For those who think that all of those fourth graders not reading at grade level will just catch up and that we don’t need to worry about ensuring all our elementary schools are using evidence-based literacy instruction, try considering some of these stats …
Wahoowah! After more than a week of having the hard copy of my Dadprovement book available for sale, the release heads into the 21st century today. This morning, Amazon officially made the book available for Kindle. You can get it now, and have it for some of those last summer beach reads before the start of the school year!
I am enormously grateful for all of the folks who have read this Eduflack blog over the past nearly eight years. What started out as a cathartic exercise has really become something, something I am proud of and something that has allowed me to meet and engage with a wonderful group of people.
So for those Eduflack readers, I am going to make 15 e-versions of Dadprovement available for free. The first 15 people to DM message me at firstname.lastname@example.org or to comment on this blog post will be sent a free Kindle version of my new book.
All I ask is that, after you’ve read it, you post a (hopefully positive) review of Dadprovement on Amazon. Calling it “life changing” or “inspirational” or “the best book on fathers and Guatemalan adoption I have ever read or ever thought of reading” is optional, but encouraged.
Last week, the Learning First Alliance hosted an important Twitter Town Hall. Those of us in the Twitterverse recognize there is a great deal of negativity floating around on the Common Core State Standards. This is particularly true of the testing and high-stakes consequences attached to the coming school year.
Back in the spring, LFA issued a rare public statement urging states to take the proper time in implementing CCSS, making sure that we get it right. In its statement, LFA noted that there is only one chance to get implementation right. There are no do overs in this.
Following the LFA recommendations, several states took note. Places like New York and Washington, DC called for a pause in high-stakes consequences for at least another year so they could focus on proper implementation. Just recently, New Jersey followed suit, asking for more time before CCSS student assessment scores counted in teacher evaluation.
Even the Gates Foundation recently called for implementation and the consequences to be separated, offering a statement quite similar to the original LFA call.
To help focus the education community’s attention further, LFA set out to focus on the success stories regarding Implementation. With so many focused on the challenges and road bumps, it was important to begin talking about those states and districts that were getting it right. The LFA Get It Right podcast series now serves as that venue, spotlighting the best and promising practice in implementation.
LFA took this discussion to a new level last week with this Twitter chat, using the opportunity to talk about what states like NJ, NY, and DC should do with the extra time they have now called for. Hundreds discussed better ways to involve parents and educators. They talked about how to unpack the standards to make them easier to apply to the classroom. They spoke of the importance of real materials aligned to the standards, rather than those bearing a phony seal of approval.
It was the beginning of a very important discussion, all of which can be found at #CCSStime. Why was it so important? Mainly because it was a productive talk on how to get it right, not on urban legends or dreaming ways to short circuit standards that are not going away.
And it is one the public cares about. By early counts, it seems the #CCSStime hour-long discussion, a trending topic on Twitter that evening, included in nearly 2,000 tweets, resulting in more than 15 million impressions. That’s a lot of people giving up a summer evening to ensure we get CCSS implementation right. And a lot of concerned educators committed to improving teaching and learning for their students.
(Full disclosure, Eduflack has worked with LFA and many of its member organizations over the years.)
Over at my Dadprovement blog, I have a post of a recent review for my new book. Just wanted to share:
I am moved every time I hear from folks who tell me how much they enjoyed Dadprovement, how much they learned from it, or how surprising the story was.
I was particularly taken by a blog post Amber Chandler posted on her blog today.
In her post entitled, So why is a 40 year old lady reading Dadprovement?, Amber not only highlighted our family story of infertility, adoption, job loss, and gastric bypass surgery, but she keyed in on part of the tale I particularly enjoy:
ADMIT IT. YOU’RE PROBABLY JUST LIKE ME. EVER READ THOSE FACEBOOK POSTS AND THINK, “CRAP. I THINK I PICKED THE WRONG CAREER (LOCATION, VACATION, SPOUSE, FRIENDS, ETC)”? I THINK POP CULTURE HAS PRETTY MUCH ADMITTED, EVEN TO ITSELF, THAT FB STATUSES AREN’T REAL IN AN AUTHENTIC WAY; HOWEVER, THE FACTS REMAIN, YOU CAN’T POST THE PICTURE OF YOUR BRAND NEW BMW IF YOU DON’T ACTUALLY HAVE ONE. SOME THINGS SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES. PICTURES FROM THE CARIBBEAN–WITH YOU IN THEM–DO GIVE A PRETTY LOUD SHOUT OUT.
PATRICK RICCARDS, WELL-KNOWN FOR HIS AWARD-WINNING BLOG EDUFLACK, HAS WRITEEN DADPROVEMENT, A BOOK THAT AT FIRST GLANCE MIGHT NOT “APPLY” TO ME. I HAVE TWO CHILDREN OF MY OWN, AND MOTHERHOOD IS PLENTY FOR ME TO CONTEMPLATE. THOUGH FOCUSED IN LARGE WAYS ON HIS JOURNEY TO ADOPT HIS CHILDREN, IT GETS TO THE CORE OF THE VERY 1ST WORLD PROBLEM OF “WHAT AM I GOING TO BE WHEN I GROW UP” AND “WHAT WILL EVERYONE THINK OF ME?” IF YOU LIVE IN AMERICA, AND ARE TAKING TIME TO READ A BLOG, I’M PRETTY CONVINCED YOU’D KNOW EXACTLY WHAT HE MEANS.
Thank you, Amber, for the kind words. And for your commitment as a teacher and edu-twitterer.