How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

On Standardized Curriculum

Curriculum (what teachers are supposed to teach) is an interesting part of school design. Ostensibly, there are things that each seventh-grade student (for example) should know, but it is very difficult to define “what students should know” outside of the context of school. The statement, “the book is written at and eight grade reading level” Read More

How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

On Intelligence

Education is based on a simple idea: We want to make people smart. “Smart” is the general term that we use to describe an individual who has greater than usual cognitive skill and knowledge; public education is intended to ensure a minimal level of “smart” for each individual in our society. As we understand it, Read More

How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

Teaching by Technology 

When using test-preparation software, skills-building websites, typing tutors, and similar tools, students are experiencing teaching by technology. For previous generations of technology-using teachers, “edutainment” software was a popular method for teaching by technology. This software found students (for example) playing games in which they earned points by quickly answering math problems.   One of the more popular uses Read More

How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

Teaching by Technology

When using test-preparation software, skills-building websites, typing tutors, and similar tools, students are experiencing teaching by technology. For previous generations of technology-using teachers, “edutainment” software was a popular method for teaching by technology. This software found students (for example) playing games in which they earned points by quickly answering math problems.   One of the more popular uses Read More

How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

Teaching About Technology

Teaching about technology was common when computers first arrived in educational markets. Called computer literacy at the time, it focused on teaching students the names and functions of systems rather than how to use them. This was a very reasonable approach at the time as few individuals had computers in their homes and one of the most Read More

How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

Why Testing is Meaningless in Schools

It is widely known inside education (but much less so outside of education), that we really don’t know what to teach or how to measure learning. Educational researchers will dispute this, as they spend their entire careers defining learning and measuring it. In science that is allowed, and we accept the conclusions of studies, but Read More

How-Networks-Arrived-in-Schools

On Zeros in Grading

Grades. Formative assessments. Summative assessments. Whatever we call these things, teachers have the responsibility to report the degree to which students have learned what they were supposed to learn. While this seems a straight-forward aspect of the work, it is highly contentious, and different educators have very different perspectives on it. I have addressed this Read More