Little Scholars

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today’s writing technology July 11, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — irishprincess71 @ 5:05 pm
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Teenagers have it hard it today’s world. They can use writing as an outlet to their feelings. Most teenagers writing today for pleasure not only for school work. Technology has changed so much that it is easier to connect with people who share their same intrests. Technology today makes connecting easier for them.

Teenagers’ lives are filled with writing. All teens write for school, and 93% of teens say they write for their own pleasure. Most notably, the vast majority of teens have eagerly embraced written communication with their peers as they share messages on their social network pages, in emails and instant messages online, and through fast-paced thumb choreography on their cell phones. Parents believe that their children write more as teens than they did at that age.

http://pewresearch.org/pubs/808/writing-technology-and-teens

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Is State Funding Sufficient ? July 5, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — jax1234 @ 3:01 am
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Should we all be considering if enough is being spent on educating our children?  Look at the New Jersey Department of Education website to view what funding your school district will be receiving for the upcoming school year and try to factor if this is actually enough to sustain the programs that you district offers.  Take the time to compare what your state receives in relations to surrounding states, both higher income and lower income. Are your children receiving their fair share?

 

Full-Day Kindergarten

Filed under: Uncategorized — kegreen17 @ 2:59 am
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Full-Day kindergarten is becoming quite popular. Parents who work full-time seem to be major supporters of full-day kindergarten programs because, unlike in half-day kindergarten programs, they would not have to find child care for afterschool. Full-day kindergarten programs are found primarily in low-income and minority school districts. Full-day kindergarten programs are also less expensive because the school districts would not have to hire people for the mid-day switch between morning and afternoon kindergarten classes; these people being bus drivers, aides, and crossing guards. Besides the cost, full-day kindergarten programs prove to be beneficial to the learning of kindergarten students. Full-day kindergarten programs will:
“* integrate new learning with past experiences through project work and through mixed-ability and mixed-age grouping (Drew & Law, 1990; Katz, 1995) in an unhurried setting;
* involve children in first-hand experience and informal interaction with objects, other children, and adults (Housden & Kam, 1992);
* emphasize language development and appropriate preliteracy experiences;
* work with parents to share information about their children, build understanding of parent and teacher roles, emphasize reading to children in school and at home, and set the stage for later parent-teacher partnerships;
* offer a balance of small group, large group, and individual activities (Katz, 1995);
*assess students’ progress through close teacher observation and systematic collection and examination of students’ work, often using portfolios; and
* develop children’s social skills, including conflict resolution strategies. (Rothenberg).”
My only concern with full-day kindergarten programs is how these programs would help those students who enter kindergarten straight from home. Even though pre-kindergarten has become popular, not all children start in a pre-kindergarten program. Other than that, I agree with Dianne Rothenberg, the author of this article, in that full-day kindergarten programs can be great for our younger students.
To read the full article, please visit this site.

 

Harlem Zone Project July 4, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — jax1234 @ 7:51 pm
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One inner city works to insure that its future is a better one than its past has been.  By creating a community wide program that assists in raising each and every children within the community. http://www.hcz.org/programs/the-hcz-project#baby_college .  At this time one of the projects that The Harlem Children’s Zone Project is attempting to work on is a sense of community through helping to assure that every child in the community is successful in school.  By instilling this into youngsters their hope is that as they grow the child will continue to take pride in where they live as well as in themselves.  President Obama speaks in some length about the power of this project in this video.  This HCZ starts before the child is even born by offering parenting classes and counseling to the future parents.  This continues as the child grows and soon becomes classes for the child themselves.  The hope of the program is to continue to follow the child trough high school and even into college.  Each step of the child’s education includes additional programs to assist in making it easier for the child to succeed.

 

Online Friendship ?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Melissa L. @ 5:13 pm
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In the article “Brave New World of Digital Intimacy,” Clive Thompson discusses social networking – facebook, myspace, twitter. All of these sites allow us to think that we know people because we get a look into their lives and personalities. But are these sites really allowing us to know people?

I think with these sites today, we think that we really know people. We can meet people from all over the world and just by looking at their pages and messaging them back and forth, we automatically think that we really know them. But the truth is, we really don’t. With all these online social networking sites, we really can be whoever we want to be.We can come across as anyone and no one knows the truth except for ourselves and those who we know – in real life.

With these sites we constantly have to check back and forth to see their “status” – are they still single? Are they going out this weekend? How do they feel today?  But again, what is really the truth?

I have personally stayed away from these social networking sites because I feel like they invade privacy. I’m sorry but I don’t want everyone looking and seeing what I’m doing everyday. I don’t want anyone, who I may have once known but am no longer friends with finding me and thinking we have a great friendship. 

While I do use the computer to research topics and for entertainment reasons, I have chosen to completely avoid social networking. I prefer face to face contact more then this fake intimacy of friendship that social networking brings.

 

How Children Learn

Filed under: Uncategorized — cott3178 @ 5:09 am
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As stated by Diane Trister Dodge & Toni S. Bickart, “There is now more research on how people learn and specifically on how young children learn than we have ever had before. This research has led to widespread debates in both the general public and media as well as the profession about curriculum and pedagogy. Frequently missing from the debate, however, is an understanding of how teachers make decisions in the classroom.

High-quality programs are planned and implemented by people who are skilled and knowledgeable about young children and how they learn. But even the best trained professionals find it beneficial and appropriate to teach in early childhood programs that use a curriculum as a focus for learning. An early childhood curriculum offers educators a vision of what an age-appropriate program looks like and a framework for making decisions about how to achieve that vision.

Curriculum in early childhood is defined as “an organized framework” that includes three components (Bredekamp & Rosegrant, 1992, p. 10):

Content—This component is the subject matter of the curriculum, the goals and objectives for children’s learning.

Processes—This component is the pedagogy of learning, how teachers teach, and the ways in which children achieve the goals and objectives of the curriculum.

Context—This component is the setting, the environment in which learning takes place.

Each of these components, to be implemented well, requires a knowledge of how children develop and learn at each stage of development; their individual strengths, interests, and needs; and the social and cultural contexts in which they live (Bredekamp & Copple, 1997, p. 9). These dimensions of learning, known as developmentally appropriate practice, guide all aspects of teaching and learning. When teachers understand developmentally appropriate practice, they can use this information to guide children’s learning.

At each stage of development, there are issues of central importance to the healthy growth of children. Therefore, we have created three frameworks to acknowledge the different needs and abilities of infants and toddlers, preschool and kindergarten children, and children in grades one through three. We base our curriculum frameworks on Erik Erikson’s stages of socioemotional development (Erikson, 1963).

Infants and toddlers are at Erikson’s stage of establishing trust and autonomy. Because these issues are addressed in the context of relationships, we emphasize the relationships caregivers/teachers have with children as the focus of decision making.

Three- to 5-year-olds are at the stage of initiative. They like to have choices, to come up with ideas for using materials and for play. Thus, we use an environmental approach and design each interest area as a laboratory for exploring, trying out and sharing ideas, and creating representations.

Six- to 8-year-olds are at the stage of industry. They are increasingly product oriented, want to do a job well, and want to feel competent as learners. In a structured community of learners, teachers can give children opportunities to investigate, represent, and reflect on what they are learning.

Strategies for teaching grow from learning principles moderated by this information about stages of development. Purposeful teaching and learning occur when this knowledge is put into practice through curriculum.”

 

Please visit  http://ceep.crc.uiuc.edu/pubs/katzsym/dodge.html to learn more about how children learn

 

Are Current Government Programs Enough?

Filed under: Uncategorized — jax1234 @ 3:06 am
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It is clear from the research that Head Start has been a successful program for the last forty or so years.  http://www.hfrp.org/evaluation/the-evaluation-exchange/issue-archive/early-childhood-programs-and-evaluation It is not clear as to why this program or similar ones have not been made available to toddlers who are not from low income families. It seems that the government – who regulates who is eligible to receive these services – feels that if you make over a certain amount of money you are capable of educating your child without assistance from anyone on their payroll.  Just because you can earn a decent wage doesn’t mean that you will or can devote the time necessary to insure that your child will enter school with the skills necessary to succeed.  In a world that is as competitive and fast paced as we currently are if a child enters kindergarten without having attended some kind of preschool they are at a real disadvantage.  As a mother that was able to stay home until my youngest was in fifth grade (eleven years ago) I would be the first to advocate a child not being put into daycare, but as an elementary school employee I would argue that it is necessary for every child to receive some kind of schooling before entering kindergarten. Many schools offer full day kindergarten and starting approximately the third week of September there is daily learning taking place.  By this I mean everyday something new is introduced.  If a child has never been in the school setting prior to entering kindergarten they are just starting to feel comfortable by the third week of September and by no means are ready to start learning.  The current administration should consider that just because you earn a livable wage doesn’t mean your child would not benefit from attending a preschool program at no cost to the parents.