December 31, 2017 - January 7, 2018

Happy new year! Much to ponder this week as the Northeast is hunkered down and bunkered deep in the snow and cold.

This week's feature article on safe schools offers an insightful reframing of the word "safe": from defining an absolute state to describing a frame of mind and skill set.  This new understanding has many clear and interesting downstream implications.

The second feature article offers a starting point for a conversation about how skills are divided throughout the curriculum.  What are the habits of thought--and of writing--implicit in each discipline?  How do they complement each other?  This is a good place to begin.

Lastly, the piece on the (now shuttered) Coalition of Essential Schools shares ten principles that remind us that the cornerstones of good teaching and learning have been around for a while.  We just need to use them.

Enjoy these, and many others this week!



What Makes A Safe School? NEASC
"'Safety' is not a single static state; it is a capacity. A 'safe school' is not an absolute, it is an approach and a practice. We must practice the ability to assess risk and make a sensible choice. Practice the perception of danger and the possible alternatives. Practice acting swiftly in some circumstances and behaving with restraint in others. 'Safety,' to paraphrase Reinhold Neibuhr, is the wisdom to know what needs to be changed."

How Do Different Disciplines Read, Write, And Think? ASCD
"The following lists for each of the major content areas, although not comprehensive, can act as starting points through which communities of teachers can begin to think in terms of disciplinary literacy."
[table PDF]


"An Impressively Detailed Philosophy Paper Grading Rubric" Daily Nous


Finding Purpose Leads To The Good Life, Even Medically Speaking NY Times

How To Make Self-Control Strength-Based, Not Deficit-Oriented NY Times

Sherry Turkle: "The Assault On Empathy" Behavioral Scientist
"There it was in black and white, the thing that has been unfolding for decades: The robot presented as empathy machine--an object that presents itself as worthy of your empathic response, and as having an empathic reaction to you. But objects can't do this."


What Can Brain Science Tell Us About Competency Learning? Competency Works

More Questions About What Happens During Sleep Atlantic


"Combating Race-Related Stress In The Classroom" ASCD

A Protocol For Talking About Charged Political Topics Kappan


Higher Ed Enrollment And Employment Numbers For 2017 Inside Higher Ed


Teacher And Students Recast Classic Stories In Video Games KQED

"The 10 Best Social Studies Sites Of All Time" History Tech

Is The Pace Of Life Accelerating? Quotes From The 1890s... xkcd


10 Characteristics Of The Coalition Of Essential Schools Nat'l Ed Policy Center
"Begun with an initial cohort of 12 high schools across the country, no one model of a secondary school was pushed. Instead, Sizer and his staff formulated 10 principles upon which educators should build schools that fit their setting. These principles were: 1. Learning to use one's mind well: The school should focus on helping young people learn to use their minds well. Schools should not be 'comprehensive' if such a claim is made at the expense of the school's central intellectual purpose..."


On The Difference Between Product Goals And Process Goals Spencer Ideas

Five Mistaken Assumptions Made In Math Instruction Getting Smart

Does Punishment Help Promote The Common Good? Science Daily

"Top 10 Reasons Students Plagiarize & What Teachers Can Do About It" Kappan

A Review Of Those Recent Studies About The Montessori Method  Hechinger 

"The Chronicle's Best Ideas For Teaching, 2017" [PDF] Chronicle of Higher Ed


Rural School Requires Writing In Every Class, Sees Huge Change EdSource

On The Rise Of Social Reading: We Are What We Read New York Times

How Do You Make A List Of The 100 Best Nonfiction Books? Guardian

The Kindle Remains Revolutionary, But It Doesn't Change Books New Republic


Pale Blue And White Dots: The Earth And The Moon In One Shot Quartz
"In October, OSIRIS-REx, a spacecraft that's bound to intersect an asteroid in August this year, took the photo above from about 5 million km (3 million miles) away from the Earth. NASA posted the picture on Jan. 2, providing the public with a unique view of our planet and its moon. The angle is great to get a grasp of what the distance between the two celestial bodies really looks like, but it's not perfect."


Essays On Whether Our Brains Are Really Being Hijacked By Tech Behavioral Sci


What's The Golden Ratio Again? Prototypr

The Seven Elements Of Art, Taught By KQED And The NYT New York Times
"Welcome to the final piece in our Seven Elements of Art series, in which Kristin Farr pairs videos from KQED Art School with current New York Times pieces on the visual arts to help students make connections between formal art instruction and our daily visual culture."


3 Guidelines For Improving Productivity Medium
"1. Do what is important, not what is urgent... 2. Do what you need to do, before you do what you want to do... 3. Remove all distractions."


"If Birds Left Tracks In The Sky, They Would Look Like This." National Geographic

Watching A Bubble Freeze Is A Sight To Behold Twitter

"Eye-Tracking Glasses Illustrate What A... Pianist Sees While Playing" YouTube