Thursday, November 8, 2007

Shanghia, China can really build.

“Shift Happens Statistic of the Day” posted on the Fishbowl.

This article, posted on the Fishbowl, is about Shanghia, China. The city is building a thirty story (or more) building in a matter of twelve days for the past six years. It has more skyscrapers than the entire United States’ west coast.

That is really fast. How do you build a skyscraper in twelve days? I know China has a very large population but still that is just fast. This matter to me because I always thought that America was the best nation for skyscrapers and that it is in the lead of that category, out of the entire world. But then Shanghia just literally pops up in the last six years that is amazing. People should care because one city in China has more skyscrapers than the U.S.’s west coast? Is that a bad thing though? I mean China must be spending a lot of money on these buildings; maybe the U.S. is spending it elsewhere. Even though this blog article is small it makes a big impact. To build a building in less than two weeks is fast. It’s like building the twin towers in roughly twenty-four days, which is less than a month. Is building a thirty story building in twelve days fast or is that the average these days? And can the U.S. do this or is it because of the population in China that makes them build so fast?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Parent-Teacher Conferences

“Not your Parents’ Parent-Teacher Conferences” from the Fischbowl.

This article is about parent-teacher conferences and how many parents just want to know how their student can get their A or B or C. A lot of teachers are getting frustrated with the parents because they only care about the grades and not what the student is learning. Anne Smith is one of these teachers, so she had the students assess their learning, had them make goals for the semester, had them make a plan to get those goals, how the teacher can help them, and then write a message to their parents. The letter to their parents was their learning assessments. Anne Smith also kept one copy with her for the conference.

I think that this is a great way to get the parents focus off the grades and on to what their students are learning. This idea goes along with our class theme what matters but instead of telling this to the students it is telling the parents. What Matters is what the students is learning not how to pass the class. And when the parents are only concerned with grades how to help their child get the good grade then they are really cheating their child. They cheat their child because they babying them by caring about their grades for them. It will get into the students head that their dad or mom will take care of the grades and that they don’t need to. But instead Anne Smith helps the parents help the students in a lot better way. It also helps the teachers have a better conversation with the parent, Anne Smith says, “I had actual conversations with parents about their child and feel like I took away more from them about how their child is growing as a learner, or how their child needs to grow as a learner. I felt like I listened as much as I talked which is a huge change from the way I participated in conferences before.” But the parents can still help the students of course. They can do this by knowing what and how their student learns best not just what they need but what they can get from the teaching. What do you think should parents only care about grades or should they care about what the student is learning? Do you think the students are being babied in any way? Over all what matters is what the students are learning not just the grade they are getting.