Australian Social Inclusion Board, May 2009
This text aims to generate discussion around questions of how to measure disadvantage and social exclusion, and to move away from current practices where social exclusion is considered largely in terms of socioeconomic status and income. The indicators that are drawn on are taken from those developed in the EU and augmented for Australian purposes: they include barriers to the job market and support networks, lack of success in education systems, and geographic factors. Full text is available online.
Subject HeadingsThought and thinking
This report examined the impact of primary students' various mathematics competences on their achievements on standardised tests. The results indicated that students' mathematical reasoning skills are critical to later achievement, with arithmetic and spatial skills also important. The report also found that children from high socioeconomic backgrounds outperform students from other backgrounds, streaming into ability-related classes improves outcomes only for high-ability students, and that mathematical self-efficacy is predicted by competence, gender, and the ability group into which they are placed. While achievement is largely determined by ability and social factors, it can be influenced by self-confidence. Full text is available online.
Key Learning AreasMathematics
Subject HeadingsPrimary education
Teachers College Press, July 2009
Aimed at practising classroom educators, this text specifically addresses the challenges of teaching critical theories and developing students' critical perspectives in secondary classrooms. This revised version includes new chapters on ideology and literary theory, and on using literary theory with diverse learners. Sections on gender, Marxist literary theory, and postcolonialism have been refined or expanded, and the text now contains an additional focus on cultural texts such as websites, films and television shows. Additional activities and handouts are included. Adapted from publisher's description.
Key Learning AreasEnglish
Subject HeadingsClassroom activities
Mass media study and teaching
The guide is designed to support the implementation of Scotland's Curriculum for Excellence policy, which emphasises learner-based education and requires educators to be flexible, skilled and reflective. It explores how teachers can work with learners, parents and communities to increase the impact of learning, and illustrates good practice in gauging and assessing learning, undertaking professional development, and planning for pedagogical improvement. Ways to make learning more accessible and collaborative are addressed in terms of using others' viewpoints, sharing and teaching, and making use of information and data. Full text is available online.
Subject HeadingsEducation philosophy
School and community
An ongoing research project is examining major trends in young people's use of technology. It covers trends affecting curricula and pedagogy, including students' increased use of web technologies, the development of mobile computing, the increased availability of technology in schools and the wider community, the relevance of technological skills to the workplace, teachers' technological skills development, and a variety of social and technological elements influencing how education is organised and delivered. Full text is available online.
Subject HeadingsTechnology teaching
Information and Communications Technology (ICT)
This report draws on results from the OECD's Programme for International Assessment (PISA) to examine differences in learning and achievement between the genders. PISA results found that female students tend to do better in reading, and males in maths; patterns of achievement in science are more complex. Student attitudes and engagement levels have been found to contribute to the differences in achievement between genders. This report reflects on reasons for these differences in order to understand potential inequalities, improve student learning, and improve understanding of students' learning. Teachers and education leaders need to find ways to improve male students' perceptions toward reading, and support female students to improve their self-concept in mathematics and science. Full text is available online.
Subject HeadingsYoung adults
The interim report recommends ways to reduce disengagement, truancy, underachievement, and poor behaviour amongst 16–18 year old students, based on interim results of a one-year research program. Factors contributing to disengagement include inadequate literacy and numeracy skills and insufficient social and emotional competencies. As well as addressing these problems, schools should seek to raise students' aspirations, develop relationships with families to improve parental support of children, and ensure that students have opportunities to engage both within and outside the school context. Techniques to lift student engagement include targeted interventions, teacher professional development, and initiatives tied to local contexts. Full text is available online.
ASCD, July 2009
A new approach to homework is taken by this text, which seeks to expand the learning opportunities offered by homework and prevent children and parents from 'switching off'. Topics include homework as a form of formative feedback, ways of differentiating homework assignments, how to reinforce good homework practices, and how to ensure homework is completed and that students are supported in their homework tasks. The text also contains suggestions and tips on developing high-quality homework tasks, and on building stronger relationships with parents around homework. Adapted from Chapter One.
Subject HeadingsTeaching and learning