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Text Version   RSS   Subscribe   Unsubscribe   Archive   Media Kit October 28, 2014

Curriculum    School Leadership   Federal Advocacy & Policy   In the States   Association News   Buy Books   Contact NAESP


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How to go digital
Scholastic Administrator
It's pretty much a given that technology has enhanced learning in dramatic ways, but many school districts still don't know how to go about transforming a classroom from analog to digital. It starts with more than resources — you must have the vision and leadership at the top, says Keith Krueger, CEO of the nonprofit Consortium for School Networking. Only 13 percent of U.S. classrooms have 1:1 devices, Krueger observes, so we're a long way from having school systems with ubiquitous access to technology. However, many districts are letting kids bring their own devices to school and/or supplying them to students who can't afford to buy them, he adds.
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5 ways to prevent K-12 school violence
The Huffington Post
School violence, when it occurs, has a high impact on schools and communities where the incident takes place. Rare but deadly incidents of violence, such as the Columbine High School Massacre of 1999 or the more recent school shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut, bring the harsh realities of school violence to light. These are both extreme examples, of course, but violence in smaller doses still occurs in schools around the country. The Centers for Disease Control report that about 828,000 students each year are victims of non-fatal victimization while on school property, which is about 32 victims per 1,000 students. In schools where violence statistics are even higher, it can be difficult to focus on academics — and keep students, teachers and administrators safe.
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Common Core revolt goes local
POLITICO
School districts from New Hampshire to Oregon are revolting against the coming Common Core tests. Even as political leaders in both red and blue states continue to back away from the standards — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is the latest example — the hottest battles have shifted to the local level, where education officials are staging public revolts against state and federal mandates to administer Common Core exams.
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Three lessons from the science of how to teach writing
The Hechinger Report
What's the best way to teach writing? The experts have many answers — and they often contradict each other. In contrast to the thousands of studies on effective methods for teaching reading and mathematics, there are relatively few rigorous studies on writing instruction. That's partly because it's time-consuming and expensive to assess writing quality in a way that can be quantitatively measured. Commonly, researchers come up with an eight-point scale.
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Wanted: Immersive gaming in K-8 classrooms
eSchool News
Seventy-four percent of K-8 teachers in a recent report said they use digital games for instruction, but few teachers reported engaging students with immersive games that offer in-depth exploration and 21st-century skill development. Teachers surveyed for a new report from the Joan Ganz Cooney Center said they believe using digital games in the classroom helps students improve math skills (71 percent), computer/technology content and skills (65 percent), executive function skills (59 percent), and 21st-century skills (52 percent).
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What your students really need to know about digital citizenship
Edutopia (commentary)
Vicki Davis, a contributor for Edutopia, writes: "The greatest software invented for human safety is the human brain. It's time that we start using those brains. We must mix head knowledge with action. In my classroom, I use two essential approaches in the digital citizenship curriculum that I teach: proactive knowledge and experiential knowledge."
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Increasing rigor in the classroom (By: Brian Stack)
Why teaching kindness in schools is essential to reduce bullying (Edutopia)
The importance of digital citizenship in schools (District Administration Magazine)
What we talk about when we talk about best practices: Types of curricula (By: Debra Josephson Abrams)
How standing desks can help students focus in the classroom (MindShift)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


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A problem-solving game for teachers and administrators
MindShift (commentary)
Gayle Allen, a contributor for MindShift, writes: "Earlier, I wrote about four activities teachers and school leaders can use to jump-start creative problem-solving in teams. Given the increased pressure on educators to innovate, the goals for each activity were to build or deepen skills associated with that work. Readers expressed particular interest in one of these activities, so I wanted to do a deep dive and provide additional information. This activity grew out of my work with teachers and school leaders to identify effective solutions to school problems."
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What's going on inside the brain of a curious child?
MindShift
How does a sunset work? We love to look at them, but Jolanda Blackwell wanted her 8th graders to really think about them, to wonder and question. So Blackwell, who teaches science at Oliver Wendell Holmes Junior High in Davis, Calif., had her students watch a video of a sunset on YouTube as part of a physics lesson on motion.
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The economic impact of school suspensions
The Atlantic
Tiambrya Jenkins was just 14 years old when she got into a fistfight that would change the course of her educational trajectory. Following an after-school scuffle between Jenkins and a white classmate, the two girls—both freshmen at Rome High School in Georgia — were transferred to an alternative school as punishment. Her white classmate was allowed to return to their original school after 90 days. But Jenkins spent the rest of the year at the transitional academy, a place she describes as more like prison than school. "It was really, really boring. You just sat there all day until the bell rang," she says. "They didn't teach us anything."
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Bullying in schools still prevalent, American national report finds
Clemson University via Science Daily
Despite a dramatic increase in public awareness and anti-bullying legislation nationwide, the prevalence of bullying is still one of the most pressing issues facing our nation's youth, according to a report by researchers from Clemson University and Professional Data Analysts Inc., and published by the Hazelden Foundation.
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Four ways to advocate for school libraries
eSchool News
If school librarians want to make a case for library funding, they must demonstrate how they help students learn and prove that they build collaborative instructional partnerships with classroom teachers. Libraries often suffer financially when school administrators are forced to make budget cuts, often because administrators might still have outdated views regarding what the school library actually does.
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Mobile device use in schools boosts grades, lowers costs
EdTech Magazine
Smartphones and tablets have changed the way we do business, the way we experience entertainment and the way we learn. A new infographic from Mobile Future, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit, paints a picture of how these devices have become an embedded part of the classroom experience. The graphic, titled "Edtech + Mobile = Learning," states that in one algebra course, a larger percentage of students who used tablets scored as proficient or better than did those who used textbooks.
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Extracurricular bus service provides safe access to learning, experiences
School Bus Fleet
Field trips, sports team competitions, band, play, choir rehearsals and performances and school dances all help students get a better-rounded education. Participating in these extracurricular activities can teach them as much about work ethic, teamwork and responsibility as any of their classes. For many, who can't even get to school for classes without the benefit of a school bus service, extracurricular transportation is particularly critical to their ability to access these events.
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Unlearning: The key dimension of professional development for technology-enhanced transformation
Education Week
Ultimately, the effectiveness of any educational model depends on the knowledge and skills of the people involved. That educators are the most important contributors to quality is true even for disruptive, technology-enhanced innovations in learning and instruction that use media intensively to empower dramatic shifts in practice. Professional development for transformative change is very challenging because participants not only must learn new skills, but also must "unlearn" almost unconscious beliefs, assumptions, practices and values about the nature of teaching, learning and schooling.
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White House is root of test-reduction rhetoric, sources say
Education Week
President Barack Obama appears to be behind his administration's recent rhetorical push on the need to reconsider the number of tests students take, sources say. And the president's new thinking on tests would seem to put U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan in a pretty awkward position. For the first six years of his term in office, Duncan has bet big on student scores on state tests, pressing states to use them in pivotal decisions, such as teacher evaluations.
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Three decades after order, Denver schools still struggle to teach English
The Denver Post
Three decades after federal courts ordered Denver Public Schools to better serve English learners, its efforts remain plagued by inconsistencies and a large number of students who haven't shown progress in learning the language. The district is two years into its latest plan to educate English learners, who make up nearly 35 percent of the district's 90,000 students. But based on the most recent annual tests, nearly one in three of the district's English learners who have been in the system for the past two years failed to make progress on their English skills.
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Emergency epinephrine used 38 times in Chicago public schools
Medical News Today
The Chicago Public School system used emergency epinephrine in 38 cases during the 2012-2013 school year and more than half of these cases were for first-time events. Anaphylaxis, an allergic reaction characterized by trouble breathing, wheezing, and throat closure, can occur within minutes or seconds and can sometimes result in death. Therefore, it is critically important that school systems have epinephrine auto-injectors available for general use, as reported in the current issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
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Tweetchat on school branding tonight
NAESP
NAESP has teamed up with the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association for a tweetchat tonight, Oct. 28, on school branding. Join the Social Media and School Branding chat at 8 p.m. ET for a discussion on the ins and outs of school branding — from logos to mottos to messaging. The hashtag for the chat is #prinmonth.
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7 perspectives on teacher leadership
NAESP
The best principals know that teacher leadership is essential to creating a high-quality education for every student. That's why NAESP supports the U.S. Department of Education's Teach to Lead initiative, which seeks to highlight methods to teacher leadership, share resources to create new opportunities for teacher leadership, and encourage policymakers and educators to commit to expanding teacher leadership in schools across the country. These seven top articles from Principal magazine show what great teacher leadership looks like and how it can impact your school.
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Before the Bell is a digest of the most important news selected for NAESP from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. The presence of such advertising does not endorse, or imply endorsement of, any products or services by NAESP. Neither NAESP nor Multiview is liable for the use of or reliance on any information contained in this briefing.

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