Blog Red

Checking the Next Generation Science Standards Crystal Ball

Aug 27, 2014

Nearly three years ago, I presented several blog posts devoted to the potentially transformative nature of the as-of-then-still-under-development Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and the possible pitfalls to the approach being taken in developing and promoting them.

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Writing Your Way Out of a Box

Aug 22, 2014

Writing texts for reading and language arts programs has been described as “writing your way out of a box.” How do you create a text that is just as engaging for students as a trade book or magazine article…and also helps them to learn and practice a targeted set of skills? Several of the editors in the Six Red Marbles Humanities Department have written books for children’s trade publishers, and that experience often helps us to get the writers we work with out of that box.

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Laura Dress Judges iGEM High School Jamboree

Aug 19, 2014

Motivating high school students to conduct research in the emerging field of synthetic biology is no easy feat. Yet, the iGEM (International Genetically Engineered Machine) Foundation has accomplished just that.

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The “Participation Gap” You Haven’t Heard About

Jul 31, 2014

Harvard professor and researcher Robert Putnam—renowned for his ’bowling alone’ thesis of American anomie—has turned his attention in recent years to growing levels of inequality between young people. While his extensive research project on this topic continues, you can get a sense of his preliminary findings from his working paper “Growing Class Gaps in Social Connectedness among American Youth” (2012). This paper focuses on the widening gap between the experiences of middle and upper class youth and their less affluent peers since the 1990s, and how these experiences affect everything from future earnings and levels of educational attainment to social capital, civic engagement, and feelings of self-worth. Spoiler alert: lower class students are not faring so well.

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