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Report Card for Education - WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT THIS MESS?

Lee is a problem solver. Therefore, the focus is on  WHAT WE CAN DO. Details on the Organizational Health Diagnostic Survey and on the current state of education appear after the A-Z listings. 

The current mess in education has been a long time coming. The wasted money has been appalling and it has been heartbreaking to see school districts, administrators, and teachers accept that some students will quit before graduating from high school.

The solution is for parents and community leaders to get involved with local education. You can demand more of the members of the school boards. You can lobby representatives in the State Legislature and copy your local school district administrators with the lobbying emails or letters. This adds pressure locally to correct problems. Always vote in school board elections. Volunteer in the schools so that you can see what is happening. Don't give up on the kids!

 

Lee's ABCs for 21st Century Learning or "This ain't your mama's classroom!"

A special acknowledgement goes to David Williamson Shaffer and James Paul Gee, Department  of Educational Psychology, University of Wisconsin, Madison campus for their work in gaming

A classroom that includes as many of the ABCs as possible will provide an excellent environment for learning. By involving students in the learning process, they accept responsibility for their progress. The classroom is a partnership between students, parents, teachers, and administrators.

A

Accomplishment is always recognized and praised

Agendas - give students structure

Align to state and national standards

 

B

Behavior Evaluation Forms are used so that students are responsible for consequences of behaviors

Brain-based learning is emphasized

"BS" is not allowed - truth is always the goal

Bullying is immediately recognized and dealt with (Lee's Quick, Smart, EZ, & Aware program showing the two extremes of each of the characters allows students to immediately recognize bullying)

 

C

Certification of Teacher is posted

Classroom organization and management

Cognate lists are given to second-language learners

Collaborative and cooperative Faculty

College and Career choices are posted 

Community involvement

Compatibility between students and teachers means success, rather than a student's shutting down

Concentration games are used in the primary grades as well as all other grade levels

Concept Maps are used

Consumer Math programs are used to educate students about the inter-relatedness of education, career, and money

Creativity

Curriculum that is being studied is always posted

 

D

Deal with social issues - racism, classism, sexism, etc. Let the students discuss and suggest solutions

Develop self-directed, independent and cooperative learning strategies

Differentiate instruction

Diploma of teacher is posted

Diversity and Inclusion - recognize the individual talents of all students and include all students in activities

Drilling is intact, but only for concepts that require it, for example multiplication tables

Dyslexia and Dyscalcula characteristics are monitored, identified, and appropriate interventions are assigned 

 

E

Emphasize the Global classroom - connect to students in other parts of the world

Epistemic games give students professional practices that help them understand careers and solving world problems - example Madison 2200, in which high school students become urban planners

Essential questions are used

Evaluations are part of student's work - they figure out how they are doing

Expectations always are clear to the student

Expertise is developed by students

Expose students to a multitude of ideas and careers - this helps them identify their talents and gifts

 

F

Focus groups of students are allowed

Fun is part of the environment

 

G

Gaming using modern educational video games that allow modification of the game so students can create their own scenarios and maps (example "Age of Mythology")

Gender differences in learning (boys more active) are always considered

Global Emphasis

 

H

Hands-On Activities - as many as possible

High Expectations

Higher Order thinking - Bloom's, Erickson's       

 

I

Innovative work preparation rather than commodity careers

Integrate content areas

Instructional Calendars are used so that students know when they study which concepts

 

J

Jobs or students have daily or weekly responsibilities

 

K

Knowledge transfer from teacher to student always is a goal with student learning to apply what is learned

 

L

Learning Styles are discovered and used

Logic activities are included

Long-term projects for development of responsibility in completing tasks

 

M

Memorization morphs into thinking

Motivate students by engaging them - find something in which they are interested

Multiple Intelligences are emphasized

 

N

Nuances are observed and noted by teacher (Are students hungry? Do you see bruises that may reflect abuse or fighting? etc.)

 

O

Objectives are always posted and used at the beginning of the lesson, then reviewed at the end.

Organized learning - students learn how to organize their time and their work

 

P

Parent Involvement

Prefix lists are given to students to help them develop vocabulary

 

Q

Quality time with no waste of precious teaching moments

 

R

Reflection is used for students and teachers - reflection leads to evaluation

Research-oriented

Rigor is the standard

Rubrics are used to offer choices to students 

 

S

Self-Management of some of the time and of work

Service projects

Staff Development is differentiated and is relevant

Student motivation 

Students develop systems 

Students teach each other

Syllabus lets students know what to expect

 

T

Teaching Styles are discovered and the teacher's personal style doesn't become so prevalent that some students don't learn

Thematic

Thinking Tools, such as Thinking or Concept Maps

 

U

Use Technology and multimedia tools

 

V

Value complexity and the new technical global society

Vocabulary is monitored in order to keep standards high

 

W

Whole Brain Learning - right brain creativity and left brain logic are both taught

World Problems are introduced

 

X

Xtra Normal or other animated software helps students create stories and lessons to teach each other

 

Y

Yearly Planning Guides and Calendars

 

Z

Zone - always create the classroom as a safe zone for students, one in which they will NOT be bullied, belittled, stressed, or otherwise placed into a negative feeling

 

 

ORGANIZATIONAL HEALTH DIAGNOSTIC SURVEY

This an instrument for assessing the internal workings of organizations. The 10 dimensions were conceptualized by Mathew Miles and operationally defined by Fairman, Holmes, Hardage, and Lucas-Renne during a three-year, three-phase project. More information is available at the OHI website.

 

 

REPORT CARD

It would be wonderful if all of our students were doing well. Unfortunately, that is not the case. We have moved from 1st in math to 23rd among the top nations on our planet. We are improving in science, but still behind other developed nations.

For more information on where we are nationally and in comparison to other nations, please visit

National Center for Education Statistics    and specific reports available at the site:

The Condition of Education at the National Center 

Digest of Education Statistics from the National Center 

Indicators of School Crime and Safety 2010 

Projections of Education Statistics  to 2019 

Please remember these are U.S. Government sites. More information, especially information that is independent of the U.S. Government,  can be found by using keywords and searching on Google, Yahoo, or another search engine. 

Great Schools has a wonderful article on education in Finland, where students score higher than U.S. Students. You can read it here.

Copyright 2002-2016 Lee Gabor All Rights Reserved