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20 lessons that incorporate the 4Cs

E-School News – Laura Ascione

“By now, the 4Cs–communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity–are part of most educators’ vocabulary. But it isn’t always easy to put these concepts into practice, especially when the 4Cs can look vary depending on students’ age and ability. At TCEA 2017, Donna Lusby, the K-6 instructional technology coordinator in the Lovejoy ISD shared how her district moved from what she characterized as “hesitant technology integration” to teachers embracing the 4Cs in their lessons.”(more)

First-born children have better thinking skills, study says

The Guardian – Alexandra Topping

“They may be jokingly referred to as PFBs – precious first borns – on popular parenting websites, but a study says first-born children really do reap the benefits of being number one. Research by the University of Edinburgh has found that first-born children have superior thinking skills to their younger siblings because they get more mental stimulation from their parents. While the study found that parents give all their children the same levels of emotional support, the first-born generally received more help with tasks that develop thinking skills.”(more)

Critical Thinking and Problem Solving Through STEM

STEM Champ – Staff Writer

“21st century life is one that is characterized by fast paced developments in technology, which influences every aspect of our lives. Therefore technological expertise is without doubt the most desirable skill for future careers. But apart from ensuring competence in STEM careers, STEM learning also ensures the development of certain 21st century life skills that are required by the growing generation to face the world. In the increasingly competitive world of this century, it is necessary that our children be equipped with the prowess to deal with the competition and meet the needs of the time. STEM education teaches these skills to students, leaving them ready and capable to face the world. Reasoning, systems thinking, decision making, critical thinking and problem solving are some of the most significant 21st century skills required by children. Critical thinking and problem solving are skills that students need to develop in need to be able to face the world outside the classroom.”(more)

How Students Critiquing One Another’s Work Raises The Quality Bar

KQED News Mind/Shift – Staff Writer

“Too often, when students produce school work, they turn it into a teacher for a grade and move on. And after the teacher spends time evaluating the student’s work, many students never look at the feedback, a cycle that frustrates both parties and isn’t the most effective way to learn. Several schools are trying a different model — one that takes more time but also helps students feel more ownership over the quality of their work. Called peer critique, students follow clear protocols that remind them to “be kind, be specific, and be helpful” in the feedback they give to peers.”(more)

Philosophy can teach children what Google can’t Philosophy can teach children what Google can’t

The Guardian – Charlotte Blease

“At the controls of driverless cars, on the end of the telephone when you call your bank or favourite retailer: we all know the robots are coming, and in many cases are already here. Back in 2013, economists at Oxford University’s Martin School estimated that in the next 20 years, more than half of all jobs would be substituted by intelligent technology. Like the prospect of robot-assisted living or hate it, it is foolish to deny that children in school today will enter a vastly different workplace tomorrow – and that’s if they’re lucky. Far from jobs being brought back from China, futurologists predict that white-collar jobs will be increasingly outsourced to digitisation as well as blue-collar ones.”(more)

The arts help kids with math, critical thinking

The Mother Nature Network – Cory Rosenberg

“If you’ve ever watched a child find her rhythm on pots and pans or been surprised to find a drawing scrawled on the wall, you know a child’s need to create is endless. And while you may not want your entire home to be your child’s canvas, it’s important for children to experiment with and engage in the arts during their developmental years. The benefits of children taking part in artistic practices are plentiful, including positive impacts on physical, cognitive and social skills.”(more)