Giving future teachers Black history lessons to take to the classroom

Commemorating contributions Black Canadians have made to our country

Giving future teachers Black history lessons to take to the classroomDo you know about the Black Canadian inventor whose innovations were associated with the phrase “the real McCoy?” How about the Black Canadian vocalist who became an international star decades before Celine Dion ever set foot on a stage? Or the Black hockey league that was founded in Nova Scotia in the late 19th century,…

Why we need to maintain performance-based education

Instead of pursuing the unattainable ideal of academic equality, we should focus on redefining our idea of educational success

Why we need to maintain performance-based educationCanadians have an unhealthy obsession with statistical parity. In 2015, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau introduced his 50-50 cabinet, prioritizing gender over merit in the name of equality. And last summer, Ontario Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced the end of academic streaming to combat “systemic racism.” Streaming refers to grouping students based on performance. Beginning in…

What Jeopardy! teaches us about learning styles

It’s important for schools to have a knowledge-rich curriculum that sequentially builds on knowledge year by year. Alex Trebek taught us that

What Jeopardy! teaches us about learning stylesCanadians were saddened to learn that longtime Jeopardy! host Alex Trebek passed away recently from pancreatic cancer. For more than 35 years, Trebek was a familiar face in our homes. There was no better way of testing your general knowledge than seeing how many Jeopardy! questions you could correctly answer. The outpouring of emotion over…

The case for creating informal neighbourhood schools

In the midst of a pandemic, home-schooling is an important option. And tutor-led neighbourhood schools can help fill the curriculum gaps

The case for creating informal neighbourhood schoolsMany parents are frustrated by the limited educational choices their children have right now. For example, a recent article in the Calgary Herald (“Parents regretting in-person classes with no options to go online”), suggests that parents are concerned about sending their children to school. They’re equally concerned by the lack of spaces in online courses…

Online learners falling behind in their reading skills

Especially if they already struggled with reading before COVID-19

Online learners falling behind in their reading skillsLast spring’s COVID-19 school closures put young, struggling readers further behind in their skills – and the situation won’t get better unless there are changes to online and at-home instruction, suggests a University of Alberta reading expert. A comparison of reading ability scores among students in Grades 1 to 3 in a sampling of Alberta…

Social connections critical for students with learning disabilities: study

U of A education researcher offers advice on how post-secondary schools and students can foster a sense of belonging and improve learning

Social connections critical for students with learning disabilities: studyFor any first-year student, university classes can seem scary. Add in a learning disability and it’s easy to be overwhelmed. Just ask Lauren Goegan. Now a post-doctoral researcher in the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Education, she vividly recalls one of the first lectures she attended as a new undergraduate with dyslexia. The class was delivered…

How parents can help their kids succeed at online learning

Teamwork by parents, teachers and students is key, says U of A education expert who offers four ways to make it happen

How parents can help their kids succeed at online learningFor students learning from home this year, there will be some lingering challenges from last spring’s COVID-19 shutdown: parents busy balancing their own work needs, no in-person connection with teachers, technology headaches. But the best way to support online learners is through solid teamwork involving everyone in the equation, says a University of Alberta education…

School choice key to improving education

Competition is always better than monopoly and the education system is no exception

School choice key to improving educationThe Ontario government recently announced a new elementary school math curriculum. It’s likely a positive step but more fundamental funding changes are necessary to truly improve the province’s education system. The province will return to a “back to basics” approach to math aimed at improving standardized test scores. It will also introduce lessons on financial…

Why remote learning takes new ways of thinking

Students, teachers must be more mindful of how they think, says U of A expert who offers advice on making the shift

Why remote learning takes new ways of thinkingAs students log in to online classes this fall, they’ll have to adjust their thinking caps in a new way, a University of Alberta education expert advises. “People will have to be more mindful of how they think, not just what they think,” said Greg Thomas, a Faculty of Education expert in metacognition – one’s self-reflection on…
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