Learning and Leading
An Australian research team recently asked "what do top-performing students do differently from everyone else?". The answer may surprise you. (Hint: it's not high IQ or hard work.)
Online quiz apps, like Quizlet and Kahoot, are great tools for formative assessment and review. If you're interested in using one be sure to check out Richard Byrne's handy one-page comparison chart. It is a quick read, and does a great job highlighting the unique features of six different (free) options.
Many people are wondering where education policy will go under a Donald Trump presidency. As it turns out, Trump has said quite a bit about education in various forums. Lisa Nielsen helpfully summarizes his views in another helpful chart.
Edutopia suggests 10 strategies for creating a better professional development program. Not surprisingly, peer observation is central to all of them.
And in big ideas, yet another recent study has found evidence that an early start time to the school day may not be optimal for teens. Such stories have been popping up for years, so I don't expect our schedule to change anytime soon, but I curious if anyone has noticed any anecdotal differences in student engagement on two-hour delay days. What do you think kids? Is it easier to focus when school starts at 10:00 instead of 8:00?
Tools and Tech
Ever wished you could put sticky notes on a webpage (without looking like a n00b boyfriend)? Now you can.
If you're looking for a new book, try typing the name of your favorite author into this cool literature map to find other writers with similar styles. Here's an example with J.K. Rowling.
Here are 5 free tools students can use to create music online.
And on a more serious note, we all want to keep the community informed of our students' accomplishments, but not at the cost of their privacy. While we should always think carefully before posting photos and videos of students online, it may help to know that YouTube offers a face-blurring option that makes it easier to show students' actions while limiting their personal exposure.
Current Events, Curriculum, and Other Cool Stuff
Biology: In this week's debate of the week, would you want to know the secrets hidden in your baby's genes? A team of scientists in Boston can help you if you do, but the results may be more worrisome than helpful. (Don't forget to listen to the audio. It's worth six minutes of your time.)
Math/Health: Sociologist Janice McCabe tried mapping college students' friend networks, with insightful and visually-intriguing results. Students with tight webs of friends, where everyone in the group knew everyone else, tended to succeed or fail as a group, as each individual was supported or distracted by the others. Meanwhile, students with whose friends did not know each other were more likely to feel lonely or isolated.
US History: The Supreme Court's 2013 decision to overturn key parts of the 1965 Voting Rights Act had tangible effects on Tuesday's election.
Economics: Most inventions get cheaper with time, but not medications. Carolyn Johnson, of the Washington Post asks why this is, and whether it's all a ploy to help drug companies get more money out of their customers.
Global: If the US election has you feeling really down, just remember it could be worse. South Korea is going through a bizarre corruption scandal that resembles the plot of a soap opera, and Venezuela is in the throes of "an economic horror story."
Geometry: On a lighter note, see if your geometry skills are good enough to help you rig an imaginary election (courtesy of 538).
Government: And if you're still panicking about the election results, just watch this funny video from 2008 that never gets old.