NYT Blog Post: Failure and LD

One of the big topics that came up in my PEN talk last week was the politics of when a student qualifies for a learning evaluation. In some schools, a student has to wait to be failing, or a student is disqualified from receiving learning support if he or she is not failing. This article is … Continue reading NYT Blog Post: Failure and LD

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NYT Article: To track, or not to track

There's an article in today's New York Times about the resurgence of "tracking" in schools. "Tracking" is when students are grouped into class sections based on ability, so the students earning the highest grades are in one group or class, the next highest-achievers are in another group, and so on. As you might expect, there are supporters … Continue reading NYT Article: To track, or not to track

More on Grit, Determination, and Perseverance

Earlier this year, I attended the Paul Tough conversation at SF Friends School with Ms. Simpson, Ms. Munda, Ms. DeMartini, and Ms. Shawe. Since then, the character traits Mr. Tough talked about--including grit, determination, and perseverance--seem to be everywhere. The idea that character matters--and that it should be talked about in schools--is exciting to see … Continue reading More on Grit, Determination, and Perseverance

Article on “Brain Training”

One of my BAISLD (Bay Area Independent Schools Learning Differences interest group) colleagues forwarded the following link to our listserve last week: it's a review of many educational interventions that purport to offer "brain training" to improve students' cognitive skills like working memory. The article has some great nuances, but its big take-home is that … Continue reading Article on “Brain Training”

Struggle as a means to success

I heard this story on NPR earlier this week and had to share: it's an interesting take on what the path to academic success can look like from a non-American cultural perspective. I loved this idea: that in some other cultures--in Japan, in this story--students' academic struggles can be viewed extremely differently in the classroom, … Continue reading Struggle as a means to success

For election season: the candidates on LD issues

As the last month of the 2012 campaign season heats up, there are some interesting posts out there on the candidates' stances on education and learning. The National Center for Learning Disabilities has published a table showing President Obama's and Governor Romney's views on different issues facing people with learning differences in the American education … Continue reading For election season: the candidates on LD issues

From Reddit: A great response to bullying

Ms. Wells linked me this week to a terrific story that came out of the online message board community at Reddit. The original posting is a little NSFW (not safe for work), so I won't link you to it directly, but I wanted to share the story with you--especially the young woman's response. You can … Continue reading From Reddit: A great response to bullying

From NYT: Don’t Fear the Cybermind

I love the Sunday New York Times; you'll notice from this blog that I end up posting links to many things I read there. I loved an entry this morning called "Don't Fear the Cybermind" by Harvard psychology professor Daniel M. Wegner: it's an interesting read on the distinction between the things we know independently--the things we … Continue reading From NYT: Don’t Fear the Cybermind

From the Onion: Point and Counter-Point on TFA

There's a story out today in the humor magazine The Onion that offers a point and counter-point on the merits of Teach for America. You can read it here. As you may know, Teach for America is a national nonprofit that brings high-achieving college graduates into underserved schools as classroom teachers.  It was founded by Wendy … Continue reading From the Onion: Point and Counter-Point on TFA