December 8 - December 15, 2019

An excellent week.

Greta Thunberg has made headlines this year, and her recent naming as Time Magazine Person of the Year marks their youngest Person of the Year yet.  I'm particularly taken by the recent collection of her addresses called "No One Is Too Small To Make A Difference."  It amounts to a dozen or more short addresses from the past year that show the evolution of her rhetoric, and reading the collection -- each about 400-700 words -- reveals the drafting process.  I recommend it for teachers of any subject, as it can be useful in English and history classes as well as science classes.

Also this week are useful resources in pedagogy and some alarming notices in digital and social media.  And not to be overlooked is the truly epic collection of math jokes...


Peter Nilsson
King's Academy 


An Excellent Post On Political (And Controversial) Discussions In Class KQED
“Surprise discussions sprung on students can go off the rails quickly. “If the Monday morning after the Charlottesville riots a teacher just walks into her classroom and asks the students, ‘Well, what did you guys think of that?’ That’s going to be a disaster,” McAvoy said. An open discussion right after a tragic event, with questions like “how do you feel about this situation?” or “do you have questions?” allows students to process—but it’s not the time to debate free speech, or what to do about monuments.”

Greta Thunberg Is Time Magazine’s Person Of The Year Time
“At first, Thunberg’s father reassured her that everything would be O.K., but as he read more about the climate crisis, he found his own words rang hollow. “I realized that she was right and I was wrong, and I had been wrong all my life,” Svante told TIME in a quiet moment after arriving in Lisbon. In an effort to comfort their daughter, the family began changing their habits to reduce their emissions. They mostly stopped eating meat, installed solar panels, began growing their own vegetables and eventually gave up flying—a sacrifice for Thunberg’s mother, who performs throughout Europe. “We did all these things, basically, not really to save the climate, we didn’t care much about that initially,” says Svante. “We did it to make her happy and to get her back to life.” Slowly, Thunberg began to eat and talk again.”



"1 in 5 U.S. Adults Use Health Apps, Wearable Trackers” Gallup


5 Simple Ways To Care For Yourself (By A Buddhist Teacher) New York Times


Dance — Movement — Changes The Brain Quartz


Does The Term “Achievement Gap” Itself Promulgate Bias? [Redux] EdWeek


Google Interpreter Mode Comes To Phones Gizmodo


“Reviewing The Evidence On Teacher Attrition And Retention” Brookings


An Excellent List Of Assignments Using The New York Times The New York Times


“How Reading Has Changed In The 2010s” BBC

A Short History Of Fact-Checking Columbia Journalism Review

“How To Talk About Climate Change Like Greta Thunberg” Quartz
“Keeping the argument on track, and keeping it both civil and productive, is a key skill in critical thinking. It is helped by: making sure everyone is clear about what the point at issue actually is; bringing the conversation back to the point when it strays, or at least acknowledging that we are now talking about something else; calling out any misrepresentation of the point.”


Instagram Face: How The Internet Is Changing How We Want To Look New Yorker
““I think that ten years ago it was seen as anti-cerebral to do this,” [the plastic surgeon] said. “But now it’s empowering to do something that gives you an edge. Which is why young people are coming in. They come in to enhance something, rather than coming in to fix something.””


Gut Bacteria, Stool, And Athletics — The Microbiome Comes To Sports ESPN

A Truly Epic Collection Of Math Jokes University of Utah


“2019 Was The Year Sustainability Finally Burst Into The Fashion Mainstream”  Fashionista


On How Kids Use YouTube, And What We Can Do To Help Them Social Media in Education
“Currently, when we ask our children about YouTube we say, “what are you doing?” or “what are you watching?” This results in an instinctive dismissal because the majority of the time, they’re watching something we don’t understand. Instead, we need to enter conversations looking to ask, “how does this video/this creator make you feel?” And, “what do you intend to do with the information you’re learning?” These questions get to the heart of YouTube’s impact on children, and they get to what children take from the platform and how they use it in their lives. This will help our children understand when they are on YouTube as a passive, entertained consumer, and not an active, informed citizen.”

On Gutenberg — And New Technologies, Like The Internet Atlantic

In-Person And Blended Learning Preferred To Solely Online Learning EdSurge