Interesting study of children, preschool and later school success.
"Children's later school success appears to have been enhanced by more active, child-initiated early learning experiences. Their progress may have been slowed by overly academic preschool experiences that introduced formalized learning experiences too early for most children's developmental status."
This trend is especially prevalent in programs that serve low-income children. Compensatory early childhood programs such as Head Start and state-sponsored pre-kindergarten for low-income families and preschoolers with special needs are designed to help children acquire skills needed for later school success.
Beginning in the 1980s, leading early childhood experts expressed concern about the wisdom of overly didactic, formal instructional practices for young children (e.g., Elkind, 1986; Zigler, 1987). They feared that short-term academic gains would be offset by long-term stifling of children's motivation and self-initiated learning. Later research suggests that these early concerns were warranted
They cautioned that early academic gains in reading skills associated with didactic instruction of preschoolers "come with some costs" that could have long-term negative effects on achievement.
imilarly, when the highly didactic Direct Instructional System for the Teaching of Arithmetic and Reading (DISTAR) was discontinued after third grade, children's previously high achievement in reading and mathematics declined
Jen Roberts gives tips on how to add voice comments to Google Docs. If you're writing in Google Docs, this is a great technique as voice always gives you a closer connection, particularly for struggling readers. They can also hear your voice and know the intent of your words.
Must read letter over at Edweek from a mom of one child who died at Sandy Hook and one who survived... if you want to be affirmed and remember why you teach, this is the post you should share with everyone.
"Your courage will support students who are left out and overlooked, like the isolated young man who killed my daughter. At some point he was a young, impressionable student, often sitting all alone at school. You will have kids facing long odds for whom your smile, your encouraging word, and your willingness to go the extra mile will provide the comfort and security they need to try again tomorrow.
When you Google “hero,” there should be a picture of a principal, a school lunch worker, a custodian, a reading specialist, a teacher, or a bus monitor. Real heroes don’t wear capes. They work in America’s schools.
"When I asked my son’s teacher why she returned, she responded, 'Because they are my kids.' "
Being courageous requires faith. It took faith to go back to work at Sandy Hook after the shooting. Nobody had the answers or knew what would come tomorrow, but they just kept going. Every opportunity you have to create welcoming environments in our schools where parents and students feel connected counts."