Standardized Tests Are Not Objective Measures of Anything – Education Article

 When it comes to standardized tests, most people are blinded by science.   Or at least the appearance of science.   Because there is little about these assessments that is scientific, factual or unbiased.   And that has real world implications when it comes to education policy.   First of all, the federal government requires that all public school children take these assessments in 3-8th grade and once in high school. Second, many states require teachers be evaluated by their…

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Norman Stone was brilliant, funny, a doll | Brief letters | Education

Re Richard Evans’ obituary of Norman Stone (26 June): what Evans says has truth in it, but it’s far from the whole truth. Stone was a brilliant teacher, hilarious company, a fascinating lecturer, and a charming admirer. And, which is surely the point about #MeToo, he didn’t get shirty or use it against you if you said no – which is why some of us didn’t. His becoming so rightwing and drunk in later life was a pity, but earlier…

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DocsTeach Adds Good Artifacts for Teaching About the Transcontinental Railroad – Education Article

DocsTeach has long been one of my go-to recommendations for teachers of U.S. History. DocsTeach provides a wealth of digitized primary source artifacts that can be incorporated into lessons for elementary school, middle school, and high school students. You can search for those artifacts according to era in U.S. History, according to artifact type (text, photograph, map, audio, video), and you can search DocsTeach’s library according by keyword. Speaking of keyword search, if you search for “transcontinental railroad” you’ll find…

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School Field Trip Turns Into a Tour of Our Nation’s Unhealed Scars – Education Article

 You’ve got to be a little crazy to take a bunch of teenagers on a field trip – especially overnight and out of town.   But that’s what I did, and – yeah – guilty as charged.   For the second time in my more than 15-year career as a public school teacher, I volunteered along with a group of parents and other teachers to escort my classes of 8th graders to Washington, DC, and surrounding sights. And I never regretted…

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Writing Historical Fiction for the Middle Grades – Education Article

Ever consider writing a book of historical fiction for kids? Like to hear how someone else did it? Malayna Evans is the author of the new Jagger Jones series, beginning with Jagger Jones and the Mummy’s Ankh. Read on to learn some of what Malayna learned, including why holding a PhD in Ancient Egyptian History from Chicago’s most scholarly university was not as helpful as you might think! By Malayna Evans To those of us who are passionate about history,…

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Charter Schools Are Quietly Gobbling Up My Public School District
 – Education Article

  I work in a little suburban school district just outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, that is slowly being destroyed by privatization.   Steel Valley Schools have a proud history.   We’re located (in part) in Homestead – the home of the historic steel strike of 1892.   But today it isn’t private security agents and industrial business magnates against whom we’re struggling.   It’s charter schools, voucher schools and the pro-corporate policies that enable them to pocket tax dollars meant…

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Resourceaholic: 5 Maths Gems #108 – Education Article

Welcome to my 108th gems post. This is where I share some of the latest news, ideas and resources for maths teachers. 1. SMP Christian Bokhove (@cbokhove) and his team have been working on this project for a while so it’s exciting to see the launch of smp2.co.uk. They have created PDFs of dozens of old SMP maths textbooks and booklets. Read about the aims of the project here. Click ‘Access to SMP’ to register and download the materials. It’s free…

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How to Make an Animated Timeline in Google Slides – Education Article

Eighteen months ago I published a video about how to use Google Slides to create a timeline. Yesterday, that video hit 50,000 views. I watched the video again and realized that I could use the animation tools in Google Slides to add animations to my timeline. So yesterday I made a video about how to do that. In the following video I demonstrate how to create an animated timeline in Google Slides. If you like this video, please take a…

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Standardized Testing is a Tool of White Supremacy – Education Article

Let’s say you punched me in the face.   I wouldn’t like it. I’d protest. I’d complain.   And then you might apologize and say it was just an accident.  Maybe I’d believe you.   Until the next time when we met and you punched me again.   That’s the problem we, as a society, have with standardized tests.   We keep using them to justify treating students of color as inferior and/or subordinate to white children. And we never…

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‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ Has Never Been More Important Than It is Today – Education Article

It’s not.     Anne Frank is not dead.     Not in 1945. Not in 2019.     Anne was a Dutch Jew hiding from the Nazis with her family and four others in a loft above her father’s former factory in Amsterdam.     The teenager is the most famous victim of the Holocaust, but her story doesn’t end when she succumbed to typhus in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in the closing days of WWII.     Because…

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Diane Ravitch’s New Book is a Fun and Breezy Romp Through the Maze of School Policy – Education Article

Imagine you could talk with Diane Ravitch for 10 to 15 minutes everyday.  That’s kind of what reading her new book, “The Wisdom and the Witt of Diane Ravitch”, is like.  You’ve probably heard of Ravitch before.   She’s the kindly grandmother you see on the news who used to think standardized tests and school privatization were the way to go but actually had the courage to pull an about face.   She’s that rare thing in public policy –…

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The Forgotten Disaster of America’s First Standardized Test – Education Article

  The merry-go-round of history continues to spin because the riders forget they are free to get off at any time.   But we rarely do it. We keep to our seats and commit the same stupid mistakes over and over again.   Take high stakes standardized testing.   It was a disaster the very first time it was attempted in America – in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1845.   Yet we continue to prescribe the same error to students in…

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An Audio History of Canada – Education Article

History has a long tradition of being told through oral storytelling. Now you can get Canadian history as an audio curriculum, allowing you to sit and hear the events of Canada’s past, thanks to Headphone History. What is it? Created by Canadian history enthusiast, Rowan Atkinson, Headphone History brings the story of Canada alive through sound and stories.  You can choose between a CD edition or a downloadable digital MP3, depending on your preference. Volume 1 explores Origins to French…

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Canadian History-Based Writing Lessons from IEW – Education Article

I am excited to share that I’ve been working with the Institute for Excellence in Writing to put together a Canadian History-Based Writing Lessons book. Using the approach taught by the Teaching Structure and Style workshop by Andrew Pudewa, this book gives your child the chance to practice their writing skills while using Canadian history as their core subject. This post contains affiliate links. Before I share more about the book, I would like to explain 2 important things: #1.…

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How to Use Canva to Create a Timeline – Education Article

Canva is one of those great tools that the more time you spend with it the more cool features you discover in it. One of those features is the ability to create timelines to save as images and PDFs. Canva has about a dozen timeline templates that you can modify by altering the text size and style, inserting images, and dragging-and-dropping other design elements. Watch the following short video to learn how to create a timeline in Canva. This is…

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2 Free Martin Luther King Day Lesson Plans – Education Article

Subscriber Special Until January 18th: Free Martin Luther King Day Lesson Plans Two lesson plans to prepare for Martin Luther King Day in January: 1) Students research events leading up to Dr. Martin Luther King’s impact on American history and share them with an Event Chain organized visually, including pictures and thought bubbles. 2) Students interpret the words of Dr. Martin Luther King in their own words in a visual organizer. Great project that gets students thinking about the impact……

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