Tag Archives: Problem-solving

How Innovative is My School? (Updated)


How Innovative is My School?   Update: This questionnaire is now less than 30 actual questions in place of over 70.   This should provoke some interesting debates! Give it a try and let me know what you think. It … Continue reading

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The Best TED & TEDx Talks for Teachers & Students


The Best TED, TEDx & TED-Ed Talks for Teachers & Students In no particular order: Do Schools Kill Creativity? (Ken Robinson) Sir Ken Robinson makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than … Continue reading

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Why Geography is Good For You (And Why You Should Take It At School)


Don’t take Geography if you want to know what the capitals of the world’s countries are. Don’t take it if you’re interested in the major imports and exports of Tajikistan. And stay away from Geography if you like knowing the … Continue reading

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Not Just a Game: Kids on The Value of Chess in Education


  As you no doubt know, constant reader (because I have gone on about it enough), I teach a chess class as an elective part of our Grade 9 curriculum. This year, as part of their final exam I asked … Continue reading

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Does the Quest to Program an Intelligent Robot Provide a Model for 21st Century Education?


Processing Learning is a system with inputs, processes and outputs. There has been much discussion in recent years around how we need to improve the inputs so that the outputs become more relevant and meaningful in the modern world. We … Continue reading

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Why I Hate The Education System: A Student Speaks Out


Do the top achieving students hate the education system? It seems unlikely – paradoxical almost. But I am convinced that most of them do. And you would think that they wouldn't. You would think it would be those who struggle … Continue reading

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40 More Things Students Don’t Say


Things Students Don’t Say:

Standardized tests really allow me to demonstrate my learning in a personalized way.
The curriculum really is more important than I am. No really, it is!
School is definitely about how well I do in the exams.
My education is preparing me for life.
I don’t feel like I am just a number. Continue reading

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Why Declining National Assessment Standards Hurts Kids


You would think that lowering the standards of final national exams in South Africa would be good news for kids. Easier exams mean more of them pass more easily. And top students can clean up. You would be wrong. Easier … Continue reading

Posted in Activism, Critical Thinking, EDUCATION, South Africa, Vitriol | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Fear Itself


We’re addicted to fear. Even in the age of science and reason, we love a good scare. Who hasn’t pulled the covers up a little higher after watching a particularly frightening horror movie – or tucked their legs up just … Continue reading

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And In The Darkness Bind Them: The Biggest Education Myth Of All


On Medieval Elitism, The Mythological Underworld and Magical Fellowships Wading Through the Fog There is a thick layer of myths in education. We are surrounded by things that sound as if they should be true, but are not. Despairingly, most … Continue reading

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What’s Missing In Our Classrooms?


Providing a more relevant education to young people is one of the key issues we face in building a better world. By now, we are all aware that education must go beyond the rote memorization of disconnected facts, and must … Continue reading

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What Teachers Want Students to Learn


A year or two ago, I asked my colleagues this question: ‘What three things do you most want students to learn in your class?’ Below are the summarized results. They make for some very interesting reading, and for me reveal … Continue reading

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What is Intelligence? (Towards An Integrated Conception of Braininess)


Introduction: On Love and Light-Sabres What is Intelligence? It seems like an easy question. But it really isn’t. I’ve been thinking about intelligence for years, and I have yet to find a definition I entirely agree with. Of course, there … Continue reading

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A Very Academic Problem


The Teachers vs The Greeks Teachers: Please stop using the word ‘academic’. You don’t know what it means. When you say things like “this is an academic school”, or “we need to lift our academic standards”, or even “I am … Continue reading

Posted in Advice, Critical Thinking, Philosophy, Vitriol | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Teachers Are Not Doctors, We’re Builders


I confess to a blunder: I have often put forward that teachers should be regarded in the same light as medical professionals. I have argued that we are as important to society, and that we consequently need to ensure that … Continue reading

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Imtropy and Legogogy: Why Introducing Lego Robotics May Be The Biggest Thing I’ve Done as a Teacher


‘Imtropy’: The Primeval Tinkering Instinct There is something about Lego which fascinates us all. I think it calls to some shared primeval tinkering instinct. Leave a pile of Lego near any group of people, and within the hour, someone would … Continue reading

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Seriously Unhelpful High School Teacher


This post is slightly acerbic. I apologise. Sometimes I use this blog to vent. It helps. All of the following use the ‘Unhelpful High School Teacher’ meme.

Posted in EDUCATION, Humour | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The Emperor’s New Invisibility Achievement: Using Gamification to Obscure the Big Problems in Education


Why Gamify Classrooms? As I understand it, the ‘gamification‘ of the classroom aims to fuse the following benefits of computer or console gaming into learning: The attainment of levels and associated skills / powers / titles / rewards and the … Continue reading

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Why We Really Need Kids to Greet Visitors from Outer Space


There is actually an office called UNOOSA (The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs). And they do many useful things. But they are also home to the planet’s official alien greeter. Should the long-awaited little green men ever land, … Continue reading

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20 Reasons Why (Some) Teachers Are What’s Wrong With Education


Some teachers are what is wrong with the system. They blame everyone else for the problems in modern-day schools: students, parents, school leaders and the government – but very seldom do they turn the bright lamp of accusation on themselves. … Continue reading

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