"If a child isn’t proficient in reading by 3rd grade, their HS dropout rate is 4x higher. So I’m trying to develop a system to help blind children develop literacy as soon as possible. If you think about it, books for young children are picture-driven, with very few words per page. So it’s tough for blind kids to really participate. So we recommend pre-reading activities to build the scene before the story begins. If you’re reading Goldilocks for example, take the child to the kitchen first, allow them to feel where the scene is going to be set. If the story is about a lamb, get a fluffy towel, so they can feel what a lamb looks like. It’s all about making the reading process as experiential as possible, so blind children can place themselves in the story without the aid of pictures."
There are a thousand ways to tell a story. Pictures are only one of many. We love this so much.
This is my own composition notebook homework assignment in progress. Professor Chewbacca reflects on the crayon experience. I’ve inked it and now I’m coloring it in
I like to figure out problems in my composition notebook using drawing and slow writing and non-photo blue pencil to help me with certain problems that defy being approached head on. I’ve found there is something to moving ones hand in a certain way — like a coloring way— while filling in a space and half thinking and half not-thinking about this something you are trying to figure out that invites possible answers to present themselves..
From all appearances, Lynda Barry is continuing to teach the best class.
I am just sitting on my bed shrieking in delight ARE YOU GUYS SEEING THIS
I want this in my life.
EXCUSE ME I KNOW THIS IS NOT RECIPES BUT DO YOU UNDERSTAND HOW MINDBLOWINGLY AMAZING THIS IS????!?!?
FUCKING TAKE MY MONEY YOU BRILLIANT INDIVIDUALS!
Mathemusician Vi Hart is back with anti-parabola propaganda and some musing on math class, cardioids, connect the dots, envelopes of lines, even a bit of origami. Also see Hart’s Fibonacci numbers explained in stop-motion vegetables, the Victorian novella Flatland on a Möbius strip, and the science of sound, frequency, and pitch in stop-motion doodles.
the teachers at my high school do this to the graffiti in the bathrooms and i literally cant
i wound up writing the group paper for my writing for the humanities class by myself but not because my groupmates were lazy or unintelligent, because paper writing is a skill that takes a decent amount of practice to nail and our professor did not teach any of it and i would guess neither did their high schools, not at the level that equips you to fairly comfortably step into the world of undergraduate paper-writing. i mean, i don’t want to imply that no one who went to a high school not as good as students deserve their school to be figures out how to write papers quickly, but i also don’t want to assume my groupmates were totally at fault for being clueless or dense because like, they seemed like perfectly smart people who were caught up in extremely common rookie mistakes, the kind of rookie mistakes probably most people make in their first paper-writing ventures. but i got to do that when i was fifteen and i had a teacher who provided good solid critique and explanations for how to move forward.
what i’m saying is i have no patience, no patience at all, for any critique of current undergraduates that doesn’t contextualize them as being, basically, the No Child Left Behind generation, the first to get the full near-lifelong brunt of high stakes standardized testing and all that that does to schools, all the horrible ways that makes education worse. i have no patience for blaming eighteen-year-olds without asking what were their teachers like, what were their parents able to supply them with (i mean, like, i didn’t learn to read at school, i learned to read at home, not everyone has that for whatever wide variety of reasons; i knew lots of kids with tutors, tutors cost money), what the administration of their school was like in terms of student-teacher culture, in terms of curricular standards and desires, what resources they had (how many students did teachers have, how much time did teachers have to provide students with targeted feedback and work with ones that needed support). i mean i could go on but i think you get the picture. trying to connect this shit to texting or the internet or even evolving trends in child-rearing, and not getting into the other stuff, not placing these kids in their context, is awful, is lazy, is terrible critical thinking skills, is arrogant, but most importantly is letting the actual people causing problems off the hook and punishing further the people suffering at their hands.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Rally and news conference announces upcoming march to Harrisburg to demand ‘A People’s Budget, Not a Prison Budget,’ May 14, 2013.
Info on the march, which kicks off May 25 at Love Park
Photo: Decarcerate PA
[image of rallying students, some with illegible signs in their hands, some arm in arm.]
How a few Philly high school students organized themselves into a few hundred in four days
May 9, 2013
It began, not surprisingly perhaps, with a modest online message.
About two weeks ago, school district officials had announced, once again, a serious hole in the District’s budget and had laid out, once again, severe cuts that would be implemented if a roughly $300 million hole wasn’t filled — this time invoking layoffs and cuts to programs, especially arts and extracurricular.
And as students pondered cuts to their favorite programs, the irony that last Friday would mark “Teacher Appreciation Day,” was not lost upon them.
Before news of the proposed cuts reached them, says Teyin Tseng (upper right), a member of the student council at the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, “Our plan was to see how much money we had and see if we could buy flowers for every teacher.”
“But then the budget [was unveiled] — and we decided to do this.”
So, on Friday, another CAPA student, Maureen Smith (lower center), created a new Facebook page: Silenced Students March — announcing a plan by her and some of her classmates to protest the threatened cuts. She opened with something of a rallying call:
“As students we are fed up and want to be heard. Its OUR education and WE should have a say in it. TUESDAY May 7th is teachers appreciation day, we are organizing a march to 440 North Broad Street, which is the school district building. Depending on your school’s location you can choose a meeting area and then proceed to march to 440.We will all be meeting there by 4:30. There is strength in numbers.”
The response — recorded online in blow-by-blow Facebook posts — was immediate, enthusiastic, and complex as any overnight organizing effort.
Talking points were discussed; a deliberate effort to attract media and control the message was conceived.
And there was, as there is in any organizing effort, vigorous debate over tactics and message: When some students announced a planned walkout; other students objected, worried the organized disobedience would undermine their credibility as a group — a debate which continues as some students contemplate a walkout tomorrow.
A system was worked out: each school’s protest contingent should nominate a representative to contact.
“We have a huge network,” explained Tseng outside the building. “We all called each other, and we got a lot of schools to join.”
“I was contacted by Teyin over here,” said Belal Shami (lower left), “and he told me he needed my help. My role was to gather people from Franklin Learning Center and get them to the protest. … I brought roughly 35 people.”
In a stretch of years in which there has been no shortage of protests outside 440 N. Broad, yesterday nonetheless marked the first time many of these students had ever done anything of the sort. And their motivations often went beyond their personal welfare.
“People are saying, ‘You’re a Senior,’ why are you here?’ Well, I have friends that I’ve made this year in lower grades,” said Kelechi Ekwerike (upper left), for whom this protest was his first. “For their education to be cut short, truncated, I will not stand for that. And if this carries on next year, if nothing is done, they [the School District] will not hear the end of it.”
“The sense in my class is a little bit like we’re the last survivors on the Titanic,” is how Samantha Ho (upper center), a junior at Masterman High School, put it. “We survived. But I have a cousin who’s going to be first year at Masterman — I can’t really imagine that place without extracurricular activities. That’s where people connect.”
“My little brother, my sister — I don’t care about myself,” said Spencer Nguyen (lower right) from the Palumbo Academy of Art. “This is for future generations.”
About two hours after the protest had started, a small knot of these students remained outside school headquarters, huddled as they debriefed and planned for whatever comes next.
“I’m more than happy with the turnout,” acknowledged Facebook event creator Maureen Smith. “It really does speak volumes, that young people can make a difference.”
From the Philadelphia Student Union: Today, hundreds of students walked-out of school and took to the streets. We rallied at City Hall to tell City Council that we need funding for our public schools. We have had enough budget cuts. We marched down Broad St. to 440. Students are ready to fight back against budget cut backs. Get ready to see a lot more of us next time.
A study released last week by researchers at Harvard and Stanford quantified what everyone in my hometown already knew: even the most talented rural poor kids don’t go to the nation’s best colleges. The vast majority, the study found, do not even try.
For deans of admissions brainstorming what they can do to remedy this, might I suggest: anything.
By the time they’re ready to apply to colleges, most kids from families like mine — poor, rural, no college grads in sight — know of and apply to only those few universities to which they’ve incidentally been exposed[…]
If top colleges are looking for a more comprehensive tutorial in recruiting the talented rural poor, they might take a cue from one institution doing a truly stellar job: the military."
A version for tumblr that can be read without opening a new tab, since plenty of people would scroll past this story otherwise.
Five states are attempting to make big jumps ahead when it comes to sex ed in their public schools.
1. COLORADO: Lawmakers in Colorado are advancing a bill that would move the state away from its current abstinence-only curricula to include comprehensive sexual health instruction, including requiring health classes in public schools to use inclusive language about LGBT issues. As openly gay state Rep. Dominick Moreno (D) argued on the House floor, traditional sex ed programs don’t often have adequate resources to help students who are struggling with their sexuality. Republicans largely opposed the provision of the legislation that would require the state’s sex ed classes to be LGBT-inclusive, and the anti-gay Focus on the Family lobbied hard against the bill — but despite their objections, the measure was approved by the House on Friday.
2. HAWAII: The state’s House Committee on Education is currently considering a measure that would incorporate comprehensive sexual education into all of Hawaii’s public schools. The bill would require Hawaii’s public elementary, middle, intermediate, high, and alternative schools to include medically accurate sexual health instruction in their curricula. Rep. John Mizuno (D), who introduced the measure, pointed out that unintended pregnancies currently cost the state an estimated $22 million each year — and more comprehensive sex ed would be a better investment. “Comprehensive sex education will equip our young people with the knowledge and tools necessary to be conscious of their decisions when it comes to sex,” Rep. Mizuno pointed out.
3. ALABAMA: Alabama’s first openly gay legislator, state Rep. Patricia Todd (D), is doing her best to update the standards for sexual education for the teens in her state. At the beginning of the new legislative session, Todd re-introduced a measure to repeal Alabama’s 1992 abstinence-only education law, an outdated piece of legislation that requires health classes to teach students that homosexuality is illegal. Todd’s bill would put the Department of Education in charge of establishing more comprehensive, medically accurate sex ed classes — an important update, since the state legislature currently sets the standards for sex ed and has the power to turn students’ basic health instruction into a politicized battlefield.
4. ILLINOIS: The Chicago public school system is considering an overhaul of its sexual education program that would require health classes to discuss sexual orientation and gender identity for the first time. The city’s chief health officer notes that if the new policy is enacted, Chicago’s public schools would comprise the largest urban U.S. school district with a required minimum of sex ed instruction and a specific curriculum for each grade level — a move spurred partly by the fact that over half of Chicago teens are sexually active. Under the new program, students below fifth grade would learn about anatomy, healthy relationships, puberty, and HIV transmission. After fifth grade, students would receive age-appropriate, LGBT-inclusive instruction about human reproduction, healthy decision-making, bullying, and contraception.
5. NORTH DAKOTA: Republicans in North Dakota are currently advancing several attacks on women’s health, and at the beginning of this month, it looked like abortion opponents might also successfully block sex ed resources for at-risk youth. After North Dakota State University won a three-year federal grant to partner with Planned Parenthood to provide sexual health services for at-risk teenagers, anti-abortion activists threatened to derail the program simply because Planned Parenthood was participating. The school faced significant pressure to back out of the grant — but fortunately, now that the state’s Attorney General has confirmed that partnering with Planned Parenthood doesn’t actually conflict with state law, the program will be allowed to move forward. University officials are celebrating the victory, which will allow teens between 15 and 19 years old to receive the comprehensive sexual health and family planning resources they need.
And some people are pissed about it?
I follow the sex education tag for obvious reasons and lately I’ve seen a lot of controversy for this law, some people calling it inappropriate or harmful. Personally, I am hoping that someday this law becomes a world wide thing and this is why. (TW: for some talk of sexual abuse)
- It’s going to be age appropriate material. If you actually read the article, they’re not going to begin talking about STIs and how to have safer sex until 4th grade, which is great since this is around the time that puberty is going to start.
- They’re going to learn about anatomy and basic reproduction. Basically, where do babies come from and things to understand their bodies. Although I’d love for this to be able to be something that parents could teach their children… that doesn’t happen. I’ve had so many questions from young people who just started their period who were freaking out and afraid because their parents never told them about it. Starting early ends the misinformation that these kids would learn on the playground that at this age can be kind of cute and funny (unless your child kisses someone and is really upset because then they think they’re going to get pregnant) but a little older can be really dangerous.
- Teaching about healthy relationships and safety. Unfortunately a lot of kids become sexually abused. These lessons will teach them that it’s not their fault and that they can get help and that the adult or older child is doing something wrong, not them. It also will probably cover bullying and how it’s not okay to touch other children without their consent. I was touched inappropriately by another child in the 4th grade. It made me feel horrible. Luckily because I got this education from my parent (which a lot of kids don’t get) I told my mom and she told the school and they made the child stop. It’ll probably also discuss how to talk to other kids and tell them when you don’t like the treatment they are giving you.
We NEED sex education that caters to every age. Instead of one random class that teaches some overwhelming information that may be coming to little to late, it builds on top of previous lessons. We start with the very basics and give kids information that they need when they need it. This will not only bring down STI and pregnancy rates, it’ll also help kids who are being abused and bring down abuse rates among young people as they will learn what a healthy relationship is and isn’t.
States with the highest teen pregnancy rates lack adequate sex ed requirements.
i’d love to know how many of the states that require it also include information about consent, sexual violence and non-victim-blaming healthy relationship advice.
i bet not that many.
(i’d say none, but i’ve read the WA curriculum and it’s actually pretty good).