What Can Cognitive Psychology Do For Teachers?

What, if anything, can knowledge gleaned from cognitive psychology do for classroom teachers? I have heard the gamut of opinions on this subject, from “Anyone who is not a teacher cannot tell teachers anything of value” to “Cognitive science is going to save American education.” (The former opinion was expressed by a teacher; the latter by a college president.)

Let me make explicit what, in my view, results from cognitive psychology can and cannot do for teachers.

read on …

When Love Hurts, Schools Can Help

Chris Brown’s arrest for assaulting Rihanna may have placed a national spotlight on dating violence, but with one in five high school girls reporting that they’re physically or sexually hurt by their partner, chances are that one may be a student of yours. Health teacher Ann Burke of North Kingstown, RI, created the Lindsay Ann Burke Memorial Fund to educate 7th through 12th graders about dating violence after her daughter was murdered a few years ago by her ex-boyfriend.

Did you have any hint that this would happen to Lindsay?

I had an idea. No one else did. Everyone else said it wouldn’t go that far. Even though she hadn’t admitted to it, in my gut I thought something like this could happen. I was frantic. A lot of mothers have that gut feeling. But it’s not like I knew immediately. Lindsay, like us, had never been educated in domestic violence or dating violence. We didn’t know anyone who had experienced it. But I saw things that didn’t seem right, some red flags, and I started asking around. more » » »

European study shows when teachers like science, students do too

Did you ever blame your teacher for hating science? If you answered yes, you’re not alone. New research shows that the shrinking number of students in Europe who choose to study science is influenced by how schools and teachers shape their attitudes. .. more

Tech Giants Offer Help to Schools Seeking Stimulus Money

Tech Giants Offer Help to Schools Seeking Stimulus Money
Anthony Salcito understands the economic challenges K–12 schools face today. That’s why the general manager of U.S. education for Microsoft says the $115 billion in federal stimulus money earmarked for education has spurred the tech giant into action. “We’re focused on how we can partner with schools on using these funds,” says Salcito. “We can help articulate the roadmap and connect the dots.”

Other tech firms, including Apple, have also begun contacting schools, with some of them offering to set up seminars and webcasts to walk educators through the process of how to capture some of the money—and, of course, suggest ways to use it. more » » »

Carrying water


Students explore a variety of ways water is collected where there is no infrastructure to deliver it to people’s homes.


U.K. Mulls Blogging, Tweeting, Podcasting in Primary School Curriculum

Blogging, tweeting, and podcasting are all good and fun, but what about including them in the school curriculum? Folks in the U.K. are considering an overhaul of their elementary school curriculum—and a draft proposal requires kids to master these Web technologies, reports the Guardian.

The proposed curriculum—which would also give teachers more freedom to decide what students concentrate on in classes—marks the biggest change to the U.K.’s primary school education in a decade, and “strips away hundreds of specifications about the scientific, geographical and historical knowledge pupils must accumulate before they are 11,” the Guardian says. more » » »

Discovery Conference Welcomes Educators Both in Person and Online

Discovery Conference Welcomes Educators Both in Person and Online
Educators looking to freshen their lesson plans this year might want to check out Spring Into Action, Discovery Education’s fourth annual virtual conference to help teachers incorporate digital content into classwork.

Set for Saturday, April 25, the conference features both webcasts and 13 in-person events across the country highlighted by a virtual lecture, “Building School 2.0,” by Chris Lehmann, principal of the Science Leadership Academy, a Philadelphia high school. more » » »

Industry makes pitch that smartphones belong in the classroom

The cellphone industry has a suggestion for improving the math skills of American students: spend more time on cellphones in the classroom.

Myers and Co launch 2nd chances

Author Walter Dean Myers has joined forces with AdLit.org, the National Education Association and the National Council of Teachers of English for a new initiative called “Second Chances,” which is reaching out to parents, teachers and others who have an influence on the lives of children and teens.

check out the AdLit Web site.