imaginative teaching and learning

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Are you ever stumped for ways to get students involved in learning? Try your course syllabus for a starter. Barbi Honeycutt, Ph. D., suggests that teachers add though-provoking questions to each objective in their syllabus.

Instead of waiting for assignments later in the term, begin with questions at the beginning - with the class syllabus. Use these to assess students' knowledge and behaviors. Questions may begin with, "What are . . . ?" To personalize foe behaviors use terms like, " How do you . . . ?"

Write discussion questions for each learning outcome and see if you can't get students involved from the get go.

Courtesy of Google Images
The U.S. has been falling behind other nations in educational rankings. The Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA),conducts a worldwide study of scholastic performance of 15-year-olds in mathematics, science, and reading. Testing began in 2000 and has been repeated every three years. The purpose is to improve educational policies and outcomes in member nations of OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.) 470,000 15-years-old students representing 65 nations and territories participated in PISA 2009. An additional 50,000 students representing 9 nations were tested in 2010. Testing has not yet occurred for 2012.

See this short article with a vivid chart:

Read the Wikipedia description:

Read the Educational Trust Analysis:

Do you agree that we are being shortsighted by not improving education for ALL our students?

Rachel Small, a New Hampshire teacher of fifth-graders, practices a time-honored way of delivering the best learning experience for her students. She uses her own creative abilities and circumvents state guidelines and team practices that deter students.

Small has great plans and dreams for her students and rather than get bogged down with minutiae she encourages reading and writing about their interests. They're only ten and eleven. There's plenty of time for "musts" and "have tos." Small's students are blogging about books and now they are participating in a virtual book club with other fifth graders in another community. Check out the happy faces of the readers and writers.