February 24 - March 3, 2019

An excellent week: changing your academic schedule, asking good questions, elements of good leadership, Hampshire College, and more

The March issue of ASCD Educational Leadership included a host of useful articles for school leaders, both of the administrative and instructional kind.  These articles are in the featured, leadership, and pedagogy sections.

Also, the stories surrounding Hampshire College's next move are intensifying.  They offer compelling narratives about the sustainability of college in general -- and also what makes an excellent education.

Lastly, I feature the perhaps-otherwise-marginal article about teachers receiving coaching through in-ear bluetooth devices because of my preface to the previous newsletter. Last week I wrote about the distance between what A.I. can do and what will be relevant to teachers.  But, in-ear coaching is a first step towards an augmented reality (AR) experience for teachers.  If this proves valuable (and research suggests it does), and if the cost of technology is low (and it is), then we may not be far at all from rudimentary AI  supporting teachers in class, with a reasonable expectation of providing some actual value (think: live feedback on wait time, open ended questioning, student participation rates, etc).  Now, whether you find this dystopic or a welcome opportunity for hard-to-come-by feedback is the next question.

These and much more, enjoy!



Four Essential Leadership Roles, And How To Balance Them  ASCD
"Only one leadership personality, the architect, delivers sustained improvement—by balancing all four roles. In the words of the researchers, "they're insightful, humble, visionary leaders who believe schools fail because they're poorly designed," so they work with teachers to develop a collaborative school vision and engage directly in professional learning, coaching, mentoring, and peer collaboration."

Teachers Are Experimenting With In-Ear Coaching   EdWeek
"The premise is simple: A teacher wears an earpiece during a lesson, which is being livestreamed for an instructional coach who is somewhere else. Throughout the lesson, the coach delivers in-the-moment feedback to the teacher, who can add something or switch gears based on what she's hearing in her ear. Typically, the coach and the teacher will meet to debrief after the lesson."


"The Lustful Middle School Girl Rises"  New York Times
"In the middle school of the American collective imagination, packs of filthy-minded boys stalk the halls, snapping bras and howling at the cliff’s edge of puberty. The sex-obsessed adolescent girl is a rarer breed. More often girls are positioned as victims of raging male hormones, or else they are styled as preternaturally mature, rising above the boys and their juvenile misadventures. Now — in [three new television shows] — the lustful adolescent girl is having her moment."


115 Schools Now Have eSports Scholarships  EdSurge
"From one institution to 35-plus in three years is fairly rapid growth in the world of higher education. What has happened in the 18 months since I wrote that blog post? There are now over 115 colleges and universities offering scholarships. Several of these colleges actively market esports scholarship opportunities to high school students and recruit high skill, high school esports players directly from tournaments."


Kindness Can Be Contagious, Just Like Anger Is  KQED
"Christakis and his colleagues mapped out the face-to-face interactions of about 5,000 people living in one town over the course of 32 years. Their emotional ups and downs were documented with periodic surveys. "We were able to show that as one person became happy or sad, it rippled through the network," Christakis says."


Philosopher: Why Creativity Is Uniquely Human (And A.I. Can't Do It)  MIT Tech Review

Being Creative Requires Consuming (A Lot)  Connected Principals


Reflections On Whether Teachers Should Follow Or Create Curriculum  Inside Higher Ed
"I would not accept someone else’s curriculum for a new course now. It is only through the development of the pedagogy that I can be fully prepared to teach the new course. I expect my first time through a new course there will be shortcomings, but this is how learning works. We cannot expect to human-proof a human process. We shouldn’t want to."

West Virginia Makes Computer Science A Graduation Requirement  EdScoop


What Professional Networks Are Necessary For Men And Women To Succeed  Harv Bus Rev


Naps Are Beneficial For Pre-K And K Students (And All Of Us?)  District Administration


The Stigmergic Path Emerging For Most Students In Higher Ed  New York Times
"“The four-year undergraduate experience is often out of reach for large segments of our population… the idea of getting that one degree and you’re set for life doesn’t really hold water anymore. Then the question becomes, ‘how do we make it easier for working adults and people who need to pick up new kinds of tools and technologies?’"

Reflections On Opening MIT's College Of Computing  EdSurge

Hampshire College Defends Its Strategy  Insider Higher Ed

A Former Hampshire Professor Argues For Hampshire's Uniqueness  Inside Higher Ed

A Former Hampshire Student Proposes A More Ethical End To The College  Inside Higher Ed


High School Class Drafts Bill To Release FBI Files. It Becomes Law.  Clarion Ledger
"Wexler said when he told his students in 2015 about how many civil rights cold cases had gone unsolved and how many of those files remained redacted, they were upset. The bill the students wrote creates an independent review board of experts to analyze and release government files on civil rights cold cases… Their teacher, Stuart Wexler, said as far as he can tell from extensive research, this is the first high school class ever to draft a federal bill that became law."


There Are Many, Still-Emergent Sign Languages  Digg

"When Did The Verb 'To Be' Enter The English Language?"  JStor


On The Importance Of Aligning Middle Managers With Vision  Harv. Bus. Rev.

On Creative Job Titles  Inc.

How Instructional Leaders Can Support High Level Teacher Performance  ASCD

An Argument For Doing Less. Three Essential Areas Of Focus.  ASCD


Historians Across The US Watch Movies And Discuss On Twitter  Chron. of Higher Ed


Reflections On The 'Why' Of Classroom Instruction  ASCD
"I'm not prescient enough to know the best why for instructional principles and practices in our schools, but here are a few possibilities  that I believe would take us in a markedly more compelling direction as we answer the question, "Why do we instruct young people?”"

A Case For Mastery Teaching As Equitable Teaching  Hechinger Report

A Method For Writing Essay Questions That Scaffold Responses  4QM Teaching

A Variety Of Reflections On Shaping Good Questions  History Tech

"Three Questions For Effective Feedback"  Harvard Business Review


Werner Herzog On School, Reading, And Writing  Austin Kleon
"Read, read, read, read, read. Those who read own the world; those who immerse themselves in the Internet or watch too much television lose it… Our civilization is suffering profound wounds because of the wholesale abandonment of reading by contemporary society."


A Comprehensive Review And Overview Of Coding Bootcamps  RTI International

14-Year-Old Shows Nuclear Reactor He Built At Home, When He Was 12  Vice


"Is Ed-Tech Hype In Remission?"  e-Literate


Teacher: "The Absurd Structure Of High School" Schedules  Medium

"The system’s scheduling fails on every possible level. If the goal is productivity, the fractured nature of the tasks undermines efficient product. So much time is spent in transition that very little is accomplished before there is a demand to move on. If the goal is maximum content conveyed, then the system works marginally well, in that students are pretty much bombarded with detail throughout their school day. However, that breadth of content comes at the cost of depth of understanding. The fractured nature of the work, the short amount of time provided, and the speed of change all undermine learning beyond the superficial. It’s shocking, really, that students learn as much as they do."

One School's Journey To And Into A Schedule Change  EdSurge
"Two of the most intriguing pieces of data collected during student surveys related to class period length and homework. When we asked students about an optimal length of class, they came back with 60 to 65 minutes. When students were asked about a realistic amount of homework time that should be expected of them, we expected to receive most answers declaring “none,” but instead, students saw the value of about 90-minutes of quality homework."


Stories From The People Who Do "Trust And Safety" For Major Online Apps  Medium

"40 Incredibly Useful Things You Didn't Know Google Search Could Do"  Fast Company