Meticulously carved wooden sculpture of man and nature — from mymodernmet.com by Paul Baliker

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From DSC:
1) To start out this posting, I want to pose some questions about “The Common Core” — in the form of a short video. <— NOTE:  Please be sure your speakers are on or you have some headphones with you — the signal is “hot” so you may need to turn down the volume a bit!  🙂

With a special thanks going out to
Mr. Bill Vriesema for sharing
some of his excellent gifts/work.

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DanielChristian-SomeQuestionsReTheCommonCore-June2013

 

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Having asked those questions, I understand that there is great value in having students obtain a base level of knowledge — in reading, writing, and basic math.  (Should we add keyboarding? Programming? Other?  Perhaps my comments are therefore more appropriate for high school students…not sure.)

Anyway, I would be much more comfortable with moving forward with the Common Core IF:

* I walked into random schools and found out which teachers the students really enjoyed learning from and whom had a real impact on the learning of the students.  Once I identified that group of teachers, if 7-8 out of 10 of them gave the Common Core a thumbs up, so would I.

* The Common Core covered more areas — such as fine arts, music, drama, woodworking, videography, photography, etc.    (Just because STEM might drive the economic engines doesn’t mean everyone enjoys plugging into a STEM-related field — or is gifted in those areas.)

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2) Secondly, here are just a few recent items re: the Common Core:


 

Good Read: Who’s Minding the Schools? — from blogs.kqed.org by Tina Barseghian

Excerpt: (emphasis DSC)

For those uninitiated to the Common Core State Standards, this New York Times article raises some important questions:

“By definition, America has never had a national education policy; this has indeed contributed to our country’s ambivalence on the subject… The anxiety that drives this criticism comes from the fact that a radical curriculum — one that has the potential to affect more than 50 million children and their parents — was introduced with hardly any public discussion. Americans know more about the events in Benghazi than they do about the Common Core.”

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The Common Core Standards

 

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Editorial: Make the Common Core standards work before making them count — from eschoolnews.com by Randi Weingarten
AFT President Randi Weingarten calls for a moratorium on the high-stakes implications of Common Core testing until the standards have been properly implemented.

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How to train students’ brains for the Common Core — from ecampusnews.com by Meris Stansbury
Excerpt:

According to Margaret Glick, a neuroscience expert and educational consultant at the International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE), the Common Core State Standards and the accompanying assessments will cognitively require more than past standards. “They will require a deep understanding of content, complex performances, real-world application, habits of mind to persevere, higher levels of cognition and cognitive flexibility,” Glick said during “The Common Core State Standards and the Brain,” a webinar sponsored by the Learning Enhancement Corporation.

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Common Core testing will require digital literacy skills — from ecampusnews.com by Dennis Pierce
Excerpt:

It also will require students to demonstrate certain digital literacy skills that go beyond the core curriculum, observers say. These include technology operational skills such as keyboarding and spreadsheets, as well as higher-order skills such as finding and evaluating information online. And many observers have serious concerns about whether students will be ready to take the online exams by the 2014-15 school year.

 

Minn. moves ahead with some Common Core education standards — from minnesota.publicradio.org by Tim Post

 

Carry the Common Core in Your Pocket! — from appolearning.com by Monica Burns

Excerpt:

Whether you are a parent or educator, you have likely heard the buzz around the Common Core Learning Standards. Here’s the deal.

Across the United States schools are adopting these national standards to prepare students for college and careers by introducing rigorous content to children in all subject areas. The standards cover students in Kindergarten through Grade 12 in English Language Arts and Mathematics. The Common Core Standards app by MasteryConnect organizes the CCLS for students, parents and teachers with mobile devices.

 

 

Addendum on 6/19/13:

Addendum on 6/27/13: 

 

Below are some great resources re: creating your own e-books / streams of content — with thanks to Mr. Michael Haan, Technology Integration Specialist/Purchasing at Calvin College, for these resources
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From DSC:

You might also want to check out Lynda.com for the relevant training materials.
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Let’s create our own streams of content — always up-to-date — plus we could help our students save big $$!  And, as Michael pointed out, such tools could also be used internally for training-related and communications-related purposes.

Thanks Michael!!!

What's the best way to deal with ever-changing streams of content? When information has shrinking half-lives?

 

 

11-year-old-inventor-May2013

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With thanks going out to Mr. Joe Byerwalter for bringing this to my attention.

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First a definition:

A digital audio workstation (DAW) is an electronic system designed solely or primarily for recording, editing and playing back digital audio. DAWs were originally tape-less, microprocessor-based systems such as the Synclavier. Modern DAWs are software running on computers with audio interface hardware.

Secondly, some items from Adam Dachis on LifeHacker.com:

 

 

From DSC:
For those who want to dip their feet into the pool quickly to see what it’s like, I would recommend checking out Garageband — it’s a powerful tool that can give you some nice results — and the learning curve is far better/easier than the more complex tools out there.

 

 

 

Game changers + kids — from live.huffingtonpost.com

Excerpt:

What happens when you bring business innovators together with today’s youth? Choose2Matter is about to find out. We talk to the people behind Choose2Matter and leaders of the business world about the power of the idea that everyone matters.

 

Also see:

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Choose2Matter-May2013

Calvin College professor: 18 reasons to save art education in elementary schools — from mlive.com by Jo-Ann VanReeuwyk

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artistjpg-07eaac856a9e51ae_large.jpg
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Jo-Ann VanReeuwyk holds a piece of art she created called “Sheath, ”
which she made from grapevine and is displaying during a
Calvin Symposium on Worship in 2010.
Paul Newby II | MLive.com

 

From DSC:
A valuable list of contributions that we receive/experience from the arts!!! Here are 5 of them:

  1. To participate in the arts is to be fully human.
  2. Art is a way of knowing and a form of communication.
  3. The arts teach problem-solving, risk-taking, creative thinking, collaborative thinking, innovative thinking. Indeed all of the higher level thinking skills.
  4. Art helps form multiple perspectives. It gives voice. It helps us identify and express issues that are global, common to all people groups.
  5. The arts emphasize value.

 

 

From DSC: re: Adobe’s Project Context:
This is the type of hardware/software combination that I’ve been hoping for and envisioning! Excellent!

It appears to be the type of setup whereby students could quickly and easily collaborate with one another — in a face-to-face setting (and ideally in remote locations as well) — by not just displaying files but also being able to share files with one another.  Files can be sent up to the interactive, multi-touch displays as well as to an interactive table. So it’s not just displaying files, but actually sharing files and being able to collaboratively work on a project.

Eventually, I see this being able to be done in your living room.  What if MOOCs could integrate this type of web-based collaboration into their projects?

But for now, this is a HUGE step forward in this vision. Great work Adobe! This is innovative! Very helpful!

Example screenshots:

 

AdobeProjectContext-May2013

 

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AdobeProjectContext-1

 

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AdobeProjectContext-2

 

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Also see:

  • Adobe’s hardware experiments are more than just hobbies: Hands-on with Project Context – from techcrunch.com by Frederic Lardinois
    Excerpt (emphasis DSC):
    At its MAX conference in Los Angeles [on 5/6/13], Adobe showed  quite a few products that will soon be available to its customers, but it also highlighted a number of hardware experiments, including Project Context, a totally re-imagined way for creating magazine layouts, as well as an advanced stylus and a ruler for touchscreens.

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project_context_screen_1

WhyLeanStartUpChangesEverything-SteveBlank-May2013

 

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

But recently an important countervailing force has emerged, one that can make the process of starting a company less risky. It’s a methodology called the “lean start-up,” and it favors experimentation over elaborate planning, customer feedback over intuition, and iterative design over traditional “big design up front” development. Although the methodology is just a few years old, its concepts—such as “minimum viable product” and “pivoting”—have quickly taken root in the start-up world, and business schools have already begun adapting their curricula to teach them.

From DSC:
This fits into my thinking/recommendation that each institution of higher education should create a much smaller, more nimble group within itself — whose goal is to experiment, pivot, adapt, etc. — in order to find out what’s working and what’s not working.  It’s why I have categories and tags for words like “experimentation,” “staying relevant,” “reinvent,” “innovation,” “surviving,” and “disruption.”

The trick is/will be how NOT to be a commodity –what’s going to differentiate your college or university?

 

 

 

 

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