November 21st, 2011

How much do college students really study? According to the annual National Survey of Student Engagement, the average college senior hits the books for about 15 hours a week. But the amount they devote to reading, reviewing notes, or participating in study groups varies significantly depending on their major.

In a word, no.

In more than a word, here’s what I think: As a college senior, I definitely don’t spend enough time “hitting the books,” for a number of reasons.

1) I go to a commuters’ school where the sense of community isn’t very strong.

If I’d been with the same students for the past three years and I had a distinct sense of belonging to my major, perhaps I would spend more time studying or doing homework with my classmates.

2) I have less of a social life and more of a “real world” life.

I know that sounds strange — having less of a social life means I study less? Well, as a student of a commuters’ school, I have not had much power to join a distinct social circle. Part of it is the “vibe” at school: most students come to campus for classes and leave. There are not a lot of extracurriculars, and since the campus is so small, it’s hard to find others who have distinct interests like yours. Because of these things, I have less of a social life than students who may go to four-year schools with dorms. I have two part-time jobs, and I spent a lot of time with family who lives close by. This leaves little room for studying. I barely have time to do homework.

3) Students are less concerned about school than they used to be.

This is pretty self-explanatory. It’s not at every school, for sure, but I have witnessed this Generation Y syndrome firsthand. A lot of students my age just want to party and want to get paid well at their first job. There are just as many students who want to learn for learning’s sake and who genuinely care about their education, but I would bet that number has gone down in the past few decades.

Just some thoughts. Just another form of distraction from the studying I should be doing on this lovely Monday before Thanksgiving…

Keep questioning,
Sara 

(Source: GOOD, via gjmueller)

June 27th, 2011
Where do I begin? What a whirlwind the past 24 hours has been! The photo above is of Dr. John Medina, developmental molecular biologist, and author of Brain Rules. Dr. Medina was the keynote speaker last night, and he addressed the impact neuroscience has on how we teach. His presentation was funny and engaging, and a great way to kickoff an inspiring conference!
I caught the train bright & early this morning (hellooooo, 5:45AM!) to set up for my 8-10AM poster session: Teaching STEM With Google Earth: Multidisciplinary Approaches to Geospatial Technology at the Pennsylvania Convention Center’s Broad Street Atrium. Around 7:45, with barely enough time to brush some make-up over my sleep-deprived eyes, people began trickling into the atrium, and I just dove right in to the pool of questions from fellow attendees.
After interacting with a few people, I realized what my messages to the ISTE community were:
Google Earth is an amazing and vast resource for teachers to breach boundaries into multidisciplinary education.
Providing an interactive platform for Earth science-based literature allows for students to put what they’ve learned in a real world context, and engage with the content, making it easier to swallow than a static, 200-page book.
Creating your own content in Google Earth is EASY! Your students can do it! Give them ownership of the content. It makes it more meaningful to them.
I was so excited to share these messages and was literally talking non-stop for two hours. It was thrilling to be extending my activities to the ISTE participants as gifts for them and their classrooms. I had a few special interactions, too, that will definitely stick in my brain. I was invited to potentially speak at a conference/panel discussion next spring, talked to a bunch of educators who, I could tell, were inspired by the platform that is Google Earth, and I was interviewed for a video, too! 
I’ve been having so much fun, and I am completely exhausted from all of the exciting & stimulating brain food I’ve been munching on!
Also… this conference has provided me with the COOLEST name tag I’ve ever received:

I mean, right?!
Keep questioning,Sara 

Where do I begin? What a whirlwind the past 24 hours has been! The photo above is of Dr. John Medina, developmental molecular biologist, and author of Brain Rules. Dr. Medina was the keynote speaker last night, and he addressed the impact neuroscience has on how we teach. His presentation was funny and engaging, and a great way to kickoff an inspiring conference!

I caught the train bright & early this morning (hellooooo, 5:45AM!) to set up for my 8-10AM poster session: Teaching STEM With Google Earth: Multidisciplinary Approaches to Geospatial Technology at the Pennsylvania Convention Center’s Broad Street Atrium. Around 7:45, with barely enough time to brush some make-up over my sleep-deprived eyes, people began trickling into the atrium, and I just dove right in to the pool of questions from fellow attendees.

After interacting with a few people, I realized what my messages to the ISTE community were:

  1. Google Earth is an amazing and vast resource for teachers to breach boundaries into multidisciplinary education.
  2. Providing an interactive platform for Earth science-based literature allows for students to put what they’ve learned in a real world context, and engage with the content, making it easier to swallow than a static, 200-page book.
  3. Creating your own content in Google Earth is EASY! Your students can do it! Give them ownership of the content. It makes it more meaningful to them.

I was so excited to share these messages and was literally talking non-stop for two hours. It was thrilling to be extending my activities to the ISTE participants as gifts for them and their classrooms. I had a few special interactions, too, that will definitely stick in my brain. I was invited to potentially speak at a conference/panel discussion next spring, talked to a bunch of educators who, I could tell, were inspired by the platform that is Google Earth, and I was interviewed for a video, too! 

I’ve been having so much fun, and I am completely exhausted from all of the exciting & stimulating brain food I’ve been munching on!

Also… this conference has provided me with the COOLEST name tag I’ve ever received:

I mean, right?!

Keep questioning,
Sara