Renascence School Education News - private school

Friday, April 10, 2015

New Resource From P21 Empowers Parents to Help Kids Thrive in the 21st Century

PR Web – Press Release

“To be successful today, students must be civically and digitally literate, globally competent and proficient in the 4Cs-critical thinking and problem solving; communication; collaboration; and creativity and innovation. Yet, according to recent data on civics education and global citizenship, more than one third of 12th grade students scored below basic in civics and fewer than one third reported they use their learning for real-world problem solving. Education today takes place both inside and outside the classroom. The Parents’ Guide to 21st Century Learning and Citizenship reinforces the idea that preparing children for 21st century learning and citizenship is a team effort-at home, at school, within the community and throughout the day.”(more)

Thursday, April 9, 2015

The Urgency of Increasing Higher Education Attainment in America

The Huffington Post – Jamie Merisotis

“As postsecondary skills have become essential to success for millions of Americans, few would argue that our nation has all of the talent it needs to prosper. New data reveal that our country risks falling behind in a global race — the competition for innovation and, above all else, talent — unless actions are taken now to significantly increase postsecondary attainment. Projections by the Georgetown Center on Education and the Workforce show that more than 65 percent of U.S. jobs will require some form of postsecondary education by the end of this decade. And yet, according to Lumina Foundation’s just-released annual Stronger Nation report on postsecondary attainment rates across America, only 40 percent of working-age adults (ages 25-64) now hold at least a two-year degree…we must do significantly better if we intend to grow our economy, meet the labor needs of our employers, strengthen our democracy and provide opportunity to individuals across the country…Here are the areas where action is most needed:”(more)

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

21st Century Smart: Staying Relevant In The Artificial Intelligence Age

Forbes – Ed Hess

“Unless you have been under a rock, you know that the world is changing fast. You know that technology advances, especially smart robots and smart thinking machines, will continue to drive change. They will raise serious questions about how anyone over the age of 18 stays relevant and competitive job-wise in a world of smart machines. Studying that issue from the viewpoint of the science of learning leads me to believe that we all need to adopt a new operating definition of what being “smart” means. Why? Because it will be a new game—we will have to compete for jobs not only against other humans, but also against smart machines…So, where does that leave us if we want to stay relevant? We need to be good at doing what smart machines can’t do better than us, at least for the foreseeable future…That would mean that the new, 21st century “smart” person would be someone who is a good critical and innovative thinker, listener, and collaborator and who has developed his or her emotional and social intelligence to high levels. This person would also need to be good at managing themselves—managing how one thinks, listens, emotionally reacts and emotionally engages and collaborates with others.”(more)

Thursday, April 2, 2015

An artist’s argument for STEAM education

Model D – Curt Bailey

“For the last 20 years or so, there has been a strong movement to promote and encourage STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) in the United States. Hallelujah! We need this. From a global competitiveness standpoint, we Americans must fully embrace the reality of our situation. We have been leaders in science and technology for a long time, but statistics show that other countries may be doing a better job at providing their populations with the knowledge required to win the race for scientific and technical know-how. However, I also believe it would be to our benefit to add the letter “A” to the acronym and changing “STEM” to “STEAM.” The “A” stands for Art. And by art, I mean “the arts:” drawing, sculpture, music, literature, etc. In this essay I want to present three reasons why we need to put the “A” in STEAM.”(more)

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Why America’s obsession with STEM education is dangerous

The Washington Post – Fareed Zakaria

“If Americans are united in any conviction these days, it is that we urgently need to shift the country’s education toward the teaching of specific, technical skills. Every month, it seems, we hear about our children’s bad test scores in math and science – and about new initiatives from companies, universities or foundations to expand STEM courses (science, technology, engineering and math) and deemphasize the humanities. From President Obama on down, public officials have cautioned against pursuing degrees like art history, which are seen as expensive luxuries in today’s world…This dismissal of broad-based learning, however, comes from a fundamental misreading of the facts — and puts America on a dangerously narrow path for the future…A broad general education helps foster critical thinking and creativity…Innovation is not simply a technical matter but rather one of understanding how people and societies work, what they need and want. America will not dominate the 21st century by making cheaper computer chips but instead by constantly reimagining how computers and other new technologies interact with human beings.”(more)

Thursday, March 19, 2015

How America’s Education Model Kills Creativity and Entrepreneurship

Forbes – Raul O. Chao & Cristina Lopez-Gottardi

“The current model of education in the United States is stifling the creative soul of our children…According to research conducted by Kyung Hee Kim, Professor of Education at the College of William and Mary, all aspects of student creativity at the K-12 level have been in significant decline for the last few decades. Based on scores from the Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking, her study reveals “that children have become less emotionally expressive, less energetic, less talkative and verbally expressive, less humorous, less imaginative, less unconventional, less lively and passionate, less perceptive, less apt to connect seemingly irrelevant things, less synthesizing, and less likely to see things from a different angle.”…While this is troubling for a variety of reasons, it also has significant economic consequences for the future of our country. America has long been unique because of its remarkable ingenuity, innovative capacity and entrepreneurial spirit. Yet over the last few decades, we have witnessed both a steady decline in the number of startups, as well as an increasing number of studies that suggest America’s education model fails to promote the kind of creativity, risk-taking, and problem solving skills necessary for entrepreneurship, and for a world and labor market that is in the midst of profound transformation. These are very worrisome trends.”(more)

Thursday, March 12, 2015

How Maker Faires are boosting STEM skills

Information Age – Chloe Green

“Over the last few years there has been a lot of interest in Maker Faires in the US and the Maker Movement, as well as its iteration in the UK…Making the Future is important for many reasons. Hands-on project-and design-based learning approaches are more consistent with the cognitive processes and learning styles we attribute to the millennial generation and younger. These approaches spark creativity, critical thinking and collaboration. They ‘pull’ kids into STEM disciplines by generating interest and confidence, rather than ‘pushing’ them to do better in maths and science…creativity and innovation coupled with STEM are essential to producing the products and services we will need in the future. For this reason we need to focus on both STEM and the arts – sometimes referred to as ‘STEAM.’ And moving beyond competitiveness, we believe that education, and particularly STEM education, is the fundamental sustainability issue of our time, since the solutions to poverty, global health issues and climate change will require a highly educated and STEM-literate population.”(more)

Thursday, March 5, 2015

GISD launches STEAM education initiative

Lakeshore Times – William Taylor

“Garland Independent School District is joining hundreds of school districts nationwide by implementing the innovative educational framework known as STEAM, which stands for science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics. Championed by educators, public officials and researchers across the country, STEAM’s official concept is that science and technology interpreted through engineering and the arts, all based in mathematical elements, is an adaptable program that supports a rigorous, 21st-century education…“The idea to launch a STEAM initiative began from community participation in the stragetic planning process last year,” said Elementary Science Coordinator Tina Garrett. “We realized that we needed to inspire more creativity, innovation and collaborative work. We wanted our students to experience critical thinking and problem solving strategies every day, all year long—not just for one event.””(more)

Friday, February 27, 2015

Our Universities Are Not Teaching Innovation

Forbes – Henry Doss

“Our system of higher education is out of whack with the future, and with innovation; and it is at direct odds with what we say we believe. Not only are our universities not teaching innovation or delivering an innovation experience, they seem to be doing their best to destroy innovative thinking in young people. This is not intentional, but it may be all the more insidious for being unplanned, unnoticed and unseen. Business leaders, politicians and economists all say more or less the same thing: The future depends on innovation and without it we are doomed as a country and a society to second-class status. So innovation, and those who can lead and cause innovation, are at a premium. You would think we would respond to this in our system of higher education; but, in fact, we are doing the exact opposite.”(more)

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Can gifted education survive the Common Core?

Thomas B. Fordham Institute – Chester E. Finn, Jr.

“What does the Common Core portend for America’s high-achieving and gifted students?…Gifted children, in our view, have generally been short-changed in recent years by American public education, even as the country has awakened to their potential contributions to our economic competitiveness and technological edge. It would therefore be a terrible mistake for the new Common Core standards, praiseworthy as we believe they are, to become a justification for even greater neglect…The advent of the Common Core standards can and should boost the learning of America’s ablest young learners, not serve as a rationale for denying them opportunities to fulfill their potential. Getting this right calls for re-evaluating and strengthening policies for the gifted, providing more robust programs and services for them, doing what it takes to make differentiation more than a pipe dream, and tapping into resources and educators who can amplify both the standards and their students’ chances of success. It’s a great opportunity to right one of the wrongs perpetrated on U.S. K–12 education during the NCLB era. In so doing, we can brighten the prospects of millions of kids—as well as the entire country’s future.”(more)