Sunday, March 11, 2007

English Update March 11, 2007

Critical thinking..... Attitude..... How define critical thinking? “I link the term critical thinking with the doubting game. I don’t see how ‘critical’ can ever be pried away from its connotations of criticism, arguments, doubt and skepticism.” P Elbow. CE (Mar. 05), 39.

Critical thinking..... Attitude..... What are some characteristics of illogical thinking? “…this fight against either/or thinking.” P Elbow. CE (Mar. 05), 398.

Critical thinking..... Defined..... How practice critical thinking? Students collect bumper sticker messages, then discuss and interpret them and infer the characteristics of people who display them. LA Morton-Meier. JAAL (Nov. 04), 280-283.

Curriculum..... Adolescence..... What are the effects of the traditional stereotype of the adolescent? “Traditional…conceptions of adolescence as a time of turbulence, raging hormones and immaturity diminish adolescents’ voices and agency. These conceptions downplay adolescents’ individuality and diversity. An emerging awareness of adolescence as socially constructed, rather than biologically determined, helps create space for new understandings of adolescents and what they need to succeed in school.” F Serafini, et al. RRQ (Oct/Nov/Dec 2004), 487-488.

Curriculum..... Adolescence..... How should teachers deal with adolescents? “Florez-Gonzalez tells educators to pay particular attention to the interests and needs of individual adolescents rather than treat them as a homogenized population without regard for individual differences.” F Serafini, et al. RRQ (Oct/Nov/Dec 04), 488.

Curriculum..... Assessment..... How can teachers help students become more conscious of how they learned what they learned? What is assessed is what is taught. However, teachers can deepen students’ understanding of how they learn effectively by having them reflect on what they did as they learned. P Johnston. RT (Apr. 05), 684-686.

Curriculum..... College..... In what way are two-year college teachers perceived differently from four-year college teachers? Teachers in community colleges are ‘marginalized” when compared to teachers in four-year colleges because two-year college teachers usually do not engage in scholarly activities, i.e., publishing. J Andelora. TETYC (Mar. 05), 107-108.

Curriculum..... Computer..... How can teachers learn to use the computer to help them in their instruction? Teachers define the methods they believe work best for them and then think about how to use the computer to extend these methods. LD Labbo. RT (May 05), 782-785.

Curriculum..... Distance Education..... What are some problems with distance education? Student criticisms of distance learning: Lack of audible communication; delays; time outs; material missed because of technological problems; 2-second-long microphone delays. A Blackstock and VN Exton. TETYC (May 05), 279-280. “One of the chief problems of using ITV to teach writing is the inherent difficulty of adapting a course as interaction-dependent as composition to a technology designed for the lecture format.” A Blackstock and VN Exton. TETYC (May 05), 381.

Curriculum..... Distance Education..... What is the value of distance education? “It comes down to a choice between making the courses available by means of an admittedly problematic technology and not making them available at all.” A Blackstock and VN Exton. TETYC (May 05), 382.

Curriculum..... Evaluation..... What are some innovative approaches to schooling? “They [students of Eagle Rock School and Professional Development Center, Colorado] know what ‘mastery’ looks like (through rubrics) and have some say in creating rubrics…. They also know that there is no failure (they are simply not ready yet to demonstrate mastery), no ‘markers’ such as GPA or class rank that stay with them forever, because there are no grades.” LB Easton. EJ (May 05), 55.

Curriculum..... Evaluation..... How make evaluation of student achievement more explicit? Suggests keeping brief anecdotal records of each student’s achievement in class. Statements of achievement are concise, in a short sentence. F Boyd-Batstone. RT (Nov. 04), 230-239.

Curriculum..... Evaluation..... What do innovators in education frequently overlook? “A common criticism leveled at educators is that they innovate but frequently fail to evaluate.” AV Bailey & G Housekeeper.

Curriculum..... Evaluation..... What are some problems with innovation? “Solutions” to educational problems may inadvertently create as well as solve problems. RF Robinett. EE (Apr. 71), 208.

Curriculum..... Goals..... How involve students in their education? Have students design their ideal school. KA Nugent. EJ (Nov. 04), 37-42.

CE = College English. JAAL = Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy. RRQ = Reading Research Quarterly. RT = Reading Teacher. TETYC = Teaching English in the Two-Year College. EJ = English Journal. EE = Elementary English.

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