Monthly Archives: March 2013

This is what building empathy in kids looks like

Imagine if every school did this? Watch Using Babies to Decrease Aggression, Prevent Bullying on PBS. See more from PBS NewsHour.

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Making Sense of Steubenville

As educators, what are we to make of the ongoing tragedy in Steubenville, Ohio – a community in which one teenage girl was raped and publicly humiliated, two teenage boys are being shipped off to juvenile detention, and two other teenage girls are now under arrest after threatening to beat and kill the victim?

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Categories: Learning, Organizational Change, Parenting

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This is what a democratic organization looks like

Courtesy of this interview with Semco’s Ricardo Semler. If you don’t know the story of Semco, take a listen. And imagine if all organizations were similarly organized?

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Categories: Democracy, Learning, Organizational Change

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A Hole in the Wall, or Our Heads in the Cloud(s)?

There are two recent cultural inflection points you’d be wise to check out if you care about the future of education: the first is Sugata Mitra’s acceptance speech for receiving the TED Prize, in which he outlines his plan to “build a school in the cloud;” and the second is ed/tech writer Audrey Watters’ article warning of the potential consequences that could follow an uncritical acceptance of Mitra’s vision.

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This is what a “relevant education” looks like

Imagine if all schools and all educators were more attuned to ensuring that what we show and share with children is meaningfully connected to the daily realities of their lives and passions?

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Your Education Stories (for a price)

It’s suddenly in vogue to gather and tell stories as part of an organization’s larger strategy to build an audience and effect change. On one level, I love this development — indeed, I’ve been gathering people’s stories about their most powerful learning experiences for years, which has resulted in a website, a radio story series, and even a book (proceeds of which do not go to me, by the way).

Yesterday, however, I received an email from Michelle Rhee’s organization, Students First, relating to an effort underway there to gather people’s stories about why they choose to put students first.

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This is what empathy looks and feels like

Imagine if we applied this same sort of in/sight to ourselves and our schools? How would our behavior change? How would our definitions of school, teacher and student success need to change? And what might we become more likely to engender as a result?

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Creating a School Culture That Works (Podcast)

I’ve just launched a new audio interview series with the good people at the BAM! Radio network, and the link for my first episode is now live. Listen in as I discuss the core components of a healthy school culture with two of the country’s best educators: Mission Hill principal Ayla Gavins and Montgomery County […]

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A Tale of Two Schools

There are two current storytelling efforts about two different schools that, if you’re not careful, might feel like the American version of a tale of two cities.

In the first, a 10-part video narrative about a year in the life of the Mission Hill School in Boston, we’re treated to the best of times: a place where every children is known and cared for, where learning is experiential and engaging, and where the adults are both extremely skilled and highly collaborative.

In the second, a two-part This American Life series about a high school in Chicago, we’re given a glimpse of the worst of times: a place where 29 current or former students were shot the previous school year, where some students spend their entire high school careers avoiding social relationships out of safety, and where every member of the football team has dodged gunfire at least once in their young lives.

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