Summer slump

While driving into work this morning, I was listening to NPR and a story came on about something that has plagued many elementary, middle, and high school teachers for year…the summer slide. The summer slide is a phenomena where students (especially those who are coming from lower income backgrounds) experience a severe decline in their achievement…

Hitting the Target, but Missing the Point

Does anyone else feel like their lives are dictated and run by numbers? I certainly do. We get grades in school that determine where we get in to college. Our colleges are ranked based on numerous qualities and characteristics. Then we get a job and start thinking salaries, days of vacation, hours worked each day…the…

John Oliver & Standardized Tests

John Oliver’s new(ish) show, Last Week Tonight, airs weekly on Sundays on HBO. A number of weeks ago, he did a special episode on standardized testing in the United States and the issues that they raise. The show paid special attention to the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT), which is the standardized test that my…

America’s K-12 Education Problem

In late 2015, President Obama signed into law the Every Child Succeeds Act, which replaces the existing No Child Left Behind Act of 2002. This article from The Atlantic surveys the opinions of many scholars and experts on the state of schools in America. It’s a really interesting take on the pros and cons of our educational…

Power Couples…the new economic divide

Hillary and Bill Clinton, Brad and Angelina, Barack and Michelle, Jay-Z and Beyonce… we know them, love them, and many of us want to be them. As a society we admire and fawn over these power couples and often aspire to be as successful as they are. A recent New York Times article brings to light some issues…

Fine motor skills matter, too!

While soft skills are important for children’s social development, fine motor skills are equally, if not more important, for academic achievement. Interesting read on how something seemingly so small, like fine motor skills, can help children in school.   “The more motor skills children develop, the more motor experiences they are able to have, and…

Soft skills matter

  Such an interesting article about how soft skills matter for keeping kids out of trouble, in the long-term. Soft skills might include teaching kids to work cooperatively in a group or teaching them how to think about the long-term consequences when they make a decision, whereas teaching physics is an example of a hard…

An Executive Order

  Barack Obama’s recent executive order includes using the behavioral sciences to inform policies that impact people directly. To more fully realize the benefits of behavioral insights and deliver better results at a lower cost for the American people, the Federal Government should design its policies and programs to reflect our best understanding of how…