The Educator's Notebook

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

Educator’s Notebook #282 (April 14, 2019)

    • New York Review of Books
    • 04/02/19

    “People like history—just look at the New York Times bestseller list—but not enough historians actually take the time to try to talk to the interested public… An obvious remedy would be to place more stress on good writing; courses on how to write for the informed laity should be central to all humanities instruction. But the humanities need a more thorough overhaul, drawing on the tools developed by the tech world to capture and convey the complex, tortured, confounding, and inspiring story of human cultures and civilization.”

    • Howard Gardner
    • 04/01/19

    “As one learns about so-called liberal arts institutions today, one swiftly encounters a wide range of aspirations, many of which have little to do with academic or even cognitive aspirations. Colleges are expected to produce good citizens; kind and empathic human beings; happy persons who are self-realized; individuals who want to lead the world, change the world, be good team players, make the world better; individuals who are healthier in mind and body. We admire these aspirations. But it’s clear that no institution can achieve all of these goals.”








    • George Couros
    • 04/11/19
    • MIT Sloan Management Review
    • 04/08/19

    Here are your jobs, leaders: Create a compelling vision of the digitally powered future. Foster conversations so that people can understand the vision and what it means for them. Clean up legacy situations — information systems, work rules, incentives, management practices, or dysfunctional functions — that slow or prevent change. Start some pilots to build momentum. Create conversations to spur different parts of the company to use, and build on, the innovative work of others. You’ll be creating a capability to transform, not just a set of transformation projects.”




    • New York Times
    • 04/10/19

    “The image, of a lopsided ring of light surrounding a dark circle deep in the heart of a galaxy known as Messier 87, some 55 million light-years away from Earth, resembled the Eye of Sauron, a reminder yet again of the implacable power of nature. It is a smoke ring framing a one-way portal to eternity.”


    • Cal Newport
    • 04/11/19

    “The team’s coach, Chris Beard, who had already banned smartphones at team meals, liked this idea and extended it even further: the phone ban held every night while the team was on the road, whether or not there was a game the next day. It worked. Texas Tech went on a 14-1 run after the ban, eventually making it all the way to Monday’s national championship game.”




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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