Friday, August 30, 2013

Educational Readings -education or schooling!

By Allan Alach

I welcome suggested articles, so if you come across a gem, email it to me at

This week’s homework!

Mind-Mapping And The Digitization Of Learning
I’ve used mind mapping (pen & paper, and also software) in both work and study, and found it to be a very valuable tool.
‘The efficacy of mind-mapping is well-understood and tested yearly in worldwide studies. For students and educators, the real question is: How can mind mapping make the academic world more efficient and more productive? How can the education world leverage mind-mapping software to ‘hack’ the retention, organization and distribution of knowledge?’

The Real Problem With Multiple-Choice Questions
‘So let us look at multiple-choice questions in this light. More than anything else, when a multiple-choice question is given to a student in hopes of measuring how well he or she understands something, it manufacturers the illusion of right and wrong, a binary condition that ignores the endlessly fluid nature of information.’

Where The Smart Kids Are
-  a review of the book “The Smartest Kids In The World: And How They Got That Way’ by Amanda Ripley.
‘Yes, she travels to Finland to observe the “Nordic robots” who achieve such remarkably high scores on international tests — and to South Korea and Poland, two other nations where students handily surpass Americans’ mediocre performance. In the best tradition of travel writing, however, she gets well beneath the glossy surfaces of these foreign cultures, and manages to make our own culture look newly strange.’

Grappling With the Question: Why Isn't America Number 1?
Another article based around ‘The Smartest Kids In The World: And How They Got That Way.’
‘...Ripley allows us to follow her as she goes to experts in South Korea, Poland, Finland and the United States to get answers about teacher preparation, national standards and assessment that raise yet more questions about what the purpose of education is, what national policies are most effective and what obligations schools have to kids and kids have to schools.’
Let's bring on a real education revolution
‘Australia should follow the lead of Canada where there is no federal apparatus in education and no need for a minister.’
An idea which needs to considered all over? Agree? Disagree?

Right Brain, Left Brain? Scientists Debunk Popular Theory
Oh dear, there goes a number of cherished classroom programmes…
‘Maybe you're "right-brained": creative, artistic, an open-minded thinker who perceives things in subjective terms. Or perhaps you're more of a "left-brained" person, where you're, good at tasks that require attention to detail, and more logically minded. It turns out, though, that this idea of "brained-ness" might be more of a figure of speech than anything, as researchers have found that these personality traits may not have anything to do with which side of the brain you use more.’

A Christmas Carol, 1843 – Education Today
‘In 1843 Charles Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol which speaks to an identical issue we face today.
“This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want (Poverty). Beware them both… but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased.”
Lack of education and poverty. Doom for an entire society and the wealthy who control it.’

School is a prison — and damaging our kids
Standardised education!
‘Longer school years aren't the answer. The problem is school itself. Compulsory teach-and-test simply doesn't work.’
This is a ‘must read article’ by US psychologist Peter Gray.

Cuba: RevoluciĆ³n Educativa?
Seems Cuba is up there with Finland:
‘For me this was probably the most interesting aspect given that without a hysterical rush to adopt “21st century” platforms and capitulating to PISA league tables Cuba has achieved, according to the instruments and indicators applied by international organisations such as OECD and UNESCO, one of the world’s best educational systems. An education system that is free to all students from primary to higher education and has achieved almost 100% literacy amongst its population.’

Monday, August 26, 2013

The New Zealand Curriculum - Back to the future!

Time to return the focus to the New Zealand Curriculum

The inspiration to write this 'Back to the Future' blog came from my good friend Paul Tegg

In 2007 the revised New Zealand Curriculum was introduced to schools. It was welcomed as a positive future orientated document and a giant improvement on the 1995 New Zealand Curriculum. For those of you who remember this earlier document it was accompanied by eight extensive Learning Area booklets. The 1995 Curriculum had well thought out principles, values and essential skills but its down fall was to be found in the associated booklets with areas divided into levels with a great number of learning objectives to be assessed for each. It was the confusion and difficulty of assessing student achievement against these objectives that was the curriculum’s downfall.

The ‘revised’ curriculum features principles, values and key competencies (very similar to the 95 essential skills). The big difference was the emphasis on the key competencies. The Learning Areas covered the ‘essence’ of each area and the earlier complicated booklets reduced to an appendix. The revised document included a valuable section Effective Pedagogy and information for Board of Trustees to consider.

It was well received.

Unfortunately a change of government introduced literacy and numeracy National Standards for each student to be assessed against. Associated withthese Standards was the future spectre of ‘League Tables’ and the possibility of performance pay. Other countries that have taken this approach have seen a narrowing of the curriculum ( this will be inevitable in New Zealand as schools are judged by the Education Review Office by their success in National Standards). Having school data published in the newspapers adds more pressure. As a result the focus on the new curriculum was side-lined.

So it is time, if education rather than politics is to be the winner, to return the focus back to the 2007 New Zealand Curriculum – a curriculum, if implemented to the full, requires more than tinkering at the edges. It needs to become central. At present it has become side-lined; it is, as one English critic has written, ‘the evil twins of literacy and numeracy have all but gobbled up the entire curriculum.’

This is not to say schools should ignore National Standards but rather they need to be put in their place.  To misquote G K Chesterton, ‘If a thing is not worth doing it is worth do it badly so you can get on with what is important.’ Literacy and numeracy are important but they need to be ‘reframed’ as the ‘foundation skills’ of integrated in- depth inquiry learning across the curriculum.

I have always liked the visual metaphor for growth of the nautilus shell that the 2007 Curriculum employs. This is explained on the inside cover as a mollusc that creates new chambers as it outgrows each existing one forming a logarithmic spiral that appears elsewhere in nature. American writer Oliver Wendell Holmes saw the nautilus spiral shell as a symbol of intellectual and spiritual growth and suggested people need to outgrow their protective shells as they no longer became necessary; ‘One’s mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions’; an argument for developmental organic education.

The premise of the 2007 Curriculum is to ‘ensure all young New Zealanders are equipped with the knowledge, competencies, and values they will need to be successful to be successful citizens in the twenty-first century’. This is a vision of students as creative, enterprising lifelong learners all able to realise their full potential.  One phrase that seems integral to achieving success is that all students should be seen as ‘active seekers, users, and creators of knowledge’.  How to ensure all students are able to do this ‘seeking and creating’ in all learning areas is the real challenge for teachers if students are to achieve ‘personal excellence’ and to leave with positive learning identities, students who see themselves ‘as capable  learners’ equipped  with a well-developed ‘can-do’ attitude.

The key to develop this positive learning identity are the development of the key competencies (I prefer the more educational term dispositions). These competencies are to be seen as both a means and an end and are best observed through the actions of the students as they involve themselves in their ‘seeking and creating’. This is a curriculum that demands personalizing learning – a phrase not mentioned in the document. This is in direct conflict with the standardisation of the National Standards with their genesis in a past industrial age.

The Learning Areas (that had a booklet for each in 95) are presented as distinct, and like the key competencies, are to be seen as ‘both an end and a means; valuable in themselves and valuable for the pathways … to other learning’.  It is suggested that, ‘All learning should make use of the natural connections that exist between learning areas….values and key competencies.’

Each Learning Areas provides an important perspective for learning but the infusing them into contextual studies across the curriculum is a challenge yet to be realised. An excellent diagram (based on the nautilus) covers the ‘essence’ of each learning area. They all contribute towards ‘meaning making and creating meaning’.  The introduction to The Arts is important, an area being neglected due to an over emphasis on Literacy and Numeracy because they are ‘about learning how to use the imagination to engage with unexpected outcomes’; and they provide for students, who may have difficulties in Literacy and Numeracy, opportunities for success. Failing students have an ‘opportunity’ rather than an ‘achievement gap’.

Although all Learning Areas have their own distinctiveness (offering areas for students’ to discover their unique talents) they all involve generic problem solving situations. All Learning Areas provide realistic contexts to ‘think creatively, critically, strategically, and logically’ - to ‘seek, use and create knowledge’.  An inquiry model of learning is expressed in all Learning Areas – perhaps there is a need make enquiry central to all learning more explicit? The Science statement says ‘Science is a way of investigating, understanding and explaining…it involves generating  and testing ideas, gathering evidence…and communicating’. Surely this is the essence of all learning. Some rewriting might be worthwhile to make this clear?

The Effective Pedagogy section is worth full consideration by all schools.  This is what schools need to be held accountable to provide. If the evidence of effective teaching presented were to be implemented to the full few students would leave schools as failures.  Schools need to develop positive relationships with all students and parents; all teaching needs to values students’ questions and their prior ideas; all inquiries need to encourage in depth understandings by doing fewer things well; all studies need to make students aware of connections between Learning Areas and their own thinking (metacognition); and all students see the relevance of what they are learning. This is all about personalising learning.

What is missing in the pedagogy section is the need to question the use of ability grouping, setting and streaming – all of which contribute to school failure. The emphasis National Standards is in conflict with personalised teaching – the over focus on literacy and numeracy, divorced from the inquiry programme in primary schools; and streaming and compartmentalised subject teaching in secondary schools, is unhelpful.  Such approaches have their genesis in a past industrial sorting and grading era and contribute to school failure by discouraging the development of multi-disciplinary teaching teams at the secondary level, vital to develop integrated inquiry based personalised learning. A greater emphasis on developing the diverse gifts and talents of all students would also be valuable.

 The concept of interpreting teaching itself as inquiry is also vital to develop positive learning environment for all learners. Through such inquiries teachers evaluate the success of and continually modify their teaching.

The curriculum document offers schools ‘the scope, flexibility and authority they need to design and shape their curriculum so that teaching and learning is meaningful to their particular communities. In turn the design of each school’s curriculum should allow teachers the scope to make interpretations in response to the particular needs, interests, and talents of individuals and groups of students in their classes.’

If the spirit of the document, the values, principles, key competencies and inquiry based programmes integrating  the various Learning Areas,  were to be implemented schools would be transformed and this would ensure ‘the realisation of a vision of young people who will be confident, connected, actively involved lifelong learners’.

This obviously not the case now – and National Standards are not the answer but literacy and numeracy are still important. In years 1-6, the curriculum states ‘teaching and learning programmes are developed through a wide range of experiences across all learning areas, with a focus on literacy and numeracy along with the development of values and key competencies.’

Currently it seems like the assessment tail is wagging the dog! The curriculum offers sensible advice on assessment with the focus on ‘improving students’ learning and teachers’ teaching’. ‘Assessment’, it states, ‘for the purpose of improving student learning is best understood as an on-going process that arises out of the interaction between teaching and learning’. ‘Much of this assessment is “of the moment” …..taking place in the mind of the teacher, who then uses the insights gained to shape their actions as they continue to work with their students.’ Surely the best assessment is to be seen in the actions and behaviours of the students and by what they can perform, exhibit, demonstrate, or show in their portfolios.

The curriculum is underwritten ‘with the premise that all students can learn and succeed and should recognise that, as all students are individuals, their learning may call for different approaches….and different goals’.

The 2007 New Zealand Curriculum has yet to be fully implemented – at best schools are tinkering around the edges – at worst totally distracted by the reactionary demands of National Standards.Jane Gilbert, in her book ‘Catching the Knowledge Wave’ NZCER reprinted 2008, writes, ‘we can’t do more of what we are currently doing… we cannot add new ideas to an old framework’. And adds we need to ‘develop a new public understanding about what we think and hope our education can do for people’.

It is time now to put the challenges of the curriculum at centre stage.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Educational Readings -Creativity and Project Based Learning

By Allan Alach
I welcome suggested articles, so if you come across a gem, email it to me at
This week’s homework!
In Praise of CREATIVITY Parts 1 & 2 (via Tony Gurr)
Tony Gurr
‘Today, we have guest posts from Chaz Pugliese, a teacher-trainer and musician (he plays a mean blues tune or two) based in Paris. Chaz and I met in Istanbul a few months ago and when I learned his “passion” was allthingsCREATIVITY – I just had to ask how he felt about allthingsBLOGGING! I’m glad I did. Take a read – feel free to contact him at’

What is Education For? Looking for Answers in the Montessori Movement
‘Montessori was a vehicle for seeing what is possible. It showed me that children can learn what they most need by following their own passions. It taught me that the role of adults should be a supportive one that allows children to develop what is already beginning within themselves.’
Nah, let’s have top down standardised education to prepare children to participate in the workforce.
Why are we teaching like it’s 1992?
The schools we have inherited were designed for standardisation and industrialisation. Their aim was to turn farmers into factory workers and, on a different social level, to show shopkeepers how to be corporate employees. We have inherited this Industrial Age system of specialised, field-driven, silo-ed, top-down, standardised education. We measure achievement in “bubble tests” where you find the best answer from five possible ones. How does that kind of thinking prepare our students for a world where they can upload or download any thoughts or pictures or movies or music they want?’

What We Know Now and An Alternative to Accountability-Based Education Reform
Well into the second decade of the twenty-first century, then, education reform continues a failed tradition of honoring messaging over evidence. Neither the claims made about educational failures, nor the solutions for education reform policy today are supported by large bodies of compelling research.’

Deck Chairs on the Titanic Failure of American Education
‘Actual children, as opposed to the abstraction of children as seen in policy debate, are not "standard." Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of child development knows that children learn in different ways and different times.
Learners are not like sardines!

While this article is about the USA, it’s very relevant to any GERM infected country.


Start funding college [university] like high school
‘Yet, even though the 21st century economy is clearly telling us that “the college degree is becoming the new high school diploma,” we do not have the same funding model or outlook for college. Instead, we still predicate access to higher education on a student’s wealth and/or their willingness to go into crushing debt.’

Why All Students Should Write: A Neurological Explanation For Literacy
Writing promotes the brain’s attentive focus to class work and homework, promotes long-term memory, illuminates patterns (possibly even “aha” moment insight!), includes all students as participants, gives the brain time for reflection, and when well-guided, is a source of conceptual development and stimulus of the brain’s highest cognition.’

Bruce Hammonds is an enthusiast for inquiry learning.
Here’s a selection of links from Bruce that expand on this process:

How to Trigger Students’ Inquiry Through Projects
Research on paper making
When students engage in quality projects, they develop knowledge, skills, and dispositions that serve them in the moment and in the long term. Unfortunately, not all projects live up to their potential. Sometimes the problem lies in the design process. It’s easy to jump directly into planning the activities students will engage in without addressing important elements that will affect the overall quality of the project.’
Creating Classrooms We Need: 8 Ways Into Inquiry Learning
‘If kids can access information from sources other than school, and if school is no longer the only place where information lives, what, then happens to the role of this institution?’
Exhibition of study of Ernest Shakelton
Basing education around student inquiry.
‘PBL is a far more evolved method of instruction. Well-executed PBL begins with the recognition that, as in the real world, it’s often difficult to distinguish between acquiring information and using it. Students learn knowledge and elements of the core curriculum, but also apply what they know to solve authentic problems and produce results that matter. Students focus on a problem or challenge, work in teams to find a solution to the problem, and often exhibit their work to an adult audience at the end of the project.’

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Teaching students learn and love maths

 Facing up to the elephant in the classroom - the mind changing ideas of Jo Boaler

Prof Jo Boaler
This book, by mathematics Professor of Mathematics Jo Boaler, will transform your attitude to mathematics teaching. One school, led by an ex maths adviser, makes use of her ideas and a school near me has bought multiple copies which has transformed the teachers attitudes towards maths.

The expression ‘there is an elephant in the room’ is the belief that ‘success in maths is a sign of general intelligence and that some people can do maths and others can’t.’

Jo Boaler makes two main points – maths can be a fun activity for all students but to achieve this needs the removal of an approach based on ability grouping.  The one in five currently failing in our schools, (notwithstanding the effects of poverty) see themselves as failures, as defined by numeracy and literacy, and the premise of this book that  this is, in good part, to the result of the use of ability grouping. Jo Boaler’s book reports on the depressing research to back her position on ability grouping.

What maths involved in observing monarchs
‘Far too many students hate maths’ Jo Boaler writes. ‘As a result adults around the world fear maths and avoid it at all costs. Mathematics plays unique role in in the learning of most children – it is the subject that makes them feel both helpless and stupid. Maths more than any subject, has the power to crush children’s confidence….but things could be completely different and maths could be a source of great pleasure and confidence for people.’

‘When the real maths is taught instead- the whole subject that involved problem solving, creating ideas and representations, exploring puzzles, discussing methods any many different way of working, then more people are successful.’

‘More worrying perhaps, students are made to feel inadequate in maths from a very young age, which results in their developing a very negative view of the subject.’

Inspirational book
Jo Boaler’s book set out to remedy this situation by making school maths more in line with real life problem solving and in the process helping all children develop self confidence in maths.  Unfortunately maths in school is used by teachers as a tool to sort, track and label children. This brutal labelling is out of sync with the mixed ability teaching of counties that score highly on international testing – Finland, Korea and Japan.

Maths classes need to change for the better. Things need to change. People don’t like maths because of the way it is misrepresented in school. Boaler argues that ‘school classrooms should give children a sense of the nature of mathematics. The 2007 New Zealand Curriculum makes it clear what is expected, ‘Mathematics is the exploration and use of patterns and relationships in quantities, space and time’….’By studying mathematics and statistics, children develop the ability to think creatively, strategically and logically’. Such a meaningful approach ‘is critical in halting the low achievement’ of many students in maths.

In real life mathematicians work on long, often ill-defined, problems. Successful mathematicians have learnt to problem solve, making use of enlightened trial and error (guessing and estimating) and it is this approach children should get a ‘feel for’.

This is not the approach to be seen in our schools. All too often maths is an isolated activity with children being taught in ability groups to solve prescribed problems or questions set by their teachers. As a result most students give up on the subject.

To bring back to life in classrooms involves giving children a sense of living mathematics where children are able to ask their own questions about maths challenges that appeal to them – often to solve problems arising in other curriculum areas.  This is applied maths; maths is a way of interpreting the world – children doing something with their maths. ‘Children need to engage, do, act, perform, problem solve for if they don’t use mathematics as they learn it they will find it difficult to do so in other situations.’  Boaler’s word echo the need for students to ‘seek, use and create their own knowledge’ of the NZ Curriculum, and one could add by working with others.

‘Schools’, she writes, ‘cannotkeep pursuing an educational model’ that results in most people giving up onthe subject. Teachers instead should aim at all their students enjoying and succeeding at maths. ‘Children begin school as natural problem solvers’ – this positive attitude needs protecting.

What is going wrong is the grouping of their students by ability a process that is increasing in UK schools with the importance of national testing and targets.  Almost all New Zealand schools use ability grouping from the time students enter schooling. This grouping is done as early as age 4 in England and 88% stay there until they leave school. Boaler finds this a ‘chilling statistic’. ‘Such grouping contravenes basic knowledge aboutchild development and learning; children develop at different rates and they reveal different strengths and dispositions at various stages of their development.’ Ironically since the UK has introduced target the UK has dropped from eighth to 24th in international tests of mathematical problem solving.

The issue of the problem ofgrouping children by ability ‘goes against all research on children’s learningand effective forms of grouping’ but it is still the approach New Zealand schools use – and in some cases children during maths times are grouped (set) by ability across classes.

Exploring patterns in maths
Boaler’s book provides plentiful examples of real maths problem solving with students working collaboratively in groups discussing their findings as they work towards solutions.  This collaborative approach is in contrast with the silent individual approach of most current school maths. Maths makes sense as children talk through their ideas and listen to the thoughts of others.

'to seek, use and create knowledge'
‘Silent maths gives students the wrong idea about mathematics; it is very hard to reason about mathematics when working in silence’. ‘Mathematical discussions are also an excellent resource for student understanding’. ‘Maths teachers need to organize productive mathematical discussions.’ Such teaching needs realistic contexts where students are given real that need mathematical analysis.’

Boaler’s book outlines in detail effective classroom practices using a project based approach with students working in mixed ability groups usually lasting about three weeks based around authentic maths challenges resulting communicating what they have discovered. The best models I can think of are the challenges students undertake as part of Math’s Fairs (or Science or Technology challenges).

Maths project Winchester School
Boaler is critical of the hyper-accountability that is now a feature of school assessment and provides positive ideas for assessment for learning to develop students as confident problem solvers

Boaler’s book is a must for schools who want to ensure all their students enjoy and succeed at maths and to encourage teachers to see maths in a new light.

My advice is to buy a few copies for your school to share with teachers and see what eventuates.

Jo Boaler u-tube

For more information read Charles Lovett

Monday, August 19, 2013

Whitebait Season in New Zealand - a great mini study!

A creative teacher should be aways on the alert for interesting things to introduce to his or her class. What do your students know about whitebait?

The whitebait season is with us once again.

I wonder how many children in your class have tasted whitebait fritters or better still been out catching them? Do they know anybody that catches whitebait?

What do your children know about whitebait?

Whitebait made front page news in our local paper last week! The article  stated that 'they are a small fish in trouble. But that is nothing new.Their gradual demise has been well documented since 1840 when shoals were as long as a rugby field were a common site. Back then whitebait were weighed in tons; the next century it could be measured in kerosene tins, then pounds and now, more than ever, in cups.'

It would be great if you could acquire a few whitebait to keep in the class aquarium to study.If not access pictures of whitebait from the Internet of from reference books and make use of for research.

Whitebait make an interesting 'mini study'. Such a study could be part of the literacy programme and an opportunity to introduce research reading and writing to the class. A small research booklet could result and include observational drawing and diagrams.

First ask your students what they know about whitebait ( their 'prior ideas') and from this what questions about whitebait they can think of to research. Teachers could interact with their students to add question children might not think of - or wait because as the study progresses ( and students read up on whitebait) further questions will emerge.

Some questions might be:

Why do they have seasons ( introducing the idea of sustainability)? The season , in most of New Zealand, runs from  August 15th to  November 30th.

What are whitebait? Children will discover there are several native species that collectively are called whitebait. There are five main species of whitebait. They are called kokopu  or inanga. The scientific name  for the species is Galaxidae named after the Milky Way because they are caught their eyes, with their translucent bodies, look like dazzling stars

What is the life cycle of whitebait? Whitebait travel up rivers in Spring, spend the summer up river growing to several centimeters long - called kokopu at this stage. Kokupu then travel downstream to lay their eggs in wetland near the sea.The eggs are washed out to sea - returning in the Spring as whitebait.

How do you catch them?
How do you cook them?

Some interesting maths could be developed around the cost of whitebait? How much do they cost each. Maybe the teacher could buy 200 grams so as to estimate how many in a kilogram!
The price this year is $140 a kilo. Some are being sold @ $35 for 250 grams!
Whitebait bring up the issue of conservation. What might be done to protect whitebait species?

Art work @ 11c a whitebait!
Their answers to their questions could be drafted out and good copies placed in their study books or a small display could be mounted on the classroom wall.

In earlier days teachers would have called this a single animal study.There are possibly articles in school journals for students to refer to? Schools could contact the Conservation Department for information.

For information about inquiry learning

State of science teaching in New Zealand

Friday, August 16, 2013

Educational Readings - ideas to think about

By Allan Alach
I welcome suggested articles, so if you come across a gem, email it to me at
This week’s homework!
Is core curriculum rotten?
Common core in the USA is like national standards in New Zealand, although possibly worse, given the reliance on standardised testing. This infographic looks at the relationship between common core and college preparedness.
Secret Teacher: schools have got lesson observations all wrong
‘With teachers playing the system and students clamming up in observations, surely schools can find a better way to assess teaching and progress?’
I agree - once the teacher and children become aware they are being observed, the classroom is no longer functioning as it usually would. The validity of any conclusions is suspect. The current emphasis on accountability, performance pay, etc, just makes it worse.
I know I have to be observed and I know that observations are important. But I long for the day when I will be trusted to do my job and people can just wander in when they want to instead of sitting there, po-faced and unsmiling, writing everything down when I so much as breathe.’
The ultimate abomination is Bill Gates’ proposal of video cameras in all classrooms, recording every event of every day.
The High Cost of Low Teacher Salaries
This article is about the USA; however there’s much of relevance to teachers all over.
‘We have a rare chance now, with many teachers near retirement, to prove we’re serious about education. The first step is to make the teaching profession more attractive to college graduates. This will take some doing.’
End the ping-pong in education
Excellent RSA Animate style video from the Post Primary Teachers Association about the effects of ‘reform’ and restructuring on New Zealand education.
Babies and Bath Water
Australian/US educator Pat Buoncristiani writing on the difference between reading books and reading online.
‘I am reading a fascinating book: ‘The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing To Our Brains’ by Nicholas Carr. I strongly recommend it. I was particularly drawn to his analysis of the differences between ‘deep reading’ and the kind of interconnected, hyperlink driven reading that we engage with when we read on the internet.’
Some years back, I tried, without success, to make similar points to a Massey University reading ‘expert’ but my observations were dismissed.
Piaget’s four stages of cognitive development
Remember this? C’mon, be honest….
Why we should stop talking about ‘delivering’ the curriculum (via Tony Gurr)
That phrase has irritated me for years, and is an example that illustrates how we should be very mindful not to use jargon that originates outside education.
Here's Why Competition Doesn't Work in Public Education
‘While the quality of other people's refrigerators doesn't affect ME in a deep and meaningful way, the quality of their education most certainly does.  Ensuring that ALL children -- including "those people living in the poor section of town" -- have access to Subzero schools means ensuring that ALL children will grow up to be competent citizens capable of making positive economic and social contributions to our communities.’
The forgotten concept of ‘public good’ needs to be reintroduced into our dialogue.
The LQ rich environment
‘The challenge to the teacher then is not to teach in a manner that seeks to meet significant strengths or preferences that have been developed (thereby further promoting them) but to provide the conditions whereby the learner is guided and given permission to go exploring their learning needs and how to meet them.’