Students who need academic interventions often lose out when schools make schedules, researchers have found. Schools should consider student equity at an operational level to ensure that all learners have access to high-quality teachers and smaller classes, and new data tools can help them identify problems and plan better for the future.
When a project-based-learning effort fails, it can be a learning opportunity for students, asserts Mike Kaechele, a PBL coach and national faculty member of Buck Institute for Education. Kaechele offers five insights on how to turn failure into a productive exercise, including showing students how to reflect and work through problems to find solutions.
Teachers should focus lesson plans on what they want students to know as well as how they'll measure success and avoid distractions within the process, writes instructional coach Peg Grafwallner. In this article, Grafwallner explains how she works with teachers to integrate literacy into subjects and shares planning tips to improve lessons.
Nine teams from eight Houston schools researched and reported on sustainability and environmental issues for a recent Student Innovation Showcase. Projects included plastic use, recycling, water conservation and how much paper is wasted at school.
The nonprofit Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program offers STEM education programs to K-12 students to help them explore and prepare for the many career and educational paths in STEM fields. The Michigan-based organization has expanded to Illinois and has adjusted its focus to include technical careers that don't require a bachelor's degree, emphasizing fields in which future growth is expected.
More high-schoolers are considering postgraduation opportunities outside of enrolling in a four-year college -- in part, because of high demand for workers in the skilled trades. Matt Liberatore, director of professional learning and student services at Arlington Heights-based Township High School District 214, says another consideration is the cost of a degree.
Less than a year after Maine repealed a law requiring high-school diplomas to be awarded based on proficiency in eight areas, about 25% of superintendents say they intend to maintain this model. The mandate, passed seven years ago, continues to be divisive after a shaky implementation, and 38% of superintendents say they plan to resume awarding diplomas based on credit hours.
Eight specific genes may play a role in the performance of harness race horses, a study published in BMC Genetics suggests. Some of the genes were linked to physical attributes while others were tied to memory, learning and intelligence.
Oklahoma City Public Schools Superintendent Sean McDaniel and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister say they're working on ways to reduce principal turnover in schools. Speaking on a televised panel, teacher Felix Linden told the leaders that schools need a "Superman" who will stay to provide consistency and build relationships.
Students who used a version of Minecraft that was modified to fit curricula in math and language arts showed improvement in problem-solving, reading and writing skills, according to a study. University of Montreal researcher Thierry Karsenti writes that using boundaries and structure for the game is crucial to fostering positive learning outcomes through its use.
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