“This new breed of individuals (actually, it’s not new, it’s just that no one has shone a spotlight on them before) will need to have, above all else, a good conceptual understanding of mathematics, its power and scope — when and how it can be applied — and its limitations. They will also have to have a solid mastery of a few very basic mathematical skills, but they do not have to be stellar. A far more important requirement is that they can work well in teams, often cross-disciplinary teams, they can see things in new ways, they can quickly come up to speed on a new technique that seems to be required, and they are very good at adapting old methods to new situations.”
“Edupunk” public school in Medellín, Colombia (Video with English subtitles.)
If this is the way education will be assessed and improved, we’re totally doomed. “New York’s education officials are obsessed with test scores. The state wants to find and fire the teachers who aren’t able to produce higher test scores year after year. But most testing experts believe that the methods for calculating teachers’ assumed “value-added” qualities—that is, their abilities to produce higher test scores year after year—are inaccurate, unstable, and unreliable. Teachers in affluent suburbs are likelier to get higher value-added scores than teachers of students with disabilities, students learning English, and students from extreme poverty. All too often, the rise or fall of test scores reflects the composition of the classroom and factors beyond the teachers’ control, not the quality of the teacher. A teacher who is rated effective one year may well be ineffective the next year, depending on which students are assigned to his or her class.”
Ever wondered why education in Finland is always on top of the lists? Their secret: good teachers.
“[T]he minuscule number of secular home learners nationwide is dwarfed by the huge population of liberal parents who do everything in their power to get their kids into the best public schools possible, moving their families to more competitive districts, those desirable zip codes, and perpetuating inequity in the process. According to Goldstein’s logic, real progressives should, instead, be enrolling their offspring in the worst possible public institutions in order to improve them, and while that sounds good in theory, I’ve never met a single parent doing such a thing. […] One of the virtues of unschooling, of the radical philosophy that underpins it, is that it calls the entire hierarchy into question.”
“If progressives want to improve schools, we shouldn’t empty them out. We ought to flood them with our kids, and then debate vociferously what they ought to be doing.”
iBooks Author doesn’t seem to be offering much to the math educator. “iBooks Author doesn’t exist for the pleasure of math education publishers or even education publishers. “This is about Apple versus Amazon for who will sell digital literature in the future,” says Audrey Watters. “This isn’t really about textbooks.” “
Bobby McFerrin shows how the pentatonic scale is hardwired in our brain, or so it seems.
“Cathy N. Davidson, professor of English and interdisciplinary studies at Duke University, speaks about rethinking education in the digital world. She argues that academics need to understand the role of new technologies in their students’ current and future lives — and think about better ways of teaching that take advantage of these new modes of working and interacting online. This will help students to think about the social, economic, aesthetic and intellectual issues of the new media they enjoy.”
Hackasaurus is a tool for kids to learn web design and coding. “Hackasaurus spreads skills, attitudes, and ethics that help youth thrive in a remixable digital world. By making it easy for youth to tinker and mess around with the building blocks that make up the web, Hackasaurus helps tweens move from digital consumers to active producers, seeing the web as something they can actively shape, remix and make better.”
The institute of play has its own school in New York. I’d love teach math in a place like this. “The school has been designed to help students to bridge old and new literacies through learning about the world as a set of interconnected systems. Design and complex problem-solving are two big ideas of the school, as is a commitment to deep content learning with a strong focus on learning in rigorous, engaging, and relevant ways. It is a place where digital media meets books and students learn to think like designers, inventors, mathematicians, writers, and more.”
“We bring together game design, rigorous research practices and strong interdisciplinary partnerships to create, study and promote game-based materials, strategies and systems as critical tools for personal and social development.”
A life story has it’s own rhythm, momentum, and direction independent of biological process, so that knowledge is not always discrete bundled of sense ‘datum’, but rather an entangled path of paths through which the psyche navigates. It is an implicit part of the flow of experience, one which may or may not be communicated or even made explicit to the self. We don’t always consciously know that we know, but we can often examine and remember the source of our knowledge. Knowledge, like understanding, is an experience through which we make sense of other experiences. We need not remember the event which initiated this learning (but we quite often do, and that helps cement the learning in our recollection of it), but it leaves a lasting mark on how we learn and understand in the future.
Video lessons about almost anything.