Listened to How the School Transmission Conversation Became So Muddled from On the Media | WNYC Studios

Coronavirus spreads in schools. Just like it spreads everywhere else.

Over the past 10 months, debates have raged over how to keep the coronavirus in check. What to open? What to close? Where does the virus spread, and where are we relatively safe? Through it all, one kind of space in particular has been the subject of vigorous debate — and, starting a few months into the virus, a kind of unexpected conventional wisdom emerged: that schools were relatively safe. In the midst of the darkness, it brought some welcome light: kids are safe! They can go to school! While other institutions closed, countries around the world — particularly in Europe and the UK — kept their schools open.

And yet, in response to rising rates and a new, more contagious variant, many of those same countries have since closed their school doors. It turns out that, if you believe the epidemiologists, schools do, in fact, bring risk of transmission. How could we ever have thought otherwise? Rachel Cohen has been covering the debates around school closings and openings, most recently at The Intercept. In this week's podcast extra, she tells Brooke about how the school transmission narrative has evolved since the beginning of the pandemic, and how our understanding of the issue came to be so muddled.

Read Let the kids Roam (RoamBrain.com)
Violeta has just started a newsletter on Parenting and Everything. You can subscribe to it here. An account of Roam Research use cases for kids and the accompanying guide for parents “What are you doing?” If you’re like me, a parent who’s not used to silence in the house, and you find yours...

Some interesting, but subtle pedaogic ideas hiding in here.

Bookmarked on Jan 4, 2021 at 22:19

Bookmarked OERxDomains Conference (alt.ac.uk)
Online - 21-22 April 2021
Organised by the Association for Learning Technology and partnership with Reclaim Hosting’s Domains Conference, this special edition of the much loved event is the 12th annual conference for Open Education research, practice and policy. We are proud to incorporate a special strand hosted by the Domains Conference - bringing our two communities closer together in 2021.

OER AND Domains?! I’m totally in for this.

Anyone want to collaborate on a slate of IndieWeb-related topics to submit for this? Proposals are due in late January and it would be interesting to have a handful of IndieWeb tech and some of our experiments discussed at this conference.

Who’s game? Greg McVerry, William Ian O’Byrne, Kimberly Hirsh, Mark Aaron Davis, Cathie LeBlanc, Kathleen Fitzpatrick, Ken Bauer, Davey Moloney, Will Monroe?

Bookmarked Course: EDS-220 Educational Psychology by Evrim Baran, Ph.D. (ocw.metu.edu.tr)
The study of educational psychology involves both theory and practice. Focusing upon applying the principles of psychology and research to the practice of teaching, the ultimate goal is the understanding and improvement of instruction. Prospective teachers and other professionals in training who will interact with students need to understand how students learn and how that learning varies and is affected by each student’s context, culture, and development. This course focuses on the effective application of psychological concepts and principles in the learning and instructional processes; the development of teaching methods, knowledge and skills; and perspectives which enhance learning environments.

Stian Håklev in “While looking for info about his book, I came across some open courses from a Turkish distance uni by @evrimb, wonderfully organized slides. She actually has two entire courses – one on theories of instruction, another on ed psych. https://t.co/h92k0Z1fKm https://t.co/09Nz6QUlA7 https://t.co/Yp7V8m5Hlh” / Twitter ()

Bookmarked Course: EDS 544 Theories of Instruction by Evrim Baran (ocw.metu.edu.tr)
The Theories of Instruction course is for graduate students who are interested in the study of the emergence and the present status of instructional theories. The overall goal of this particular course is to equip course participants with the knowledge of instructional theories comparing and discussing the relationships among learning theories, and their practical applications. The development of the knowledge on instructional theories will be fostered by a) learning by design activities, and b) opportunities to critique and evaluate applications of the theories.

Stian Håklev in “While looking for info about his book, I came across some open courses from a Turkish distance uni by @evrimb, wonderfully organized slides. She actually has two entire courses – one on theories of instruction, another on ed psych. https://t.co/h92k0Z1fKm https://t.co/09Nz6QUlA7 https://t.co/Yp7V8m5Hlh” / Twitter ()

Read Thinking about Educational Cooperatives by Cathie Leblanc
One of the many biographies of women artists that I listened to on my daily walks this year was Dorothea Lange: A Life Beyond Limits by Linda Gordon. Lange was a complicated, talented photographer committed to social justice. There were a couple of things about the book that annoyed me but mostly I loved it and was sad when it ended with her death from esophageal cancer at the age of 70. It seems like she wasn’t done contributing to the world. I have always admired the work of the FSA photographers, Lange among them. Her photo, Migrant Mother (below), is one of the most iconic images of the 1930s Depression. I love the idea of the US government paying artists of various types to document life in the US, especially during a time like the Depression.
Read Talking out loud to yourself is a technology for thinking by Nana Ariel (Psyche)
Talking out loud to oneself is a technology for thinking that allows us to clarify and sharpen our approach to a problem

I ran across this article this evening and some of the ideas resonate strongly with me. The article mentions some areas of psychology research and a few papers I hadn’t seen before.

I’m also particularly interested in the idea of embodied cognition within cognitive psychology. Has anyone delved into these areas in their research or memory-related work? @LynneKelly’s research and written texts encourage singing, dancing and performing (I don’t recall specifically speaking or walking in her contexts, but I’m sure they’re all closely related), but has anyone else experimented with these additional modalities in their practice?

Most of the Western-based mnemotechniques I’m aware of are focused almost solely on internalized speech/thought. Can anyone think of any which aren’t?

I’ve seen several works in which Nassim Nicholas Taleb propounds the benefits of the flaneur lifestyle for improving thought, though his mentions are purely anecdotal as I recall. I’d appreciate any additional references to research in these areas if others are aware.


Like many of us, I talk to myself out loud, though I’m a little unusual in that I often do it in public spaces. Whenever I want to figure out an issue, develop an idea or memorise a text, I turn to this odd work routine. While it’s definitely earned me a reputation in my neighbourhood, it’s also improved my thinking and speaking skills immensely. Speaking out loud is not only a medium of communication, but a technology of thinking: it encourages the formation and processing of thoughts.

I’ve noticed speaking out loud also seems to help me in practicing and acquiring a new language.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 09:52PM

The idea that speaking out loud and thinking are closely related isn’t new. It emerged in Ancient Greece and Rome, in the work of such great orators as Marcus Tullius Cicero. But perhaps the most intriguing modern development of the idea appeared in the essay ‘On the Gradual Formation of Thoughts During Speech’ (1805) by the German writer Heinrich von Kleist. 

Some of this is at play with the idea of “[rubber ducking](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rubber_duck_debugging)” as a means of debugging programs
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 09:55PM

In both cases – speech and writing – the materiality of language undergoes a transformation (to audible sounds or written signs) which in turn produces a mental shift. 

There’s surely a link between this and the idea of thought spaces in the blogosphere or the idea of a commonplace book/digital garden/wiki.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 10:06PM

Mute inner speech can appear as an inner dialogue as well, but its truncated form encourages us to create a ‘secret’ abbreviated language and deploy mental shortcuts. By forcing us to articulate ourselves more fully, self-talk summons up the image of an imagined listener or interrogator more vividly. In this way, it allows us to question ourselves more critically by adopting an external perspective on our ideas, and so to consider shortcomings in our arguments – all while using our own speech. 

I’m also reading this and wondering about memory techniques and methods and how these may interact beneficially.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 10:07PM

It’s no coincidence that we walk when we need to think: evidence shows that movement enhances thinking and learning, and both are activated in the same centre of motor control in the brain. In the influential subfield of cognitive science concerned with ‘embodied’ cognition, one prominent claim is that actions themselves are constitutive of cognitive processes. That is, activities such as playing a musical instrument, writing, speaking or dancing don’t start in the brain and then emanate out to the body as actions; rather, they entail the mind and body working in concert as a creative, integrated whole, unfolding and influencing each other in turn. It’s therefore a significant problem that many of us are trapped in work and study environments that don’t allow us to activate these intuitive cognitive muscles, and indeed often even encourage us to avoid them. 

I’m curious if Lynne Kelly or others have looked into these areas of research with their Memory work? She’s definitely posited that singing and dancing as well as creating art helps indigenous cultures in their memory work.
Annotated on December 28, 2020 at 10:10PM

Read How the School Reopening Debate Is Tearing One of America’s Most Elite Suburbs Apart (Slate Magazine)
In a district where parents are epidemiologists and health policy experts, the meltdown happened one Zoom meeting at a time.
Fascinating to see how the school reopening question is playing out in a wealthy school district with some serious resources most school systems don’t have.
Read - Want to Read: Teaching Aboriginal Cultural Competence: Authentic Approaches by Barbara Hill (Springer)
This book examines a collaborative partnership model between academia and Indigenous peoples, the goal of which is to integrate Indigenous perspectives into the curriculum. It demonstrates how the authentic and creative approaches employed have led to an evolution of curriculum and pedagogy that facilitates cultural competence among Australian graduate and undergraduate students.
The book pursues an interdisciplinary approach based on highly practical examples, exemplars and methods that are currently being used to teach in this area. It focuses on facilitating student acquisition of knowledge, understanding, attitudes and skills, following Charles Sturt University's Cultural Competence Pedagogical Framework. Further, it provides insights into the use of reflective practice in this context, and practical ideas on embedding content and sharing practices, highlighting examples of potential "ways forward," both nationally and globally.
Replied to Notes on IndieWebCamp East Online 2020, day 1 by Jeremy Felt (jeremyfelt.com)
Start a class by outlining the syllabus or the chapters of the textbook. Professors who decide to write their text books as they go with the students. Publish the result as OER. It’d be fun to see some examples of that. 
Robin DeRosa did something like this that serves as a good example:
https://robinderosa.net/uncategorized/my-open-textbook-pedagogy-and-practice/
Not getting enough of this week? Bring your ideas to IndieWebCamp East this weekend and let’s go hands-on to build and experiment with them! Free registration is still open.
https://2020.indieweb.org/east
Liked a tweet (Twitter)