Information Age Education Blog

The goal of IAE is to help improve education at all levels throughout the world. This work is done through the publication of the IAE Blog, the IAE-pedia, the IAE Newsletter, books, and other materials all available free on the Web. For more information, go to http://iae-pedia.org/.

Improving Brain Health

Research in Brain Science (Cognitive Neuroscience) has been making great strides in recent years. We now know a lot more about brain plasticity, memory, learning, concussions, Alzheimer’s, sleep, dyslexia, ADHD, and a host of other aspects of brain functioning. I enjoy reading about this research progress and the efforts to translate the research into improvements in the everyday lives of all people.

I am particularly interested in improving education. So, I keep asking myself, “What have we learned from brain science that makes a significant difference in the quality of education being received by students of all ages and throughout the world?”

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Virtual Reality in the Science Lab

“The medium is the message.” (Herbert Marshall McLuhan; Canadian philosopher of communication theory and a public intellectual; 1911-1980.)

"If you want to teach people a new way of thinking, don't bother trying to teach them. Instead give them a tool, the use of which will lead to new ways of thinking." (Richard Buckminster Fuller; American engineer, author, designer, inventor, and futurist; 1895-1983.)

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Use of Letter Grades for Student School Performance

Recently it occurred to me to ask, “When did K-12 schools start using the grades A, B, C, D, and F to record and disseminate student achievement?” I asked a friend of mine whose first teaching experience was in a one-room school about 65 years ago where he had about 30 students spread over grades 1-8.

He told me that each term he was required to provide a brief written report about a student’s academic progress, deportment, and other relevant topics. This “report card” did not contain letter grades.

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Community Project for Improving Science Education

My 7/31/2014 IAE Blog entry was titled A Successful Community Project for Improving Science Education (Moursund, 7/31/2014). The project was started by two retired scientists, Robert Collins and Cal Allen, who happened to meet in Sisters, Oregon. Sisters is a farming and resort community located in the Cascade Mountain Range, and has a population of about 2,100.

I was amazed at the popularity of my blog entry about this science education project. To date, it has had over 24,000 hits.

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Building a Personal Library for Children

Recently I bought a Kindle Fire tablet computer  on a special sale for about $40. (Currently it retails for about $50.) What a bargain! I have a large, personal library on my Kindle.

Wouldn’t be nice if a parent or teacher could go to one or a very few websites and find many thousands of free books they could download to build a personal library for their children and students? Significant progress has occurred in this endeavor. My 5/11/2016 Google search of the expression free downloadable children's books online produced over 13 million results. While it requires Web connectivity to download such books, once they are downloaded they can be read without connectivity.

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