April 1999 - Strategic Studies e-News Volume 2.8
Visit us at http://www.strategicstudies.com
President's Notes

Winning

Cheating.....It is more common than you think

Book Learning

Real Life Mathematics

Smile

Rain Song

April Links

President's Notes

So much of what we do in school seems to be painted in black and white....right or wrong. But it really isn’t that simple. Educators make subjective judgements every day. We just have not had a systematic way to quantify these judgements. So we rely on standardized tests or other forced choice measures to evaluate how well students are learning.

Our role has been to assist school districts and teachers to develop a way to use performance activities to analyze how students are learning the taught curriculum. If we recognize that students are partners in the teaching/learning process, then we can develop activities that provide students the opportunity to expand beyond a preset level. We want teachers to develop activities that set the parameters for learning, but yet challenge students to expand the concept based on previous learned and acquired knowledge. The teacher facilitates the learning process.

As educators we are reluctant to give our students the freedom to make choices about the work they do. We have traditionally controlled the learning process based on our concept of a preset output. If we write activities appropriately the parameters allow for students to expand well beyond our expectations.

What we have found, for the most part, is that teachers at the primary level have a good understanding of the learning process, but that their knowledge of the content is general. Teachers at the upper elementary and high school levels understand their subject matter but do not view the process of learning as important, as the content of learning. We want educators to know you can not have one without the other.

The earth gives us protection from the sun, it gives us food and water and it gives us somewhere to live. In April, KnowledgeNet celebrates Earth Day on April 22 by looking at how recycling can help to save our world.


 

e-News Page 2
President's Notes

Winning

Cheating.....It is more common than you think

Book Learning

Real Life Mathematics

Smile

Rain Song

April Links

Winning

The element of winning is so ingrained that we become unnecessarily competitive and this can seriously hurt our ability to bargain well and to get the most, individually and/or jointly, out of the situation.

It is mutually disastrous to try to beat someone else; in so doing, you may hurt everyone, including yourself. When you bargain well you and everyone else involved will obtain very good outcomes.

Cheating.....It is more common than you think

Before you assume that your child would never cheat, consider this: In a California survey of 1,037 sixth graders, 38 percent said they had copied from another student in an exam. By the time these students graduate from college, university studies have shown, more than half will have cheated in order to get better grades.

Children, particularly adolescents, are strongly influenced by a desire to be accepted, but they often do not have a good sense of right and wrong. This need to feel part of a group makes them willing disciples of the "everybody is doing it" philosophy. It is important to instill in your child the values which will help arm him against the temptation and peer pressure to cheat. There are ways parents can promote honesty in children.....when they are on the athletic field, playing a game or "exaggerating" achievements to friends. Stress that dishonesty, in any form, is wrong in principle, as well as unfair to his peers and ultimately, to himself.

Despite your influence, you may suspect that your child has cheated. There are a few ways you can deal with it, including:

Don’t’ condemn. Discuss your suspicions with your child, but express disappointment or doubt, not anger.





 

e-News Page 3
President's Notes

Winning

Cheating.....It is more common than you think

Real Life Mathematics

Book Learning

Smile

Rain Song

April Links

De-emphasize grades. Students who cheat want to get a good grade, but they do not believe they can accomplish it on their own. Explain to your child that the grade she gets on a test or paper is secondary to the ultimate reward of mastering a subject on her own.

Uncover the reason. Find out why, in addition to wanting a good grade, your child resorted to cheating. Once you have identified what’s behind the cheating, you can work with your child to help correct it.

Contact the teacher. Although you may want to handle the matter on your own, your child’s teacher can help. Remember that you and the teacher are partners with the same goal: to see that your child obtains a through understanding of the class material.

Try not to be too upset when you discover that your child has cheated. Remember that he was driven by a desire to be successful and, probably, was aiming to please you. With help, he will learn that accomplishing something on one’s own merits....especially the attainment of knowledge.....is far more gratifying than pretending to do so.

Book Learning

Education should not confine itself to books. It must train executive power, and try to create that right public opinion which is the most potent fact in the proper solution of all political and social questions. Book learning is very important, but it is by no means everything.

Theodore Roosevelt

Real Life Mathematics

A good understanding of math begins with real-life experiences. Here are some ways to help your child excel in math:




 

e-News Page 4
President's Notes

Winning

Cheating.....It is more common than you think

Real Life Mathematics

Book Learning

Smile

Rain Song

April Links

  • Get your child involved in measuring things around the house. Give her practice in using a calendar, a ruler, scales, a clock, and a thermometer. At the store, have her weigh fruits and vegetables and compare prices.
  • Ask questions that involve math: How long until your favorite show begins? How many days until your birthday? How much change should we get back?
  • Give her materials she can pick up and move around while doing her math homework. Use pennies, toothpicks, plastic chips, or straws.

  • When you are helping with math, stick with the way the teacher is teaching. Sowing her a new way or a short cut may confuse her. Many games involve counting and problem-solving. Some examples are Parcheesi, Yahtzee, Battleship, card games, Chinese Checkers and Uno.

  • If she doesn’t understand a concept, encourage her to ask the math teacher for help or send a note yourself.

Practicing these suggestions will make math come alive and will help your child see herself as a math learner.

Smile

"My daughter’s computer knowledge far exceeds my own," wrote a parent. "And I expect that gap will widen once she starts first grade."

Rain Song

Pull up the curtain,
Look out of doors,
Hear how it’s thundering,
See how it pours!
Lightning will show
Like a claw in the sky,
And there’ll be a rainbow,
I think, by and by.

Elizabeth Coatsworth

 

e-News Page 5
President's Notes

Winning

Cheating.....It is more common than you think

Real Life Mathematics

Book Learning

Smile

Rain Song

April Links

April Links

 
Word Central
http://www.wordcentral.com
Merriam-Webster’s Word Central Web site, geared for kids ages 9 to 14, and featuring word games, puzzles, and other fun language experiments
 
Favorite Poem Project
http://www.favoritepoem.org/
The Favorite Poem Project shares audio and video of people reading their favorite poems, and invites readers to send in their favorite poems with a few sentences aboutwhy it is special to them.
 
Garbage: How can my community reduce waste?
http://www.learner.org/exhibits/garbage/intro.html
Learn about the waste disposal habits of the average American
and solutions to solve problems related to garbage in the environment. Included are an interactive Hazardous Waste quiz, problem-solving exercises, related resources, and much more.
 
Catch the Wind
http://www.intellicast.com/kitecast/
The site has wind charts and forecast maps for the continental United States, with zoom-in detail and timely data for dozens of U.S. metropolitan areas.
 
Knowledge Net
http://www.e-tutor.com/kn
The earth gives us protection from the sun, it gives us food and water and it gives us somewhere to live. In April, KnowledgeNet celebrates Earth Day on April 22 by looking at how recycling can help to save our world.

 

 

Copyright 1999 Strategic Studies, Inc. (http://www.strategicstudies.com)