April 19, 2014

Hacking Education to Give Kids Back Their Superpowers

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The brilliant simplicity of this video and its inspiration should herald in the unconventional and perfectly sane Hack Schooling method.

The Superpower of “Activities” vs. the Evil of “Assessments” A.K.A Tests without the “T” Word

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Children will tell you the problems and their brilliant solutions if you bother to survey and really listen to them. You actually have an advantage of finding the truth as they have fewer filters on their mouth. All good marketing technology has you locate your exact public, survey them for what they need and want, then package the material in such a way that it fits their needs. Marketing technology works for all fields, including Education. How to package and label (title) any action in Education is as important as the packaging and labeling a product in the business world.

The virtual K12 curriculum has made a key marketing and learning process blunder. This blunder is actually preventing full application-based learning.

This same mistake could be made in any school setting, by any educator, thus this article.

A Super Power or Evil Baddie? The Digital Identity of our Youth

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Children (and even adults) are searching for their own identities and the identity of the world they find themselves in. They want to know who they are, why they are and where they should be going in life. Due to the technological advances, they can now search at record speeds. “Facts” (non-fictional and fictional) are flying at them everywhere they turn.

We are utilizing this technology to help us answer the age old questions that we, as humans, have sought to answer for a millennium – Who? What? When? and Why are we? The problem is every single step and act me make in this direction is being recorded and can be used by the unscrupulous to their own ends.

The Superpower and Art of Problem Solving – The Artistic Edge

*May 11 - 00:05*

Convincing people of the importance of an education in the arts can be a tough sell. In 2012, math and science are heralded above all else and the general public still tends to overlook the arts. When a school faces budget cuts – music, visual art and drama are typically the first to go.

The reality is that we are doing our children a great disservice by not immersing them in the arts. More and more studies are proving how children exposed to an arts curriculum demonstrate increased skills in critical thinking when compared to their peers.

Think about it. Why wouldn’t an arts education with its focus on creativity, produce young people capable of thinking outside the box? Artists are constantly pushed to explore unchartered territory. The truly great ones are those that produce new and exciting work that has never before been created.

Review: “Who Was or Is …?” Book Series – The Inspirational Superpower of Real People

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One challenge in a virtual school or home school scenario is having enough fun books that are truly a pleasure for a child to read while also being educational.

Our family filled this need with the Who Is or Was …? Series. It’s a fantastic biography series that has got us totally hooked. We are all reading them! Most of the books have a different author but each is well-edited to ensure a smooth read for 3rd-5th Grade reading level.

This series is real people telling their real and interesting stories. It doesn’t get better than that.

Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy

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Lucy is part of Generation Y, the generation born between the late 1970s and the mid 1990s. She’s also part of a yuppie culture that makes up a large portion of Gen Y.

Lucy’s kind of unhappy.

To get to the bottom of why, we need to define what makes someone happy or unhappy in the first place. It comes down to a simple formula:

Happiness = Reality – Expectations

It’s pretty straightforward — when the reality of someone’s life is better than they had expected, they’re happy. When reality turns out to be worse than the expectations, they’re unhappy.

K12: Designing a Personal Learning Plan – Learn What You Love

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For individuals in the United States to compete and participate in this modern, globalized and increasingly flat world, we need innovative and creative people. We need leaders who love what they do and are damn good at it. We do not need stressed-out, over-tested, fact-fire-hosed individuals and expect them to retain their creative and innovated sparks.

Any education program has to be designed around the interests and personal goals of the child. To do otherwise is to lose their interest and self-motivation to conquer the unknown and learn the material; they need their own reason to do it. And it can’t just be “Mom says so!” If you lose their own personal desire, you only have force and authority as tools to enforce the knowledge. Any guesses what that does to creativity?

K12 Review: Virtual and Public School Testing – Overdone

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After only a few weeks of K12 Virtual School 4th Grade, it has become apparent that the technique used within the public school system is akin to fire hose training. Turn it on full blast and hope some of it sticks. To make some of it “stick” in rote memory, test and re-test constantly and continuously.

How unkind and unrefined!

I have met only enthusiastic administration and teaching staff with K12 and ORVA. These teachers want to teach! It is their passion. You gotta love that. The illogical and needlessly complicated additives stem from the testing system and curriculum, not from the staff and educators I’ve conversed with.

The Superpower of Virtual School in Our Digitally Connected World

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As of 2013, the world is flat; there is no doubt about it.

We live in the globally connected “flat” world of a 21st Century digital age. Physical distance is no longer a barrier when it comes to learning. And the U.S. education system of 20th Century learning styles resembling a factory assembly line is being phased out. Good riddance!

As our brick and mortar public school system slowly crumbles, from its ashes rises the virtual school.

The Super Power of Recognizing Opportunity Within Hard Work

Teen Choice Awards 2013 - Show

Tweet Ashton Kutcher Acceptance Speech – Teen Choice Awards 2013 (High Quality) This is one of the best award acceptance speeches I have heard in a very long time, “Opportunity Looks A Lot Like Hard Work.” I watched this speech after seeing Ashton Kutcher’s magnificent portraile of the creative genius, Steve Jobs, in the recently […]