Find amazing images of deep space from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, plus interactives for examining telescopes, comets, myths and legends about the stars; homework help from scientists; professional development resources; and, more.
Understanding Evolution is a website for teaching the science and history of evolutionary biology to grades K-12 and undergraduates. Find current news, teaching modules and a primer, an image library, and more.
It's the time of year when senioritis sets in, reggae is blaring from dorm room windows, and college-bound students sharpen their pencils to figure out how to pay for the next year of school. This is also the time of year when student financing becomes a political gold mine, as Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney found out last year when he hastily backed an effort to keep interest rates from going up. Now the one-year fix that Romney backed is coming to an end. The 3.4 percent interest Read more here
Student Loans: Springboard or Ratchet? Back in the late 1970’s when I was starting my career as a public interest lawyer, I remember the dread that accompanied each month’s bill from Sallie Mae, who, at that time, was the goddess of all student loans (or so I thought). I think I owed just about $30 per month, but with a public interest lawyer’s starting salary of just $15,000 per year, there were months when making that payment, paying the rent and putting gas in my Read more here
People Like Free Stuff I don’t think there’s much mystery here. People like free stuff—especially when a] they’re told they’re entitled to it, b] it’s thought to be good for both the individual and the community, c] it’s described as a “loan” and not a “handout”, and d] it’s paid for by just sticking the tab on the national credit card. Warren’s proposal appeals to students because it disguises enormous Read more here
We offer a variety of resources to help you teach F. Scott Fitzgerald’s 1925 novel and help students understand its historical context and literary impact.
"Kids don't learn from people they don't like," said Rita Pierson, a teacher and anti-poverty advocate in opening an hour-long television program devoted to major themes in teaching and learning. Her presentation is available on the Web to promote the full program on PBS Tuesday and Thursday.
Pierson's message is that kids need human relationships with teachers in order to learn. She also makes no bones about how difficult it is for an adult to offer that kind of interaction with every...single...child.
"Will Read more here
I Am Their Friend, Not Their Peer When students say they don’t like a teacher, it most often means they don’t like how the teacher is treating them as persons. Those who do not work with young people may be surprised to learn students also do not like teachers who don’t respect them enough to actually teach them. As I often counsel newer teachers, we should not confuse students “liking” us with their respecting us. Part of my teaching philosophy from the start Read more here
Five websites provide grade-specific resources for helping students at all levels learn about the biological process by which an animal develops physically after birth or hatching.
This companion website for D. G. Mackean’s biology textbooks, supports the teaching of basic concepts and principles in high school biology. Find PowerPoint presentations, over 100 activities and experiments, videos and a question bank.
It's test-taking time in the Washington, D.C. public schools, an annual ritual that my fifth grader is learning to despise. The DC Comprehensive Assessment System, known as DC CAS, is taken in mid-April for all public school students, beginning in second grade. It is a series of tests that assesses reading, math, science, and writing. "This annual test keeps DC Public Schools accountable for meeting high standards for our students' success," the district says on its Web site.
Here's how my son experiences Read more here
Guest: Not a Political Tool Here is a comment from Patricia McGuire, president of Trinity Washington University: Student learning assessment is an essential dimension of teaching, not something separate and apart from teaching. Teachers can only know whether their work is effective through assessing what students have learned in each lesson, class and course. Modern pedagogy emphasizes the engagement of students in active learning --- discussions, roleplays, simulations, small group Read more here
Fawn’s Son Sees the Damage Being Done Though still young, Fawn's son is wise enough to see how destructive our high-stakes testing system has become. He is absolutely right to despise the tests, or at least the toxic educational results of using the tests for high-stakes purposes. If it’s any comfort, he is far from alone, with resistance building across the country. This testing season has seen boycotts, opt-out campaigns, demonstrations, resolutions and community forums reaching unprecedented Read more here
Better Ways to Judge Teaching, Learning Across the country, parents, teachers, and students are beginning to pushback—hard—against the misuses and abuses of standardized testing in our educational system. First, most people do not understand what standardized achievement tests are actually designed to measure. They are not designed to measure what students have “learned” over a specific period of time or from a specific teacher. Therefore, attempts to use them for that Read more here
This long running public radio program describes how art, technology, and ideas have shaped the world we live in. Audio file and transcripts introduce students to science concepts and offer detailed explanations.
The following resources have been collected to help guide the lesson as educators begin to instruct students on the struggles that led to the voting rights all are currently afforded.
This companion website to the television program of the same name offers resources for teaching business and money skills, including lesson plans, four online games, calculators, budgets, business plans, and more.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium has Games and Interactives for K-12 students, including an “I Spy” activity using downloadable posters, “critter cards,” a unique “go fish” game, and more.
Part of the Fabric of What We Teach I don't remember anyone explicitly teaching me financial literacy, but ever since I was a working teenager, I've known how to manage my money and what it means to have debt, to pay interest, and the basics. Part of that was because my parents were small business people (I guess) but also part of it was because my peers were similarly inclined. I remember one high school math teacher talking about saving and I certainly remember when I had to get student Read more here
President Obama has declared April to be Financial Literacy Month. The goal is to "ensure all Americans have the skills to manage their fiscal resources effectively and avoid deceptive or predatory practices," he said in his proclamation.
This week, that National Assessment of Educational Progress will release new results on the economic literacy of 12th graders. The study was last conducted in 2006, before the financial collapse, and it showed while most students (79 percent) have a "basic" understanding Read more here
The Tobacco Tax is a Place to Start Providing high-quality pre-K for all low- and moderate-income 4-year-olds across the country is an expensive proposition. So seeking out new and creative funding streams has merit. The tobacco tax is worth talking about, but it should not and cannot realistically be the long-term solution. The president’s plan would make $75.0 billion in federal pre-k funding mandatory, which means it wouldn’t have to be reapproved by Congress in each annual appropriations Read more here
A Policy Two-fer President Obama’s proposal to increase tobacco taxes to provide all low- and moderate-income four-year old children with high-quality preschool is an innovative, cost effective solution that will have promising results for our children, our healthcare, our economy, and our future. This is a win/win for the country. We can protect our kids and prevent them from ever starting to smoke, and use that money to give each child the best start possible. The statistics speak for Read more here
This NASA website borrows from computer games designers to create visually engaging resources for grades 5-8. Find activities, lessons, background information and resources for student reports, like factoids, images, PowerPoint templates and more.
Penny For Your Thoughts I haven’t met a single person who doesn’t want high-quality pre-school for every child. But the Devil is in the adjective, isn’t it? I’m not sure we know what the adjective “high-quality” means in this context. So I would propose a one penny tax for one year to generate enough money to answer two questions: 1. What existing pre-school programs have been shown to be broadly and conclusively effective? 2. What is required to replicate these Read more here
In videos for The Wallace Foundation, principals explore the tactics of effective school leadership.
President Issues Clear Focus: Birth to 5 The President’s Early Childhood and Preschool for All Initiative smartly addresses the need for comprehensive, birth to five early childhood development that will improve education health and economic outcomes—no matter how it is funded. The president’s Initiative is fiscally sound and makes dollars and sense. This is a great opportunity that must be seized to build a better U.S. President Obama sends a clear and well-documented Read more here
Investing In Our Future A high quality early education is crucial to ensuring that every child has a foundation upon which to grow and succeed. Unfortunately, too many children do not have access to pre-K programs that can have a positive and profound impact on their social, emotional, and cognitive development. Data shows that by far the most affective way to close the achievement gap is to prevent it from arising in the first place. The President’s comprehensive early education plan aims Read more here
California decided to tax each pack of cigarettes an extra 50 cents to try to get every child into preschool. That was 15 years ago. Last week, President Obama proposed taking a similar plan nationwide.
In his 2014 budget, Obama outlined a plan to pay for his universal preschool initiative by raising federal taxes on tobacco products, namely a 94-cent hike on each pack of cigarettes. According to the budget, the early education investments would cost $77 billion over the next 10 years, more than Read more here
It's about time for federal investment Today, too many children arrive at kindergarten without the skills they need to succeed in school; they start behind, making it even harder to catch up. Research shows that high-quality preschool can help ensure our children most in need are school ready and set them on the path for academic success. That’s why CAP supports the President’s bold commitment to early childhood education. The President’s budget proposes a $75 billion investment Read more here
Pre-K and Tobacco, Perfect Together? High quality pre-K for all funded by a tobacco tax is a winning combination. It makes perfect sense from both economic and political perspectives. Let’s start with the economic perspective. Economics is primarily concerned with two issues, efficiency and equity (fairness). The primary economic argument against higher taxes is that they lead people to make less optimal choices, perhaps even discouraging socially beneficial activities Read more here
President Obama released his Fiscal Year 2014 budget proposal, requesting a slight funding increase for the U.S. Department of Education.
Find short online movies and other resources that explore key features of our relationship with stuff. Resources examine sustainability, national debt, corporate power and democracy, electronics, cosmetics, bottled water, and cap and trade.
Kinetic City features science experiments, online games, activities, challenges, printable card games, and more for grades 3-5.
This online workshop consists of several video segments based on in-person workshops and includes guidelines and methodological suggestions, historical and artifact photographs, text, and links to related sites within the Museum’s Web site.
Members of the U.S. House of Representatives have until April 15 to show their support for the critical Striving Readers Literacy Program.
The Senate is working on national immigration legislation that includes easier ways for foreign graduates of U.S. colleges and universities to stay in the country. President Obama wants foreign students in math, science, technology, and engineering to be given green cards automatically.
The foreign student provisions are part of a much larger debate on immigration, but they touch on some quiet, but very real concerns among families. Will foreign students displace my own kid? What if the foreign Read more here
Diversity or Dollars? Diversity on various dimensions is a wonderful asset for effective education, right? Bringing different viewpoints, experiences, or ways of understanding the world is an essential element in achieving important educational goals — whether it be approaching a challenging physics problem from different perspectives, or promoting civic tolerance and cohesion by developing understanding of multiple viewpoints. Of course, in a global economy, individuals, Read more here
Resources for high school journalism students include tutorials on data analysis, interviews of investigative reporters, tips for debunking myths with online tools, and advice for harnessing social media.
With the National Rifle Association offering its prescription for safer schools this week, a group of civil rights activists preemptively weighed in on the issue last week, arguing that adding armed police to schools will not do anything to increase our children's safety. The conversation takes place almost four months after the shooting massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. The Senate is poised to vote on a range of gun control measures in response to the Newtown shooting next Read more here
As the principal of one of the nation’s top-performing, public, charter schools, my perspective about who’s responsible for educating students somewhat defies the contemporary dogma of modern public schooling. My charter school is predicated upon the fundamental notion that parents are ultimately in charge of their child’s education. This notion holds true when it comes to a child’s safety, too. That this longstanding, nationally embraced perspective has been lately lost on most public systems Read more here
Chris Schweizer’s blog for his series of historical graphic novels The Crogan Adventures includes a teaching guide, audio and video interviews with the author, and more.
Using this website, students in middle school and high school can examine concepts of race from perspectives of history, human variation, and personal experience.
Teaching K-12 Economics provides lessons, projects, and support resources for grades K-5 and 6-12. The resources are keyed to national curriculum standards. Teachers can search by concept, standard, or lesson.
Getting Outside the Traditional Givens The dominant notion has been that the country's goals for learning will be met if we just add standards, measurement and consequences -- accountability -- into the traditional model of school. That was politically realistic: If the effort at standards had proposed to change school in radical ways, nobody would have listened. So 'standards' bought into the givens of conventional school. As does the Common Core today. Last July at the ECS meeting in Atlanta I Read more here
The Common Core State Standards offer the perfect case study in misplaced expectations. The school standards that 46 states are implementing have been billed by advocates as the answer to the country's K-12 ills and by critics as the beginning of federalized schools. In truth, they are merely a set of benchmarks put together by well-meaning people who may or may not have accurately pinpointed the areas where students and teachers need the most help.
To actually offer that help, roll up your sleeves Read more here
A Great Idea at Risk The Common Core is another great idea at risk of being sabotaged by our penchant for accountability. Call it what you will but in this day of global competition we need a set of national standards. We are the United States of America in everything except education, with fifty sets of standards and fifty ways to evaluate them. But the Common Core goes beyond the potential for national standards. They propose to lift our pedagogy beyond the recall, recognition and knowledge levels Read more here
Success in Implementing the Common Core The new report from Carnegie Corporation, Opportunity by Design – New High School Models for Student Success, makes clear that a business-as-usual approach to education will be woefully inadequate to support millions of students in meeting the new Common Core State Standards. It calls for “next generation” learning that is “personalized and deeply engaging, focused on deeper learning of higher order content, complex skills and Read more here
FossWeb is the official website for the inquiry-based FOSS (Full Option Science System) science curriculum. It features interactive modules that include media, FAQs, and teacher and parent information.
It may seem like sacrilege to subject the "good debt" of federal student loans to the ups and downs of market forces, but lawmakers eventually will have no choice. It's probably not a bad idea anyway.
The House Education and the Workforce Committee kicked off what is likely to be a long conversation about the costs of college last week at a hearing where Chairman John Kline, R-Minn., proposed moving to a market-based system for student loans. Interest rates for new student loans would fluctuate Read more here