Sunday, January 31, 2010

State of the Union: Investing in a World-Class Education



WH.gov: State of the Union: Investing in a World-Class Education

President Obama calls on Congress to continue to support education reform, including inspiring students to excel in math and science, revitalizing the community college system and making college more affordable. January 27, 2010. (Public Domain)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

An Undocumented Princetonian

An Undocumented Princetonian By JOSEPH BERGER, NYTimes

Illegal at 13, Ivy League at 18, and then . . . caught.

Friday, January 29, 2010

DREAM TV - The Story of the Undocumented Students

DREAM TV - The Story of the Undocumented Students

The DREAM Act is a bipartisan proposal, which would create a pathway to citizenship for thousands of young students who were brought to the United States years ago as children. If Congress fails to act this year, another entire class of outstanding, law-abiding high school students will graduate without being able to plan for the future, and some will be removed from their homes to countries they barely know. This tragedy will cause America to lose a vital asset: an educated class of promising immigrant students who have demonstrated a commitment to hard work and a strong desire to be contributing members of our society. For more info, see DREAM TV on YouTube or DREAMActivist.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

After 10 Years, Federal Money for Technology in Education

After 10 Years, Federal Money for Technology in Education By ELIZABETH JENSEN, NYTimes

The National Center for Research in Advanced Information and Digital Technologies is intended to bring digital innovations into classrooms and museums.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Colleges Market Easy, No-Fee Sell to Applicants

Colleges Market Easy, No-Fee Sell to Applicants By JACQUES STEINBERG, NYTimes

Lifting a page from the playbook of credit card companies, some colleges are sending applications that cut fees.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

CA Students Face a Class Struggle at State Colleges

Students Face a Class Struggle at State Colleges By KATHARINE MIESZKOWSKI, NYTimes

Educational opportunities cost more and are harder to grasp and even harder to hold onto than ever before in state-run higher education in California.

Monday, January 25, 2010

The Davos Debates



thedavosquestion
YouTube and the World Economic Forum invite you to join the conversation at this year's annual conference in Davos. Share your ideas and questions at youtube.com/davos - the top-ranked submissions will be posed to world leaders during three special panels.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Foreign Languages Fade in Class — Except Chinese

Foreign Languages Fade in Class — Except Chinese By SAM DILLON, NYTimes

WASHINGTON — Thousands of public schools stopped teaching foreign languages in the last decade, according to a government-financed survey — dismal news for a nation that needs more linguists to conduct its global business and diplomacy. But another contrary trend has educators and policy makers abuzz: a rush by schools in all parts of America to offer instruction in Chinese.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

SAT Jan 2010

Week (0r Two) Before the Test

  • Gather all your completed SAT Practice Tests into ONE pile.
  • Review a completed test every evening before the Night Before the SAT Test.
  • Look-up any difficult vocabulary.
  • Note how you used POE (Process of Elimination) to get the right answers.
  • Analyze your wrong answers, and adjust your POE.
  • Re-read NYTimes The Choice Blog: For Those Withholding SAT Scores, Advice on Completing the Common Application By Jacques Steinberg
The Night Before the Test
  • Don't cram for the SAT!
  • Follow you normal Friday Night Homework routine.
  • Go to bed early.

Day of the Test:
  • Wake up fifteen minutes early to focus your thoughts.
  • Eat breakfast
  • Bring Student ID
  • Bring pencils, calculators, ear plugs, water, energy bar, etc.
  • Arrive early--use the spare time to encourage yourself and your friends to do your best.

During the Test

  • Stand up and stretch!

Essay:

  • Read the Prompt
  • Read the Quote
  • Read the Prompt again.
  • Think for 1 minute (don't write).
  • Brainstorm. Focus, focus, focus your examples. Organize. (2 minutes)
  • Write (20 min)
  • Intro Paragraph:
  • Thesis plus preview of your examples
  • 3 body paragraphs. Topic sentence plus 3-4 sentences of concrete detail.
  • Transition between paragraphs.
  • Conclusion.
  • Fix errors and upgrade vocabulary (2 min).

Writing Section

  • The Fist of No Error (see sidebar)

Critical Reading

  • POE (process of elimination)
  • Avoid answers that are too extreme (narrow, general, always/never, etc)

Sentence Completion--1 Blank

  • Cover the answers.
  • Read the sentence.
  • Note trigger words (ex: conjunctions, prefixes, modifiers, negation) which change the meaning of the sentence.
  • Read the sentence again, substituting your own word in the blank.
  • Match your choice with the supplied answer choices.
  • Not sure of the meaning? Look at the root--is similar the root similar to the root of a word that you know?
  • Use POE to target the correct answer.
  • Yes, the word you don't know can be the correct choice.

Sentence Completion--2 Blanks

  • Cover the answers.
  • Read the sentence.
  • Note trigger words (ex: conjunctions, prefixes, modifiers, negation) which change the meaning of the sentence.
  • Read the sentence again, substituting your own word in the blank.
  • Uncover the first column of words. Match them with your choice in the first blank (two answers should be retained, the other three should be dismissed).
  • Not sure of the meaning? Look at the root--is similar the root similar to the root of a word that you know?
  • Uncover the second column of words. Match them with your choice in the second blank (the target choices in the 1st blank are usually synonyms of each other; and the second blank is usually opposite of each other; OR the target choices in the 1st blank are antonyms of each other and the second blank is are synonyms).
  • Remember: there is only one correct answer!).

Short Parassage (new)

  • Read the questions first.
  • The short passage questions are usually about the tone, main idea, or inference.
  • There is usually one dual short passage set per SAT test.
  • Each of the four questions compare/contrast both passages.
  • Draw a quick Venn Diagram to organize the info.
  • The dual passages may not contradict each other (i.e. +/-), but one passage may be general, and the other passage may be more specific. Remember WHAT the topic is about, and the AUDIENCE.

Long Passage

  • Read the blurb (who? what? where? when?)
  • Skim & underline for information (Proper Nouns, Unusual Punctuation, Lists)
  • Mark-up the passage as per the Questions (Beware of stealth EXCEPT and Inference Questions)
  • Read the passage critically (why? how?)
  • Answer the questions via POE

Dual Passages

Dual Passage--Intro

  • Draw a Venn Diagram
  • Read the blurb (who? what? where? when? audience? type of text?)
  • Fill out the Venn Diagram

Dual Passage--Passage 1

  • Skim & underline the First Passage for information (Proper Nouns, Unusual Punctuation, Lists)
  • Mark-up the passage as per the First Passage Questions (Beware of stealth EXCEPT and Inference Questions)
  • Read the passage critically (why? how?)
  • Answer First Passage questions ONLY via POE
  • Skip all Second Passage and Dual Passage Questions

Dual Passage--Passage 2

  • Skim & underline the Second Passage for information (Proper Nouns, Unusual Punctuation, Lists)
  • Mark-up the passage as per the Second Passage Questions (Beware of stealth EXCEPT and Inference Questions)Read the passage critically (why? how?)
  • Answer Passage 2 questions ONLY via POE
  • Skip all Dual Passage Questions

Dual Passage--Dual Passage Questions

  • Update Venn Diagram (tone +/-) (note if there is a switch in tone/argument)
  • Answer Dual Passage questions via POE
  • Finish!

After the Test

  • Don't just go home--celebrate with a special lunch or snack.
  • Go on to your next task!

GOOD LUCK!

Monday, January 18, 2010

VOAVideo: Martin Luther King, Jr Holiday a Time for Tributes

VOAVideo: Martin Luther King, Jr Holiday a Time for Tributes

On January 18th, Americans will pay tribute to the legacy of slain civil rights leader The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the annual national holiday that celebrates his birthday (January 15th). Reverend King would have been 80 years old if he were alive today. More than 50 years ago, Dr. King campaigned across the United States, leading non-violent marches and demonstrations for equal rights for African Americans. VOA's Chris Simkins looks back at his life and the impact his work had on the country.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Haiti in Ink and Tears: A Literary Sampler

Haiti in Ink and Tears: A Literary Sampler by NYTimes

MISERY

"It was a sad song - I mean to say that she was sad and that she didn't know any other kind of song. She didn't sing loud and it was a song with no words, her mouth shut the song sticking in her throat like a moan... so what do you want? She sang as the black girls do, as if you're smothering a sob, and this song always ends by beginning again because it is made in the image of misery, and tell me, will misery ever end?"

Jacques Roumain, "Gouverneurs de la Rosée" ("Masters of the Dew") Translation by Mr. Bell.

American Red Cross Pledges Initial $1 Million to Haiti Relief
  • Send a $10 donation by texting ‘Haiti’ to 90999

Saturday, January 16, 2010

China and Google

China at Odds With Future in Internet Fight By SHARON LaFRANIERE, NYTimes

Many in China, especially university students, view the possible loss of Google’s maps, translation software and access to scholarly papers with real distress.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Lalitesh Kattragadda: Making maps to fight disaster, build economies (plus a photo essay about Haiti)



TEDTalks: Lalitesh Kattragadda: Making maps to fight disaster, build economies

www.ted.com As of 2005, only 15 percent of the world was mapped. This slows the delivery of aid after a disaster -- and hides the economic potential of unused lands and unknown roads. In this short talk, Google's Lalitesh Katragadda demos Map Maker, a group map-making tool that people around the globe are using to map their world.





American Red Cross Pledges Initial $1 Million to Haiti Relief


Send a $10 donation by texting ‘Haiti’ to 90999

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Madness of Crowds and an Internet Delusion

The Madness of Crowds and an Internet Delusion By JOHN TIERNEY, NYTimes

If the mantras of “open culture” and “information wants to be free” have produced a destructive new social contract, how can it be reversed?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Google, Citing Cyber Attack, Threatens to Exit China

Google, Citing Cyber Attack, Threatens to Exit China By MIGUEL HELFT and JOHN MARKOFF, NYimes

Google threatened to pull out of its operations in China after it said it had uncovered a massive cyber attack on its computers that originated there.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Recession Spurs Interest in Graduate, Law Schools

Recession Spurs Interest in Graduate, Law Schools By REBECCA R. RUIZ, NYTimes

A shortage of good jobs pushed a record number of people to take the Law School Admissions Test and the Graduate Record Examination in 2009.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Did You Pick an Activity to Impress an Admissions Officer?

Did You Pick an Activity to Impress an Admissions Officer? By JACQUES STEINBERG, NYTimes

One of the ways that some students and their parents try to game the admissions process at highly selective colleges is to choose extracurricular activities in hopes of catching the fancy of an admissions officer...

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Teaching Green, Beyond Recycling By

Teaching Green, Beyond Recycling By MIREYA NAVARRO and SINDYA N. BHANOO, NYTimes

Several schools in New York have adopted an environmental theme to teach students about local issues and prepare them for jobs in related fields.

Friday, January 8, 2010

A Deluge of Devices for Reading and Surfing

A Deluge of Devices for Reading and Surfing By BRAD STONE and NICK BILTON, NYTimes

Dozens of companies, both well known and unknown, brought slender touch-screen tablets and electronic reading devices to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

ROOM FOR DEBATE: Are They Students? Or ‘Customers’?

ROOM FOR DEBATE: Are They Students? Or ‘Customers’? by the NYTimes Editors

A recent article in The Chicago Tribune described a continuing debate in business schools over whether their enrollees should be regarded as “customers” rather than as traditional students. Should the students have more say over what they are taught and even how they are judged? What’s the risk of the student-consumer approach in M.B.A. programs? And does the issue reflect broader issues in higher education?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Now That the Application Is In, What’s a Parent to Do?

Now That the Application Is In, What’s a Parent to Do? by Martha Merrill, NYTimes: The Choice Blog

Soon, students will be racing to the mailbox to find the fat envelopes of elation or the skinny letters of heartbreak. Almost all will find a mixture of both. This is, of course, a stressful time for high school seniors, and parents can add to that stress or help alleviate it...

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

TED Talks Scott Kim takes apart the art of puzzles



TED Talks Scott Kim takes apart the art of puzzles

http://www.ted.com/ At the 2008 EG conference, famed puzzle designer Scott Kim takes us inside the puzzle-maker's frame of mind. Sampling his career's work, he introduces a few of the most popular types, and shares the fascinations that inspired some of his best.

TEDTalks is a daily video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes. Featured speakers have included Al Gore on climate change, Philippe Starck on design, Jill Bolte Taylor on observing her own stroke, Nicholas Negroponte on One Laptop per Child, Jane Goodall on chimpanzees, Bill Gates on malaria and mosquitoes, Pattie Maes on the "Sixth Sense" wearable tech, and "Lost" producer JJ Abrams on the allure of mystery. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design, and TEDTalks cover these topics as well as science, business, development and the arts. Closed captions and translated subtitles in a variety of languages are now available on TED.com, at http://www.ted.com/translate. Watch a highlight reel of the Top 10 TEDTalks at http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/top10

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Making College ‘Relevant’


Making College ‘Relevant’ By KATE ZERNIKE, NYTimes

Students are increasingly focused on how their major will translate into a job. The response to that demand is changing higher education.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Amissions: Taking the Pressure Off

Taking the Pressure Off By THE NEW YORK TIMES

Two policies designed to take the pressure off college applicants.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Yes We Can!



Yes We Can

It was a creed written into the founding documents that declared the destiny of a nation.

Yes we can.

It was whispered by slaves and abolitionists as they blazed a trail toward freedom.

Yes we can.

It was sung by immigrants as they struck out from distant shores and pioneers who pushed westward against an unforgiving wilderness.

Yes we can.

It was the call of workers who organized; women who reached for the ballots; a President who chose the moon as our new frontier; and a King who took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the Promised Land.

Yes we can to justice and equality.

Yes we can to opportunity and prosperity.

Yes we can heal this nation.

Yes we can repair this world.

Yes we can.

We know the battle ahead will be long, but always remember that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, nothing can stand in the way of the power of millions of voices calling for change.

We have been told we cannot do this by a chorus of cynics...they will only grow louder and more dissonant ........... We've been asked to pause for a reality check. We've been warned against offering the people of this nation false hope.

But in the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.

Now the hopes of the little girl who goes to a crumbling school in Dillon are the same as the dreams of the boy who learns on the streets of LA; we will remember that there is something happening in America; that we are not as divided as our politics suggests; that we are one people; we are one nation; and together, we will begin the next great chapter in the American story with three words that will ring from coast to coast; from sea to shining sea --

Yes. We. Can.