education & tech

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Education + Tech

Education & Tech, was created to build hope that education based on social technologies, can transform the new century, and enable abundance not only spiritually but economically. Milton Ramirez, Ed.D. - @tonnet is the founder & editor. He is a teacher, tech blogger, writes on education, and hails this blog from Union, NJ. For further questions, tips or concerns please e-mail him to:miltonramirez [at] educationandtech [dot] com

Teacher + Scholar

If you are a regular to Blog Education & Tech, you shall remember that I am a blogger and I'd written a post about education almost everyday since 2003. Education & Tech provides you with education news, expert tech advice, classroom management ideas, and social media tools for educators, administrators, parents and k-12 students.

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Education & Tech: 2016 Year in Review

This year here at Education & Tech we relied on guest writers for the most part. As an editor, I focused primordially on the round ups promoting and presenting relevant links to important topics generally based on education.

I also have to mention that Education & Tech has been referenced on paper research and books as I am going to mention: Handbook of Research on Innovative Technology Integration in Higher Education by Fredrick Muyia Nafukho & Beverly J. Irvy. Journalist blogosphere in Ecuador. The deliberated opinion ¿Who are they and what do they write?[es] by Ma. Isabel Punin & Benazir Gutiérrez. And as source of relevant research by the Visionary Leaders Institute whose president is Mr. Ako Kambon.

Beyond that and given our low editorial production this year, I can tell we are satisfied with the range and reach of this blog. I promise the next year it's going to be better and more productive. In the meantime, I'd like to share with you the 10 most read blog post during 2016:

1. How to Stay Motivated Throughout Academic Life. This was a guest post by Ishika Agarwal and among other things, he wrote that pushing yourself too much can be stressful and it can certainly lead to demotivation. It is what usually happens with students who desperately want to achieve everything without strategizing their goals.

2. 10 Gadgets To Help College Students Get Through The Year. A guest post by our long time contributor Jennifer Thayer.

3. Applying the Concept of 'Supply & Demand' to the Teacher Shortage in America. This was an essay we worked way ahead of president-elect Donal Trump. By then, we already envisioned the necessity of hold accountable all our representatives and constituents, including the nominated Secretary of Education,Betsy DeVos.

4. Expressions You Will Regret Saying to Your Students. Relationships matters. It's time to choose very carefully our words when in front of a full room of students.

5. Why Educators Should Talk More About Their Work and Accomplishments. An Elevator Pitch, the one most businessman recite at every new encounter, should be a common practice among educators as well.

6. Social Justice Seen Through the Educators Eyes. Social activists in need of representation should read this post. You'll read about 'educolor' and the necessity to "uplift of people of color in education."

7. Four Most Valuable Tips for New College Students. Another guest post by Jessica Alabama. Higher education does play a huge role to offer in the success or betterment of those pursuing college education.

8. Technology's Impact on Studying Abroad. Students go into study abroad programs with a goal to expand intellectually through cultural immersion, and technology is helping them break barriers.

9. Nuances of Written English Not Taught in School. Guest post by Lucy Adams. Being a non-native speaker among natives is sometimes challenging. The fewer mistakes you make, the more credible you look in the eyes of English pen wizards, writes Adams.

10. Is The SAT Fair Or Unfair?. I am pretty sure you are familiar with other acronyms like TOEFL, GRE and GMAT. All of them part of a very lucrative business rather than intellectual capacities assessments metric. And the sad part is that there is no a definitive answer.

Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments, subscribe in a reader or send an email to the author at miltonramirez@educationandtech.com . You can share ideas for stories on the Education & Tech.

Milton Ramirez

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

American teachers unable to buy their own house!

An article in the PBS NewsHour has sparked controversy on the Internet whether teachers really are paid enough (or even well paid) as to afford their own houses. Community argue teachers are living well because they only work for 9 months during the year, opposite to what everyone else is working in the U.S. Some others differ:

Most teachers earn much less than $57K, says Rodrigo Fernandez, a Chilean in Austin, Texas. They have to work more than 40 hours a week, spend their own money in educational materials, and have children of their own, and they have the responsibility of preparing most of your children for the future.

However, teachers are not so much different than some other Americans. In order to get your own house, the stream of two incomes is necessary in any middle class family. That is precisely what Fawn Neun, a Chief Editor and Hair Puller at Vagabondage Press, in Florida, wrote in Facebok. "I know a lot of people that would love to have a $56k a year salary who have similar qualifications and professional standing as most public school teachers. Housing frequently requires two incomes for everyone in the middle class now."

Mel Gee is another of the participants in the discussion. This person relies on statistics to back up the argument that teachers are well off as of now. US Median Income across all professions is $51,939. So many Americans can't afford to buy a house. At least teachers have a retirement fund, affordable healthcare, and union protection. Gee asserts she's a "pro-teacher" so she's not against them having these things. She just thinks we all should.

And of course we have interpretations pointing to the political parties. Keith Sottung from Holland, Pennsylvania, declares: "The GOP has made it very clear teachers are an expense obstacle towards a profitable business. Do get me started on how they feel about unionized teachers."

The study by the National Housing Conference, Paycheck to Paycheck - A Snapshot of House Affordability for School Workers to which the PBS NewsHour refers to is here.

Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments, subscribe in a reader or send an email to the author at miltonramirez@educationandtech.com . You can share ideas for stories on the Education & Tech.

Milton Ramirez

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Nuances of Written English Not Taught in School

Grammar nuances
By Lucy Adams*

Undoubtedly, the English language is one of the most powerful business tools. The international language significantly expands your opportunities. The better you English, the more credible you are in the business world.

Well, all starts from school. Regardless of you are Englishmen, American or non-native, you've studied English under a standard program. Alas, but it sometimes misses the important things like specific grammatical constructions, the arrangement of commas, etc.

Let's have a look at the nuances of written English not taught in school. Looking ahead, I must say that in case of significant problems with English, you may always order an essay help at special services like Undoubtedly, the English language is one of the most powerful business tools. The international language significantly expands your opportunities. The better you English, the more credible you are in the business world.

Well, all starts from school. Regardless of you are Englishmen, American or non-native, you’ve studied English under a standard program. Alas, but it sometimes misses the important things like specific grammatical constructions, the arrangement of commas, etc. Let’s have a look at the nuances of written English not taught in school. Looking ahead, I must say that in case of significant problems with English, you may always order an essay help at special services like bestessay4you

#1 Inversion

The translators of fiction say that to provide an accurate translation, they almost every time have to restructure English sentences and then build a new one in the target language not to lose the meaning. That's why because English grammar has a very strict word order. However, the inversion is quite typical:

  • There is a cake on the table (there is/there are).
  • "This is your pill," – said the doctor (after the direct speech).
  • "Here is your money, please" (in sentences that begin with "here").
  • Had I played better, I would win the competition (in conditional sentences with the verbs was/were/could/should).
  • Never had I had such a terrible support (in complex sentences that begin with the words no sooner/not only/scarcely/hardly/nothing/never).
  • It was me who won the fight against corruption (as part of a turn it is / was… that / who / whom).
#2 Comma Before "Which/That"

Among the types of subordinate clauses in English, there are ones that begin with recognizable relative pronouns who/whom/that/which/whose/when/where. The attributive clause can be restrictive and nonrestrictive. The first reduces all possible characteristics of a noun to a single and the most important one while the second simply states one of the many properties of an object or subject:

  • 1. I met with a girl who was smoking a long cigarette. It was Mary (restrictive clause).
  • 2. I met with a girl who was smoking a long cigarette, which looked expensive (nonrestrictive clause).
Why know all this? Just because nonrestrictive clause requires comma while restrictive doesn't.

Most often, "which" indicates nonrestrictive clause while "that" – restrictive one. The latter often requires a comma.

#3 Absolute Phrase

One of the mistakes that can be made in the process of learning English is trying to understand the English grammar on the base of the grammar of the native language. Although almost every language has logics, these logics are often very different.

To sound authentic, you need to get used to using English grammatical forms like Absolute Phrase. (by the way, "phrase" is called a structure in which there's no subject and predicate; "clause" is a subordinated sentence; "sentence" is a separate simple or complex sentence).

Absolute Phrase can't be translated literally! Let's take an example:

  • With his hand on the table, Jane waited for the beginning of the lesson.
Absolute turnover must contain at least a noun and a participle. It can be constructed on the basis of one Present Participle (-ing) or Past Participle (-ed). Absolute turnover is particularly useful when the author describes an object or situation that he's watching closely.

#4 Verb as a Subject

A verb can be a subject not just in the gerund form (signing), but also in the form of the infinitive (to sing). In contrary to the school instincts that may prompt us to always use the gerund, it is worth remembering that the English grammar allows the second option:

  • To sing this song has always been Lucy’s dream, although she has been born in a city where there are no great vocal tutors.
#5 Semicolon

Semicolon plays a major role in English punctuation. Not by chance, this sign is put on one of the most convenient places on the keyboard. To understand whether you can use a semicolon, it is often enough to ask yourself whether you can put a point instead, thereby dividing the sentence into two separate fragments.

  • I saw a pigeon flying in the sky; it was Harry, my favorite bird.
#6 Direct Speech and Punctuation

Unlike other languages, English doesn't require a colon or a dash in front of or after the direct speech.

  • "It was fantastic."
The final punctuation mark in a replica – regardless it is an interrogation point, an exclamation point or a dot – is put before the quotation marks.

#7 Oxford Comma

Oxford comma (Harvard comma) is a comma that can be placed right before the third item in the enumeration.

  • I went down the street, bought a ticket, and returned home, but still was disappointed.
Despite its name, Oxford comma is more typical for the American English.

Oxford Comma. Photo by Topher McCulloch on Flickr
Being a non-native speaker among natives is sometimes challenging. The fewer mistakes you make, the more credible you look in the eyes of English pen wizards. Feel free to share your tips for learning English in comments.

(*) Lucy is a professional writer from http://www.edublogawards.org. The blogger is always in touch with her readers and ready to answer any of your questions. Moreover, Lucy writes blogs for free! Thus, you have a unique chance to add some value to your website without investing a single penny. Contact the blogger and get a fast response.



Education & Tech

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

The rest of my favorite links are here.

Technology's Impact on Studying Abroad

By Jennifer Thayer

Technology has had a multifaceted impact on studying abroad. From helping students make a smoother transition abroad to bridging the communication gap, it’s opened many doors and new ways to go about living and learning in a different country, creating an entirely new study aboard experience.

Preparation and Transition of Going Abroad

The endless access to information we have thanks to technology has transformed society into one that is constantly curious, looking for answers and expecting to get those answers from the internet. This craving to be always informed has incentivized students to be more thoroughly prepared to go abroad. Students can research the country they are headed to and begin to understand the culture in which they will live for an expanded amount of time. Additionally, they can also learn the language to better assimilate to their new home for the next months and gain a greater ability to get around in foreign territory. Furthermore, social media has become a platform for students in a study abroad program to get in touch with each other. For example, Facebook groups can be used as a forum for students in study abroad programs to discuss what to bring and virtually meet each other prior to the first face-to-face encounter.

Satellite technology can also come into play, as students prep for their journey. They can scope out housing and explore the area they want to live via innovations like Google Earth, which allows users to pinpoint anywhere on the map they want to see with real-life visuals of actual streets and surroundings.

Transitioning into a new place in and of itself is already a stressful task. Moving to a foreign country has an even greater impact on a person’s ability to ease in. During their time abroad, students can get around by utilizing mobile apps. Students can use translation apps like iTranslate, an application that translates text, websites and facilitates voice-to-voice conversations in more than 90 languages. Other travel-friendly apps, like Easy Currency Converter, let students figure out how much they are actually spending in their foreign coin. And the ever-so-popular Uber app is also internationally available in many countries, giving students the ability to get around an unfamiliar town.

Communications

Possibly the greatest impact technology has had on studying abroad is on communications. The emergence of smartphones and the ability to connect anywhere and everywhere has caused ground-breaking changes in how students stay connected internationally. Students are able to talk with their friends and their family at home, as well as with their study abroad peers within the same country for free with apps like WhatsApp, WeChat, Skype, and Viber. Many of which only require Wi-Fi connection (a plus for those without an international data plan). To add, video technology integration in these communication apps allows people to feel even closer to one another no matter how many miles are in between.

The telecommunications industry has also supplemented smartphone technology in its push to further support communications whenever and wherever. Carriers such as T-Mobile feature plans that support 145 countries, providing users unlimited data and texting at no extra cost, and flat-rate calls for a very reasonable price. Having the option for lower rate international data plans is highly appealing to any student studying abroad because it’s budget friendly and lets them keep in contact with others no matter what country they are in.

Technology has ultimately taken away some major road blocks that come with traveling in a new country. Students go into study abroad programs with a goal to expand intellectually through cultural immersion, and technology is helping them break barriers during their exploration to make the most out of their experience.

Education & Tech

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

The Benefits of Working a Job While in College

By Jennifer Thayer.

Going to school and working at the same time is not easy. Make no mistake, doing well in college will demand your attention, persistence, and commitment. If it's worth it should be self-evident though. After all, doing well in college can set you down a path that leads to prosperity and success, so it certainly deserves your attention. But there is one not-so-minor fact of life that is equally deserving of your attention, and which makes having a job while in college job make sense: College is expensive.

The cost of tuition and books can quickly add up. Even if you enjoy a fully paid scholarship, there are such things as rent, food, living expenses, and fraternization with friends to contend with. All of these things cost money. For this reason, considering a college job is not only a good idea, for many of today's college students, it's a given. Good news, however, as working a job while in college is not only possible, it can be hugely beneficial. Let's take a look at reasons you may want to put in your application soon:

Money!



Let's get this one out of the way. Having a job in college provides you with an income. The benefits don't get more obvious or practical than that. Having even the smallest degree of financial independence while in college can mean the difference between enjoying yourself, forming lasting memories, and progressing through school relatively stress-free, and being utterly destitute and anxiety-ridden for four straight years.

Whether you work part-time at a local retailer or dining establishment (don't scoff at busboys and waiters; it's hard work and an honest living), get a part-time job on campus, or work as a freelancer in a field you're particularly adept at, the income that you make can allow you to go out with friends, eat food that isn't prepared in the school cafeteria, fly back home for holidays, or go on Spring Break vacation with your best friends. It also has practical benefits, like enabling you to pay your car insurance and phone bills.

Reduce Your College Debt



Remember, any college loans that you take on during your schooling will have to be paid back, with interest. The less you have to borrow the better. If you do work a college job, don't make the mistake that so many college students do. It may be tempting to spend it all on frivolous things and rack up further credit card debt, but don't.

Carefully determine what your monthly financial obligations are then compare this number with your average monthly income. If you're able to, set aside a set amount per month for school expenses. Whether you can pay for part of your tuition or cover your other school expenses in cash, these efforts will help reduce your college debt over time.

Develop Leadership Skills



The easiest way to develop leadership skills is to actually test yourself in real working environments. You may think that a college job wouldn't provide many opportunities for such development, but that's not true. No matter the field or the type of work that you pursue, there will likely be room for growth... a means of climbing some sort of "corporate ladder." If this applies to your job, take advantage of it.

Demonstrating to future employers that you took responsibility, led a team of peers and co-workers, and proved to your employers that you were capable of doing so can help tremendously when the time comes to enter your chosen professional field. Whether you are a shift manager, assistant manager, or merely take the reins on projects and spearhead them from start to finish, it can be incredibly beneficial, not only for your personal skills, but your resume as well.

Develop Time Management Skills



Of course, future employers will also want an employee who is good with his or her time. Many college graduates fall into the trap of assuming they are owed a position merely by virtue of having a college degree. But it pays to approach the issue from the perspective of the employer. What can you offer that will justify your expense (which not only includes your salary, but health care costs, benefits, training, and other miscellaneous costs)? Being good with time management certainly helps.

Many college students don't get their first job until college. If this describes you, then a college job makes even more sense, as the differences between school and work are many. A job requires you to be on time, to accomplish your assignments and tasks, and to do your work efficiently and with enthusiasm. True, not everyone actually meets these standards (who hasn't had a bad customer service experience?), but that should be your goal. The only way to gain these skills is by actually doing the work.

Gain Invaluable Work Experience



Having actual work experience puts you ahead of the competition once you graduate. It really is that simple. All things being equal, the candidate who has a broader history of work under his or her belt is likely to be seen as the superior candidate, regardless of the position. As much as we all like to think that spending a semester studying abroad will look attractive on our resume, the truth of the matter is that most employers would much rather you show them actual work experience. And there's only one way to accrue this experience – it's by working.

But What Can You Do?



It's a question many college students ask themselves, particularly those who are seeking a job for the first time. The good news is that there are more choices than ever. Increasingly, entrepreneurship is one of those options. Companies like Amway and University Tutor make it easier than ever to become independent business owners. Do well with your own business and you may find that you don't even need to look for a job after college (this will depend a lot on the type of business you run, of course; direct sales companies like Amway are likely to have more room for growth than companies like Uber or Lyft). And success with your own business will make you a valuable applicant.

There are also more traditional options. Again, there's no shame in getting a job as a busboy or waiter. It shows that you are willing and able to work hard and fast. You may also find a job in retail, customer service, or the government sector. Many colleges, schools, and municipalities have seasonal and hourly work that is open to college students. Investigate your options and apply for any that seem well-suited to you. Regardless of what you choose, be sure to maintain a healthy work-school-life balance. After all, if your college job becomes more important than college itself, that is counter-productive.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

  • Currently 7.4 million people are unemployed in the United States, another six million want full-time work but can only find part-time jobs, millions more have given up looking, and perhaps tens of millions have settled for jobs with low wages, skimpy benefits, or poor working conditions.

  • Consider a few recent cases: Brown University, Johns Hopkins University, Williams College, and Haverford College, among others schools, withdrew speaking invitations, including those for commencement addresses, because students objected to the views or political ideology of the invited speaker.

  • To get permission to impose the highest fees, they have to set and meet goals approved by Ebdon’s office for enrolling more low-income, racial and ethnic minority, and first-generation students.That’s something to which many colleges and universities in the United States still are far behind.

  • You don't have to have a fancy title to be a leader: https://t.co/IYsS1xknvX. #leadupchat https://t.co/JPoDOqnLoi

    tags: #educationandtech

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Is The SAT Fair Or Unfair?

The SAT, or Scholastic Aptitude Test, is a standardized test to determine which high school students are ready for college.

Across the nation, universities request SAT scores. While not the only determining factor, they play a significant role in determining admission. The SAT is considered so essential to getting into a top school that many students sit for the test a number of times to raise their scores. In addition, there is a high demand for prep schools like Kranse SAT prep that teach the core academic skills necessary to score high on the test.

There is much controversy about the standardized testing that colleges require for the admissions process these days. The debate is whether it's truly an indicator of someone's intelligence or if it does more harm than good. Should colleges rely so heavily on the SAT when making their eligibility decisions? Is it a fair way to assess a student's ability and potential?

Let's look at the pros and cons to get a balanced perspective.

The Pros

Proponents of the SAT make the following arguments:

1. It's a fair and unbiased test. Since the SAT is standardized, it can create a fair comparison between all high school students who are taking the test. It compares the scholastic reasoning skills that they should have acquired by the end of their high school years.

2. GPA is an unreliable measure. The SAT is much better than using the GPA, or grade point average. The GPA is not a fair system because of three factors:

  • A student may not have been able to keep up with the pace of the curriculum due to life events like illness, the family moving, or other events. As a result, they may have a lower GPA than they deserve. The SAT, by comparison, gives those students who have fallen behind for one reason or another and got a low GPA, another chance to catch up on their missing gaps in knowledge.
  • Each school has its own system to determine how GPA is ranked, with some even using a 5.0 system.
  • The GPA can be influenced, either positively or negatively, by teacher bias. There is much room for subjective evaluations when grading classroom papers and test but with the SAT, the scoring is entirely objective—in general, students either get the answer right or wrong.
3. It rules out rote memorization. Memorization is not a necessary aspect of the SAT. The SAT is not a test of memorization of facts and figures. It's a test of reasoning ability and a demonstration of scholastic skills. Rote memorization of facts and figures just for the sake of passing the test will not help someone taking the SAT. They must understand what the information means.

The Cons

Critics of the SAT make the following arguments:

1. The test only measures a few aspects of intelligence. The test only measures the standard methods of evaluating intelligence. It is heavily biased toward vocabulary and math. However, according to the extensive work of psychologist Howard Gardner on human intelligence, human beings have multiple kinds of intelligence.

In this spectrum, the SAT only rewards students with high linguistic and logical intelligence. This narrow selection makes it difficult for those high in other intelligence areas to go to college.

2. It does not take cultural considerations into account. Students who come from low-income homes often score lower than their wealthier counterparts. It may also ask verbal questions that discriminate against race.

3. It is only a measure of test-taking skill. Although the test is designed to measure reasoning ability, it only measures how well you can take the test. If you don’t reason according to the parameters set by the test, that could indicate poor reasoning ability.

Fair or Unfair?

There is no definitive answer.

If there is no SAT, then all college admissions will be based on subjective views. This could open the door to racial profiling or pursuing a covert agenda like only admitting students from affluent families.

On the other hand, the SAT has many flaws that make it difficult to call it a fair assessment of how well a student will do in college. Is it fair for people who excel in non-academic intelligence? Does it really test linguistic and mathematical skills or how quickly and well one can answer timed questions?

While there is no sign of the SAT going away soon, we must be open to asking if there is a better way.

This is a featured post by site supporter Katherine

Education & Tech

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Education & Tech: News for Educators

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

Four Most Valuable Tips for New College Students

By Jessica Alabama*

As far as the importance of college education in the life of every individual is concerned, this is certainly assumed as a new life experience for all new college students. Therefore, being a freshman you are supposed to learn the norms and cultures of your respective college in the desired manner. As a result, you will be able to obtain the required deliverables from a higher education in the right way. Considering the significance of college education or experience, new students are needed to follow these 4 most useful tips as much as possible.

1. Take classes regularly

All new students should realize their college life has been started, therefore they are required to go to their classrooms on a regular basis. In this way, they will be able to participate in discussions and at the same time, they will also learn unique kind of experiences from their fellow students and teachers as well.

2. Make friendship with senior students

There is no point of denying this attribute that socialization at the college level does play a key role in the development of students as an individual. It is highly recommended that students use their connections and other resources in the right way for the purpose of achieving greater outcomes in their studies. With the help of this socialization, they can easily obtain valuable information regarding their subjects from senior students who are studying the same courses or subjects. Hopefully, they will surely perform better in their assignments and exams to a large extent.

3. Keep in contact with your family

Being a new college student, you are allowed to make new friends, but at the same time you should keep an effective relationship with your family as well. This is because these people have really encouraged you to take admission in college and without their support or efforts you were not able to become a part of the college education. Therefore, all new students should not underestimate their families' contributions.

4. Learn from mistakes

Higher education is a lifetime experience because students learn every day a new thing and at the same time they also make mistakes during this experience. So, students are required to learn positive things from their mistakes in the best possible manner. This is the way through which college students could become better and successful persons in the future.

In the end, education at the higher level does play a huge role to offer in the success or betterment of those pursuing college education. These students need to follow these tips in order to transform their college life more successfully and result-oriented.

(*) Jessica Alabama is a business graduate who has successfully experienced college education in the past. These days, she is currently working as a junior executive in a multi-national firm in Do My Dissertation For Me.

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Education & Tech: News for Educators - #Writing

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Social Justice Seen Through the Educators Eyes

This past weekend I had the opportunity to attend the 2nd annual Urban Teaching Matters Conference at the Rutgers Graduate School of Education.

The featured speaker started by making chant all participants: "Social justice", when: "Now". If not, "Shut it Down". He even said that after hearing what he was about to tell to the audience he would get kicked out of New Jersey. Jose Luis Vilson really tore down the House at GSE!

Among other things he stated that the way we see ourselves is not same as the way students describe our image. Teachers need to portrait a positive image to their students. Education professionals are to develop their own identity, it doesn't matter whether this is rap or its lyrics. Guess what played a great role on Jose Luis own motivation.

He spoke about some statistics and mentioned the unfortunate reality that urban communities are badly served by the disproportion of well-trained teachers and low budgets. He encouraged listeners to look for a much diverse participation not only in about the skin color but in their deep thoughts, as well. The author of This Is Not A Test: A New Narrative on Race, Class and Education, was confident when saying: Being in the classroom is something you cannot replicate.

As part of the conference, there were some other workshops. One I participated was Restorative Practices and Shaping School Culture, lead by Jamie Gullota and Amy Pitucco. Working with the Restorative Circle and two techniques recognized as "Affective Statement" and "Fishbowl", participants were able to exercise the restorative practices for conflict resolution. Most importantly, it was stressed, you must build a positive relationship with your students and watch the words (feelings related) that you need to use when communicating with children.

And then, I had the pleasure to hear another great educator, Joseph Mathews. This teacher and author is a former disengaged student and a high school drop out. Referring to his book, Things I Wish My Teacher Knew About Me: Engaging the Disengaged Student, he made his case appropriately pointing that many students still feel that outside the school there are people who love you more.

Mathews as much as Gullota agree that in the school environment everything is about relationships. The former says that in order for a student to get engaged, he needs to trust the teacher. The latter asserted, before applying restorative practices a teacher has to listen to what are the students feeling at the time he is misbehaving.

All in all, after lectures, workshops and corridor conversations everyone agreed that teachers are not teachers only perse, they all are social agents that need to balance the space every one has, and look to rebuild the distrust that actually exists not only between teachers and students but feel not ashamed that certain people looks at you 'in a certain way'.

Education & Tech

Education & Tech: News for Educators

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Applying the Concept of 'Supply & Demand' to the Teacher Shortage in America

Careers in law and business are in high demand according to the 2016 Pricing for Salary Survey Reports and DataOnDemand released by the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR). This means that we teachers are fairly included in the list because as Frederick Hess from Education Next points, "salaries and annual raises vary tremendously across disciplines."

Every week or two the newspapers headlines bring up a note about the teachers shortage in the STEM area. This is due to lack of interest of many professionals to get enrolled or even pursue a degree in education. But this apathy is only for careers different than math, science or special education. There is high demand of certified teachers on these areas. Why having the human resource the Boards of Education can't secure hirings on these disciplines?

First, it all has to be with the certification process. To me, safety clearance from the FBI is a must. But all bureaucratic testing and selection --which by the way increases money accounts of private businesses-- is a waste. Allow professional with academic credentials to get into the education and decide out their practice. Many would like the position (some might need it), and they will stay or quit whatsoever.

Secondly, even when this will make fellow educators and education advocates a bit uncomfortable, we need to differentiate salaries among teachers based on specialization, experience, and continuous professional development. Right now we only differentiate salaries based on the subjective --testing again, teacher effectiveness and high-poverty school community. It falls short of what the faculty really needs.

Hess argues that "the extra pay has to come from somewhere. Perhaps it would require students to pay more tuition or the institution to make cuts elsewhere—perhaps trimming pay for graduate assistants or maintenance staff." My personal experience is that having a mathematics education is not the same, in terms of effort, as other in history for example. The latter is less time consuming. By this I don't mean less professional. I am just saying we need to differentiate a university credit on both subjects.

Finally, I would believe that this only an idea. To change the way education apparatus (I resist to call it system) works in this country we need more than ideas and articles in very visible magazines. Community has to reclaim a better education to their families putting a considerable more pressure on the back of their political representatives. Local and national constituents are to be forced to work not only to the business interest they represent but the home communities, as well.



Education & Tech

Education & Tech: News for Educators

  • Why is there so much variation across states, districts, and even positions? As the Indiana example demonstrates, geography is a major factor, with certain cities and rural areas alike scrambling to fill openings.

  • The large salary gaps for new professors may understate the financial impact of these differences. Generally, those in the higher-paying disciplines are also in fields where time to degree for Ph.D.s is considerably shorter than those in the low-paying fields. So those being paid the least have taken the longest to be able to apply for full-time jobs, and on average have more debt.

  • Thank you, my friend! https://t.co/VsroXnI2Mw

  • The list of potential headaches for new teachers is long, starting with the ongoing, ideological fisticuffs over the Common Core State Standards, high-stakes testing and efforts to link test results to teacher evaluations. Throw in the erosion of tenure protections and a variety of recession-induced budget cuts, and you've got the makings of a crisis.

  • Recruiters from Oklahoma City have traveled to Puerto Rico and Spain on the hunt for teachers, while in Charlotte-Mecklenburg school district in North Carolina, the superintendent, Ann Blakeney Clark, tells audiences at every community meeting she attends that the schools are desperate to hire.

  • tags: #educationandtech

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