Sunday, April 22, 2012

Mann the man!!

One of the most important people in education is Horace Mann. He was the founder of common schools and helped to reinforce the foundation of education across the country. This “Father of the Public School” believed that public education work towards two goals that were practical and idealistic. In 1837 Mann held the position of “Superintendent” and had a hand in the creation of the Massachusetts State Board of Education. He strongly enforced improving education for all social classes. He believed that educating the working class would improve the economy by increasing the efficiency of industry and business. Mann thought that lower income families deserved the same amount of education as those who could afford it. One of the ways he did this was trying to desegregate the classrooms, but the role of religion proved to be an issue. He was not only a leader in education reform,  a motivational force to his students. His focus in the classroom was not towards the typical content, instead he concentrated on relevant information that would prepare them for the real world.
In 1838, Mann created The Common School Journal. In it, he discussed the problems within public schools and what he believed in; “his six main principles were: (1) the public should no longer remain ignorant; (2) that such education should be paid for, controlled, and sustained by an interested public; (3) that this education will be best provided in schools that embrace children from a variety of backgrounds; (4) that this education must be non-sectarian; (5) that this education must be taught by the spirit, methods, and discipline of a free society; and (6) that education should be provided by well-trained, professional teachers. Mann worked for more and better equipped school houses, longer school years (until 16 years old), higher pay for teachers, and a wider curriculum”
Mann was a pioneer for all teachers in education and the public school system. He was one who stood up for what he believed in and made changes to better society through new age innovation and learning.

Playing with Polio

During the early and mid 1900’s there was an epidemic that swept over the United States causing many people to get sick and thousands of people to lose their lives.  This epidemic was called polio and it is a viral disease that can lead to full paralysis in some cases.  The outbreak caused national panic until there was a vaccine created in 1955 by a man named Jonas Salk.  The virus spread through direct person to person contact, contact with infected phlegm or mucus, or contact with infected feces. Since the outbreak in the 1900’s the world has seen a decrease in polio patients, and can be found typically in some areas of Africa and Asia and is more aggressive during the summer and fall months.  Most children are immunized at birth for the disease and most people are only at risk if they travel to an area where an outbreak has occurred.  For children who are affected by polio may result in complete paralysis and they would have to be in a wheel chair for the rest of their life, this may affect the persons physical activity however there are many things that can be done even in a wheel chair especially in the physical education setting.  Some games that students who are chairs users can play are Wheelchair basketball, wheelchair tennis; most students in chairs can also bowl with minimal assistance.  Also to challenge these students during class they can always be checked for understanding by asking them questions, also incorporating cognitive tasks into the lesson to get the student involved will provide some type of challenge besides physically.  Lessons that use stations can be modified to help with the student’s upper body strength, or obstacle course can be set up to allow the student to practice maneuvering around objects.  Figure

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Colonial Education

The nature and purpose of colonial education was different if you were a boy or girl.  Christopher Lamb revolutionized the classroom, when Christopher Lamb was in school the program back then was focused around the bible and, moral and social values.  The discipline during Christopher’s classroom experience was based off of physical punishment; the students received welts and bruises when they acted out.  Christopher Lamb became a teacher after his apprenticeship was up, once he had the reins of the classroom he started to change things, for example he took out the need for physical discipline and began using a punishment and reward system.  Education grew from simple home schooling to dames or stay at home mothers who started teaching more than just their own children.  The education changed a little, yet the focuses were still on reading, religion, and values for the boys.  However the girls were taught homemaking skills by the age of 7 years old.  As time went on a law called Old Deluder Satan Law was passed and made it a requirement that –Every town of 50 households must appoint and pay a teacher of reading and writing, also – Every town of 100 households must provide a Latin grammar school to prepare youths for the university, under a penalty of 5 pounds for failure to do so.  All in all the colonial time period for education laid out the foundations for, local control of schools, compulsory education, tax-supported schools, and state standards for teaching and schools. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A little look at some history!

Schools have grown in a variety of ways over the years from race and ethnicity, the gender, and public growth of the education system.  Education has come a long way since the 17th century in the United States; it has grown from simple trade schools to the laws and rules of the classroom we have today.  The first schools in the 17th century were based around apprenticeships, informal family education, dame schools, and it went as far as hired tutors.  As the 18th century came around the corner the nation grew more concerned about education, and the states got more involved as well.  As the years went on secondary schools began to grow and become more relevant in the education system.  Ethnicity throughout the years has been an issue even with the schools today.  Prudence Crandall was one of the pioneers for bringing education to African American girls in the 1800’s.  She was taught by active abolitionists who were fighting for racial equality; therefore this was a driving force behind her interest in education equality.     She began her own school for girls in Canterbury, where the first black girl was admitted.  The reason this was such a huge deal even though Connecticut was a free state meaning African Americans were not slaves, was that many of the whites in that area wanted the freed African Americans to be deported.   Believe it or not many of the whites were afraid of interracial marriages and wanted African Americans to leave.  Even with the harassment verbally and what not she still was persistent  in teaching young black girls and after her passing the education for African Americans continued to grow.  (image click here)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Practice Method

The practice method is broken down into a whole practice and a partial practice, this refers to the skills being demonstrated and learned either by practicing it whole or in parts with progressions.  The part practice gets broken down in two three sections, 1.  Simplifies skill, 2.  Allows learners to experience early success, 3.  Permits practice on problematic components without wasting time on those already mastered.    The whole practice is sometimes beneficial over the practice for example, an organized task or interdependent skill such as a cartwheel cannot be broken down into parts or that would be difficult to do so it is easier to teach as a whole, versus a complexity task which can be represented through a swimmer and the freestyle stroke because would be easier to learn if it was broken down into parts.  There are other factors as well such as the capability of the learner, the equipment available, and environment can all be factors in the approach one takes when teaching skill.  When deciding how to teach the skill whether it be a whole or part practice keep in mind that skills that are high in organization and low complexity usually are easier to learn through whole practice, but skills with low organization and high complexity are usually taught with part practice, even with these two “rules” keep in mind that they do not account for all the possible combinations of organizations and complexity.  Figure

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Non-Profit Soccer Organizations

I recently did some research on some nonprofit organizations that are affiliated with soccer.  A nonprofit organization “Play Soccer” was founded in 2001 through a similar program in Ghana.  The program started out with 100 kids and since then it has grown to 40’000 kids in 6 countries and still a sport led program.  The program is funded by a bigger brother program the PSNI (Play Soccer Nonprofit Organization) the program is budgeted at a low cost budget with volunteers.  The PSNI provides supportive organizations, quality-training, and basic resources.  The program takes place after school and on weekends when the kids are obviously most available to play and all the kids who are there seem to be fully participant in the program.  Another nonprofit organization is “NEYSO”.  This was founded in 1978 in San Antonio, Texas and completely supports youth sports, soccer is a focus of theirs, and they also work with special needs teams as well.  There are two other organizations that work with this one, one being the South Texas Youth Soccer Association, Inc. (STYSA), and the other being the United States Youth Soccer Association (USYSA).  An interesting rule these programs enforce is sportsmanship.  They have a zero tolerance rule with mouthing off to referees and not playing with class.  I find a lot of outside high school organized sports lose the idea of sportsmanship and care to much about winning rather than playing the game.   I think soccer is a great sport for kids, it has a great tactical approach to it and demands a strong fitness level and it is such a fun game to play.  Therefore any organization that can use soccer to help kids in rough situations or give kids a better opportunity at something has a successful program in my eyes.  Another reason Soccer is a great game for kids is that it is a reasonably affordable game realistically kids just need a ball and making goals are simple.  Soccer also has a lot kids on a field at once ideally the game should be played with 11 players on each side however the game can be modified to be played with 12 or 3 players on each side and the kids will still get the fitness out of the game, teamwork, and can still have fun.  (image location click here)

Friday, April 6, 2012

Teaching philosophies

While being at Cortland I have had a wide variety of teachers ranging from hard raw old school teaching to a technologically based classroom setting and I could sit here for hours explain to someone how one of the styles are better than the other or in which class did I learn more in however regardless of how I learned they all had good teaching philosophies that at the end of the day taught students.  Every teaching philosophy is unique and can have a lot of individuality to it and that is what makes a good philosophy being able to add a sense of individuality to your thoughts and teachings.   The philosophies in the United States are essentialism, perennialism, progressivism, social reconstructionists, and existentialism.  An essentialism approach has the idea to teach the students the absolute needs or the “essentials” to character development, academic knowledge, and patriotism.  Perennialism come from a more context and factual approach, this kind of philosophy is structured around text books, and ideas and concepts.  Progressivism is more of an authentic approach to the real world with primarily focusing their educational beliefs on the concerns, curiosity, and real life experience for the students.   Social reconstructionists relates to the students refining and “reconstructing” the justifications of society and are trying to teach to make society a better place for everyone.   The last philosophy existentialism is very similar to one of Mosston’s styles of teaching which was self-teaching because both of these styles and philosophy deal with allowing students to find the answer to their questions and pretty much re-discover the wheel and all the mistakes along the way.  Now the question is usually asked which philosophy is best and any good teacher will explain that no one philosophy is best however it’s the way the teacher can pull different meanings and lessons from each philosophy and bring that into their classroom and give the students more opportunities to learn.  Click on me for the image 

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Do physical activity not drugs!

Drugs in schools are always an obstacle that students and educators must face.  An article on Exercise and Substance Use Among American Youth found in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine by Yvonne M.  Terry-McElrath discusses the relationship between drugs and student athlete’s performance in the classroom and exercise.   The study shows how students who did not use drugs or alcohol including tobacco had higher grades and increase in exercise performance.  The study also states that students who did use drugs and alcohol used less when they were exercising and participating on the athletic team.  Seeing how substance abuse patients use exercise and physical activity to help control and decrease craving for their addiction, while students are using physical exercise to fill the need for drugs and alcohol.  Now do not get me wrong rehab patients and high school athletes are completely different and are not directly related, but there is a connection between the physical activity and the drug use.  As the reports show besides dealing with alcohol and high school students the drug use both decreased as physical activity increased.  Many people get discouraged when they hear the words physical activity or physical fitness, however many activities that are lifelong healthy activities are recreational and fun, it is more than just going to the gym and working out.  Activities such as hiking, kayaking, golf, tennis, or even dance are all healthy activities that can be used by anyone especially substance abuse patients.  In many of the studies above athletics and physical activities took the place of using drugs and alcohol and have turned their physical activity into a new positive habit. (Picture)

Monday, April 2, 2012

Written Assessment!

Today was my first time giving a written assessment to actual students instead of my peers.  Today my trip to Newark Valley Middle School my partner and I had a written affective assessment that addressed 3 out of 4 dribbling cues and an example of how they demonstrated good sportsmanship during the lesson.  Managerially the assessment went fine we had all the students spread out along the mid court line and one of us passed out the pencils and the assessment while the other explained the directions.  We gave the students about 5 minutes which did not seem to be enough time for some of them.  The answers we received were very interesting and varied from basic one word response to 3 to 4 sentence reply.  Once the first class got done with our assessment they were given a free period so I went and worked with some of the girls with jump rope and we ended up playing a game that had 3 girls jumping rope at once counting to see how many successful jumps they could get as a whole.  The next class that came in we were able to set up and explain team handball which involved bouncing a ball into a goalie free net and having the option to shoot the ball at the basketball hoop.  During the game one of the students had a problem with how his team was not playing defense well and he chose to come over to me and yelled that it was “bullcrap”, I asked him what he said and he realized he wasn’t allowed to speak like that and he responded with saying that it was wrong how his team wasn’t passing him the ball and wasn’t stopping the other team from scoring.  I explained to him that he cannot help his team when he is arguing and needs to cut or some sort of offensive move to get open.  The student caught me off guard because I was not expecting him to be so upset it seemed liked everyone was enjoying the game.  I thought I handled the situation appropriately and it reminded me of my 255 class and skill acquisition class because when we had teaching assignments our peers would imitate disruptive students, and in this case that definitely helped me.