A Missouri program is working with about two dozen school districts to train teachers to conduct visits to students' homes to boost parents' engagement. Teachers -- who are paid for the time by the Home Works program -- attend two training workshops, host family dinners and pair up to conduct two visits a year to each student's home.
Some districts in Missouri have students enrolled in summer school to avoid summer learning loss, while others take part in enrichment programs. Not all programs test students to determine if the programs are yielding desired results, prompting some in the state to call for more data collection to see if there is a benefit to the state's investment, which totaled $120 million in 2013.
California educator Dave Orphal writes in this blog post about how he taught his students to work backward with the end goal of their project in mind when he had them develop proposals to be presented to the School Site Council on ways to reform the school. He writes that he then launched into the lectures and assignments to guide them in producing this work and offers links to view their proposals online.
When educators discuss student engagement, the focus tends to be on student behavior. However, a recent study by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Michigan finds that emotion and cognition are the more subtle -- but equally important -- signs of student engagement, writes education reporter Sarah Sparks. Researchers for the study, published in the journal Learning and Instruction, found that students were more engaged and motivated when the lessons were of personal interest and relevant.
Gracie Kelley, 11, who has limited movement on one side of her body due to a stroke suffered in the womb, uses an electronic device called WalkAide to stimulate her leg muscles and help her walk without splints. The device helps the Webster Groves, Mo., resident move faster and allows her to wear fashionable shoes.