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Dear Commons Community,
Last night I attended a panel discussion at Hunter College’s Roosevelt House led by David Steiner (formerly of Hunter College and now at Johns Hopkins University) entitled Can Education Technology Narrow the Achievement Gap. Panelists included Julia F. Fisher, Jamie Stewart, and Kevin Wenzel. I thought the most significant discussion came when a member of the audience raised the question of why teachers resist technology. The context of the question related to teachers fearing technology as threatening their jobs. The responses were mixed but I would summarize (and add my own views on the issue) as follows.
First, not all teachers resist technology. To the contrary there is mounting evidence that teachers and faculty at all levels have integrated technology into their teaching. Much of the narrative that teachers are resistant is promulgated by technology-vendor hype.
Second, some teachers are hesitant to use technology because the support for it does not exist at their schools. For education technology to succeed, there has to be appropriate infrastructure (reliable high-speed connectivity, training, support staff). While many schools provide this infrastructure, many others especially in some of our urban school districts do not.
Third, education technology is not a panacea and it will not solve all of education’s problems. One of the panelists made the point that students who come to school hungry may need much more people on people attention. Most teachers understand this well.
Fourth, some of the education software and other technology products are not very good. Teachers have to be involved in the selection/purchasing decisions and not just have it handed down to them by the administration.
Dear Commons Community,
Donald Trump became the presumptive Republican presidential nominee yesterday with a major win in Indiana that forced Senator Ted Cruz, to suspend his candidacy. Bernie Sanders defeated Hillary Clinton by a narrow margin. As reported in the New York Times:
“Donald J. Trump became the presumptive Republican presidential nominee on Tuesday with a landslide win in Indiana that drove his principal opponent, Senator Ted Cruz, from the race and cleared the way for the polarizing, populist outsider to take control of the party.
After months of sneering dismissals and expensive but impotent attacks from Republicans fearful of his candidacy, Mr. Trump is now positioned to clinch the required number of delegates for the nomination by the last day of voting on June 7. Facing only a feeble challenge from Gov. John Kasich of Ohio, Mr. Trump is all but certain to roll into the Republican convention in July with the party establishment’s official but uneasy embrace.
In the Democratic contest, Senator Bernie Sanders rebounded from a string of defeats to prevail in Indiana over Hillary Clinton, who largely abandoned the state after polls showed her faring poorly with the predominantly white electorate. But the outcome was not expected to significantly change Mrs. Clinton’s sizable lead in delegates needed to win the Democratic nomination.
Mr. Trump’s victory was an extraordinary moment in American political history: He is now on course to be the first standard-bearer of a party since Dwight D. Eisenhower, a five-star general and the commander of Allied Forces in Europe during World War II, who had not served in elected office.
Mr. Trump, a real estate tycoon turned reality television celebrity, was not a registered Republican until April 2012. He has given hundreds of thousands of dollars to Democrats, including his likely general election opponent, Mrs. Clinton. And, at various points in his life, he has held positions antithetical to Republican orthodoxy on almost every major issue in the conservative canon, including abortion, taxes, trade, and gun control.
But none of this stopped him. With his ability to speak to the anxieties of voters, and his shrewd use of celebrity and memorable put-downs, Mr. Trump systematically undercut veteran politicians in a field of candidates that many in the party had hailed as the strongest in at least three decades. He was underestimated by leading Republicans and Democrats time and again, and he succeeded while spending far less money than most of his rivals and employing only a skeletal campaign staff.”
Bring on the general election! It is going to be quite a battle.
Students who are first-language speakers of a language other than English are, in America, categorized as English Language Learners, or ELLs, and our country’s history of working with these learners has been complicated and politically fraught. Oftentimes, references to federal decisions such the landmark Supreme Court case Lau v. Nichols in 1974 or state-level legislation such as California’s Proposition 227 in 1998 come into the conversation as markers of the pendulum that swings between conservative and progressive viewpoints. The former view tends to advocate for an assimilation-minded view favoring transitioning students into the mainstream classroom as quickly as possible, in which ELLs’ home language is seen as a barrier to academic, social, and economic opportunity (and, in earlier times, a form of deviance deserving of shaming and punishment). The latter, in contrast, asserts that ELLs’ home language is a cultural resource and a dimension of their identities which must be incorporated as a necessary dimension of equitable and ethical education.
Sometimes, through all of these important and lofty ideas, the actual local experience of a learner can get lost. We in academia argue passionately about what Paulo Freire would say, how Gloria Anzaldúa expressed this struggle to self-identify as a linguistic being in the face of intersecting, possessing forces, what Ofelia García argues is the politically committed way of thinking about the education of linguistically non-dominant learners…yet the imagination can get bound up with constructs and move away from lived experience.
I found a short movie today that brings this lived experience, different for every learner, into focus for overthinkers in the ivory tower. The movie, called “Immersion,” tells the story of Moises, a young Spanish-speaking boy who struggles to navigate education in an English-only classroom, in modest yet potent tones. The 12-odd minutes are worth the reconnection to the complex and fragile,”every-child-USA” narrative told through his eyes. (For more information on the movie and how to get involved, check out the website at http://www.immersionfilm.com/.)
Registration: 8:00am – 10:30am in the History Lounge, Room 5114
Coffee and bagels will be available from 8am to 9am.
If you’re on twitter, please use the hashtag #EARSCON16 and #CUNYEARS
Chair: Michael Crowder, History, Graduate Center, CUNY. Commentator: Dr. Martin Burke, History and American Studies, Graduate Center, CUNY.
Chair: John Winters, History, Graduate Center, CUNY. Commentator: Dr. Andrew Shankman, History, Rutgers University – Camden.
Chair: Alisa Wade, History, Graduate Center, CUNY. Commentator: Dr. Zara Anishanslin, History, College of Staten Island.
Chair: Miriam Leibman, History, Graduate Center, CUNY. Commentator: Dr. Benjamin Carp, History, Brooklyn College.
Chair: Dr. David Houpt, History, Queens College. Commentator: Dr. Andrew Robertson, History, Graduate Center, CUNY.
Chair: Nora Slonimsky, History, Graduate Center, CUNY.
*For pre-circulated readings that discuss the show, see: “Hamilton” articles (forthcoming)
Chair: Roy Rogers, History, Graduate Center. CUNY.
CUNY Graduate Center’s Early American Republic Seminar (EARS) is a student-run organization focused on promoting and facilitating the study of early American history. Our primary mission is to provide a space for graduate students and early career scholars to present works in progress in a rigorous but collegial environment. EARS has also hosted a number of public talks by prominent historians. For a look at announcements or our upcoming schedule, visit cunyears.wordpress.com. For any questions about this event, contact our conference organizers, Roy Rogers (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Nora Slonimsky (email@example.com).
Big Onion Walking Tours (www.bigonion.com) is currently seeking qualified graduate students who are interested in the social and political history of Manhattan & Brooklyn to become walking tour guides. Founded by two graduate students at Columbia University nearly 25 years ago, Big Onion has since grown to be the largest and most scholarly public history walking tour company in the United States — and is still fully staffed by graduate students from local universities!
Big Onion leads over 30 different walks around the city. Tours occur year round on a regular basis for the public, as well as private tours for schools, non-profits, corporations and other organizations. Big Onion is designed to offer flexible year-round, part-time work for graduate students. Not only is leading tours rewarding and fun, but it can be scheduled around guides’ other academic commitments, it pays well, can enhance teaching skills, and is a resume-worthy experience! Many of our guides have gone on to successful careers in academia and related fields. More information about Big Onion and our guides can be found on our website at http://www.bigonion.com/about-us/.
If you are pursuing an advanced degree, can hold an audience’s attention, and are interested in taking your skills out of the classroom, contact Seth Kamil, President of Big Onion, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please email your resume with at least two references. Interviews and hiring preference will be given to those with teaching experience.
For more information: https://www.h-net.org/jobs/job_display.php?id=52886
The deadline for completed applications is 13 May 2016. Please submit by email to email@example.com.
All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadian and permanent residents of Canada will be given priority.
Brock University is an equal opportunity employer committed to inclusive, barrier-free recruitment and selection processes and work environment. We will accommodate the needs of the applicants under the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) throughout all stages of the recruitment and selection process, per the University’s Accommodation for Employees with Disabilities Policy (https://brocku.ca/webfm_send/6557). Please advise the Human Resources Department to ensure your accessibility needs are accommodated throughout this process. Information received relating to accommodation measures will be addressed confidentially.
Brock University is actively committed to diversity and the principles of Employment Equity and invites applications from all qualified candidates. Women, Aboriginal peoples, members of visible minorities, and people with disabilities are especially encouraged to apply and to voluntarily self-identify as a member of a designated group as part of their application. Candidates who wish to be considered as a member of one or more designated groups should fill out the Self-Identification Form available at:
https://brocku.ca/webfm_send/26360 and include the completed form with their application.
More information on Brock University can be found on the university’s web site at www.BrockU.ca
|Contact:||Dr. Daniel Samson, Chair
Department of History
St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada
Email for application submissions: firstname.lastname@example.org
|Primary Category:||European History / Studies|
|Secondary Categories:||Digital Humanities
Early Modern History and Period Studies
Medieval and Byzantine History / Studies
Modern European History / Studies
The Institute of Historical Research in London is looking for a lecturer/senior lecturer to lead its IHR Digital department. Please forward to anyone who might be interested.
The Institute of Historical Research is seeking a Lecturer or Senior Lecturer to lead its Digital History department. The successful candidate will lead a team of professional staff, taking an academic lead on digital history projects and initiatives, and manage the financial, HR and administrative affairs of the team.
The IHR, part of the School of Advanced Study at the University of London, is the UK’s national centre for history, and a place for historians from all over the world to meet, research and collaborate. It is home to the UK’s largest programme of history seminars and houses a research library of over 180,000 volumes and periodicals.
IHR Digital is the recognised centre for digital history in the UK, placing the IHR at the forefront of developments in this evolving and important field, and is responsible for curating British History Online (www.british-history.ac.uk[british-history.ac.uk]) and the Bibliography of British and Irish History. The team combines research facilitation (through the provision of services and digital resources) with cutting edge research projects, as well as underpinning digital activity across the Institute and helping to shape the School of Advanced Study’s digital strategy.
The team’s work falls into five broad categories:
The successful candidate will have a track record of excellence in research and digital project management, and experience of obtaining external funding.
Interested candidates should submit a CV with a covering letter by midnight on Tuesday, 24 May 2016. If you have any queries about the role, please contact the IHR Institute Manager, Alex Bussey: email@example.com.
Interviews are expected to take place on 16 June 2016.
This appointment will be made at either Lecturer (Grade 8) or Senior Lecturer (Grade 9) level, dependent upon experience.
Publishing Manager, British History Online
Institute of Historical Research
University of London
LONDON WC1E 7HU
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