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Showing posts from April, 2014

#BostonStrong: Boston Marathon Bombing, One Year Later

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One year ago, I wrote the following blog post to share resources with educators and parents/guardians - to help work with students and to help adults themselves work through this tragedy that hit Boston, Massachusetts and the world.  In the spirit of seeing the good after a tragedy, we teach our students to focus on the leadership and human kindness that emerges from dark, tragic times.  The 2013 Boston Marathon bombing was one such time, but Boston is resilient, and so are its people.  In addition to the resources below, some heroes of the Boston Marathon bombing are profiled one year later, which is a positive follow-up to either start or conclude a reflection on the Boston Marathon bombing anniversary:

http://www.aol.com/article/2014/04/14/4-heroes-of-the-boston-marathon-bombing/20868687/
http://www.necn.com/04/14/14/BMC-honors-victims-heroes-of-Boston-Mara/landing.html?blockID=865065&feedID=11106
http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/04/13/boston-strong-ducks-marathon/75…

Stress, Play and 21st Century Skills

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While discussing stress with his students, our building's Health Teacher invited me up to discuss students' concerns - at their request.  Students felt strongly enough that they wanted to speak about stress, homework and academic pressure with the principal.  Seventh graders!  I popped up to his classroom, and what I heard was alarming, upsetting, and a bit sad.  Students reported things such as "there is so much pressure, that sometimes I have to decide between playing with friends or doing my homework" and "I'm thinking about dropping out of playing on my sports team, because I don't have time to be on a team and time to finish my schoolwork."

I polled the students, and on average, students have over two hours of homework a night, often not including studying for tests and quizzes.  What does this tell me?  We need to do some work with students around study skills, backwards planning and executive functioning skills.  In her article from the fall…