Immersion Learning Fails Students In More Ways Than One

When I was 16, I attended high school in the French city of Rennes. Like many foreign exchange students before me, I was assigned the same classes as local French students - literature, math and science classes - all, of course, entirely taught in French. Despite my (and my parents') hopes that I would quickly … Continue reading Immersion Learning Fails Students In More Ways Than One

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Teaching during COVID: Big Ideas and Eclectic Voices

Sometime at the beginning of January, a leader at my school in China who is in charge of these sorts of things informed us that there was a small outbreak of the Coronavirus in a nearby province called Hubei. Few of the expat teachers at the meeting, me included, knew where that was. With the … Continue reading Teaching during COVID: Big Ideas and Eclectic Voices

5 Steps to Becoming a Reader of Research

A lot of people have told to me at my workshops that they wish to start reading research but they don't know where to start. I usually respond by recommending popular books, such as How Learning Happens: Seminal Works in Educational Psychology and What They Mean in Practice and How We Learn: Why Brains Learn … Continue reading 5 Steps to Becoming a Reader of Research

A Learning Pyramid Profession

This week I tweeted a thread that started with this learning pyramid: https://twitter.com/MrZachG/status/1262938445158117376?s=20 For anyone who didn't know already, everything about the Learning Pyramid is fake (Letrud & Hernes, 2018). There have been numerous iterations of it passed around at education conferences and, yes, Twitter too, for more than 160 years! Do a Google image … Continue reading A Learning Pyramid Profession

Reducing the Distance in Distance Learning

Educators continue to ask both the right and wrong questions about distance learning during this online learning period. In a recentĀ post, I argued that instead of squabbling over which technology we use, or whether a synchronous format has advantages over an asynchronous format, we should look at distance learning through a different lens. Specifically, we … Continue reading Reducing the Distance in Distance Learning

How Rapid Prototyping in Schools can Fail.

How does your school solve problems, make changes, or figure out what works best? In my previous post I wrote about how important it is for schools to get used to the idea of conducting controlled experiments to generate new knowledge for how make decisions and solve problems. In this post, I am going to … Continue reading How Rapid Prototyping in Schools can Fail.

From Meetings to Prototypes: The Importance of Being Experimental

Educators are problem-solvers in a profession riddled with instructional and non-instructional problems. In any one school, countless problems need to be solved concurrently; Maybe one grade level needs help with improving students' decoding skills, while the specialist teachers are curious how adjusting class periods would affect learning, while at the same time, despite heavy investment … Continue reading From Meetings to Prototypes: The Importance of Being Experimental

The Unproductive Debate of Synchronous vs. Asynchronous Learning

Like millions of people around the globe right now, I am practicing social distancing. One valid point that has been brought up online is that the term should really be physical distancing rather than social distancing; Of course self-isolation and quarantine separate us geographically, but the psychological space between us doesn't have to be so … Continue reading The Unproductive Debate of Synchronous vs. Asynchronous Learning

Has the Coronavirus Online Period Proven that all Teachers can use Technology?

I love online learning. I love it so much that I decided to get an online degree in it. Working in a physical brick-and-mortar school is a pleasure, for sure, but I've long been interested in bringing the best of online learning into the face-to-face classroom. This is not because I think these tools are … Continue reading Has the Coronavirus Online Period Proven that all Teachers can use Technology?

Every School Needs a Research Group

I'm looking forward to 12:50 this Wednesday, the time that is usually reserved for teachers and students to eat lunch. Usually my lunch routine is to sign out, walk across the street (carefully), and choose between ma la tang or ma la xiang guo from one of the stalls that cater to mostly Chinese college … Continue reading Every School Needs a Research Group