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2 simple math activities help counteract spring fever

Michelle Russell says her classes were beginning the slide into pre-Spring Break slump when she opted to try some simple math games she'd been tucking away for "later." Both the Math Card War and One Incorrect activities proved engaging and useful for formative feedback. Read more.
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Earth Day: Going green in the middle grades

Megan Kelly is passionate about making students more aware of human impact on the planet and working with them to take action. Earth Day is on April 22. You can plan now how you will celebrate and make your school a more eco-friendly place. Kelly shares her local, national and international Eco Club ideas. Read on.
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Middle-school students may benefit from CV screening

Researchers recruited 45 middle-school students to undergo cardiovascular screening at school and found that 34.8% had high HbA1C or lipid levels and 23.2% had high triglyceride levels, while 42.2% had a body mass index in the overweight or obese range and 57.8% had a normal or low BMI. The findings in The Journal of Pediatrics also revealed that two children with HbA1C levels in the diabetes range had not been diagnosed with the disease and did not have symptoms, highlighting the need for CV screenings, said researcher Dr. Robert Siegel.

Medscape (free registration)

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7 Secrets Remarkable Leaders Embrace that Average Leaders Neglect by Dan Rockwell

32,294 is the number of points it took for LeBron James to pass Michael Jordan on the N.B.A.’s top scorers list. It happened on March 6, 2019.* Lebron is now #4 on the list. I noticed because I'm a fan of Michael Jordan. But he wasn’t remarkable at baseball. In 1994 one of the greatest […]

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Why Do Teachers Have Such Lousy Parental Leave?

Peter Greene

At Working Mother, Amy Sherman asks a really good question-- It's a Mom-Dominated Profession. So Why Are Teachers Getting the Shaft on Maternity Leave?

Of course, we're talking about US teachers, because we rank at the very bottom of the barrel for developed (or in some cases, even semi-developed) countries when it comes to maternity leave. For all our noise about babies and motherhood and how parenting a small child is one of the most important jobs in the world, as a society, we don't do jack to support people who are actually parenting babies. We could make, as a country, the same deal that we make, for instance, with soldiers-- when duty calls, the employers just have to suck it up and the country makes sure to support them.
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Combining districts can save money, increase bargaining power and create opportunities, but officials must weigh factors such as autonomy and transit.

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Doris Kearns Goodwin’s 10 Leadership Lessons from the White House By Betsy Corcoran     Mar 20, 2019

Inviting Doris Kearns Goodwin to speak to a gathering of thousands of educators brought together by the annual ASCD Empower19 conference might have seemed like a surprising choice at first. Over the past four decades, Goodwin has earned her moniker, “Historian of the presidents.” She’s written a half-dozen best-selling books, including ones on Presidents Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson.

But when ASCD board member Ben Shuldiner introduced Goodwin, he underscored that choosing her was no happy accident. Goodwin studies presidents as leaders, and today, those are needed more than ever in education. “Decisions are being made by people who haven’t been inside of the classroom,” he told the assembly—and those decisions are frequently “not being made in the best interests of our children and our teachers.

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Bill Gates Thinks The Textbook Is Dying. Is He Right?
Suppose you’re taking high school algebra. Instead of just reading a chapter on solving equations, you can look at the text online, watch a super-engaging video that shows you how it’s done, and play a game that reinforces the concepts. Then you solve a few problems online, and the software creates new quiz questions to zero in on the ideas you’re not quite getting.

There are several reasons I would not write an obituary for textbooks just yet.
Cost. Schools buy textbooks once and then use them for years. Software, on the other hand, requires schools to buy a new set of licenses annually--in effect repurchasing texts every year. This model is not going away any time soon. In fact, the next time you get an update notice for Windows, stop and read the message. Chances are it starts with "Windows is a service." This is the rising model--instead of buying a copy of software to own and use as you will, companies are continuing to move toward "subscriptions" for a "service." We no longer buy a copy of Office, but instead subscribe to Office. This is good for their revenue stream, but for a school system to, in effect, repurchase its "textbooks" every single year in addition to regularly updating the equipment (netbooks, tablets, etc.) students will use to access the text--that's a big price tag.
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Lynd wrote a wonderfully insolent book in 1950 titled "Quackery in the public schools."

That's about 70 years ago. He nailed everything ahead of his time and it's still hot news.

The book is too expensive now, but here's my review: https://www.amazon.com/Quackery-Public-Schools-Albert-Lynd/dp/B001KF51LM#customerReviews

Or read this piece on American Thinker called K-12: Quacks Rule which discusses the main points he makes in the book.

https://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2017/04/k12_quacks_rule.html

1950, that decade, was sort of a turning point. The Education Establishment assumed they could just walk through the schools and toss everything out. There was so little resistance, these geeks got sloppy and lazy. Suddenly there was book after book calling them Quacks, etc. After 1960, I think they got much sneakier.. All their theories and methods were sophistry but subtle.....If anybody wants more, I'll write an article or be interviewed.

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Study looks at prevalence of back pain among youths

One-third of children and adolescents ages 10 to 18 reported having back pain during the previous year, with every year of increasing age associated with a nearly 4% higher prevalence in back pain reporting, but only 41% looked for treatment, researchers reported at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons' annual meeting. The findings also showed that girls were more likely to report back pain, compared with boys.

HealthDay News

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