At home or at school, Waldorf education is very much the same. For toddler, the routine barely changed. Waldorf early childhood curriculum is child-led, home-rhythm-based (even in the school setting!), in which parents (at home) or teachers (at school) hold the space through meaningful handwork, house chores, cooking, arts, outdoor play, and open-ended play. In a developmentally appropriate way, children are directly involved in the house rhythm; they help in activities such as baking, cutting vegetables, folding laundry, putting their toys away, “washing” cloths, and serving their food. In Waldorf education, there is only a slight separation between education at home and education at school; the classrooms offer a harmonious, inviting space, where children relax in the peaceful environment that is designed to be an extension of home. That’s such a protective factor in difficult times. That’s the beauty of Waldorf education.
According to a report by Measure of America (2012), titled “Youth Disconnection in New York City”, there are “350,000 young people ages 16-24 in the New York metro area who are neither working nor in school.” (p.2) Although young adulthood is seen as a time of identity formation through the exploration of new roles in the academic, occupational, and socio-emotional domains, for many disadvantaged young adults, it is a stressful developmental period, in which the time to explore is scarce due to the lack of material and non-material resources. Disadvantaged youth are pressured to prematurely commit to social roles because of their life circumstances, and not their choice. Yet, a considerable number of young adults go through disconnection from family and society, which results in long-term consequences such as inter-generational poverty, incarceration, and the high costs associated with public assistance.
The “Child Trends Research” (2009), highlights macro, mezzo, and micro factors that put young adults at risk for being disconnected from family and society. For instance, mezzo factors such as foster care, juvenile justice, and special education involvement put young adults at greater risk for disconnection. In other words, “among the challenges these vulnerable young people face are limited skills; a lack of family support; learning disabilities; health, emotional, and behavioral problems.” (p.2) It is eye-opening to note how the authors consider the involvement with foster care, juvenile justice, and special education as risk factors for youth disconnection. Given that social, emotional, and academic limitations put youth at a higher risk for disconnection and that residual and institutional services are designed to mitigate risks; it becomes questionable to what extent such institutions are helping or hindering disadvantaged youth’s development and consequently keeping the status quo. Other risk factors mentioned in the report are household income, level of parental education, single-parent and stepparent family structures, and minority status. At the micro level, poor grades, poor health, and negative peer influence raise the risk of disconnection during adulthood transition. At the macro level, poverty is considered to have a major impact on youth disconnection. Therefore, it is observable how micro, mezzo, and macro factors are interdependent, which results in an endless cycle of poverty and inequality if proper social policies are not supported by the government.
It is also valuable to point out how life circumstances can influence on adulthood transitions, making it either an exciting time for the exploration of opportunities, or a stressful period in which youth cannot effectively explore their opportunities, because there are none. According to Hutchison (2015), there is a significant difference between individuals who follow a default individualization process, in which adulthood transitions are defined by life circumstances and situations rather than the individual’s choices; and developmental individualization, in which young adults have the privilege to deliberately choose intellectual, occupational, and psychological opportunities of growth (p.280). In other words, it is noticeable how macro factors such as poverty, racial oppression, and poor social policies produce cumulative disadvantage, failing to mitigate social inequality and resulting in family intergenerational poverty and internalized oppression. Therefore, one can also infer that individuals who go through the process of default individualization during adulthood transitions are at higher risk for disconnection since they can be either forced into a premature occupational commitment or have no positive perspective for their future.
According to the “Child Trends Research” (2009), there are several programs geared to help at-risk youth avoid disconnection and reconnect to society and family. Nonetheless, the authors highlight that measures to prevent disconnection have proven much more effective than those that aim at reconnecting youth. Research indicated that the fact that young adults participated in a program was not in itself linked to reconnection. “Once youth are disconnected, however, recruitment, enrollment, and retention of these young people into programs may require stronger and more persistent outreach, more intensive services, and more long-term participation.” (Child Trends Research, p.6). The research’s authors pointed out that the lack of appropriate services that address the specific needs of this high-risk population was one of the main reasons for failure to reconnect. Therefore, preventive measures such as school-to-work programs help students link academic content and real-life experience, which results in the development of work ethics, habits, and attitudes necessary for the labor force. Other interesting programs that prevent youth disconnection are apprenticeships and trainings. That is, in conjunction with the school, those programs offer not only career guidance, but also emotional support, which leads to improved academic outcomes and self-sufficiency in students (p.6). Another interesting example is brought by Hutchison (2015), who emphasizes the importance of service-learning programs for high-risk populations, as those promote the development of young adults’ skills and social capital. For instance, programs such as the AmeriCorps are known for promoting connection to civic society, critical thinking expansion, and a sense of purpose and meaning in life (p.302). In addition, I strongly believe that linking post-secondary schools’ programs such as certificate and associates degrees with job placements would make a significant difference in preventing youth disconnection.
To conclude, although young adulthood is an exciting learning time, for the disadvantaged youth it can be stressful as they might not have the time and resources to explore learning opportunities. Macro and mezzo level factors such as better social policies, and programs that specifically target the needs of this high-risk population are necessary to provide a buffer against the risk factors associated with youth disconnection.
Child Trends (2009). Youth who are “disconnected” and those who then reconnect: Assessing the influence of family, programs, peers and communities.
Hutchison, E.D. (2015). Dimensions of Human Behavior: 5th Edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc.
Youth Disconnection in New York City (Rep.). (2012, September). Retrieved June 22, 2017, from Measure of America website: http://ssrc-static.s3.amazonaws.com/moa/One_in_Seven_NYC-FINAL2.pdf
Jimenez (2010), sheds some light on the concept of ideology as “templates, or reassuring explanatory structures that can explain contingencies, both the unexpected and the taken-for- granted aspects of social order” (p.45). Community, government and the media exert considerable influence on the formation of the individuals’ ideologies. That said, the beliefs of upward income mobility and equal opportunity are, according to Jimenez (2010), ideological positions aimed at promoting social control and quieting feelings of social unrest (p.60). That was a reality in the 19th century and continues to be nowadays. An interesting example is immigration; the image sold in countries such as Brazil, is that the United States offers equal professional growth opportunities to everybody who works hard. Therefore, people want to come here and pursue the American dream, nonetheless, when they arrive in the country, they start facing social barriers. The thought of a completely open social and economic order and the association of economic success with individual merit does not correspond to the reality of many immigrants who are educated but when applying for a job, face unfair situations such as the other candidate’s personal connections, favoritism and ethnic discrimination.
The ideas of upward income mobility and equal opportunity prevalent in the U.S society tend to hinder the development of individuals’ critical thinking about inequality and lack of economic opportunities (Jimenez, p.61). In other words, if everybody believes that their social condition is only temporary and that their personal success is solely influenced by their own choices and not external factors such as the political environment, there is no reason for people to fight for better social conditions or even to fight for a complete change in the economic and social systems of government. Jimenez (2010), further clarifies that it is unlikely that most people will criticize ongoing poverty and oppression in the United States due to the lack of a major political party leading a critique of the market’s economy (p.77). In the 19th Century, Socialist political traditions were a reaction against industrial capitalism’s ways of exploiting workers in England and Germany (http://public.wsu.edu/~brians/hum_303/socialism.html). Nonetheless, in the U.S, the myths of upward mobility and equal opportunity kept society optimistic and working hard on pursuing the American dream, if not for them, for their next generations.
Introduction to 19th-Century Socialism. (n.d.). Retrieved January 10, 2017, from http://public.wsu.edu/~brians/hum_303/socialism.html
Jimenez, J. (2010). Social policy and social change: Toward the creation of social and economic justice. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, Inc. (Chapter 3: Historical values influencing social problems and policies).
by A. Kaye
According to Brown and Knowles (2007) the main purpose of assessment should be the improvement of students learning. Focusing on meaningful learning experiences provides more significant information to drive instruction rather than focusing on the number of facts that students have memorized. Three basic principles that should be employed when developing an assessment training program for teachers are: 1) assessments should be connected to curriculum and instruction; 2) students should actively participate in the creation of their own assessments; 3) assessments should be authentic in order to lead to meaningful learning.
In order to support effective understanding and application, there are some components of assessment literacy that are essential. For instance, an assessment program for teachers should contain the difference between classroom assessments and accountability assessments. That’s because many teachers feel pressured by their administrators to score high in the standardized tests and make “teaching for test” their number one priority. Classroom assessments are comprised by formal and informal procedures that teachers use to make accurate inferences about what their students can or can’t do yet (Brown and Knowles, 2007, p.190). That said, it is also important to present a sub-topic of classroom assessment which is alternative assessments. The latter provides meaningful learning experiences through the creation of students goals. Other advantages of alternative assessments are that it provides choices for students to demonstrate their learning; allows flexibility; provides opportunities for self-evaluation; encourages students’ thinking process development and promote authentic connections. Another important component of this type of training would be the significance of genuine feedback.
Genuine feedback is the key difference between assessment of learning (traditional and standardized testing) and assessment for learning (assessing students so that teachers can help each of them grown cognitively). The point is to demonstrate to teachers that assessment is not only about giving students an A, B or C grade or a percentage number, but most importantly guiding them towards improvement. Routinely assessments and continuous feedback also mitigate the problem of students’ anxiety during accountability tests. Students’ participation in their own assessment should also be covered by an assessment training program. If students can and should participate in how they will learn information, they could and should participate in how they want to demonstrate their new acquired skills. In this way, students actively take ownership over their leaning experience. It is important to invite the teachers to think reflectively about the purpose of assessing their students. In other words, academic growth should not be a “point in time” measurement but a continuous process, thus, the importance of goal creation, continuous feedback, students’ inputs, and assessment-curriculum-instruction integration. “Student motivation is an end result of the powerful connection of curriculum, instruction and assessment” (Brown and Knowles, 2007, p. 189).
An assessment training program should be proposed based on the evidence that today’s teachers know little about educational assessment and many feel pressured by scoring high on standardized tests and end up “teaching for the test” instead of truly measuring their students’ knowledge and guiding them towards academic improvement. The benefits of taking this type training is that staff would be provided with the opportunity to think reflectively about students assessments, meaningful feedback and how to align meaningful assessment and State requirements.
Brown, Dave F, and Trudy Knowles. “Understanding the Young Adolescent’s Physical and Cognitive Growth.” What Every Middle School Teacher Should Know. 2nd ed. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2007. 290. Print.
I would like to respectfully write some words about the article that was assigned to us this week:
Owais Shafique (2012) ‘Recruitment in the 21st Century’. IJCRB.webs.com 4 ( 2) Institute of Interdisciplinary Business Research, Available online from: http://search.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.liv.ac.uk/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=83518189&site=eds-live&scope=site
I just finished reading it and it is surreal how it lacks basic English writing skills and has a truncated aspect.
Here I have some examples of the article that show what I meant by stating the above:
Strategic recruitment is of vital importance in recruitment planning
now a day(now a days). We also found the usefulness of Generation X approach in identifying the differences between the old generation and the young new ( young or new? chose one)Generation x and the different needs and attitudes of both the( there is no need for “the”) generations.
…” Try to use “you” instead of “we need” & “must have”…
View original post 254 more words
Integrating listening skills into Spanish classes is essential so that listening and comprehension in Spanish language can be achieved. I have been successfully using some strategies such as getting to know my students and letting them know me. For instance, they enjoy when I share cultural aspects and funny stories related to my trips to Spanish speaking countries. Dr. Vega (2012) in her article: “Active listening: Seven ways to help students listen, not just Hear”, affirms that “students are more likely to listen to someone they view as three-dimensional- as opposed to a talking head”. Another way to improve listening skills is through activities that integrate speaking and listening comprehension. In this activity, each student will read a debatable prompt. The prompts are chosen beforehand based on the students’ general interests, after reading it out loud, the student will express his point of view. When he is finished, other students will be able to agree or disagree using learned vocabulary and Spanish grammatical structures learned. When one student wants to talk, he’ll raise his hand and wait until the current student is finished talking. My role is to facilitate the debate, indicating who is next in case of confusion, teaching new vocabulary and asking additional questions related to the topic being discussed. One of the most interesting aspects of this activity is that in order to be able to engage in the debate in Spanish, the students must actively listen to the others, make sense of what they are saying and then respond to them.
Artze-Vega, Isis. “Active Listening: Seven Ways to Help Students Listen, Not Just Hear.” Faculty Focus. N.p., 01 Oct. 2012. Web. 14 Oct. 2015. <http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-and-learning/active-listening-seven-ways-to-improve-students-listening-skills/>.
Jason certainly is going through a lot of physical, neural and cognitive changes that might be causing him to feel emotionally unregulated. The need for peer acceptance, the fact that he does not want peers knowing that he excels academically, the skin problems, and the growth spurt might result in mood swings. In other words, Jason is able to better regulate his emotions in some situations but not in all situations. I’d recommend having him monitored by parents, teachers and the school counselor in order to make sure there is no substance abused or depression diagnose. According to Manning and Bucher (2012) depression can also be manifested through irritability, negativity, sarcasm, criticism and somatic symptoms in adolescents that are not cognitively mature (35). Therefore, Jason’s parents and teachers should definitely schedule a counseling session with the school’s counselor since he might be exhibiting signs of depression. The counselor could also address Jason’s need of peer acceptance and “fitting in”.
As for the difficulties on grasping abstract math concepts, I would recommend that teachers vary their techniques, provide extra resource, simplify the steps of a problem, adjust the complexity of the assignments or even give the student an entire different placement. Another interesting point emphasized by Wormeli (2001) is that teachers should constantly look for more professional training (63). That makes sense since we are living in a rapidly changing world that “obligates” people, including young adolescents, to rapidly change as well. As a consequence, teens have been feeling more stressed and unbalanced. The fact that he is doing well in science and social studies and is declining just in math, might be a sign that he is not cognitively ready for abstract thinking or for certain types of abstract thinking such as in algebra. Parents and teachers should monitor his overall progress and adjust the ways he is able to learn. Not being able to grasp abstract concepts might also be stressful to Jason! Few months ago he was just fine and all of a sudden he can’t solve algebra questions. It is equally important that parents, teachers and the counselor are in frequent contact and define a date for the evaluation of Jason’s progress. The progress evaluation meeting would be “Student-Led” (Brown and Knowles, 2007, 201), in order words, Jason should not only be there, but also actively participate in the discussion about his own progress. Based on the conversation, parents, teachers, school counselor and Jason should either change strategies or celebrate his achievements.
The plan would be composed of the following steps:
- Jason would meet with the school counselor once a week in order to discuss peer pressure, rule out substance abuse and depression and discuss Jason’s perspectives on all the changes that his body is going through and how that might affect his academic performance.
- As Jason decline academically just in math, the math teacher would help Jason through the general adjustment of the subject complexity such as breaking a math problem down, varying his teaching techniques and simplifying steps of an algebra question.
- Parents, teachers, counselor and Jason would meet again in 6 weeks to discuss Jason’s progress.
My plan was very similar to the suggestions given by the text. However, although I should’ve, I did not address the matter of incorporating topics such as peer pressure, substance use and growth spurts in their advisory programs (Manning and Bucher, 2012, 49). Also, I believe that I considered points that the suggestions given by the text did not consider such as depression, stress and include Jason in his own progress evaluation meeting. Brown and Knowles (2007) emphasize the importance of Student-Led conferences since it put young adolescents in a position of responsibility for their academic growth (200).
Brown, Dave F, and Trudy Knowles. What Every Middle School Teacher Should Know. 2nd ed. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann, 2007. 290. Print.
Manning, M. Lee., and Katherine T. Bucher. Teaching in the Middle School. 4th ed. Boston: Pearson, 2012. Print.
Wormeli, Rick. Meet me in the Middle: Becoming an Accomplished Middle-level Teacher. Portland, Me.: Stenhouse, 2001. Print.
Es evidente la relación entre el poder y la manipulación de las masas en la película “La Historia Oficial”. Este artículo tiene como objetivo analizar los mecanismos de tal relación y explorar las posibles causas y consecuencias de los eventos históricos que la generaron. López (2014) en su artículo sobre psicología de masas, brillantemente afirma que cualquier forma de gobierno, ya sean monárquicos, democráticos, comunistas o constitucionales dependen de la aceptación pública para que logren hacer política a largo plazo. El autor añade que un gobierno sólo es gobierno en virtud de la aprobación pública. De esta manera, uno constata que la película “La Historia Oficial” está cargada de elementos que representan la manipulación de las masas a través del poder político, social y hasta religioso.
La Teoría de los dos demonios, presentada por Marcela Viscoti (2014) en su artículo “Lo Pensable de una Época: sobre la Historia Oficial de Luis Puenzo”, es indispensable para que uno comprenda mejor los mecanismos de la relación entre el poder y la manipulación de masas en la película. Esa teoría afirma que el terrorismo de Estado fue una repuesta al terrorismo practicado por grupos paramilitares; justificando así, el pasado dictatorial. A través de la teoría de los dos demonios, el Estado procuraba no solamente justificar la represión estatal pero también ubicaba la sociedad en una posición de inocencia. Es decir, mientras el Estado promovía la idea de un pueblo inocente y ajeno frente a la barbarie que sucedía ante sus ojos, la sociedad empezaba a percibirse a sí misma como libre de cualquier responsabilidad social y política (3). En 1985, cuando la película fue estrenada, todavía había mucha gente que creía que los militares habían defendido a los argentinos de la subversión. El film de Luis Puenzo, divulgaba por primera vez a nivel nacional e internacional el robo de niños, la dictadura y la manipulación popular. Otro concepto relevante y que la película explora detalladamente es la complicidad civil con la dictadura. Puenzo muestra la complejidad de la complicidad civil desde el escenario empresarial- multinacional hasta las acciones cómplices de la iglesia católica. Además, la complicidad como negación social presentada en la película deja bien claro que la supuesta inocencia de la sociedad es justificada en la pretensión de no saber (Viscoti, 2014). Por lo tanto, Alicia es la personificación perfecta de la complicidad social como negación y esto se ve bien claro cuando el profesor Benítez le dice: “Siempre es más fácil creer que no es posible, ¿no?” y “No hay nada más conmovedor que una burguesa con culpa”.
El personaje de Alicia parece vivir en su propio mundo, huyendo de la realidad y enseñando la historia oficial, en vez de la historia nacional. Hasta se la podría comparar con Alicia en el país de las maravillas. Uno percibe la ajenidad de Alicia en la escena en que está con sus amigas en un restaurante y vuelve a encontrarse con Ana, su mejor amiga, después de 7 años. Uno claramente nota que Alicia es muy diferente a Ana y las demás amigas. Durante la conversación, una de ellas menciona que una persona conocida suya tuvo que irse a Brasil: “Si se lo llevaron, por algo habrá sido, ¿no?” Y Alicia inocentemente contesta: “¿Aie, pero de que están hablando? También, cuando la amiga dice: “El único hijo que le quedaba” y Alicia ingenuamente contesta: “¿Por qué? ¿Qué les pasó a los otros? Ya en la escena con Ana, tomando licor de huevo, Alicia llega al colmo de la pretensión de no saber. Las dos pasan de las risas a los llantos y luego constatamos por la expresión facial de Alicia, cuanto le cuesta creer que su mejor amiga había sido torturada. Deltel (2012), en su artículo “La Historia oficial”, clasifica la ingenuidad de Alicia como insensata ya que Alicia le pregunta a Ana si ella habría hecho una denuncia y porque no la habría hecho.
Puenzo también denuncia la manipulación socio-política a través de la escena del baño de Gaby, en la cual la nena canta “en el país de no me acuerdo”. Ya el abuso de poder también está claramente simbolizado por la escena del aeropuerto, en que Roberto dice a Alicia: “¡No pienses!”. En ese contexto, Deltel (2012) presenta el concepto literario de Intrahistoria creado por Don Miguel de Unamuno en 1895 y demuestra como tal concepto está presente en la película de Puenzo a través de tres tipos de historia que son: la historia oficial, la historia nacional y la historia personal. Don Miguel de Unamuno hace una comparación de forma muy acertada acerca de “La Historia Oficial” o sea, la gran historia que normalmente sale en la prensa, con la intrahistoria que reflejaría todo lo que pasa pero de lo cual no se habla en los periódicos. De este modo, “la intrahistoria es la verdadera historia, la realidad, lo que se esconde detrás de varias cosas” (Deltel, 2012). Uno claramente verifica la conexión entre los conceptos de poder, manipulación, intrahistoria y complicidad civil vivenciados por la sociedad argentina en la época de la dictadura y durante la emergencia y desarrollo de la democracia. Puenzo genialmente simboliza cada uno de esos conceptos con sus personajes. La intrahistoria, por ejemplo, está presente durante toda la película puesto que el espectador sospecha todo el tiempo de la realidad por detrás de las apariencias. El espectador sospecha del exilio a Brasil en la escena del restaurante; también sospecha que Gaby probablemente reviviera un trauma inconsciente cuando sus primos entraron en su habitación jugando a ser policías; y sospecha que Ana probablemente estuvo exiliada por siete años en algún lugar. Todas esas sospechas, de acuerdo con Deltel (2012) representan la intrahistoria. Siendo la intrahistoria tan presente, uno puede deducir que la historia oficial es lo que uno menos ve en la película. Puenzo, intencionalmente, provoca la sospecha en los espectadores y los hacen percibir la realidad de la historia nacional a través de las historias personales de cada uno de los personajes. La Historia personal de Roberto por ejemplo, lleva a los espectadores a deducir la historia nacional; o sea, Roberto representa la corrupción, el abuso de poder y la tiranía del gobierno dictatorial. La escuela, el rito del himno nacional, la clase de historia y la vida de Alicia representan la manipulación de las masas a través de la teoría de los dos demonios. Finalmente, la historia personal de Gaby nos lleva a la historia nacional de los robos de niños de padres “desaparecidos”.
El personaje de Alicia solamente empieza a sufrir una profunda modificación en su manera de ver al mundo cuando ella asiste a una manifestación de “Las Madres de la Plaza de Mayo”. Otra vez, uno percibe la perplejidad de Alicia a través de sus expresiones faciales. Alicia se da cuenta de que la realidad que se desvela ante sus ojos, no corresponde a la historia que ella ha enseñado por tantos años. La maestra empieza a vivenciar una especie de conflicto de identidad y aprovecha que su marido se va de viaje y empieza a investigar la historia de Gaby. Curiosamente, la historia personal de Gaby le ayuda a construir su propia historia personal de ciudadana (Deltel, 2012). Puenzo deja al espectador imaginar un posible final para la historia. Quizás, Alicia iba a empezar a participar de las manifestaciones de las Madres de Mayo y luchar en contra de su historia oficial.
Para concluir, desafortunadamente, la manipulación de las masas objetivando hegemonía política ha existido desde el proceso de colonización de América Latina. Casi siempre los jefes de Estado logran manipular las masas a través de la educación o la falta de educación. Es decir, la película muestra un sistema educativo basado en el positivismo de Auguste Comte, en lo cual los estudiantes son “programados” para aprender la historia oficial y los maestros “programados” para enseñala. Contrariamente, aquellos que abren sus ojos para la realidad sufren las consecuencias políticas y sociales de sus actos. Afortunadamente, con la restitución de la democracia en la República Argentina, los medios de comunicación y la libertad de expresión permitieron que películas como la de Puenzo denunciasen la realidad histórica argentina objetivando la promoción del pensamiento crítico a nivel nacional e internacional.
Deltel, Luis. “La Historia Oficial (Luis Puenzo 1985).” Madri Más. 14 Dec. 2012. Web. 1 May 2015. <http://www.madrimasd.org/blogs/imagen_cine_comunicacion_audiovisual/2012/12/14/12607
López, German. “El Poder Y La Manipulación De Las Masas.” Pueblos 31 Aug. 2014. Print.
Viscoti, Marcela. “Lo Pensable De Una Época: Sobre La Historia Oficial De Luis Puenzo.”Universida De Buenos Aires (2014). Web. 27 Apr. 2015. <http://www.aletheia.fahce.unlp.edu.ar/numeros/numeros/numero-8/articulos/lo-pensable-de-una-epoca.-sobre-la-historia-oficial-de-luis-puenzo>.