Slate’s Barry Schwartz recently wrote an article about how schools must train students to pay attention you can read his whole article about it here. I agree that the ability to focus attention is a skill and should be increased in order to allow our students to be more successful.
There are numerous techniques to improve ones own attention, what do you think is a simple strategy you can use to improve your attention? One simple strategy is to create questions.
Questions hook the mind and your mind immediately wants to find the answer. How can you use this? You can control your own focus by creating questions about what you should be focusing on so that your mind will try to find the answer. Teachers and parents often model this behavior by verbalizing questions to show their thought process.
“63 percent of teachers report buying food for the classroom each month with their own money . . . That’s just one statistic from a report put out by Share Our Strength, which surveyed teachers across the country about hunger in America’s classrooms.”
Certification Maps in partnership with USC Rossier Online wrote up an article on how to better get to know your students during the first few days of classes. These ice breakers use technology, candy, or strings:
I just watched this video on the “Online Revolution: Education For Everyone” and I believe that all teachers who plan to teach online or are already teaching on line MUST take a look at this video and understand how to use it for your classes.
“The TeacherLists.com concept is simple: teachers, school staff members and parent volunteers can use the service to post their school supply and teacher wish lists. Then, with a click, they can broadcast the list on their school or teacher website, print the list for sharing with parents, or post the list to any of more than 300 social media sites. Parents have the option of printing the lists or viewing them on a smartphone or tablet right in stores, adding a convenient and “green” element to back-to-school shopping for the first time. Parents using the site can also take advantage of coupons and discount offers on popular supplies and from key retailers available on the Teacherlists.com website.”
Education Week created a “round” table discussion on how teacher’s pay should be given out. Six contributors including several teachers have weighted in with their ideas on how teacher’s pay should be tackled.
Arguments around changes to teacher compensation have been heating up all across the country. In Tennessee, for example, education officials just put a new plan in place that eliminates annual step raises given solely for experience and advanced degrees, asking districts to also consider factors such as test scores and whether a teacher works in a high-needs school. The state’s teachers’ union has come out firmly against it, saying it could lower teaching requirements and overall teacher pay.
Meanwhile, places like The Equity Project Charter School have experimented with innovative approaches to compensation, including starting teachers’ salaries at $125,000.
How do you think teachers should be compensated? Should “effectiveness,” leadership, degrees, and/or years served be part of the equation? If so, how? To what extent is differentiation in teacher pay feasible? How could teacher compensation change to better support student learning?