By Jordan Bienstock, CNN
(CNN)– President Obama’s administration has announced plans for a national Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Master Teacher Corps. The effort is part of the administration’s plan to recruit, recognize and reward leading educators in these fields.
Plans are for the STEM Master Corps to begin with 2,500 members - 50 teachers from each of 50 different sites - and then expand to 10,000 master teachers within four years. The Department of Education said it will work with nonprofit organizations, along with business partners and school districts, to identify teachers for the Corps through a competitive selection process.
Membership will require a multi-year commitment from educators, who will receive up to $20,000 in compensation above their base salary, as well as other rewards. In return, these teachers will be required to offer their expertise and leadership to promote and expand STEM education.
Administration officials say STEM Master Corps members will develop new lesson plans and strategies to improve science and math teaching. They will also run mentor programs for fellow STEM teachers and lead professional development programs.
(CNN) – With students around the country anticipating – and then celebrating – that final bell before summer, there is one song that is absolutely inescapable this time of year.
“No more pencils, no more books, no more teacher’s dirty looks.” (All together now) “School’s out for summer!”
So it seems like the perfect opportunity to delve into some music appreciation, specifically songs about schools:
(CNN) – It began on May 7 with Chemistry and Environmental Science, and ended on May 18 with Human Geography and Spanish Literature. During the two weeks in between, millions of U.S. students pored over questions and essays on more than 30 Advanced Placement exams.
Now, all they can do is wait.
Advanced Placement, or AP, courses provide high school students the opportunity to earn college credit. They’re overseen by the College Board, the same organization that administers the SAT college admission test.
The battery of exams takes place in early May, but students won’t find out how they did until July, when scores are revealed.
Even then, students won’t know which questions they got correct or what individual mistakes they may have made on essays. All they receive is a number, 1 through 5, with a 3 or higher being a passing score. FULL POST
by Jordan Bienstock, CNN
(CNN) No one thinks twice about using machines to grade multiple-choice tests. For decades, teachers – and students – have trusted technology to accurately decipher which bubble was filled in on a Scantron form.
But can a machine take on the task of evaluating the written word?
A recent study conducted by the College of Education at the University of Akron collected 16,000 middle and high school test essays from six states that had been previously graded by humans. The essays were then fed into a computer scoring program.
According to the researchers, the robo-graders “achieved virtually identical levels of accuracy, with the software in some cases proving to be more reliable.”
So the simple answer to whether machines can grade essays would appear to be yes. However, the situation is anything but simple.
The grading software looks for elements of good writing, such as strong vocabulary and good grammar.
What it isn’t able to do is distinguish nuance, or even truth.
(CNN) It’s that time of year when colleges and universities send out acceptance letters. For prospective students, the euphoria of knowing where they’re heading for that first taste of independent living may be mixed with some anxiety about whom they’ll be living with.
How do I pick a roommate? What if we don’t get along?
Have no fear! The Schools of Thought blog is here with some college roommate survival tips.
Tip #1 – Get started early
Wesley Pickard works in the Residence Life and Housing office at Emory University in Atlanta. “Every university that has a good housing department is going to make roommate-finding software available to students,” Pickard says. “The onus is on the student to take advantage of that.” He says incoming freshmen who aren’t pro-active in the process are often the ones who end up having roommate problems.
Tip #2 – Best friends AND roommates? What could go wrong?!?
A lot. Deciding to room with someone you already know can have its benefits. It’s a built-in support system in an unfamiliar environment. But being friends with someone and LIVING with them are often two completely different situations. If you think you can weather the ups and downs, great. If not, you might want to consider rooming apart in order to keep the friendship together.
(CNN) – Teachers play a tremendous role in shaping how we view the world. But who – or what – shapes our view of teachers? For me, and I’m guessing for many of us, the answer is entertainment.
We may spend years in the classroom with real-life teachers and professors, but the hopes and aspirations we assign to them are just as likely to come from their fictional counterparts.
To that end, the Schools of Thought blog has put together a list of some of our favorite TV teachers. This is by no means a complete list, nor a ranking, and we’re sticking strictly to television teachers (sorry, Principal Skinner and Coach Reeves).
Gabe Kotter (Gabe Kaplan), “Welcome Back, Kotter”
Gabe Kotter returned to his alma mater in Brooklyn, taking on the task of teaching the Sweathogs, a group of remedial students. Kotter refused to accept that his students were destined to be underachievers, especially since he was part of that same group when he was in high school. His faith in their potential made believers out of the Sweathogs themselves, and prepared them for a brighter future.
Charlie Moore (Howard Hesseman), “Head of the Class”
Mr. Moore walked into almost the exact opposite situation from Mr. Kotter. Initially a substitute teacher assigned to a class of gifted students, Moore didn’t need to push his charges to focus on academics. Rather, he inspired them to recognize that life isn’t found solely in textbooks, and he encouraged them to pursue and celebrate other aspects of life, helping them navigate the often emotional perils of high school life.
CNN’s Schools of Thought blog is a place for parents, educators and students to learn about and discuss what's happening in education. We're curious about what's happening before kindergarten, through college and beyond. Have a story to tell? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org