A Defense of the Humanities in a Tech-Inebriated World

By Leon Wieseltier, New Republic, 5/28/13 [From Mr. Wieseltier’s commencement address at Brandeis University, 5/19/13.] Has there ever been a moment in American life when the humanities were cherished less [or] needed more?…. I have come to regard a commitment to the humanities as nothing less than an act of intellectual defiance, of cultural dissidence. […]
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Cold-Calling in Class

By Mitchell Handelsman, Psychology Today, 11/26/13  Should teachers call on students who don’t volunteer? Should, or when should, teachers engage in “cold calling”—calling on students in class when the students have not volunteered?…It’s hard for me to have (or understand) blanket policies (“I never call on students if they haven’t raised their hands,” or, “I always […]
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Learning That Lasts

By Bryan Goodwin, Educational Leadership, October 2014 Different teaching strategies support different stages of learning—so when it comes to delivering instruction that sticks, the question isn’t so much what to do, but when and why to do it. Answering that question starts with a clear understanding of how the brain translates new information into long-term […]
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How Schools Kill Creativity

By Ken Robinson, excerpted from the most-viewed TED-Talk of all time, February 2006 I have an interest in education — actually, what I find is everybody has an interest in education. If you’re at a dinner party, and you say you work in education — actually, you’re not often at dinner parties, frankly, if you […]
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Why a Leading New Media Professor Banned Technology in Class

By Clay Shirky, The Washington Post, 9/25/14 I have just asked the students in my fall seminar to refrain from using laptops, tablets, and phones in class…. I have been teaching classes about the Internet since 1998, and I’ve generally had a laissez-faire attitude towards technology use in the classroom…. There was the competitive aspect. […]
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The Power of Music

By Amisha Padnani, The New York Times, 8/11/12 Some workers like to listen to music when they find themselves losing focus. They may also plug in their earbuds to escape an environment that’s too noisy — or too quiet — or to make a repetitive job feel more lively. In biological terms, melodious sounds help encourage the […]
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Don’t Listen to Music While Studying

By David Cutler, from the website Edutopia I notice several students listening to music while busy at work…. I ask one student why music helps her concentrate. “It soothes me and makes me less stressed,” she says…. As a college student,…music offered me not only comfort but also increased focus–or so I thought, until coming across […]
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Discipline Breeds Creativity

“The Good Order,” by David Brooks, The New York Times, 9/26/14 When she was writing, Maya Angelou would get up every morning at 5:30 and have coffee at 6. At 6:30, she would go off to a hotel room she kept — a small modest room with nothing but a bed, desk, Bible, dictionary, deck […]
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Gestures Aid Learning

“The Secret Code of Learning,” by Annie Murphy Paul, Time Magazine, 11/9/11 Frederic Mishkin, who’s been a professor at Columbia Business School for almost 30 years, is good at solving problems and expressing ideas. Whether he’s standing in front of a lecture hall or engaged in a casual conversation,…his hands [are] waving, pointing, jabbing the […]
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Learning: Make It Stick

By James M. Lang, The Chronicle of Higher Education, 4/23/14 Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning [is the story of an airplane pilot navigating his way through a midflight emergency]. It describes his range of options, the implications of his choices, and how his training helped him manage the crisis successfully. The book’s […]
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