Carnival of Education: It's So Much Better When You Can TOUCH Things!

We are honored to periodically host the Carnival of Education. Hats off to our good friend Jane Goodwin for all of her work on the latest Carnival. – editor

Welcome to the Carnival of Education, hosted right here at Steve Spangler Science! As all good teachers well know, the best education is the education that encourages us all to get down and dirty with it: in other words, touch it, feel it, experience it fully.  Connect it with other things you know.  spangler-iconActivate your schema!  Textbooks are good, and full of fascinating and useful information. However, if one student is given a textbook reading assignment and nothing else, and another student is encouraged to get up after reading and APPLY what he just read by putting his/her hands into and on and around smelly, goopy, noisy, exploding, changing, growing things, guess which student is going to remember the lesson best?  Guess which student is going to talk about the lesson at the dinner table that nig?t.  Yeah, that’s what we THOUGHT you’d all say! AWESOME!

Here we go! Let’s walk around the lab and see what we’ve got this week! children

Travis A. Wittwer, of Stories from School: Practice Meets Policy, wants to know Why Don’t All Teachers Blog? Travis writes: For me, the act of blogging about my teaching context provides an opportunity to reflect on current issues as well as invite in thoughtful discussion.

No two people learn in the exact same way, and Nersher of Online MBA Study gives us lots of examples, reasons, and illustrations in his post Adult Students: Learning to Learn.

airzookaJoanne Jacobs, always a fine educational contributor to the Carnivals, has a post this week called “Two Students, Two Schools.” It’s an age-old question, isn’t it: what could possibly prevent two equally intelligent high school students from performing equally well?

Over at Green Rising, Vehar Sheth writes about what can happen when students are finally in an environment that allows them to thrive, or at least be enlightened to subjects they would never know about were it not for this program. Their minds are opened and hope is permitted to build inside of them.

Darren, of Right on the Left Coast, has a definite opinion of these statistics: Well-off, high SAT’s: 82% of such 12th graders finish college butterflygarden Well-off, low SAT’s: 52% of such 12th graders finish college Poor, high SAT’s: 44% of such 12th graders finish college

So will all of you.

Over at A Guide To Raising Great Kids, Alejandra Peraza de Halvorssen asks this question: How can we prevent our kids from being exposed to drugs and alcohol?

Mary Ann Zehr, at Curriculum Matters, believes that most textbooks, particularly history books, leave out a lot of important material, and she encourages teachers and students to critique their textbooks.

What should teachers do in the summertime?  Mister Teacher – himself a fantastic educator – has put together a list over at Learn Me Good! The post is entitled 12 Things Teachers Should Do Over Summer Break, and I especially like #1! axleanniesnow

Heidi, Kim, and Laura are themselves writers and teachers, and they like to review nature books. Check out their blog at Wild About Nature.

Ah, the underachieving gifted! So often, they do poorly in school because their minds move differently than most of the other students’ minds, and more often than not, the teachers’ minds, can keep up with. Joep de Graaff has some suggestions on Dancing Crocodile in a post called Gifted But Stupid.

Alvaro Fernandez, at Sharp Brains, wants to know how anybody can take care of his or her brain when every week brings a new barrage of articles and studies which seem to contradict each other?

There’s a lot of teacher dissatisfaction in New York. There’s a very good reason for that, too. Under Assault has a post that will make your hackles rise. Massaging data to support a favorable school governance record has been a trademark of Klein’s chancellorship. In fact, it’s what the Tweed PR team actually do best.

Andrew Short, at Teen College Education, bemoans the fact that our high schools have been insta-snow-jar-12-4-08-260x250taken over by standardized testing at the expense of everything that made education, well, EDUCATION!

The Britannica Blog states its opinion pretty bluntly:  The logic of school choice seems obvious. If parents selected their children’s schools, they would not choose bad ones, so bad schools would not be able to survive. Schools would have to improve or close, just as a store that offers poor service will lose business to a store that offers better service.

GrrlScientist at Living the Scientific Life (Scientist, Interrupted) gives us this blurb to make us curious and click on her link:  Biologist Robert Full studies the amazing gecko, with its supersticky feet and tenacious climbing skill as we learn in this fascinating and educational video. But high-speed footage reveals that the gecko’s tail harbors perhaps the most surprising talents of all.

Over at Scenes from the Battleground, old andrew writes about Wilful Stupidity. We’ve all seen it in action.  We see it daily.  And yes, he did spell “wilful” correctly!

Siobhan Curious . . .(has) no studies or statistics to support my conviction that teenagers should have more support in dropping out of school if they wish to. But I still believe it.

Jim Wang at Bargaineering has a top ten list of smart student credit rules.kit

Pat wants us to know that successful inclusion classes do exist!

Kerry Fletcher has some advice for parents who don’t know what to do with all that artwork their children have been bringing home.

Over on Classroom Canada, Victoria Westcott is throwing a party, and you’re all invited!

It’s not the curriculum, it’s us, swears Matthew Needleman of Creating Lifelong Learners.

Jane Goodwin (Mamacita) at Scheiss Weekly shares a list of fifty or more fantastic themed quotations every single Saturday, and last weekend, the theme was Education!  Indulge yourself.

Larry Ferlazzo firmly believes that everyone – student, teacher, citizen – EVERYONE, should be ladybuglandknowledgeable about the protests in Iran.

These days, pretty much every teacher has an e-mail account at school, but a school account isn’t, I hope, the ONLY email account every teacher has!  Jeannie Anderson uses G-mail; what do you use?  Jeannie also shares a list of web resources her classroom couldn’t live without.

Steve Spangler and the gang have been at sea for the past week!  On a huge ship, along with some excellent naturalists and a hundred teachers in warm coats and mittens, they’re studying whales, and icebergdolphins, and waves, and ice, and you name it, if it’s found in the cold ocean waters!  From Alaska to Vancouver, the Science at Sea crew is having a “whale” of a grand time, and you can follow right along on Twitter and Flickr!  also check out the hashtag #SciSea on Twitter!

On a very serious note, Sara sends in two links about the notorious Rubber Room.  The first is an MSNBC article, which paints a picture of lazy teachers lounging and playing cards while still getting their full pay.  This is not an accurate picture, however, for, while there are teachers in the Rubber Room who actually deserve to be fired, the majority of teachers in Rubber Rooms all over the States are there because they ran afoul of an administrator.  The video and commentary on Pissed Off Teacher’s blog are much more accurate.

Hula Doula is sending her two children to a different school next year.  I don’t blame her a bit.

Miss Eyre, guest-blogging at NYC Educator’s blog, has some handy and timely hints for new teachers who will be setting up their classrooms in a few weeks.  Just don’t do anything logical, ‘kay?

Jenny, over at Three Kid Circus, sent her kids to Drama Camp.  Oh, the DRAMA!

wspi-500-100x100Apostrophe Catastrophe is always good for a laugh.  The laughs are painful, because the grammar and spelling pointed out here are painful, but hey.  This time of year, teachers need a good laugh, even if it does hurt.

Over at Not Always Right, we meet once again all the former students who were their year’s “THAT kid,” and guess what: most of them haven’t changed a bit!

That’s it for this week’s Carnival of Education.   A big thanks goes out to everyone who contributed, and another big thanks goes out to all who read, click, and learn.

All of the submissions were wonderful, too *.  I can’t wait to get started reading CAREFULLY!

*Except, of course, for those who tried to slip their businesses, their disgusting plagiarized essays, villaintheir real estate ads, their not-very-cleverly-disguised money-making schemes, and their condo rentals into a blog carnival that is supposed to be about EDUCATION.

We’re educators.  We care far too much for our students to fall for any of that nonsense.  Give it up.  The Carnival of Education is about EDUCATION.

Submit your blogposts HERE for next week’s Carnival of Education!

13 replies
  1. CeeCee
    CeeCee says:

    Your statement about the Britannica blog is misleading. This article was also posted on The Homeschool Carnival. The author is blunt, but is blunt in stating that school choice won’t work because parents are more likely to choose bad schools. IMO, it’s an idiotic article that doesn’t belong on any sort of education blog – at least, it’s not worthy of this one or any homeschooling blog. It’s insulting to parents and doesn’t serve any useful purpose. It’s merely the silly opinion of one person based on one book.

  2. Mister Teacher
    Mister Teacher says:

    Great Carnival! I have read a few of the posts so far, and I am looking forward to reading more!
    I also hope that some day, there is a Carnival of Cheap Condos and a Carnival of Copied Essays so that everyone will have their own place. 🙂

  3. Travis A. Wittwer
    Travis A. Wittwer says:

    Thank you for your inclusion of my question, Why Don’t All Teachers Blog. I have come into contact with a great number of thoughtful teachers lately and would love to continue to hear their thoughts online as we are distances apart.

    To the teachers reading this comment, if you have a blog, post a link to it on my post so that it can be shared with other teachers.



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