Category Archives: Rough Ideas and Arguments

What Elementary Teachers can Learn from Academic Philosophy

One of the best parts about my career shift from the academy to elementary (middle-level, specifically) education is the level of support and enthusiasm offered when educators get together to discuss how to be better at what we do. When … Continue reading

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Games and Game Elements & Mechanics in the Classroom: A Simple Taxonomy

When I began teaching in the Spring of 2008, I was teaching adults in a college setting, and I acted under the assumption that students were just like me – they’d like what I liked, learn how I learned, and … Continue reading

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A Critical Lens: Standards-Based and Competency-Based Grading

As I’ve been learning more about Standards-Based Grading and Competency-Based Grading, I am struck by something: they don’t appear to be any different in practical application from traditional grade reporting. They distinguish themselves, but they fail to be different in … Continue reading

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On Student Motivation (and on making content matter through gamification)

So as not to bury the lead: gamification motivates more naturally than does the boring, standard approach to content. For those who see my posts and think, TLDR, you may be interested in homing in on the bold-faced ideas, which … Continue reading

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Student Choice + Choice Architecture

When we walk into retail stores – Home Depot, Target, or whatever your personal flavor – effective store designers know how to encourage from us particular choices. Sunstein and Thaler would call such experience-creators “choice architects”. By presenting our shopping … Continue reading

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