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Mark White's Blog (12)

To Compute or Not to Compute?

As we race to place technology in the hands of students in our schools, let’s consider an alternative view. The New York Times published an article on its front page on October 23, 2011, titled A Silicon Valley School that Doesn’t Compute (by Matt Richtel; at…


Added by Mark White on October 27, 2011 at 11:34am — 1 Comment

Project-Based Learning in the Digital Age

Here are a few points about project-based learning taken from Reinventing Project-Based Learning: Your Field Guide to Real-World Projects in the Digital Age by Suzie Boss and Jane Krauss.

1. John Seely Brown, former chief scientist of the Palo Alto Research Center in California, suggests that we should imagine what “passion based learning” would look like. Replace the term project with passion and think about your idea again…

2. Keeping a project moving… Continue

Added by Mark White on October 6, 2011 at 9:46am — No Comments

Four Ways Business Leaders Might Transform Education

As an American educator, I’ve lived with the changes that have come to our profession in the past twenty-five years. Today’s students are the most tested students of any generation in American history, and our educators are facing accountability measures unlike anything ever imagined by their predecessors. We have spent our careers working in a system that places its highest values on high test scores.



Added by Mark White on September 11, 2011 at 5:33pm — 1 Comment

Will Increased Technology Usage Improve State Test Scores? Probably Not

When schools make dramatic upgrades in technology, observers frequently hope the upgrades will increase student scores on state tests, and then they are disappointed when the scores remain stagnant. But is that the main reason we need to get more technology into the hands of students? To raise test scores?


I think people who link education technology and state test scores are missing the…


Added by Mark White on September 8, 2011 at 2:01pm — No Comments

How Technology Might Unfreeze Education

Around 100 years ago, Kurt Lewin coined the term “unfreezing,” meaning to break out of a paradigm in which we have been “frozen.” Now we live in exponential times, and educators are struggling to keep up with societal and technology changes that are occurring more quickly than ever before. These changes will not stop; in the near future they will continue to increase in number and influence. These rapid changes put all models of education at risk − if obsolete…


Added by Mark White on September 6, 2011 at 8:31am — No Comments

10 Rules that Made Steve Jobs Successful

According to Newsweek (9/5/11), Steve jobs used these 10 rules to be successful in his mixture of creativity and productivity.

1. Strive for perfection.

2. Surround yourself with experts.

3. Be tenacious in your pursuit of excellence.

4. Figure out what people want before they know they want it.…


Added by Mark White on September 2, 2011 at 9:15am — No Comments

Avoiding Paradigm Paralysis

Here are some ideas about paradigm shifts from Living on the Future Edge by Ian Jukes, Ted McCain, and Lee Crockett. Technology advances have reached a point to where the changes we are seeing in society are exponential – they are coming so quickly that they are hard to grasp. To compound the problem, the time between the shifts continues to decrease, which gives us even less time to adjust before another new paradigm is upon us.

So what do we do…


Added by Mark White on August 31, 2011 at 5:04pm — 1 Comment

21st Century Challenges

I’ve been reading Living on the Future Edge by Ian Jukes, Ted McCain, and Lee Crockett, and they point out that our schools were built for a world that existed 100 years ago but disappeared with the advent of the Internet. Are we ready for a challenge? Our greatest challenge as educators is to prepare our students to enter a future world that doesn’t exist yet, to train them to solve problems that don’t exist yet, and to train them to solve these problems…


Added by Mark White on August 31, 2011 at 4:59pm — No Comments

7 Points about Change

As we start the new school year, it’s worth remembering some points from Robert Evans’ The Human Side of School Change.

1. American society has changed more quickly in the past two generations than ever before, and that change is accelerating. .

2. It’s natural for people to say they want to change, but then they have trouble actually implementing it because it’s so… Continue

Added by Mark White on August 14, 2011 at 11:36am — No Comments

Leadership Poetry: Leadership for the Heart

I've been reading Learning from Lincoln: Leadership Practices for School Success by Harvey Alvy and Pam Robbins. I highly recommend it because the authors do a masterful job of examinig Lincoln's leadership styles and applying modern leadership models to his practices. If you're a Lincoln fan, this book is a "must read."

Two of my favorite passages from the book are listed below in which the authors cite work by R. Ackerman and P. Maslin-Ostrowski, and by Jim Collins:…


Added by Mark White on August 5, 2011 at 8:31am — No Comments

Finding Our Digital Native Leaders (DNL's)

I was taking part in a phone conference a while back, a rather dull one, when one of the elementary school principals in the room furtively motioned for me to take a look at one of her young teachers who was also participating in the phone conference. I casually looked over in the teacher’s direction (who I’ll call Jessica because there seem to be so many young Jessica’s out there!), and I saw that she was sitting in her chair, her brightly colored phone in her…


Added by Mark White on August 2, 2011 at 5:00pm — No Comments

9 Things about Music and the Arts in Schools

I had lunch today with two great retired band directors, and as we discussed the future of music education in America we kept coming back to several key points.


1. Today's students learn differently than they did 30 years ago, but they still have a need for music in their lives. They want music in their lives.

2. If music education programs are to survive in our schools, then music eductors must constantly adapt to new cultural and school environments and they…


Added by Mark White on June 24, 2011 at 2:19pm — No Comments


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