The Educator's Notebook

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

Educator’s Notebook #267 (December 23, 2018)

    • Medium
    • 12/05/18

    “On the first day of school, my students and I met in the library. Instead of going over a syllabus or introducing course expectations, the librarians and I gave brief book talks, sharing novels we had read or that we knew were well-received by young adults. When I invited my juniors to choose a book to read, they stared at me blankly. Anything? Yes, anything.”

    • Harvard Center for the Developing Child
    • 12/01/18

    “This Working Paper from the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child explains the science behind motivation–the “wanting” system and the “liking” system–as well as how those systems develop, and how that development can be disrupted. It also dives into the implications of the science for parents, caregivers, and teachers, as well as policy and public systems.”









    • NPR
    • 12/18/18

    I am officially declaring e-cigarette use among youth an epidemic in the United States. Now is the time to take action. We need to protect our young people from all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes.

    • New York Times
    • 12/17/18

    The vaping increase was so precipitous, researchers said, that it was the largest annual jump in the use of any substance, including marijuana, they had seen in the project’s 44-year history.”


    • Washington Post
    • 12/12/18

    “The same year that armistice ended World War I, Columbia University professor William Heard Kilpatrick produced his own shot heard round the world: “The Project Method.”


    • Pudding
    • 12/01/18
    • Kottke
    • 01/05/18

    There are marked differences in the ways that oral and literate cultures think about memory, originality, and repetition. In highly literate cultures, there is a tendency to dismiss repetitive or formulaic discourse as cliche; we think of it as boring or lazy writing. In primarily oral cultures, repetition tends to be much more highly valued. Repeated phrases, stories, or tropes can be preserved to some extent over many generations without the use of writing, allowing people in an oral culture to remember their own past.”



    • Medium
    • 12/06/18

    We made under-26s and women aged 28 to 45 the focus of our innovation process. Over a year, we interviewed 85 people face-to-face. As well as giving their feedback on our prototypes, they told us about their news behaviours: where they find value, as well as their pain points. Based on these conversations, we developed a set of writing principles.”






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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