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January 29, 2007

Engaging 'Tweens and Teens

From MEMO listserv

Engaging 'Tweens and Teens

By Raleigh T. Philp

Download a PDF of this article (http://edutopia.org/php/print.php?id=Art_1721&template=printarticle.php)

Showing teachers how to cope with the developing -- and often baffling -- teenage brain.

This is an excerpt from Raleigh T. Philp's recently published book 'Tweens and Teens: A Brain-Compatible Approach in Reaching Middle and High School Students.

The single most important thing a teacher must do is manage the learning state of his or her students. Twenty minutes is probably the maximum time that most people can stay in a positive learning state without a change of stimulus. Most students may even be aware that they have moved down the spectrum from a positive learning state to a feeling of the brain being out to lunch! An effective teacher is aware of the looks on the faces of students, the squirming, and general disinterest. These teachers are always scanning the class for signs of learning fatigue and know what to do to ameliorate the problem.

For middle school, the rule could easily be reduced to the Fifteen-Minute Rule. Teachers cannot expect middle school students to stay in a favorable learning state for more than fifteen minutes without intervention. A maximum of twenty minutes for high school students and probably most adult learners, including those in graduate school, is appropriate.

We could learn from observing how lower-elementary teachers handle learning fatigue. Since students in the early grades generally have a limited attention span and suffer from learning fatigue in a more demonstrative way than older students, elementary school teachers are constantly forced to manage the learning state more acutely than teachers of middle school and high school. Visiting a good teacher of second graders, for instance, would provide an opportunity to see a master of state management, since most second graders are able to stay continuously in a positive learning state for only a short time.

Visit college classes, particularly graduate education courses, and you will frequently observe a professor lecturing on and on and on. The concept overriding almost all other objectives is to cover the material. The most expedient way to do this, of course, is to teach didactic lessons. Creative teaching strategies are talked about but, because of limited class time and a great deal of material to cover, are seldom demonstrated fully.

Students at this level know how to play the game and are habituated to the didactic lesson. The eyes make contact, the pencil is poised, the laptop is humming, but after about twenty minutes without a learning-state change, even the brains of these high achievers are on autopilot, with very little learning taking place. As we see a higher percentage of courses taught online, the challenge to demonstrate the management of learning states becomes even greater. These classes now become the models for teacher preparation.

The most effective teachers know intuitively how to read their students and have almost a built-in clock that reminds them that middle school and high school students need to have their learning states managed about every twenty minutes. Naturally gifted teachers and speakers change the learning states smoothly and without even their own awareness at times. As you experience an outstanding presentation from a gifted speaker, make mental notes to see how often the speaker changes the learning state. It may be a change of voice, a joke, a gesture, a storytelling, or a relocation of the speaker -- anything that allows the participants to change their state!

In classrooms where teachers are effective learning-state managers, students know what to expect and often look forward to getting out of their seats periodically and interacting with others, ultimately refreshing their learning states. Some teachers say that once they get the students settled into their seats, they want to retain that structure for the remainder of the class period if possible. The problem isn't as critical when students are involved with cooperative learning, project learning, or other activities that require students to move around and be involved in hands-on learning and discussions with other students. The bottom line is that students need to have their learning states changed frequently.

Read an interview with Raleigh Philp

The following Web sites appeared in this article: Raleigh Philp: www.glef.org/1720

January 25, 2007

Follow-up to April 2006

Reference Notes April 2006, featured and article titled, “Consumer Health Information (CHI) need within the Spanish-speaking population.” In the latest newsletter by Reforma (Winter 2006) there is a great article entitled “Bee Stings and the Library.” The author stresses the importance oof sensitivity and culturally appropriate health information. The article suggests the following resources:

Reference Interview
Guidelines for providing Medical Information to Consumers http://library.uchc.edu/departm/hnet/guidelines.html
ICON Library Consortium http://iconlibrary.org/hhqvideo.html
MedlinePlus http://medlineplus.gov/
US Dept. of Health and Human Services profile of the health in the Hispanic Population http://www.omhrc.gov/templates/browse.aspx?lvl=2&lvlID=54

January 24, 2007

Next Gen Librarianship: Where Do We Go from Here?

Soaring to Excellence 2007: Library 2.0 and Beyond

Next Gen Librarianship: Where Do We Go from Here?

Friday, February 9, 2007
11:00 AM – 12:30 PM (Central Time)
S30B Wilson Library
West Bank Area, University of Minnesota

Description: Today's multigenerational library workforce faces a number of both internal and external challenges. To meet these challenges, we need to learn how to work together effectively, keep connected and current, and draw on individuals' unique strengths. In a graying profession, we also need to pay attention to succession planning, passing on institutional wisdom, and recruiting, retaining, and mentoring the next generation.

Topics include:
What defines generations­and why people tend to resist definition
How best to recruit, retain, manage, and mentor the next generation­emphasizing creating a healthy environment for all library workers
What different generations can learn from each other, and how to take advantage of multiple strengths
Ways to be successful in 21st Century libraries

Rachel Singer Gordon, Consulting Editor, Information Today, Inc., Book Publishing Division, and webmaster, LISjobs.com

Fee: No charge; registration is required.

To register to attend this teleconference at Wilson Library, go to http://www.minitex.umn.edu/train-conf/teleconference.

To register to stream to your desktop, go to https://www.cod.edu/secure/software/registerteleconf.htm. Residents of MN, ND, and SD will not be charged; please do not complete the billing information section of the web form. College of DuPage will forward links directly to registrants.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns.

Sunshine Week Teleconference

Sunshine Week 2007

Closed Doors; Open Democracies?

Monday, March 12, 2007

12:00 PM- 1:30 PM (Central Time)
S30B Wilson Library
West Bank Area, University of Minnesota

Topics include:
The program will focus on access to government information, including the impact of government suppression and manipulation of scientific information on public health and safety - and accountability. The dialogue will start with a lively discussion of the issues and end with ideas for action.
To learn more about the teleconference visit: http://openthegovernment.org/article/subarchive/94

Panelists: TBA

Fee: No charge; registration is required.

To register to attend this teleconference at Wilson Library, go to http://www.minitex.umn.edu/train-conf/teleconference.

Also, other regional downlink sites are available. See below for more details.

Minnesota Coalition on Government Information

Hosted at Metropolitan State University Library

645 East 7th Street, St. Paul, MN

To register, contact: Mary Treacy, mtreacy@onvoy.com

How Young People View Their Lives, Futures and Politics

A Portrait of "Generation Next"
By thelibrarianinblack@gmail.com

The Pew Research Center has released a new report: A Portrait of "Generation Next": How Young People View Their Lives, Futures and Politics." The report includes a lot of interesting findings about our 18-25 year olds in the U.S.

68% believe their generation is unique and distinct
84% believe they have better educational opportunities than were available 20 years ago
72% believe they have access to higher paying jobs than were available 20 years ago
They believe that their generation uses more sex, alcohol, and drugs and is more violent
52% believe that immigration strengthens the nation
Read through the findings and then think--how can your library use this data to better target services toward this age group?

New Journal: Evidence Based Library and Information Practice

New open access library science journal called "Evidence Based Library and Information Practice." Thought you all
might want to take a look: http://ejournals.library.ualberta.ca/index.php/EBLIP/index.

January 22, 2007

Scrolling text image generator

Thought I would show everyone this new sign technology that I read about on the blog, LibrarianInBlack.
Image Hosted by ImageShack.us

Signbot lets you create your very own LED Scrolling Sign image.

January 16, 2007

2007 National Freshman Attitudes Report

2007 National Freshman Attitudes Reporthttp://tinyurl.com/usqck

“The 2007 National Freshman Attitudes Report,” a survey of nearly 100,000 incoming freshmen at 292 public and private two- and four-year colleges, finds that men and women share high expectations for getting a degree, “no matter what obstacles get in my way.” But male students at the same time report coming into college with far less ambitious intellectual interests and sharply lesser study habits than their female counterparts. Even so, male students in general express greater confidence in their academic abilities than do female students.
- Summary from http://insidehighered.com/news/2007/01/15/freshmen

January 2, 2007

December Reference Notes

The December issue of MINITEX Reference Notes is up on the web and ready for viewing! This month’s issue includes information on the Digital Divide, TIES Conference '06, Collaborate, Collaborate, Collaborate, Next Gen Librarianship: Where Do We Go from Here? Teleconference, Previous Teleconferences Now Available for Checkout Online, and more!

To link to the current or past issues go to http://www.minitex.umn.edu/publications/refnotes/
Don’t miss out on this timely information!