What are we doing with Science?

WHAT ARE WE DOING?

Where do we go wrong with science?

When I visited the Science section of the Assessment of Performance Unit in England some years ago, I was able to share the difficulties that the testors had. They knew that one could not test science by recording answers on paper. Science is a doing subject.  They were trying to construct a number of diaramas to forward to schools, but the effort seemed to be too cumbersome and expensive. It just didn’t work.  Within the classroom, large scale blanket testing had to be dropped and replaced by hands-on learning. Science was the first subject to drop blanket programmed testing.in England. It was replaced by some really creative  and captivating teaching and learning. Things went well for many years until managerialism hit the fan.     With present day blanket testing-type  projects now, the spirit of teaching and learning science has been blown away in England and Australia by the overuse of preparation for NAPLAN and TIMSS and the like.

If you watched the Charlie Pickering’s Show, ‘The Weekly’ on the ABC on Wednesday night, 22 March 2017,  you would have listened to the opinions of Rock Star Physicist Brian Green.  If you missed it, click here…

http://iview.abc.net.au/programs/weekly-with-charlie-pickering/LE1611V008S00#playing.

He suggests that pupils are turning away from accumulating ‘Knowledge’ because they don’t think they need it.  They don’t want it as it is. He says that ‘it is an outrage that children are being denied the pleasure of learning about the world. They keep being tested and tested and tested in the name of Science. Facts. Facts. Facts. Science  is vital to our life and should be valued in the same way that we value great music or great theatre.

 Australian children are taught, he says, that Physics is  just a collection of facts. “We need a big cultural shift from learning facts back to learning the value of subjects and of learning about the subject itself. It is vital. Learners must engage with their subjects. “Grades [aka scores] are garbage.”

“I can’t stand the way they assess everything a kid does.”

“Schools are not dedicated to educating. They just do credentialing.”

Now, there’s a point.

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Phil Cullen  41 Cominan Avenue  Banora Point Australia  2486   07 5524 6443   0407865999   REFER: Who’s Who in Australia
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Education Readings March 24th

By Allan Alach

I welcome suggested articles, so if you come across a gem, email it to me at allanalach@inspire.net.nz

Why even the world’s highest-scoring schools need to change

‘Marion Brady is a veteran educator who has long argued that public schools in the United States need a paradigm shift. The core curriculum, he says, does not meet the needs of today’s students, and schools fail to do the most important thing they should be doing. He explains in the following post.’

http://wapo.st/2mUwwq0

You Probably Believe Some Learning Myths: Take Our Quiz To Find Out

‘We all want for our kids to have optimal learning experiences and, for ourselves, to stay competitive with lifelong learning. But how well do you think you understand what good learning looks like?

Ulrich Boser says, probably not very well.’ 

http://n.pr/2noFahe

We should be cautious about classroom tech

‘However, before we blithely fall off the digital cliff face like pixelated lemmings, we do need to assess the effect of our coming bout with the big gorilla. Education has always been about freeing ourselves from the coercive effect of ideology so that we can live informed lives free from superstition or marketing. However, today we are on the cusp of hitching ourselves to big business with very little empirical research on the effect of technology in schools.’

http://bit.ly/2mVYvDf

Most people are secretly threatened by creativity

‘Creativity is highly prized in Western society—much touted by cultures that claim to value individualism and the entrepreneurial spirit. But scratch beneath the surface, and it turns out that a lot of schools and businesses aren’t actually all that excited about bold new ideas. By and large, we tend to be threatened by creativity—and eager to shut it down.’

http://bit.ly/2nDPS3I

Finger painting as fun, learning and an act of resistance.

“Looking through some old pics of student art work I am reminded that one of the things that drove teacher-hating trolls the most nuts was that I, an elementary Art teacher, was paid a full teacher’s salary for “finger painting with kids.” So I always made sure that during the school year that is exactly what I did. And post it. Kids love to finger paint and it is messy! And I was paid in full.”

http://bit.ly/2neFyhO

Contributed by Bruce Hammonds:

Personalising education by introducing the spiritual dimension – an antidote to linear standardised teaching

Bruce’s latest article:

‘I have just been looking at a book ,’Learning by Wandering: an Ancient Irish Perspective for a Digital World’  sent to me  because the Irish author Marie Martin had made use of some of my writing from an e-zine I wrote in 2009. I felt it a bit of a honour to be included in her book alongside well recognized international  educational writers she made reference to.

http://bit.ly/2noGBw0

Why high-flying Singapore wants more than grades

‘The next update of the education system will have to ensure that Singapore can create a more equitable society, build a stronger social compact among its people while at the same time develop capabilities for the new digital economy. Government policies are moving away from parents and students’ unhealthy obsession with grades and entry to top schools and want to put more emphasis on the importance of values. Schools have been encouraged, especially for the early elementary years, to scrap standardised examinations and focus on the development of the whole child.’

http://bbc.in/2mu91pf

Ignorance Might Be the Best Thing For Your Creative Mind

‘There is no right and standard prescription for creative work. Creativity requires some form of knowledge. But knowledge alone is not useful unless you can make meaningful connections. A more refined design and an efficient implementation are not absolute guarantees of success.

http://bit.ly/2nTbq9V

Educators argue creativity just as important as literacy and numeracy in national curriculum

‘The Federal Government-commissioned report released in October last year recommended Australia’s school curriculum should refocus teaching in early childhood years on literacy and numeracy. But some Sydney schools are worried if there is a shift away from fostering creative and critical thinking skills, students will not learn the skills needed when they enter the workforce.’

http://ab.co/2nKu9Yk

Is school ‘killing’ your child’s creativity? And does this matter?

‘Rote learning, controlling teachers and a “fixation” on standardised tests are crushing children’s creativity, according to a school principal who is on a mission to change things.’

http://ab.co/2noKJfH

From Bruce’s ‘goldie oldies’ file:

Environmental awareness for pre-schoolers – from ‘On Looking’ by Alexandra Horowitz

‘These days learning using technology – exploring the ‘virtual’ world, seems to the latest ‘silver bullet’ and, all too often, this is at the expense of developing an awareness and appreciation of the real world.’

http://bit.ly/1xo3Ndi

The Way David Hockney Sees It.

‘Hockney’s skill has been his ability to make fresh pictures many based on real technical skill. While I was in England I picked up on an newspaper interview with Hockney and feel some of his ideas are worth sharing  with educators.’

http://bit.ly/2chHAYM

Does NAPLAN work?

Does NAPLAN Work?

Now that the anxious period of NAPLAN test-prep dominates the curriculum landscape, the kids are worried, the teachers are flurried and the playground talk is serious, there is one question that all politicians all principals, all education associations, all educational journalists must be asked:

Is NAPLAN doing what it is supposed to do?

OR….Are you still living with the promises of increasingly high achievement rates, high teacher enthusiasm, parent satisfaction, transparent operations?

Will you answer?

Should we do something about it?

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Phil Cullen  41 Cominan Avenue  Banora Point Australia 2486   07 5524 6443  0407865999   cphilcullen@bigpond.com   REFER: Who’s Who in Australiia

The hysterical history of our testucation system.

The Hysterical History of Australian Schooling

Important principles of school administration  have not changed much since the education industry was established in Australia. We still have a similar arrangement to what we had when we kicked off.  The monied gentry would tell the governor what they wanted and expect to get it.  They still do. They still rule. It’s easy to describe.

Mind you, there were no state schools providing free and compulsory schooling and those who came from the great Britain in earlier colonial times were used to an arrangement back home where churches and a few private societies supplied schools. The remnants of this system remain. There are public and private schools.

Rev. John Dunmore Lang was a big wheel in Sydney society in the 1830s, and a passionate educator, according to historian, David Hunt.  Lang was concerned by the increasing numbers of Irish bushrangers – The Wild Colonial Boy and his impoverished kind were becoming a real nuisance. “Lang, a Presbyterian minister hated Catholics and believed that they were conspiring to ‘rivet the chains of popery on a deluded people in the Australian colonies'”; so he started a school in 1826 to counter their influence.

The irreverent Hunt [“True Girt”]wrote : “The Church of England was the only church to have an official presence in NSW in the first decade of settlement and it hadn’t exactly set the colony alight. While the church half-heartedly provided a few schools, they were funded by the state, a radical departure from British practice.
In 1824, Governor Brisbane reported, ‘every murder or diabolical crime, which has been committed in the colony since my arrival, has been perpetrated by Irish Catholics’ . Believing strong moral leadership  from the church would reduce Catholic crime, Brisbane funded Therry’s schools.” (Fr. Therry was the first Catholic priest allowed to practice his faith in the colony and was keen to establish the schools for altruistic and religious purposes.) Believing  that strong moral leadership from the church would reduce Catholic crime, Brisbane funded Therry’s Catholic schools. He also partially financed the building of Australia’s first Catholic Church, given the impoverished state of the predominantly Irish Catholics, although he refused to pay for any over-the-top papist frou-frou.”

“This Catholic aid outraged Lang. The splenetic Scot complained that he was forced to give his sermons in a schoolhouse shared with diabolical papists, who assaulted his nostrils with their incense and his ears with their bell-ringing. Brisbane refused his demands for a government-subsidised church because the Scottish Presbyterians had enough cash hidden in their mattresses to build one themselves.”

What a diabolical setting it would have been for a  2010 Gillard-type ‘My School’ presentation!

“The arrival of Therry and Lang brought the long-dormant religious divisions of the old country to the surface,”  continued Hunt. “The Catholics hated the Anglicans for not permitting Catholic education in their schools; the Presbyterians hated the Catholics for receiving government support and for being Catholics and the Anglicans hated the Catholics and Presbyterians  for moving onto their turf. Sectarianism had stormed into the previously secular colony, its battlefield the hearts and minds of children.”

William Charles Wentworth was a key figure in the introduction of state education. Also, money was his God and he could not abide having the poor in any decision-making position. “People with property portfolios and sheep should be given the vote and people without them should not. The poor were not fit to determine the future of the colony, as ‘ignorance and poverty went together’. In the world of Wentworth’s faith, the moneychangers would be keepers of the Temple.” That’s how our super-elite took power, and the thought-bubbles that encourage such a point of view persist to the present day.  Schoolies are part of the poor and ignorant brigade.  They don’t count. The governance of the day and teacher groups will do as they are told by those who matter. ….and so say all of us….right through to today.   The notion of the schooling profession using its expertise to run schools all around the vast land to teach the children to read and write and calculate properly, was not on the agenda….the same as it is now….and, so, teachers just have to enjoy being the target of ingenuous, ignorant, dishonest, elitist nincompoopish criticism, because the self-important, very rich  cockalorums say so.

Part of the Gillard-Klein negotiations included the New York proposal that principals and teachers be sacked if their schools did not get decent results in set tests. It’s  still on the  klein/gillard agenda and will receive little oppositions from Australia’s meek and mild teacher groups when it becomes instituted. UBS [‘UBS’ is an anagram for all sorts of things] paid the fare of Joel Klein and his wife to come down under to proseltyse the values of whipping kids and teachers into shape, for money. He only spoke to big business and to their press at their club. We members of the poor and ordinary, bought it  all…big time.  UBS MEANS BIG, BIG POWER AND CONTROL, in case you want to know.   It owns us….well….our public-care institutions.

Ironically, Wentworth, at the time,  had an ally in the press. Horatio Spencer Howe Wills, publisher of The Gazette,  who joined with Willy and, together,  they founded The Australian Patriotic Association. “The membership fee of £5 kept the riffraff out and the association’s policy of denying the vote to poor people, blacks and women encouraged a number of the more progressive exclusives to join. Governors Bourke and Gipps lent their support…..”  and nothing much has changed to the present day. The denigration of the most important of the caring professions remains a feature of our schooling. 

In the mother country, popular education had to have a religious basis  In the Old Dart, the State started in 1833 to make contributions to schools started by the National Public Schools Association following heavy advocacy by secularist and those who hotly disputed the claims of the Church of England to be responsible for national education. As is usual in such cases, dispute  and conflict and dissatisfaction was maintained until Britain decided to establish a Department of Education in 1856.  A Royal Commission [ a certainty for Australiaeducation in a few years from now] was appointed in 1858. It found that churches had done a reasonable job, but, generally speaking the standard was too elementary and superficial….and children were leaving school too early to get a job. Disputes, conflict and dissatisfacton kept reigning. It was the period of Wentworth and Lang wrestling with Governors Bourke and Gipps in the colonies. Chaos and uncertainty. Schooling in Australia had no model , so we tolerated a kind of chaos – who does what to whom and who cares – free-wheeling = as it was in Britain.

Not only that. Since the state was paying grants to schools on a per capita basis, a mere numbering of attendees was unsatisfactory.  The pupils had to be up to scratch with their standards.  During this period, England’s Parliament introduced what they called a Revised Code. As Barnard [P.130] notes : The government will pay per capita grants to schools which had a satisfactory report from Her Majesty’s Inspector. These grants would be supplemented by local grants from county and borough rates. Thus was introduced the system of ‘payment by results’ which hampered the development of elementary education for many years to come.”  OMG! It lasted forty years....and our NAPLAN has been going for ten….which is certainly nine years too long.

“…the shortcomings of the Revised Code were clearly  seen by such educationists as Kay-Shuttleworth and Matthew Arnold; and subsequent history show the justice of their condemnation of it. The examination system resulted – as it so often does – on overpressure on children, due to the anxiety to produce ‘results’. The teaching of the three ‘Rs’ may have improved because teachers were tempted to concentrate on these grant-earning subjects and neglect other work; but this encouraged mechanical methods of teaching. The New Code also tended to demoralise the teacher. Their position in the eyes of their managers and therefore their very livelihood, might depend on the amount of the grant earned by their pupils. Hence there was a temptation to falsify registers and hoodwink inspectors by requiring pupils to learn off their reading book by heart. One of the inspectors stated that  he used to counteract this pratice by requiring pupils to read their book backwards. ‘

NAPLAN has returned us to the exigencies of The Revised Code…..with its over-pressure, anxiety and stress….way beyond blue.   We must wonder at the wisdom of those of the NAPLAN sect, who ignore the lessons of history. Their lack of classroom experience and ignorance of the psychology  of classroom behaviour does not do anything for Australian progress. We are driving at breakneck speed, using only the rear-vision mirror for guidance, backwards.

Put another way :- Once we arrive back at about the 1830’s standards …which shouldn’t be too long,…we will probably continue to exercise the tenants of the Kajabbi Complex. “The Kajabbi Complex is named the antics of after two notable Queensland  North  Westerners who  had had a successful day at the races at Kajabbi, not far from the Gulf of Carpentaria. The two  celebrated excessively, atthe bramble bar before  heading, late in the night, for their home town, Cloncurry.  They drove for hours and did not seem to be getting any closer.  They paused at a signpost to check things out. It said “6 Furlongs”. They had  been driving  in circles around the Kajabbi racetrack for hours…..around and around, as if the were NAPLAN testucators.

Sadly. the Revised Code lasted so long that its test-test-test cancer became part of the DNA of British-style schooling, despite the efforts of Matthew Arnold and superior educators of the time. Church schools applauded the rigours of testing, believing in the long run that preparation for tests was a holy mission and a legitimate enterprise. The Gradgrinds of the world thought it was Christmas all year. They could watch the kids squirm for months.  While western-style cultures have been praying for the ghost of Matthew Arnold to re-emerge, corporate bodies and other proponents of Gillard’s kleinism, have been burning effigies of him. He made too much common-sense for them…They just can’t comprehend that teachers make the most of child’s zest for learning by using the full range of teaching strategies [not just direct, chalk-talk didactic instruction];and there is no need to scare the living daylights out of them. Vision-impaired, these just wont see. They must believe that producing learners with top-level intellectual capacities is a communist plot or something and that the conventional target of producing mediocre scholars because we have always done that sort of thing and we should maintain the traditions. “Learning how to learn because we like it” must be  disgusting socialist stuff like they do in Finland up near those Commie countries.

Kleinists  want us to respect our heroes…..Thomas Gradgrind, Joel Klein himself, Rupert Murdoch, Julia Gillard  and Simon Birmingham as they thunder down the stretch of the Kajabbi racetrack heading for the next round – not knowing how far to go nor where they are heading – charter schools, Year 1 Tests, full school testing, dumbing down test levels, computer testing, pre-graduation testing, sacking principals, sacking teachers, appointing big named sciolists to administrative positions; all floating around as ‘different’ ideas. Your local member will fit in with them, if he/she doesn’t have a mind of their own. It’s all yet to come.

London to a brick.

Aussies seem struck with a special kind of attitude, born of an hysterical past. Right?

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BREAKING NEWS

NAPLAN victims of stress, anxiety, depression and sleeplessnes will be relieved to learn that Ms. Julia Gillard, co-founder of our kleinist system of schooling, is taking control of the organisation that works towards the relief for sufferers from stress, anxiety and depression.

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Phil Cullen 41 Cominan Avenue  Banora Point  Australia 2486  07 5524644  0407865999  cphilcullen@bigpond.com      REFER: Who’s Who in Australia

 

Humanity-free Education.

“When the U.S. Chiefs of Staff meet, their chests are emblazoned with colourful medals that they give to each other for killing people.  While our leaders want us to treat children as the enemy and keep trying to destroy their intellectual and creative spirit, our leaders should do the same.” (Susan O)

HUMANITY-FREE EDUCATION

In the test-prep run up to the Noplan Tests in May, observers of how we run our schools won’t get a better example of Humanity-Free Education than we have before us, now. The season is open on children’s intellectual and creative talents.

Child-care and welfare are ignored. Schools must make a concerted attempt to destroy children’s natural zest for learning.  Of historical origin, the collective conscience of Australian voters seems to support our politicians in their drive to acculturise our children to hate school and ignore learning, but maintain an abiding interest in passing tests.  There can be no other reason for the tests. Testing controls the Nation!  Our schools must be run in the best traditions of our model testucator, Mr Thomas Gradgrind.

Mr Thomas Gradgrind is the notorious school board Superintendent in Dickens‘s novel Hard Times who is dedicated to the pursuit of profitable enterprise. His name is now used generically to refer to someone who is hard and only concerned with cold facts and numbers…..according to W-pedia

 While some fair-dinkum educators try to ignore the nastiness, the Gradgrinds in Australian schools are already geared up to observe the rituals of  Naplanic Testucation.  Testucation is an outcome of Kleinism, a fear-based system introduced in 2008 and continued by formal decree.

 The creation of high levels [some extreme] of anxiety, fear, sleeplessness and mental illness is a form of child abuse that is encouraged as a teaching method during this Noplan period of schooling. It can only cease when enough parents say ‘No’.

1. The test starts on May 9, but schools have not sought permission from parents for children to undertake these experiments on their children. Humane schools can offer this choice…nothing to stop them…but they don’t…they  do as they are told and thumb their noses at parents…scaredy cats they are, too cautious of the bureaucratic consequences.  Yes. It is an EXPERIMENT. What else ?  It keeps failing. We keep going in case it works

2. Because of this, parents assume that Noplan is part of normal school routine. IT IS NOT AND NEVER HAS BEEN. State authorities, threatened by loss of revenue,  have given their permission to federal authorities for all state and private schools to use their children to gather data. It takes 3 days of learning time each May. Completing the tests is , clearly, an optional extra, nothing to do with learning the traditional curriculum.

3. Parents have to inform the school that they do not want their children to take part in experiments that risk their attitude to and their aptitude for learning. Some parents don’t even know that they have this democratic right io say ‘no’. Schools are instructed by federal and state authorities  not to tell the public……to ‘keep mum ‘ .

4. When parents do inform the school that they do not want their child to participate, the Gradgrinds of this world still continue to force all children to participate in the venomous test-prep, in clear breech of honour and integrity and dignity and ethics.  No means NO in other institutions.

5. Journalists and columnists are not allowed to inform the public of their rights; and none has yet been brave enough to buck the system and reveal the truth. Control by  the Murdoch/Klein enterprises scares the whole media force. In ten years there has not been a newspaper article nor TV commentary that informs the public of its rights under NAPLAN. Not one.

6. The established holistic curriculum covering as many life- enhancing learnings as possible,  is allowed to be fiddled. Subjects such as Phys.Ed., Music, Art, Health are denied to pupils.

7. PISA and TIMSS international results to date have provided no joy, but authorities continue as if nothing has happened. Noplan should be stopped forthwith. It’s failed.

We all allow these things to happen right under our noses. n

We don’t care much for kids. “The environment you live in, is the environment that lives in you.”  We are perpetuating a schooling environment of fear, deceit and mediocrity.

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Phil Cullen  41 Cominan Avenue Banora Point Australia 2486  07 5524 6443   0407865999  cphilcullen@bigpond.com

If the affective is secure, the cognitive is inevitable.

         WHAT ELSE DO YOU NEED TO KNOW TO RID US OF THIS NAPLAN CONTAMINATION?

Never Allow Pupils Learn Anything Necessary

Education Readings March 17th

By Allan Alach

I welcome suggested articles, so if you come across a gem, email it to me at allanalach@inspire.net.nz

Writing is more beneficial for learning than typing, according to these scientists

‘”When the students were drawing the word we saw that the brain was active in larger areas and also in a very particular way that is indicative of being beneficial for learning,” said van der Weel. The researchers found that when your motor skills are involved, the way nerve cells communicated with each other was found to be better for processing information, he explained. Van der Meer added that using a pen in the process of writing or drawing is often slower than typing — forcing people to process what they’re hearing or seeing, compared with passively typing.’

http://on.mash.to/2nGsRd8

Flogging Dead Horses

‘Our model of schooling is more than 100 years old and has barely changed in that time

The rest of society – our industrial practices, technology, the media we use, our leisure activities, the global scope of our world, communication systems – has undergone a revolution.’

‘The original purpose of school – designed to sort and sift; to separate sheep and goats – is now redundant.  We need 100% of students to be skilled and capable citizens able to contribute positive agency to both their economic and social world.’

http://bit.ly/2nph6vd

Teacher Quality: A Reader in 2017

‘“The continual dumbing-down of the preparation of teachers is not without consequences.”

I would argue that the “dumbing-down” is about the false attack on “bad” teachers as the primary or even single cause of low student achievement among, specifically, vulnerable students. And the ugly consequence of that assault has been increasing accountability over teacher certification and teacher evaluation (such as using value-added methods) and thus demonizing teachers without improving teaching or learning.’

http://bit.ly/2npdHgf

Busting the attention span myth

‘You probably won’t get to the end of this article. Everyone knows our attention spans are getting shorter. It’s just obvious. Or is it?’

http://bbc.in/2mQmOVw

12 ways to really make Genius Hour work in your class

‘It’s a class unlike anything you’d see at almost any school. But at heart, it’s driven by the same thing that drives Genius Hour: helping kids pursue what’s important to them and what’s important to the people they serve. Genius Hour is the idea of giving students 20 percent of their class time to pursue projects related to their passions. The concept is broad and intentionally open-ended, and the results can be phenomenal.’

http://bit.ly/2mQjzxB

The changing skill set of the learning professional

‘It comes as a surprise to no-one that learning professionals are operating in a very different world to those of a generation ago. I’d like to highlight four changes in particular that impact heavily on the skill set of the learning professional.’

http://bit.ly/2nGsbV9

Contributed by Bruce Hammonds:

How Integrating Arts Into Other Subjects Makes Learning Come Alive

‘Art has long been recognized as an important part of a well-rounded education — but when it comes down to setting budget priorities, the arts rarely rise to the top. Many public schools saw their visual, performing and musical arts programs cut completely during the last recession. A few schools are taking the research to heart, weaving the arts into everything they do and finding that the approach not only boosts academic achievement but also promotes creativity, self-confidence and school pride.’

http://bit.ly/2npf1PX

Brava Art Press, Visual Art for Children, Teachers and Parents

An Art site schools might like to join?

‘Children who participate in the Brava Art Visual Art Program express their thoughts, ideas, and feelings, and at the same time, they develop their own symbols and techniques to create their art works.As artists, children are encouraged to rely on the concept of personal freedom and expression – utilizing a variety of both new and old materials – to transform this Visual Art Program into a very creative adventure.’

http://bit.ly/2ntQqGr

Seeing Struggling Math Learners as ‘Sense Makers,’ Not ‘Mistake Makers’

The need to develop an activity based maths programme.

’In discussions of progressive and constructivist teaching practices, math is often the odd subject out. Teachers and schools that are capable of creating real-world, contextualized, project-based learning activities in every other area of school often struggle to do the same for mathematics, even as prospective employers and universities put more emphasis on its importance.’

http://bit.ly/28LOvo8

Want to Raise Successful Boys? Science Says Do This (but their schools probably won’t)

‘This is a story about successful kids (especially boys), common sense, and research.

Most of us spend hours each day sitting at work. Science says it’s killing us, and we have developed all kinds of fads to combat it–from standing desks to smartphone alerts to get us up and moving. Armed with that knowledge, however, what do we force our kids to do each day at school? Sit still, for six or eight hours. Now researchers say that mistake leads us into a three-pronged, perfect storm of problems:’

http://on.inc.com/2muwwdS

From Bruce’s ‘goldie oldies’ file:

Mathematics in education and ability grouping

Bruce Hammonds  recently complied a recent blog with developing active maths programmes with links to practical resources for those interested.

‘Recently I had a discussion with some young teachers about the teaching of mathematics in schools – the teachers taught in the middle school area. It didn’t go to well! They have to do what’s expected of them – and that this was  sadly influenced by what the secondary school maths teachers wanted students to have covered! Change requires leadership and a whole school approach.’

http://bit.ly/2mQnaeZ

What do the learners think?

‘The people who know best about what attracts student’s curiosity, or things that worry them, are the students themselves. A visit to even the most child-centred classrooms will find very little reference to students’ questions, views and theories. All too often students are required to respond to what their teachers feel is important for them to learn.’

http://bit.ly/2m22JwW

Noplan claims another victim

A TREEHORN MESSAGE

NAPLAN/NOPLAN CLAIMS ANOTHER VICTIM – SCIENCE

Noplan, controller of Australian school standards, has done it again.  Determined to maintain a fear-laden testing base to Australia’s education system, it has added to a world wide school reputation that we can do without.

NAPLAN is the absolute, unquestioned, only cause of our ‘falling standards’. Yes. It is!

Once amongst the top dogs in the world-wide PISA contests and others, we are now 14th in Science, 16th in Reading, 25th in Maths out of 72 competing countries. Statisticians tell us that we are behind Asian countries, whom we once helped with their schooling problems.

What has happened to us?

Simple…..the children don’t like doing tests nor getting ready for them. It’s boring and unpleasant and not part of proper schooling. Our pupils are telling us to ‘…cut it out. We want to learn.’  We overdo it. As plain as the nose on your face, it’s clear that we are turning our kids off learning…..off schooling..

Noplan is a prismatic disaster.  It’s a failure, no matter which way you look at it.   Instead of provoking industry and scholastic effort, it creates dislike for subjects that, scholastically,  crave loving, fearless attention and spirit and challenge……not being belted around the place, used as weapons of  fear and anxiety and distaste.

Suppose you lived overseas [e.g. P.N.G.],would you, as a concerned parent, send your child to Australia for schooling?  If you wanted a complete, total, holistic, proper education for your child, would you send him or her to a school that claimed notoriety through its NAPLAN scores?

What is wrong with an education system that starts with the requirements of the child?
What is wrong with an education system that tries to satisfy each child’s zest for learning?
What is wrong with an education system that puts no limit on a child’s achievements?
What is wrong with an education system that develops learning habits that last a lifetime?
What is wrong with us?

What is learning?  What is schooling.  Don’t know?
____________________________________
Phil Cullen  41 Cominan Avenue Banora Point Australia 2486  07 5524 6443   0407865999   cphilcullen@bigpond.com