Good Topics I’ve Seen So Far

September 22, 2014 Leave a comment
  • The life of a high school athlete
  • Teen driving and accident rates
  • Recent history of school vs. now
  • High school student workload
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A Slog Example: How Schools Kill Creativity

September 5, 2013 Leave a comment

Robinson, K. (2006, February). How Schools Kill Creativity [Video File]. Retrieved from http://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_says_schools_kill_creativity.html

According to his bio on TED.com, Sir Ken Robinson is a “creativity expert” who speaks and writes about creativity and education. He has written a couple of books on the subject, including one that came out this year: Finding Your Element

What Robinson Says: In this TED talk, Sir Ken Robinson argues that schools actually stand in the way of students being creative, and that this is going to be a big problem for solving 21st century problems, and finding 21st century jobs. He claims that students are being given, and have been given for a long time, exactly the wrong advice: don’t follow your passion, because you’ll never get a job doing it. Robinson’s point is that the economy and job market are changing so rapidly, we can’t know what skills will be needed even five years from now.

What I Say: Though he gave this talk almost a decade ago, it seems to me that this problem has gotten worse, not better. Schools that emphasize following a prescriptive, textbook-driven curriculum offer fewer opportunities for students to tap into what they know and are passionate about. I do think that Robinson has a too-romantic view of following your passion; there’s a supply-and-demand side of finding jobs that fit your passion that he doesn’t address. Not everybody can be Gillian Lynne.

Your Source Log Assignment

September 4, 2013 Leave a comment

As a student in Perspectives, you will continuously conduct research on a topic of inquiry. You are expected to maintain an online log of the sources you find. A source log. You might call it a Slog.

Generally, you will be assigned three posts per week. Those posts will follow a common pattern based on the book They Say, I Say, and will include the following:

  • A basic citation in MLA format, including a hyperlink.
  • 2-3 sentences of description of who the author is, and what his/her/their credentials are on the topic. If you’re using another source to find information on the author(s), include hyperlinks.
  • 2-3 sentences of summary (“what they say”): what key points/arguments/insights does the author provide?
  • 3-4 sentences of informed response (“what I say”). How does this piece fit alongside other pieces you’ve read? What do you think of the arguments or insights?

Source logs are graded on an all-or-nothing completion basis. That is, if you complete all four of the bullet-pointed items above, you will receive full credit. If you do not, you will receive no credit until the missing pieces are done.

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