OverEducation


Are We Really Educating Our Children?

Once again, I sat down with the wisest person I've ever met. In this conversation, he and I brainstormed about the educational system. As with all of my conversations with him, I experienced the sensation of being educated about subjects I may not have considered. This dialogue was no different. As usual, he leads with questions.

He asked me if I knew the etymology of the word education. That led me to Wikipedia. There I learned that etymologically, the word "education" is derived from the Latin educatio ("A breeding, a bringing up, a rearing") from educo ("I educate, I train") which is related to the homonym educo ("I lead forth, I take out; I raise up, I erect") from e- ("from, out of") and duco ("I lead, I conduct").[3] With that said, he asked if I could discern what was missing in the educational system. He asserted that we've lost sight of the intention of the word educate.

I'm rarely foolish enough to defend my point of view against him. Therefore, I listened. And he gave me an earful.

He said the educational system starts with a presupposition that children are not intelligent. On the other hand, some institutions believe many four years olds qualify as geniuses. Why is it that so many children grow to dislike school and do just enough to get by if they start as geniuses? It may be because we don't leverage the brilliance children already possess. If you look at the word education, it has more to do with bringing up, to lead oneself, conduct and come out of. These children already have what it takes to lead themselves. They only require guidance.

The educational system is the opposite of empowering children to lead themselves. Instead of guidance, we impose beliefs upon them. We demand they memorize thoughts, beliefs and discoveries of others. We are asking them to be robots with memory chips. We do not engage them in such a way they develop authentic thinking. They only learn to rely on thoughts in their memory. What's worse, is many of the tests are multiple choice or true and false. And there are people who do not memorize the material. They just memorize if the answer is A, B, C, D or true or false.

In that paradigm, children never learn to lead themselves. In fact, that method teaches children to shut themselves down and value the knowledge of others more than they value their own innate brilliance.

I told him his analysis was harsh. He said he was still being nice. However, he said there is a better way to guide people to lead themselves to authentically think.

He suggested teachers serve as a guide to students. Instead of the teacher being at the front of the class, each student would be better served if they led class lessons. The teacher's role would be to work with each student to help them prepare for their turn at leading a lesson.

In that paradigm, the students would have to know the material to teach it to his or her peers. The student would also benefit if they could give their perspective on what they learned and how it relates to supposedly unrelated matters. That would encourage thinking. Furthermore, the other students would study the material with the intent of quality control. They would be more critical of their peers leading class than they are of the teacher. Some of the students would question their peers in a more challenging way than they would question the teacher.

This method would ensure students learn the material and lead themselves. The idea of critical thinking would become first nature and it would leverage the brilliance they already possess.

What do you think? I'm open to ideas. Or if you want to write me about a specific topic, connect through my blog www.turnaroundip.blogspot.com. Ted Santos

Getting A Suitable CISCO Certification In The Right Way

CISCO certification can help you in securing a decent job in the IT sector and so you need to ensure that you opt for the right options in this regard. Certification helps you in staying on top of the industry no matter what it takes. You can easily get experienced once you opt for the right options in this regard. In this article, we are going to talk in particular about getting a suitable CISCO certification without any difficulty. You got to pay proper attention towards the below mentioned article.

Some of the key instructions that you should follow in order to get a CISCO certification are discussed below. I am pretty convinced that you will be able to generate some fine results.

• You should first choose the right path that fits your career goals and experience in the right way. You should even choose a path which is accompanied by field technicians, service providers and routers. You need to be rest assured that you opt for the right options that suit you in the right way.

• Now, you need to recognize the precise certification levels consistently so that you are able to hold on to the current position. Professional level can be easily achieved by experts who are planning to gain more specialized certifications. The deeper security knowledge and professional level exams will surely help you in learning more and more about this topic.

• Now, you got to carefully study the examination requirements on their website. You will surely be able to get some key information in regard to this topic. All the major assessment tests are quite good when it comes to ensuring immense success in regard to certification.

• You got to reassure that you undergo exam training that suits you in the right way. By doing this you will be able to gain some expertise in this industry.

• You should reach the test location at least 15 minutes before the exam begins. I am pretty convinced that you will be able to look out for some fine options. Internet research plays a crucial role in all the industries and you need to research hard online for making the right move.

So, these are some of the finest things that you should remember in regard to getting a suitable CISCO certification in the right way. I am pretty convinced that you will be able to generate some fine results. Enjoy a lot while getting certified.

By Sandra Wilson M

A School That Raises People, Not Students

Education is, without doubt, an integral part of our lives and something that has to be treated very seriously. However, there are some problematic aspects to it, particularly in the way it's being implemented in most parts of the world. The common trend is that schools focus entirely on the academic aspect of kids' education, and completely forget to teach them the other important parts of being a good human being.

That's why it's very important to consider where you want to send your children to study. A regular school may or may not work for them, but what you can be sure about is that your kids will benefit most from a school designed specifically to raise good people, not simply bright students.

These two things don't have to be mutually exclusive either, which is what some parents tend to fear when it comes to choosing the right school for their kids. No, your child won't fall behind in classes simply because his/her teachers are also taking the time to explain good human values to them. Quite on the contrary, a child being raised this way will be quicker to adapt to and accept their responsibilities in life, and they'll know how to contribute to society and be a better person.

Are you confused over where to send your kids in order to give them an education like that? Don't worry - there are plenty of good places, and in fact, there's probably a good school of that type in your local area if you're willing to spend some time looking for it. The Internet can be a great friend here, as it can quickly reveal all the good schools in your area that focus on this type of education.

Remember though, just because you've found a good school for your kids doesn't mean that your responsibilities as a parent end there. Quite on the contrary, there are some serious expectations for you with regards to what you teach your kids at home, and this will be just as important in their upbringing as giving them a good education at school. As long as you follow what the school is trying to teach them, and contribute something of your own in the same tone, you should handle that job just fine.

So, with all that in mind, don't limit your kids' potential and future development just so you can stick to the traditional model for schooling. A lot can be done to improve on that model, and if you're concerned with making your kids better people, then you'll spend all the time it takes searching for the right school.

Just one last thing to be careful about - if there are multiple schools that seem similar (and suitable) in your local area, you should go and talk to the teachers around them personally. This will solidify any impressions you might have of the schools (or break them, sometimes), and will show you exactly where your kids will feel at home - you should know, as a parent!

If you are worried about selecting a good school, you can consider Catholic Coeducation School in Adelaide.

By Trevor Levine

What Happened to the Student Portfolios?

Many teachers want to change the way they do things, but sometimes there's just a lack of tools, a clear plan, or systems already in place about how to proceed. Teachers and administrators are so busy, that unless the tools and the plans are ready to go, sometimes the best intentions have to get left behind.

Authentic assessment is a great example of something so many teachers want to do, but can't always pull off. At one school I worked at, teachers all agreed to a new plan of authentic assessment. The administration had made it clear that each student should have a student portfolio of real work samples. Not only would teachers view this work as part of the assessment process for report cards and conferences, but each portfolio would be passed on at the end of the year to the next year teacher so they could get to know their new kids.

It started as an exciting idea by administrators and teachers - instead of just using test grades, let's look at real student work! Let's get on the bandwagon of portfolio assessment! So the teachers made boxes to store some of the students' best work throughout the year.

Well, at first all was going well. Good samples got saved, and some of it got used a few times during parent teacher conferences. But then, as the year progressed, the realities of paper and time started working against the teachers. The boxes got more and more stuffed full of paper and there was no system set up for weeding out work as more came in. Some teachers kept the boxes in order, and others let them get increasingly messy. At the end of the year, some teachers were stressed when the administration asked them to prepare a final folder of best work spanning the year for each student, to pass on to the next teacher. Some of them managed this better than others - the ones that were very well-organized. Finally, the boxes that some of the teachers made were all lined up and labeled. It was at this point that everything started to fall apart.

The teachers started moving faster and faster to finish cleaning their classrooms for summer vacation. Students were revved up with end-of-year energy and kept the teachers very busy. Some of the portfolios were meant to be labeled, but that just wasn't a priority with everything else going on. And some of the boxes weren't labeled that well either. When the kids left on the final day, admin asked the teachers to move the portfolios and other boxes all into the hall so the cleaners and painters could work in the summer. Some of the portfolio boxes that were labeled well got moved to a hallway storage area. Some stayed mixed in with the rest of the boxes.

Well, sometime late in the next fall, I was helping out at the school, and there was a need to clear out some storage space. Someone said there were a bunch of boxes lying around. They asked me to help figure out what they were and get rid of them. Well... there they were, the boxes of portfolios of beautiful student work. Most of them had never made it to the next grade teachers. "Wait!" I said... "There are teachers expecting these! This is student work! This is supposed to go to their next teachers!" I frantically tried to contact teachers. Some had left the school. I checked on student names... they were all in different rooms now, it would be a long process to match the folders to their new teachers, and some were missing last names and grades. Some folders were meant for the middle school down the road but had never made it there. No one at that school was expecting them or ready to pick them up - it was already way into the school year and they were on to other things, too, and no one had time, energy, or cars to deal with these boxes of mixed up student work. No one could even organize getting the work back into the students' hands or their parents' hands because the kids were all spread out in different rooms and grades. No one wanted to deal with these darned boxes. In the end, they had to be tossed in the recycling bin. At least they were recyclable; I rationalized, as I watched them get hauled away. And at least some of the other portfolios in the school had made it to their destinations and not to this corner of the hallway. But, it made me think, there must be a better way.

Now, just a few years later, at least there is a much better way - digital portfolios are starting to become available to replace big heavy boxes filled with papers. But even as we find good solutions with technology, we still need to remember, that behind every good idea, there's a need for good implementation and planning, so that all of our teachers, students, parents, and administrators can see good things come of their good intentions.

June Schwartz is writing expert for digital portfolio at Open School ePortfolio.

How Mighty Is the Pen? The Dire Problem of Education Finance

School funding in the U.S. is essentially unfair and inequitable. In a society in which it is nearly impossible to advance without a good education, in which education has become a civil right of man, it would be wrong to deny any child quality education.

We cannot logically expect our children to advance in society that will not give them the money they need to get a decent education. And even after primary and secondary education, it makes no sense to put the poor in college debt when they were already given less opportunities to get into that college than the rich. Making college so expensive continues to burden the poor and when the time comes, their children are put in this cycle. This violates the original intentions of American life, giving equal opportunity for all.

Why are there so many struggles placed on those who work hard? Currently systems are based on a revenue limit, meaning districts provide money for schools depending on property wealth of the school. School finance should be given based on the current wealth for one family and society, more finance on the less fortunate and vice versa. If this cycle of giving less to the less fortunate continues, it will create a socioeconomic gap that hurts quality of education, teacher fold, and school ranking.

School funding works at three different levels: local, state, and federal. Federal funding is minimal for lack of educational clauses in the constitution, while state governments are the sole voice in taking control of financing. Yet instead, local funding has shown to be the most domineering and main source for school funding. This has become a problem because local funding depends on property wealth, and property wealth widely varies within city and district. Cities that suffer from a predisposition of "poorness" get poorer the funding. Those schools are stuck in the ditch of debt and are unable to escape due this revenue-limit system.

As well as the federal and state funding level needing repair, the local and district division is also issue. Districts may be considered the smallest unit of funding, but funding inequality is prevalent within districts too. This disparity is exemplified in the rising differences among schools in material and teacher quality. Teachers get paid more in low poverty districts and as a result compete for those jobs. Consequently, high-poverty districts suffer from a shortage of teachers, lower quality teachers, and a high turnover rate. And in our current system, schools finance judgments are per-teacher-based, so high-poverty schools are unable to receive the aid they need because of surface teacher salaries. Schools instead should be given enough money in a per-student system rather than per-teacher system in effort to increase output per student.

Renowned economist and critic Eric Hanushek addresses the finances of education issue in his novel Courting Failure. In his novel, he explores and discovers the correlation that low student performance indicated inadequate funding. It is precisely this situation that shows children's right to adequate and equal education cannot be pursued if do not fix the underlying problems, such as that of public funding state levels need to provide a safety net for the schools of their region. States can do so by providing more to the less-wealthy and less the more-wealthy. Yet while doing this, they must make sure the funding level is high enough that all these schools can function properly, instead of the "minimum" levels they currently adopt.

Hanushek also questions the term "adequacy", the current national requirement for school education. Strikingly, 28 states have been ruled unconstitutional in this area. States assert minimal education standards that no reasonable people would consider acceptable. Adequacy's violations can be visualized if we imagine fully efficient public school and an actual public school or what society believes students should learn and what they actually learn. The space between these two ideas is incredible and throw off all vouches for adequacy. This gap comes from how finance calculations are made, typically through teacher-salary, lack of inclusion for more expensive students (e.g. English language learners), and different standards of adequate funding. We need to stop resorting to traditional terms of what is "sufficient" and instead adopt concrete definitions needed to give real standards to schools so they can be efficiently and thoroughly funded.

Another widely claimed label is "equity", the idea to distribute resources equally throughout schools in a state. If we are to allow all students equal opportunity in school quality and ranking, this distribution should be done in a way that lessens the differences ranging across school districts' abilities to raise funds. Lawsuits claim that such is a violation of the "equity" principle, that poor districts should not get more money than rich districts, but if we do not help or nurture those in need, we are raising them for unequal chances and opportunities for their future lives. Indeed, it is necessary to limit the poorness of these districts.

Studies suggest this inequality can be reduced by transferring more of responsibility of funding from local to state. Well respected Californian finance reform advocate, Arun Ramanathan, proposes a plan to better state-wide academic funding.

1) Instead of a revenue-limit formula, adopt a student weighted formula.
2) Ensure that school funding gets allocated directly towards students.
3) Require districts to clearly show district and school level spending
4) Monitor correlation of financial inputs and academic results. Ensure that those who need special help get the help they need.

A plan similar to the one Ramanathan proposed was implemented in Colorado recently. The plan itself calculates the difference that state funding has to make up for local funding to be equal throughout the state. The idea is that if the districts can raise more from local taxes, the state does not have to make up the difference if the locals make less. The new finance act makes sure to have expenditures visible and comparable for the public, allowing for direct regulation of financial reform. The plan also accounts for those who qualify for reduced-lunch and ESL learners. By diving 20-40% more money toward those students, the financial system balances giving all students equal opportunity. Using these plans, Coloradans have begun showing improving trends in educational finance.

With plans like these, there truly is a future in education reform. But it is up to all the other states, or rather, the federal institution to begin addressing the concerns the students' well-being as students.

By Tanzeela Khan

Studying Abroad Helps to Prepare You for an International Career

Your college years are a time of expansive learning, adventure and hopefully fun! Taking time to study in Italy for a semester, summer or year can broaden your horizons and teach you important linguistic and cultural skills. Italian is a romance language, and as such, is linguistically related to English, French and Spanish. Although learning Italian may be challenging at first, your ear for the language will be facilitated by your native language and your familiarity with other romance languages.

Studying Abroad Helps to Prepare You for an International Career

Learning a new language is just the tip of the iceberg when you go for an extended time period to study abroad in Italy. If you choose to stay with an Italian family as a foreign exchange student, you will learn both the language and the culture much more quickly because of your immediate immersion into all things Italian! Learning a new culture can also help you to quickly develop the sensitivity, awareness and cultural understanding necessary to successfully pursue an international career. Studying abroad in Italy will hone your interpersonal skills and deepen your understanding of other cultures.

Study Abroad Scholarships are Available

If you would love to study the culture, history and language of Italy, but aren't sure if you can afford it, there are scholarships available. A college education can be costly, and often students take out federal and private student loans to cover the expenses. If you are receiving financial assistance through your college or university, you may also qualify for a scholarship to study for a semester or longer in Italy. If you are not receiving financial aid, you still may qualify for a scholarship to study abroad. Please contact your college's financial aid office for more information about available scholarships and to see which study abroad scholarships you are qualified to receive.

With some financial assistance through a private scholarship, you will be able to immerse yourself in the rich and varied history, architecture, art, and culinary delights of the old world. Imagine sipping an espresso on the Piazza Navona after viewing contemporary artwork in a local art gallery in Rome, and then visiting the Roman Colosseum as the afternoon sun slowly sets over the horizon. Spending time studying in Italy will also afford you the opportunity to visit the resplendent Vatican and the Pantheon.

Taking some time to study in Italy for a semester, summer or year is very exhilarating and exciting. It is also a great way to prepare for an international career in our globalized economy. Studying abroad expands your horizons and teaches you cultural flexibility and sensitivity. It also deeps your knowledge and appreciation of current events and politics affecting areas of the world outside of the United States. Another benefit of studying abroad is that it teaches you a new language, which has been clinically shown to increase the efficient functioning of the brain. And, of course, it is very exciting and fun to travel to another county and experience a completely different culture way of experiencing the world.

Visit John Cabot University for more information about study in Italy.

By M. Patrick Quinn

Creating A Great Resume - PDF Worksheet


R.I.P. OBJECTIVE STATEMENT

Lets get started with, in my opinion the most important part of any resume, the objective statement. The objective statement has taken the spotlight and is king on the resume. Now you might be saying to yourself, "If the objective statement is king why am I saying R.I.P. to it?" Great question: R.I.P. to the old way of writing your objective statement. The days of writing an objective statement about what your looking for in a position is over. Since we are a staffing/placement firm for Registered Nurses and Therapists here is an example of what we see most of the time on an objective statement on a resume that is sent to us for an open position. (This is just an example that we made up and in no way singles out anyone)

Example mission/objective statement - To obtain a challenging career as a Registered

Nurse in which I can utilize my excellent customer service and organizational skills while providing the highest level of patient care. The mission/objective statement written above is no longer acceptable to hiring managers and/or facilities. It is outdated! 99% of anyone who has ever written a resume/cv has just about written the same mission/objective statement entailing what he or she as a employer are looking for to benefit them. Remember the title of this little worksheet - WE WANT TO STAND OUT WITH OUR RESUME/CV ABOVE OUR COMPETITION. WE WANT TO BE REMEMBERED AND THE FIRST TO GET THE CALL FOR AN INTERVIEW.

How do we accomplish this goal?

We start by changing our way of thinking. Instead of thinking what's in it for me, think how can I help this company/facility with the skills I bring to the position.

Our new mission/objective statement should read - Motivated medical professional with over 8 years experience organizing and providing exceptional assistance to an entire emergency department. Adept in accurate data entry with excellent communication skills.

With mission/objective statements, it's the first statement that the hiring manager or recruiter will see. You only have one chance and 15 seconds to get it right. Compare the two mission/objective statement above and you can clearly see which one stands out!

When you are selecting a font for your resume, the font size should be between 10 and 12 to allow for readability. You should use a readable, font such as Times New Roman, Arial, or Calibri. Do not use the default - it's boring and we want to stand out.

1. Know the purpose of your resume - The objective of your resume is to land an interview, and the interview will land you the job.

2. Use effective titles - Like it or not, employers will usually make a judgment about your resume in 15 seconds. Try to be as descriptive as possible. For example:

Bad title: Registered Nurse

Good title: Per Diem/Supervisor RN - ICU/CCU/PCU

3. Proofread it twice - One small typo and your chances of getting hired could slip.

Proofreading it once is not enough, so do it twice, and what I mean is have someone else read it the second time for errors.

4. Put the most important information first - This point is valid both to the overall order of your resume, as well as to the individual sections. When describing your experiences or skills, list the most important ones first. You may have to tailor this for each different position you apply for. Make sure to compare to the position summary.

5. Do not include "no kidding" information - There are many people that like to

include statements like "Available for interview" or "References available upon request. If you are sending a resume to a company, the hiring manager knows that you are available for the interview and that you will/should have references.

By Nicholas Blake

Helping Your Child Feel More Comfortable On the First Day of Elementary School



The first day of elementary school for a child can be exciting but can also lead to some anxious feelings. The same can be said if it is the first day at a new school. As a parent, you can do your part to make the transition as simple as possible, and to help your child feel at ease in the new environment.

Let your child know the positive aspects of starting elementary school. They will get to see the friends they have made in the neighborhood. They will also have the opportunity to meet new kids and make new friends. There will be a nice teacher and lots of fun things to learn every day.

Your youngster may think they are the only one feeling anxious and uneasy about going to grade school. Remind your little one that there are other students who share the same concerns. Teachers know that their pupils may feel this way on the first day and will do everything they can to make their classroom of pupils feel comfortable and relaxed.

Talk to your child about what they have learned at preschool and at home and discuss these accomplishments. Let your youngster revel in what they have learned to this point in time. From there, you can move the conversation forward and talk about all of the interesting subjects that are in store in the weeks and months ahead.

Make sure that your youngster is prepared with all of the right supplies for the start of the elementary school year. For example, ensure that there are enough pencils, erasers, and notebooks in their backpack. You also may wish to purchase something for your young student to let them know that although you are not in the classroom with them, you are still thinking of them.

Some children may need more support than others when starting elementary school. This is especially the case if you have relocated halfway through the year, or if your child has not had the opportunity to get to know the other kids in your neighborhood. Talk with your youngster about their feelings, both the good and the bad. Listen carefully to what they have to say. They may be excited at the prospect of starting at a new place of learning, but may also be concerned about being liked.

It is a good idea to visit the educational facility before the first day that your child begins classes. This will let you see the classroom, and give you the opportunity to meet with the principal, vice principal, and the teachers. You may also be able to address any concerns that you have at this time. Bring your child with you as this may help to alleviate worries. Let your youngster ask question as you look about the facility and the playground.

Living in Battle Creek? Elementary school information can be found here: http://www.oneamazingclass.org.