Disney’s two newest princesses, PISA, and German school design—here’s what you might have missed in news and thoughts related to student engagement, school climate, and the world that affects them.
“Scientists can prove that on average, in the population, certain kinds of behaviors or practices typically lead to certain kinds of results, and these are useful patterns to identify for making educational or therapeutic choices, but your individual mileage will vary.”
—Justin Reich, in the EdTech Researcher blog, on understanding studies that promote and criticize the benefits of video games
“Take Poland: This country, a land defined by tragedy, overrun by Nazis and traumatized by communists; a big, messy place with plenty of distrust for the central government; this country has lifted up an entire generation of students.”
—Amanda Ripley, author of The Smartest Kids in the World, on how PISA demonstrates how countries can overcome seemingly intractable problems like poverty
“This is a movie that quietly declares, in scene after scene, that a powerful woman is not someone to be loathed, feared, or hidden from view. Would it have killed Disney to make sure the marketing proved worthy of the message?”
—Variety film critic Justin Chang, on how the House of Mouse’s advertising campaign undermined its new film “Frozen” (which, by the way, is phenomenal)
“His parents had gone into the hills to get away from electricity and the corruptions of civilization, to raise their children apart from ‘the hollowness of mainstream living.’”
—Gawker’s Tom Scocca, in a serious longread for Gawker, in a powerful screed against smarm
“Photographs of one German school, in which children sit every which way in their chairs, point out the flexible design of classroom furniture—a ‘detail’ to some, but the authors argue it is actually fundamental to successful teaching and learning.”
—BookMarks blog writer Amy Wickner, discussing a new book that offers design ideas for schools
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A version of this news article first appeared in the Rules for Engagement blog.