In “Building A Better Teacher,” Elizabeth Green presents cases personifying two perspectives on teaching effectively—one we often hear referred to as “classroom management” and the other regularly called “good content.” She uses Doug Lemov and Deborah Ball, respectively, as her exemplars of the cases.
Professor Ball, dean of the University of Michigan’s school of education, is widely noted for her studies of teachers’ content knowledge in mathematics. Mr. Lemov, a consultant and promoter of charter schools, has a forth-coming book documenting concepts about teaching practices that span content areas.
Continue reading ‘Sorta building a better teacher, maybe’
Randall Munroe creates the xkcd comic, and he often includes insights about logic, mathematics, and science in his strips or other images. This is one of my faves, so I’m passing it along to readers as a gift.
The image points to that particular cartoon. Once you’re there explore, or click this link to go to the home page and see the Mr. Munroe’s current cartoon.
Over on Kitchen Table Math the contributor who identifies himself as SteveH has a delightful post about some new test results. Here’s the lead:
Recent testing has shown improvement in shoe tying by fourth and eighth graders over the past two years, although the growth has been stagnant in some districts. Urban school activists, however, can be encouraged by the statistical improvement in areas with populations of 250,000 or more. This continues an upward trend that started 6 years ago when this testing began.
Jump over to Testing Shows Improvement in Shoe Tying.
Bob Dixon, an instructional designer who can run circles around just every other instructional designer whom I know, has initiated a service to which I want to refer readers: instructionalsolutions.blogspot.com. Here’s his explanation:
I’ve been reading posts about dyslexia, reading disabilities, learning disabilities, autism, and such. Many courageous people are fighting battles on large fronts on behalf of students so labeled. Here and there in these discussions, however, I see a relatively specific question about a specific problem a real student is having right now with some specific task. Such questions often get responses that are far too general to address the specific question identified. That seems to me like a small gap in the discussions that could possibly be closed. I’m going to give that a shot, using a blog in a sort of “backward” fashion. I’m hoping that parents, teachers—anyone, really—will post very specific, concrete problems on the blog. If a student is having a severe spelling problem, for example, list what the words should be and what the student wrote. If a students appears to be “dyslexic,” give a sentence and tell exactly what the student says when reading that sentence. If a student doesn’t have a clue about the first step in a simple geometric proof, post the proof and say the student writes absolutely nothing for the first or second step. If the student can’t remember a list of anything, provide the list and describe how the student studies it and what happens. You try the offered solutions and report back on their relative success.
Joanne Jacobs covered a story about a professional development consultant advising a teacher to dodge a question about whether introducing calculators will hinder students’ acquisition of basic computation skills. There’s video! With transcription by Wayne Bishop, one of Teach Effectively’s Much Admired Folx, the inanity of the consultant’s response becomes quite clear. If the presenter wasn’t so serious, it’d be humorous, sort of like a parody.
Link to Ms. Jacob’s post.
A little levity is a good thing every now and again, no? So, as regular readers probably have inferred, I read cartoons. Recently I came across Mark Anderson’s Andertoons, which includes a selection about teaching, teachers, schooling, education, and etc. So, I took advantage of a script available from Mr. Anderson’s site to pull an illustrative cartoon into this post.
Continue reading ‘Another ‘toon source’
Over on Weapons of Math Destruction, Oak Norton and Bob Bonham have another fun cartoon. It shows a police officers examining an outline on (presumably) a street; the caption begins, “Common sense was seen fleeing the crime scene….”
Jump over there and have a look at it in a higher resolution.
I’ll be closing the current Bogus Bowl pretty soon. You might remember that this BB, which is the 4th in the series, provided alternative answers for the question, “How do you know that [teaching practice] is effective?” Jump over to it, vote, leave a comment, see which answer has garnered the most votes, or just marvel at the very existence of Bogus Bowls.
Link to BB IV.