Suggested Reading (Articles)

MLK Reading a Paper

This will be a dynamic post, because I want to keep a running list of articles that I’ve come across lately, and ways that I think that they might be useful in the classroom.  They’ll be in the order that I come across them.   Hence, I have two recommendations:

  1. Please feel free to comment, and add any readings you’ve come across that are worth sharing – that can relate to classroom practice.
  2. Come back to this post now and then, because I will continue to add to it.

Coates, Ta-Nehisi. “The Case for Reparations.The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 21 May 2014. Web. 09 Aug. 2015.

Ta-Nehisi Coates has been creating a bit of an uproar since last year, starting with the article above, particularly in light of the many recent conversations about equality around police treatment. Whether or not you agree with his thesis, the article could be particularly powerful for US History teachers addressing the legacy of Jim Crow.

Wu, Tim. “The Case for Less.The New Republic. N.p., 23 Apr. 2013. Web. 09 Aug. 2015.

While this article first appears to be a book review, it turns out that the author is using the book as a launching off point to discuss some perils of “abundance”, with particular attention to an abundance of information given to us as a result of the web and our many devices to access it. I want to use this in my advisory class to help students navigate a world thick with technology and temptations for addiction. Our school’s faculty has been wrestling with the best way to manage our 1:1 environment, and I see this article as a possible tool. It is among the very few voices out that says, “More of something is not necessarily better”.

Murphy Hall, Annie. “Bigger Gains for Students Who Don’t Get Help Solving Problems.MindShift. KQED News25, 25 Feb. 014. Web. 09 Aug. 2015.

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes. As a constructivist teacher of math, I want my students to face problems, and have to think about the solution, not merely react with a pat algorithm. Of course, we have to find the balance between an allowance of struggle, and too much frustration…but we will never build up tolerance for frustration in our students if we never expose them to this sort of approach. If you are a math teacher, please read this.

Strauss, Valerie. “Why Young Kids Need Less Class Time — and More Play Time — at School.Washington Post. The Washington Post, 21 Aug. 2015. Web. 23 Aug. 2015.

Honestly, this is a no-brainer. I post it because I think the same philosophy holds for adolescents. In the 2014-2105 school year, I had a group of very, very active young men, who, at the age of 17, looked very much like a group of 2nd graders if they didn’t get a chance to move around.  My and their lives became much better when I required that they take a lap (walking or running) around the field before we started 5th period.  Call it “recess”, call it a break, whatever. It worked.


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