The Educator's Notebook

A weekly collection of education-related news from around the web.

Educator’s Notebook #184 (May 21, 2017)

    • New York Times
    • 05/19/17

    Kids who look up the quadratic equation may end up like the child who looked up “meticulous”; they have a definition, but they don’t have the background knowledge to use it correctly. Students should learn not only the formula but also why it works and how it connects to other math content. That’s how contextual knowledge develops in the brain, and that’s why vocabulary instruction seldom consists of simple memorization of definitions — students are asked to use the words in a variety of sentences. The same should be true of more advanced concepts and for the same reason.”

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Every week I send out articles I encounter from around the web. Subject matter ranges from hard knowledge about teaching to research about creativity and cognitive science to stories from other industries that, by analogy, inform what we do as educators. This breadth helps us see our work in new ways.

Readers include teachers, school leaders, university overseers, conference organizers, think tank workers, startup founders, nonprofit leaders, and people who are simply interested in what’s happening in education. They say it helps them keep tabs on what matters most in the conversation surrounding schools, teaching, learning, and more.

Peter Nilsson

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