Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Simple, clear language...


flickr image via iUnique Fx ©
A good friend gave this newspaper clipping to me a while back…
The parents of a Houston high school student received a message from the principal about a special meeting on a proposed educational program.
It read, “Our school’s cross-graded, multi-ethnic, individualized learning program is designed to enhance the concept of an open-ended learning program with emphasis on a continuum of multi-ethnic, academically enriched learning using the identified intellectually gifted child as the agent or director of his own learning.”
The parent wrote the principal, “I have a college degree, speak two foreign languages and four Indian dialects, have been to a number of county fairs and three goat ropings, but I haven’t the faintest idea as to what the hell you are talking about. Do you?”
When I read this it made me think about the language I choose when talking to others, especially students, their parents and also to my colleagues. There is great value in simple words. We can so easily get caught up in the jargon surrounding teaching and learning. We should keep it simple, I think.
As a school administrator I vow to use simple, clear language in my communication with people at school.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Kids really do live in their own world...

 flickr photo via Chris Campbell

I just knew it...
According to this research from the Georgetown University Medical Center, mental introspection increases as brain areas begin to act in sync. Young kids really do think differently than we do!

I was talking to some colleagues recently and we were reflecting on how we (adults) lose our ability to see the world through a child's perspective. We all had one as a child, but sadly most of us have lost it. When it comes to teaching and learning, this is bad.
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