Misconceptions and Growing Minds

Topics for this week include misconceptions in education, solar eclipse resources, and reasons to attack clutter.

Misconceptions and Growing Minds
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Happy Friday!

Here's your weekly installment of education and personal development articles and resources.

Have a great weekend!

In today’s newsletter…

  • What are some misconceptions that persist in education?
  • Solar eclipse teaching and learning resources.
  • Reasons to reign in your clutter.

The News

Here are some articles and resources that grabbed my attention.

  • Misconceptions - Five commonly held beliefs are contested based on research evidence: the effectiveness of doodling for focus, the benefit of reading aloud for fluency, the superiority of talent over persistence, the impact of background music on learning, and the motivational value of grades. These misconceptions might require changes to your current teaching practice.
  • Solar Eclipse Resources - The solar eclipse occurring on April 8, 2024, will be particularly special because it will be a total solar eclipse visible from several countries, including Mexico, the United States, and Canada. In the US, it will pass through several states, providing a unique opportunity for millions to experience the rare event of totality, where the moon completely blocks the sun, turning day into night for a brief period. This solar eclipse presents an awesome learning opportunity for students. Here are a few teaching and learning resources for the April 8th solar eclipse.
  • Growing Minds - It seems our students’ attention spans have been hijacked. “How long can you focus on a thought – or anything – without being interrupted by your flashing phone? With a powerful distraction inches away, many people find their ability to focus has dwindled to a matter of minutes, according to our next guest. New York Times bestselling author Johann Hari explores the importance of attention and how it has been “stolen” in his latest book.” The most important thing you can do to reclaim attention spans is to keep phones far away from the classroom—quality sleep, regular breaks, and spending time outside also help.
  • Resource -Turn your classroom into a Makerspace.
  • Social connections - I started listening to a podcast by Bryon Carpenter called Fresh Air At Five. He walks each morning while listening to podcasts and then shares his thoughts. If you are a podcast listener, this would be a great way to learn about new episodes that interest you. I shared my appreciation, and he responded.
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Personal Development and Wellness Resources

  • Better To-Do List - A more effective and realistic to-do list can reduce stress and improve team collaboration. Try keeping a singular project to-do list, framing tasks as if/then contingencies, and focusing on one task at a time. This promotes efficiency, accountability, and a shared understanding of the goals and progress. “The key to creating a realistic to-do list is to embrace flexibility and transparency, to continually assess your priorities, and to refine and iterate the process as you go.”
  • Clutter - The clutter in my classroom is starting to bug me. Here are ten reasons to reign in your clutter. The two that impact me the most are the added stress that clutter can represent and the visual reminders of postponed decisions.
  • Compliments - There is an art to giving good compliments. Genuine compliments can serve as a means of connection rather than judgment. Here’s how to shift to more personal, connection-offering compliments.
  • Persistence - Here’s this week’s STRONG Teacher Newsletter in case you missed it.


"Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around." — Leo F. Buscaglia

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