Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Atul Gawande is an American physician and surgeon who has, over the past 8 years, performed over 250 surgeries a year. This is not an unusual amount of surgeries, but what is a bit unusual is that Gawande also finds the time for his side-career as a journalist writing about medical issues for The New […]

Today I was introduced to an act of cognitive dissonance called the “Benjamin Franklin Effect“. Cognitive dissonance is when you hold conflicting ideas in your mind,  and to reconcile these conflicing beliefs, you change your attitudes or beliefs to make sense of the conflict in your mind. The Benjamin Franklin Effect is but one example […]

Education is serious business, especially for preschoolers. How much students learn in kindergarten can have an effect on their income for the rest of their life, according to economists from Harvard, UC-Berkeley and Northwestern University, so it’s no surprise that parents want the best prekindergarten education for their kids. A mother in New York City […]

An article in the New York Times last week looked at the statistical model for evaluating teachers known as value-added assessment. Value-added assessment is a way of assessing student performance by comparing a student’s current performance to their past performance to see how much they have improved; this is usually assessed using standardized tests. The […]

Here’s a neat video describing a recent set of experiments designed to associate individual cells in the brain of a mouse to specific functions (in this case, how the mouse’s brain processes visual stimuli). It’s a neat demonstration of how learning and memories can lead to changes in neuronal connections. Even though it was a […]

If you haven’t seen the immensely popular video yet, it’s embedded below: And here are my stream-of-consciousness thoughts on this topic: In schools, getting a high grade is a quantifiable demonstration of your knowledge, and is seen as validation of your ability and status. This is similar to the world of work, where making lots […]

I discovered some interesting books on my travels through the internet last week, so I made a trip to the bookstore. I drifted to the teaching/education section of the store, and was flipping through John Taylor Gatto’s book “Weapons of Mass Instruction”, a critique of modern compulsory schooling. After reading a few passages, a tiny […]