September 17 - September 24, 2017

The pen pal story this week is compelling and strikes me as a terrific experience for everyone.  I'd love to see more narratives from this kind of experience (and perhaps I should try it with my own class?)

Some compelling diversity/inclusion reading this week, as well as some interesting writing about design. The creativity articles on design offer some interesting models of thought that stimulate fresh perspectives.  I want to spend more time with them to think about how to apply the core ideas.

These and more--enjoy!


Red State, Blue State: A School Pen Pal Exchange SF Friends School
"Today, we write back. We thank them for looking at our projects and ask for more details about what they mean when they say "safety net." We try to answer their questions about our thoughts on the "Muslim ban.""

The Business Case For Inclusive Decision Making Forbes
"Teams that follow an inclusive process make decisions 2x faster with 1/2 the meetings. Decisions made and executed by diverse teams delivered 60% better results."


Drinking And Sex Are Happening Later For Teens (b/c Phones?) Quartz


Lessons From Three Books On Empathy Dublin Review of Books

Questioning Grit And Growth Mindset On Equity Grounds Radical Scholarship
"I also remain skeptical of growth mindset and grit because they are very difficult to disentangle from deficit perspectives of students and from monolithic, thus reactive, views of identifiable groups by race, class, gender, or educational outcomes."


Blind People Repurpose Their Visual Cortex For Audio Processing New Scientist


A Unified Theory Of Design (Applicable To Most Anything) Medium

Deconstructing Design Tools (Think Metaphorically) Free Code Camp

Improv And Design Thinking: "Yes, And" - Observe - Reflect - Make UX Design


Should We Teach More Civics In Schools? NPR


Another Take On The History Of Whiteness New York Times

Diversity (Demographics) Is Meaningless Without Inclusion Inside Higher Ed

"Can Prep Schools Fight The Class War?" New York Times
"In recent years, and most obviously since the rise of Black Lives Matter, private schools around the city have taken concerted care to recruit minority students, to introduce curriculums and conversation about racial understanding in lower grades, to seek diversity consultants and to promote inclusion around gender. At the same time, ostentatious displays of wealth and entitlement that can dominate a school's ecosystem have gone too often unchallenged."


Ken Burns' "The Vietnam War" Goes To Broadcast New York Times


How Small Group Rituals Can Create Employee Bias Quartz


From MIT: "Lifelong Kindergarten" ...Projects, Passion, Peers, Play NPR


"The Hobbit" Turns 80 Atlantic

Jeff Bezos Starts Meetings With Silent Reading Of Each Others' Writing Inc.


OER Increasingly Used By Teachers, For Different Reasons THE Journal

LMS Market Share Data: Canvas On The Rise (In The US, Anyway) Edutechnica)

Cell Phone Ban: No Phones At Lunch For 841 Middle School Kids LA Times

Wooden Toys That Teach CompSci Principles To Elementary Kids Quartz

Approach Tech Like The Amish: Digital, But Minimalist Cal Newport
"The Amish, it turns out, do something that's both shockingly radical and simple in our age of impulsive and complicated consumerism; they start with the things they value most, then work backwards to ask whether a given technology performs more harm than good with respect to these values."


Lessons From Working From Home New York Times


8 Surprisingly Different Tips For Working Smarter, Not Harder Fast Company

Rand Corporation Report On Designing Innovative High Schools Rand