. Robinson’s recommendations
    1. change the gene pool of education, think differently about human capacity
    2. get over the myth of “academic”, “non-academic”, “abstract”, “theoretical”, “vocational”
    3. most great learning happens in groups (collaboration is the stuff of growth), if you try to individualize you are creating a disjunction between some people and the environments where they best learn
    4. it is about the culture of our institutions, the habits and habitats they occupy

If you like this animation, there are more here:  http://comment.rsablogs.org.uk/videos/

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