Seth Godin on good teachers

Here’s the secret, I think: teaching is empathy.If you have a bad teacher, who is strict for no reason, who says “there will be a test,” who is strict for no reason, who glosses over things that the class doesn’t understand, or spends time on things the class does – that teacher is a bad teacher because they are selfish.…

Podcast recommendation: Econtalk – Andy Matuschak on Why Books Don’t Work

This is a fantastic interview that takes Andy Matuschak‘s controversially titled essay as a springboard for a not-really-controversial but fascinating discussion of teaching, learning and tech informed by Matuschak’s work at Kahn Academy. Highly recommend. Highlights to follow.

Machine. Ecosystem. (8) – classrooms as complex adaptive systems

Planning is essential in education, but it’s easy to fall into the habit of treating your session plan or presentation as a set of inputs for a machine: “If I do these things, and introduce this content, and prescribe this activity, this learning will result.” But we know that groups of people, and especially groups of children, don’t work so…

Deep literacy: Kevin Kelly on more than reading

… producing books with ease on Gutenberg’s press did not fully unleash text. Real literacy also required a long list of innovations and techniques that permitted ordinary readers and writers to manipulate text in ways that made it useful. For instance, quotation symbols make it simple to indicate where one has borrowed text from another writer. We don’t have a…

Learning between the lines

You can’t ever just teach one thing. Whether we like it or not there’s always other stuff going on: we’re teaching what we think of our students, whether we value other people’s time or feelings, how we think we should speak to people, how a person might be in the world… All the time – consciously or not, or both – teachers…

“How do I take these thoroughbreds and turn them into a team?”

Getting a team together? Start building it before you’re even in the room. Kathy Delaney-Smith is the coach of the Harvard woman’s basketball team… A few years ago she was asked to be the coach of Team USA in the international basketball competition. And what she was going to have was a dozen kids who’d been selected from a hundred…

Learning

Here’s a theory of learning: A person**… meets something new… has some kind of interaction with it… and is changed in some way. I think these are the bare essentials. You can’t have learning with less, and everything else is detail under one of these headings.  ** Or animal, or…