August 2012

Can School Performance Be Measured Fairly? – Room for Debate –

This site has several blogs and articles from a variety of voices.  Take some time to read the different viewpoints.



The National Academy of Sciences has not once but twice spoken out against imposing this sort of high stakes accountability scheme on our schools, and pointed out the dangers of basing irreversible decisions on erratic and inherently unreliable test scores filtered through imperfect and abstruse formulae.

What would be a better way of evaluating teachers and students?

via Tests Don’t Assess What Really Matters – Room for Debate – .com.


“Today, we have a great deal of scientific evidence on the language and literacy development of infants. Much of it reinforces our intuition to engage children through relationships and to impart knowledge through intense interaction. Yet, the evidence also strongly suggests that there is much more we can do as parents and teachers to build stronger language and literacy skills in young children.
There is a science to early language and literacy development. We can better prepare children for later school achievement by taking what we know and making it an intentional and integral part of early childhood education—particularly among at-risk children and families.” From Crib to Classroom

Click on the link to download.  This might be a great conversation starter for professional development.  Your thoughts?



From Crib to Classroom: Developing Language and Skills for Reading | Invest in US.






“Babies and young children are like the R&D division of the human species,” says psychologist Alison Gopnik. Her research explores the sophisticated intelligence-gathering and decision-making that babies are really doing when they play.


Alison Gopnik takes us into the fascinating minds of babies and children, and shows us how much we understand before we even realize we do.


via Alison Gopnik: What do babies think? | Video on



David Hawkins, director of the Mountain View Center for Environmental Education, discusses the role of Teacher as learner.  “Good teaching requires the teacher’s own involvement in learning, ” he maintains.

Read the interview and let me know what you think?  David and Frances Hawkins were instrumental in young children’s learning connected to environment.

A Neurologist Makes the Case for Teaching Teachers About the Brain | Edutopia.

Have you had any professional development focusing on the brain?  What have your experiences looked like connected to brain development?

Listening is not just etiquette; it’s a way of loving, honoring and repecting.  It’s a way of sharing ourselves and our humanity.

Ways to listen with compassion, understanding and intention:

Be present and give the speaker your full attention.

Show interest, be generous, encourage the speaker.

Listen with your heart as well as your ears.

Make it safe for the speaker to share his or her thoughts and feelings.

Listen to every word without interrupting or wishing to speak yourself.

When the speaker has finished, acknowledge what you heard without judging or correcting.

( From “How Many People Does It Take To Make A Difference?)

“I felt it shelter to speak to you.”  Emily Dickinson

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