Teachers in Tacoma voted to strike late today so there will be no school tomorrow. Eighty-seven percent of the union's total membership voted in favor of the strike. School opened Sept. 1 without a contract. Their issues include teacher pay, class size and seniority.
What's interesting is that apparently teachers striking is illegal in Washington State but not enforced. At least that is the way I've heard it - teachers?
From the NY Times, an interesting column about an all-important question: are we teaching kids lessons that will help them succeed? Not just what they learn but:
"...life skills like self-control, motivation, focus and resilience, which are far better predictors of long-term success than high grades."
“What are we really trying to do when we think about raising kids?” asked Dr. Kenneth R. Ginsburg, an expert in adolescent medicine at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “We’re trying to put in place the ingredients so the child is going to be a successful 35-year-old.
Dr. Ginsburg who has writing on child development cites this study:
In one set of studies, children who solved math puzzles were praised for their intelligence or for their hard work. The first group actually did worse on subsequent tests, or took an easy way out, shunning difficult problems. The research suggests that praise for a good effort encourages harder work, while children who are consistently told they are smart do not know what to do when confronted with a difficult problem or reading assignment.
Another author, Ellen Galinksy, had this piece of advice:
“It’s not just knowing the information,” she said. “It’s knowing how to find the answers to the questions that is the basis of critical thinking.”
Also in the NY Times, was an op-ed about boys and reading by author, Robert Lipsyte.
And making a little bit of lemonade out of the lemon of a hurricane that hit Vermont, comes this story about "When I Was Your Age and had to get to School. "
But on Wednesday, Aug. 31, at 7:55 a.m., three days after the storm closed down much of the state, the four school buses pulled up right on time, and off hopped 18 children from the dark side of the mountain (their electricity was still out).
“They were so proud,” Ms. Prescott said.
They had reason to be. Their families had discovered a half-mile-long forest path that they could walk, from Route 4 across the mountain to their school bus. At first, the woods were still and unsettling. “My hands shaked a little bit,” said Jillian Bradley, a second grader.
But as Sophia Hussack, another second grader said, “Since Vermont got hit by the storm, people think we couldn’t, but we do.”
And one teacher?
After Ms. Prescott was done with the children, she called down teachers who’d overcome sizable odds, including Bob Myers, the middle school social studies teacher. Mr. Myers left his house at 4 a.m. and managed to get to school the first day by 8:07, even though his GPS said “Recalculating” so many times he finally turned it off and guessed the best way.