Month: January 2016


Transferring Great Ideas to Writing – Part 1

“My students have great thoughts and ideas in discussions but then they don’t successfully transfer that to their writing. It just ends up being a summary.”

I recently overheard this lament from a teacher, and it was immediately echoed and affirmed by his colleagues in the room. They had observed the same thing from their students.

I immediately had a couple thoughts and a question. I’ll share my thoughts today and save my question for next week:

My thoughts:

First, how GREAT that students’ […]

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IBD-ize: Inquiry By Design Becomes a Verb

I was working with a group of teachers in Alameda Unified School District in California a few weeks ago. A district leader got up to welcome teachers and make a few announcements before we launched into our work for the day. Among the announcements she made was this item.

“… and on such-and-such a date we will have our IBD-izing planning day, so bring whatever texts and materials you’ll need for that.”

The teachers in the room all nodded and […]

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The Great Descartes Intelligence Caper: What Educators Should Know About Brain Science and Mindset

For centuries French philosopher Rene Descartes pretty much dictated what we believed about the human brain. He argued that the mind and brain were separate—made of different ingredients and following different rules. The brain, according to Descartes, was a physical, material thing existing in space and time and following the laws of physics. The mind (or the soul, as Descartes called it) was immaterial, a repository of non-physical thoughts, not taking up space or obeying the laws of matter. The […]

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