Category Archives: Blogs

How to find out the core problems associated with dyslexia as a teacher?

‘Dyslexia is a language-based disability’

It is a lifelong condition or disorder that makes it difficult for people to read.

Dyslexia occurs in people of all backgrounds and intellectual levels and there are many adults and children who are suffering from this disorder. Studies revealed that a staggering of 5 to 15 percent of Americans, in general, have dyslexia. Dyslexia is a language-based disability. It is not a mental disorder nor a visual disorder as many people often assume. It is a learning disorder that affects children’s ability to read, spell, write, and speak no matter how hard the person tries or how intelligent he/she is! And oftentimes, people with dyslexia were called “dumb” or “lazy”. We know that labeling them this way can be cruelly inappropriate. Because dyslexia is not a mental disability. In reality, people with dyslexia can be as bright and motivated as their nondyslexic peers.

In a world where reading and writing skills are in demand, the impact of dyslexia on individuals can be frustrating. However, the earlier a child with dyslexia is diagnosed, the more effective educational interventions are likely to be.

But identifying dyslexia can be very difficult for teachers especially if the class teacher is not properly experienced and trained to spot the problems amongst students associated with dyslexia.

The following methods can be considered to employ to find out the core problems associated with dyslexia.

♥ Proficient Reading Assessment

Conduct an assessment to assess his reading skills with a brief screening test and developmentally appropriate short texts or passages using the benchmark while recording his/her reading behaviors. This method will help me identify the reading problems of the child.

Individualized Supplemental Instruction

After conducting the benchmark reading assessment, you would know by this time his instructional level of reading. If the student is below that benchmark which is 40% then the second method that I would implement is to ask some help from the school to deliver intensive and individualized supplemental reading instruction before determining whether the student needs a comprehensive evaluation that will make him eligible in special education.

However, there are some students who just simply need more structured and systematic literacy reading programs to get back on track; they don’t really have learning disabilities.

Individualized Intervention Plan

A comprehensive evaluation should be properly conducted and if a student emerges the characteristics of dyslexia, an Individualized Intervention Plan should be developed which includes appropriate accommodations and extended time. This testing can be done by a trained school or outside specialists.

Since this is a lifelong condition, proper help can make many children and people with dyslexia read and write well. Early intervention and treatment are keys to helping individuals with dyslexia achieve in school and in life. These students with dyslexia greatly need help from a teacher to be successful in their lives.

If you have other suggestions to find out the core problems associated with dyslexia, please share to the comment section for helping our class teachers dealing with this disorder in the class.

Thank you and God bless you all!

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Ancient Siam Offers You To Discover Thailand In Just One Day!

Welcome to Ancient Siam, Thailand! The world’s largest outdoor museum!

Ancient Siam features 116 structures of Thailand’s famous monuments and architectural attractions. 

 

If you ever want to travel to Bangkok, do not miss the chance to visit the Ancient Siam. Ancient Siam is the world’s largest outdoor museum occupying over 200 acres in the shape of Thailand. This open-air museum features replicas of Thailand’s most significant historical sites along with sculpture gardens and mini-museums. Though the replicas are far from the originals both in scope and craftsmanship, Ancient Siam gains points for its quieting atmosphere, impressive scale, creative vision and dedication to maintaining Thai culture.

photo credit to James Edward Flores

 

How to get to Ancient Siam

Ancient Siam is in Samut Prakan province on Sukhumvit Road, seventeen kilometers south of Bearing BTS station. You can get here by taxi anywhere in the city (through Bearing BTS station would be a great starting point), or take a local bus to Pak Nam and catch a tuk-tuk from there. You can take your car with you as well.

We booked a ticket online before we went to Ancient Siam. When we got there, we found out that buying a ticket inside the museum is much more pricey. Tickets inside are 700 baht for adults and 350 baht for children. But we only paid for 480 baht from the Filipino agent for one person. You can contact her via Facebook.

                 Photo credit to James Edward Flores

When we got inside, we rented a 6 seaters golf cart for 500 baht/ hour. We took a video instead of photos because we’re only allowed to use it for one hour. Otherwise, we would pay an extra 300 baht for another one hour to go around the area. One hour was not actually enough to enjoy the views. After one hour, we headed back to the ticketing booth to pay for one more hour for picture-taking purposes. Surprisingly, we discovered that we could actually take our own car inside for only 400 baht and take note, it’s unlimited time!

                                     

Inside the museum, there’s a buffet floating market too! Again, we didn’t know that booking online for the buffet is much cheaper. We paid 250 baht per person for our foods because we didn’t book online in which we could have been only paid for 175 baht per person. (We just charged it to our experience.)

Why Do Zombies Love Brains: A Lesson Plan

Interesting Brain Facts:

The average adult brain weighs three pounds, contains around 100 billion neurons, 1 trillion other cells to support the neurons, 100 thousand miles of blood vessels, and generates enough electricity to power a low-wattage light bulb!

The brain is more powerful and complex than even the most advanced supercomputer.

Sensory neurons send signals that about 150 miles per hour, and motor neurons can transmit at about 200 miles per hour!

There are no pain receptors in your brain, so it doesn’t feel any pain.

A bigger brain doesn’t mean a smarter person. Albert Einstein’s brain was slightly smaller than average.

Surgeons say that a living brain feels like a lot soft tofu. YUM!

It’s also a myth that we use only 10% of our brains. Even though there are still many things we don’t know about it, we do know that each part of the brain has a purpose.

Your brain only makes up about 2% of your body weight, but uses about 20% of your energy and oxygen.

The bursts of light a person sees after hitting their head (“seeing stars”) are the result of the brain hitting the back of the skull. The back of your brain is where vision is processed.

It isn’t true that your brains tops making connections has been seen in adults who have had brain injuries, who form connections around the injured area.

Each side of your brain contains four lobes. The frontal lobe is important for cognitive functions and control of voluntary movement or activity. The parietal lobe processes information about temperature, taste, touch and movement, while the occipital lobe is primarily responsible for vision. The temporal lobe processes memories, integrating them with sensations of taste, sound, sight and touch.

Teaching your students about the learning their brains and the four lobes of the brain will help them obtain better understanding of what’s happening around them.

Worksheets here:

This company is paying kids to do their math homework!

Most kids hate doing their homework. Period. Most parents enforced their kids to finish their homework before they get to bed. Something that most kids don’t like to experience daily.

Who are we to judge them? We put exactly the same fuss when we were children and our parents were telling us that we couldn’t play or sleep until we’re finished with our homework.

Over the years, schools and parents have tried everything to try and make it a less of a chore, but without much luck.

But one company has come up with an excellent idea to solve this situation- paying kids to do their homework!

Mohamad Jebara has been motivated to create this app not just because he simply loves mathematics but he’s also concerned that too many students grow up thinking that this beautiful, rewarding subject is difficult and boring.

His company is experimenting with a bold idea: paying students for completing weekly math homework. He explores the ethics of this model and how it’s helping students–and why learning math is crucial in the era of fake news.

How would the company fund this thing?

Mohamad claims that paying kids to do homework is no different to paying them to do chores.

He said that ” As a society we’re quite used to financial incentives, whether it be by the government, employers or at home.

When it came to funding, they decided to ask parents to pay a subscription fee to use the app.

But if the kids complete the work on time, the money goes back into the child’s bank account.

Will this program for the long term?

Speaking about the long term benefits of the scheme, Mohamad said:” Mathematics is so much more than just a subject you study at school.”

” In the long run, the money won’t matter anymore because, in the long run, the wonder of mathematics will be the incentive and understanding it will be the reward.”

They’ve been testing the idea for five months in Australia and they’re hoping to roll it out into schools in the near future.

According to their survey, they’ve found 75% of children are doing their homework if they’re getting paid.

Mohamad said that these students who are getting paid for doing their homework are more engaged than those students who are not on the rewards program.

Do you think this would work to your kids?

Watch below if you want to know everything about this company.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar: A Butterfly’s Life Cycle

Butterflies go through a life cycle. It is a series of changes in form than an organism undergoes, returning to the starting state.A butterfly has four stages in its life cycle. Each stage is varied. There is a different goal for each stage. A butterfly becoming an adult is called metamorphosis.The process of the life cycle can take a month to a year depending on the type of a butterfly.

Below is the lesson plan together with the worksheets that you can use to teach about the life cycle of a butterfly. This lesson is good for primary level.

Worksheets here:

Interview Tips: Sample Questions And Answers For Teachers(Video Included)

Being a teacher can be one of the most gratifying jobs on the planet Earth. However, getting those first jobs teaching can be a nail-biting experience.

As a teacher, it’s all up to you to pass on significant skills to your students, but when it comes to learning on how to nail your first job teaching interview, the following tips will be helpful to you. But it takes great practice to be able to master the possible questions with confidence.

I’ve found this video I embedded from Youtube which I’ve used to practice myself for my teaching job interview on skype. There are actually plenty of videos sources you can choose from to help you gain the confidence in your answers. So, I would suggest that you’ll get a paper and a pen to start writing your own answers for each question. Take enough time to listen to the questions and then, write down your answers based on your teaching experiences. I really encourage you to be honest with all your answers. We don’t want you to get embarrassed if the interviewer finds out that you’re lying.

Honesty is the best policy.

Remember that a teaching interview is your great opportunity to demonstrate that you’ve got the knowledge, skills, and experience to become a teacher. Good preparation is a key- so, discover the questions you’ll likely to be asked and how to approach them. You’ll only have one chance to hit the target. Make a good impression. Practice makes you more confident to nail the interview for your dream job.

Think clearly and leave the interview knowing you’ve told them all they need to know.

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

Why do naturally talented people usually fail to reach their potential while other far less gifted individuals go on to achieve amazing things? 

In this New York Times bestseller, pioneering psychologist Angela Duckworth shows anyone striving to succeed- be it parents, students, educators, athletes or business people- that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and perseverance she calls “grit”.

When Angela Duckworth was 27 years old, she left a very demanding job in management consulting for a job that was even more demanding: teaching. She went to teach seventh graders math in the New York City public schools. And like many teachers, she made quizzes and tests. She gave out homework assignments and calculated grades.

During her teaching period, she got struck off the fact that IQ was not the only difference between her best and worst students. Some of her strongest performers did not have stratospheric IQ scores. Some of her smartest kids weren’t doing so well. And that got her thinking. The kind of things they need to learn in seventh-grade math, sure, they’re hard: ratios, decimals, the area of a parallelogram. But these concepts are not possible, and she was firmly convinced that every one of her students could learn the material if they worked hard and long enough.

After several more years of teaching, she came to the conclusion that what we need in education is a much better understanding of students and learning from a motivational perspective, from a psychological perspective.

In education, the one thing we know how to measure best is IQ. But what if, doing well in school and in life depends on much more than your ability to learn quickly and easily?

Angela left the classroom and went to graduate school to become a psychologist. She started studying kids and adults in all kinds of super challenging settings, and in every study, her question was, who is successful here and why? Duckworth and her research team went to West Point Military Academy. In their study, they tried to predict cadets would stay in the military training and which would drop out. They also went to the National Spelling Bee and tried to predict which children would advance farthest in competition. They studied rookie teachers working in real tough neighborhoods, asking which teachers are still going to be here teaching by the end of the school year, and of those, who will be the most effective at improving learning outcomes for their students? They partnered with private companies, asking, which of these salespeople is going to keep their jobs? And who’s going to earn the most money?

In all these very different contexts, one characteristic emerged as a significant predictor of success. And it wasn’t in social intelligence. It wasn’t good looks, physical health and it wasn’t IQ. It was grit.

Grit is a passion and perseverance for very long-term goals. Grit is having stamina. Grit it sticking with your future, day in, day out, not just for the week, not just for the month, but for years, and working really hard to make that future a reality. Grit is living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint. 

Duckworth started studying grit in Chicago public schools. She asked thousands of high school juniors to take grit questionnaires and then waited around more than a year to see who would graduate. Turns out that grittier kids were significantly more likely to graduate, even when she matched on every characteristic she could measure such as family income, standardized achievement test scores, even how safe kids felt when they were at school. So, it’s just at West Point or the National Spelling Bee that grit matters. It’s also in school, especially for kids at risk for dropping out.

The most shocking thing about grit is how little we know, how little science knows, about building it. The question is how do educators like you and me build grit in kids? What do we do to teach kids a solid work ethic? How do we keep them motivated for the long run? Honestly? I don’t know the answer. 

After hearing Angela Duckworth, I discovered that talent doesn’t make you gritty. Her data show that there are many talented individuals who simply do not follow through on their commitments. In fact, grit is usually unrelated or even inversely related to measures of talent.

Building grit in kids is in the “growth mindset” an idea developed at Stanford University by Carol Dweck. It is believed that the ability to learn is not fixed, that it can change with your effort. Dr. Dweck has shown when kids read and learn about the brain and how it changes and grows in response to the challenge, they’re much more likely to persevere when they fail because they don’t believe that failure is a permanent condition.

So, the growth mindset is a great idea for building grit. However, we need more. We need to take out best ideas, out strongest intuitions, and we need to test them. We need to measure whether we’ve been successful, and we have to be willing to fail, to be wrong, to start over again with lessons learned.

In other words, we need to be gritty about getting our kids grittier. 

 

 

 

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