Education

Education
6:03 am
Mon July 6, 2015

For Americans Seeking Affordable Degrees, German Schools Beckon

Berlin's Humboldt University — named for its founder, the 19th century philosopher and linguist Wilhelm von Humboldt, and his brother, naturalist Alexander von Humboldt, pictured here — is one of several German universities attracting U.S. students. More than 4,000 Americans are studying in German universities.
Markus Schreiber AP

Editor's Note: We've reported on the crushing burden of student debt in the U.S., and the challenges of finding financial aid, but one area we haven't followed much is the growing number of students seeking alternatives outside the U.S.

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Education
4:30 pm
Thu July 2, 2015

In Secular French Schools, One Group Wants To Talk Religion

A student attends a course on religion at a middle school in Metz, in eastern France, on June 5. French schools teach basics, like the history of religion, but discourage any displays of religious identity.
Jean-Christophe Verhaegen AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu July 2, 2015 6:35 pm

For the past several years, the group Coexister has been going into secular French schools to break down religious stereotypes in the classroom.

Since January's attacks on satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and a kosher supermarket, the demand for their interventions has skyrocketed.

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Education
5:04 am
Wed June 17, 2015

A Vision For Teacher Training At MIT: West Point Meets Bell Labs

Originally published on Wed June 17, 2015 6:14 pm

For decades, Arthur Levine, the former president of Teachers College, Columbia University, has tried to imagine a new kind of institution for training teachers. He envisions a combination West Point and Bell Labs, where researchers could study alongside future educators, learning what works and what's effective in the classroom. That idea is now set to become a reality.

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Education
3:53 pm
Tue June 16, 2015

A Soft Eraser Won't Fix This SAT Mistake

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Tue June 16, 2015 6:52 pm

On a rainy Saturday morning in June, 17-year-old Sarah Choudhury showed up bright and early at her SAT testing center in the town of Lagrangeville in upstate New York. This was her last chance to raise her score before applying for early admission to highly competitive premed programs in the fall.

As she was taking the test, she says, "chaos" struck. There was a discrepancy between the time allotted in the student test booklet for one of the sections, 25 minutes, and the proctor's instructions, just 20 minutes.

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Education
5:10 pm
Sat June 13, 2015

Esperanto Is Not Dead: Can The Universal Language Make A Comeback?

Greg Kay decided to raise his son Linken, 10, to speak Esperanto as his native tongue. When Greg was younger, he traveled around South Korea, biking between Esperanto-speaking homes.
Stina Sieg KJZZ

Originally published on Sat June 13, 2015 6:21 pm

In his Tucson, Ariz., backyard, 10-year-old Linken Kay throws a ball for his dog, Harley.

The dog speaks only English. But Linken was raised speaking another language.

"Li ŝatas salti en la naĝejo por preni la pilkon," Linken says.

What's that, now?

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Education
8:03 am
Fri May 22, 2015

An Irreplaceable Replacement, This Sub Gets The Job Done

Substitute teacher Josephine Brewington receives the substitute teacher of the year award.
Courtesy of Kelly Services

One of the toughest jobs in education is the substitute teacher. The pay is low, schedules are unpredictable and respect can be hard to come by. But because the average teacher missed 11 days of school in 2012-2013, a sub like Josephine Brewington ends up playing a crucial role.

And this week — Brewington was rewarded for her efforts — winning the 2015 Substitute Teacher of the Year award.

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Education
7:36 am
Fri May 22, 2015

How Do You Motivate Kids To Stop Skipping School?

Hanna Barczyk for NPR

It seems like a no-brainer: Offer kids a reward for showing up at school, and their attendance will shoot up. But a recent study of third-graders in a slum in India suggests that incentive schemes can do more harm than good.

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Education
9:34 am
Fri May 8, 2015

What The Best College Teachers Do

Ken Bain, author of What the Best College Teachers Do.
LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Fri May 8, 2015 11:40 am

Part of our ongoing series of conversations with thinkers and activists on education issues

In a year in which we're exploring great teaching, it's a good time to talk with Ken Bain. He's a longtime historian, scholar and academic who has studied and explored teaching for decades, most notably in his 2004 book, What the Best College Teachers Do.

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Education
5:37 am
Wed May 6, 2015

What Happens In Vegas Includes Crowded, Struggling Schools

Students eat lunch at Robert Forbuss Elementary School in Las Vegas. The school, designed for 780 students, enrolls 1,230.
Eric Westervelt NPR

Originally published on Wed May 6, 2015 9:54 am

Las Vegas is back, baby. After getting slammed by the Great Recession, the city today is seeing rising home sales, solid job growth and a record number of visitors in 2014.stru

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Education
12:09 pm
Wed March 25, 2015

Learning To Move, Moving To Learn: The Benefits Of PE

Early physical fitness is a path to sustainable fitness for life.
LA Johnson

One of our occasional conversations with thought leaders in education.

When it comes to kids and exercise, schools need to step up and focus more on quality as well as quantity. And, says Dr. Gregory D. Myer, they need to promote activities that develop motor skills, socialization and fun.

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Education
7:03 am
Mon March 23, 2015

Fundraising Site For Teachers Illuminates Classroom Disparities

With DonorsChoose.org, teachers have an alternative to dipping into their own pockets to pay for classroom supplies.
LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Mon March 23, 2015 6:26 pm

What happens when a teacher wants to assign an extra book for class, but the school can't afford a copy for every student?

For Dana Vanderford, an English teacher at L.W. Higgins High School in New Orleans, the book was Eric Schlosser's Fast Food Nation. Buying enough copies for her class would have cost more than $800. Not an option.

"I get $80 a year to buy resources for my classroom," Vanderford says. "And I have 90 students per semester. So that $80 doesn't go very far."

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Education
9:34 am
Mon March 9, 2015

The Teacher Who Believes Math Equals Love

For her trigonometry class, Sarah Hagan (center) uses everything but the kitchen sink: a flower pot, garbage basket, rolls of tape, rubber balls, even loose spaghetti.
Elissa Nadworny NPR

Originally published on Wed April 1, 2015 7:19 pm

What makes a great teacher great? That's the question at the heart of 50 Great Teachers, from the NPR Ed Team.

Sarah Hagan has a passion for math, and the pi-shaped pendant to prove it.

The 25-year-old teaches at Drumright High School in Drumright, Okla. The faded oil town is easy to miss. Fewer than 3,000 people live there, and the highway humps right around it.

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Education
5:22 pm
Thu March 5, 2015

Why Some Parents Are Sitting Kids Out Of Tests

GIRLRAY Flickr

Originally published on Mon March 9, 2015 12:07 pm

Meet Jenni Hofschulte, the 35-year-old mom who's one of the parents leading the charge against testing in Milwaukee.

"I have two children in Milwaukee Public Schools," Hofschulte says over coffee at a cafe near her home. "The oldest one is in eighth grade." She's interrupted by her fidgety 4-year-old son, Lachlan.

Hofschulte quiets him down, furrows her brow and begins again.

Hofschulte says that when she found out her son would have to take a diagnostic test next year that's required of all Wisconsin kindergartners, all kinds of red flags went up.

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Education
3:34 am
Tue March 3, 2015

Behold The Humble Block! Tools Of The Trade

Bing Nursery School Courtesy of Bing school

Originally published on Tue March 3, 2015 2:41 pm

For this series, we've been thinking a lot about the iconic tools that some of us remember using — if only for a short time — in our early schooling. Things like the slide rule and protractor, Presidential Fitness Test and Bunsen burner.

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Education
8:03 am
Mon March 2, 2015

College: I'll Only Go If I Know (That I Can Afford It)

New research shows that when students think they can afford college, they're more likely to go to college.
Elissa Nadworny NPR

Originally published on Mon March 2, 2015 3:43 pm

It's Financial Aid Week here at the NPR Ed Team (not really, but it sure feels like it). And we're kicking things off with a nostalgia nugget for all you children of the '80s.

The old G.I. Joe animated series famously ended with the phrase, "Now I know! And knowing is half the battle."

It's a catchy line and, it turns out, eerily relevant when it comes to high school seniors debating their college options.

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Education
10:54 pm
Sun March 1, 2015

Young Louisville Percussionists Love Led Zeppelin — And Jimmy Page Loves Them

David Williams (in the leopard hat) and Jonas Gordon (at right) play their xylophones with the rest of Kentucky's Louisville Leopard Percussionists.
Courtesy Tricia Williams

"Too good not to share," Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page wrote Feb. 20 on his Facebook page. "Have a rocking weekend!"

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Education
11:08 am
Fri February 27, 2015

A Glut Of Ph.D.s Means Long Odds Of Getting Jobs

Jorge Cham is the creator of PHD Comics and received his doctorate in mechanical engineering at Stanford University. PHD (Piled Higher and Deeper) is a comic strip about life (or the lack thereof) in academia. See more of his work at www.phdcomics.com.
Jorge Cham PHD Comics

Originally published on Sun March 1, 2015 2:54 pm

This week marked National Adjunct Walkout Day, a protest to gain better working conditions for part-time college instructors. Why are college professors from San Jose State University to the City University of New York taking to the streets like fast-food workers?

They say they have something in common.

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Education
3:40 am
Fri February 27, 2015

Colorado Pushes For Concealed Guns In K-12 Schools

Colorado educators take part in a concealed carry course in Englewood, Colo., on Nov. 8. The course is open to all state school employees. Participants who complete the training are eligible to apply for a permit to carry a handgun.
MATTHEW STAVER Landov

Originally published on Fri February 27, 2015 7:42 am

Patrick Neville was a 15-year-old sophomore at Columbine High School in 1999. He was on his way to a fast food lunch when the shooting started.

Two students, armed with guns and pipe bombs, had stormed the Colorado school, on their way to killing one teacher and 12 students — some were Neville's friends.

Neville, now a Colorado state representative, says many of Columbine's teachers and faculty acted heroically that day.

But, he says, "I truly believe that had some of them had the legal authority to be armed, more of my friends might be with me today."

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Education
7:03 am
Thu February 26, 2015

5 Lessons Education Research Taught Us In 2014

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Thu February 26, 2015 2:30 pm

Studies, research papers, doctoral dissertations, conference presentations — each year academia churns out thousands of pieces of research on education. And for many of them, that's the end of it. They gather dust in the university library or languish in some forgotten corner of the Internet.

A few, though, find their way into the hands of teachers, principals and policymakers. Each year the American Educational Research Association — a 99-year-old national research society — puts out a list of its 10 most-read articles.

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Education
5:02 am
Mon February 23, 2015

How We Talk About Our Teachers

For his study Professor Benjamin Schmidt culled roughly 14 million reviews from the website Rate My Professor. Blue dots represent male professors, red dots female. The farther right the dot, the more often that the word on the left was used to describe the professor.
Alyson Hurt

Originally published on Mon February 23, 2015 2:57 pm

Male professors are far more likely to be considered "smart" or "brilliant" by their students, according to an analysis of reviews from the website Rate My Professor.

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