Students Benefit from Video Games

Submitted by Malik Muftau on Sun, 11/23/2014 - 9:46pm.
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There is a conception that if students spend too much time on computer games, they will not have enough time to interact with peers or even much time to do their homework. However, the vialogue below reveals that students actually benefit from spending more time on video games. According to the research highlighted in the vialogue, students who spend a lot of time on video games tend to be very conversational.


Preschool Education

Submitted by Bismark Appiah on Sun, 11/23/2014 - 8:58pm.
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Preschool is supposed to be all about learning and having fun. This is the time every child begins to develop his/her mental capacities. They learn basic numeracy and literacy skills. Many pre-schoolers are occupied with numerous learning materials. This is the way to get children involved in different kinds of activities with the hope that they will obtain a valuable lesson in the end.
During pre-schooling, children learn how to draw and paint, play with puzzles and listen to their teachers read stories. All these activities contribute to the child’s development. However, there are a lot of preschool children in developing countries who do not have such opportunities. This vialogues demonstrates the struggle preschoolers are facing in Mozambique. Despite the lack of resources, preschoolers there are still performing well.

Then there are those children who never attend preschool. Children who don’t attend preschool cannot read or write or solve basic math problems. However, the children who are in preschool are able to write, read, and solve math problems. In essence, if help is provided for these children, they will be more engaged in learning. Additionally, those who missed preschool will be able to catch up.


Dewey Re-Imagines the Library...Food for Thought for the Learning Theater?

Submitted by Carmen James on Sun, 11/23/2014 - 12:58pm.
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John Dewey in Chapter Three of his book School and Society, offers a diagram of the school that is creative re-imagining of how we could better specially design schools. Of particular interest, is the centrality of the library and the role he sees the library playing. I thought everyone might be curious to see his ideas!


The school building has swelled out, so to speak, the surrounding environment remaining the same, the home, the garden and country, the relation to business life and the university. The object is to show what the school must become to get out of its isolation and secure the organic connection with social life of which we have been speaking. [...] The center represents the manner in which all come together in the library; that is to say, in a collection of the intellectual resources of all kinds that throw light upon the practical work, that give it meaning and liberal value. If the four corners represent practice, the interior represents the theory of the practical activities. [...]


Wherein NLT Goes Speed Dating

Submitted by Joann Agnitti on Fri, 11/21/2014 - 3:07pm.
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I attended my second Test Tube event a few nights ago and it delivered; I got a lot of feedback in a little time. For this go-round I was testing NLT. Because you only have 7 minutes with each person, I couldn’t go too in depth with any one task, but I did get some telling first impressions. Quite a few pain points surfaced; namely,

  • The hassle of having to sign up
    • Only one person said that they would leave the site immediately once the wall came up. The rest (4 people) felt it appeared too soon and of these people, 3 suggested allowing people to sign up through Facebook or Google.
      People also wanted more emphasis on the site being free.
  • Not understanding the featured stories block
    • Overall, it seems people need more context about this section. They weren’t sure why these stories were being featured (one person thought it meant they were breaking news stories).
    • Two people thought this section was a video. One person said because of this, and because they peruse news sites while at work, they definitely wouldn’t click on it. Interesting/troubling?

Value of Experimentation in Product Strategy

Submitted by Kate Meersschaert on Fri, 11/21/2014 - 11:45am.
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As I work on marketing plans for Vialogues and New Learning Times I came across this powerful article from Stanford Social Innovation Review. In a nutshell: strategy is good, "experimenting towards success" as a team is even better. What is less valuable for innovative social ventures is rigid planning that is tied to hard-fast "time horizons." The author makes connections between past strategic planning and the battlefield and makes an eloquent call for a more agile, responsive strategic approach. The parallel for me is agile methodology of programming and product development versus the more brittle business plan-driven models of the past. Another connection brought to light by the author is the value of pattern recognition vs. a sole focus on data collection and the beauty of planning for a set of "intentional experiments."


College Tuition by State

Submitted by Khalil Abubakar on Fri, 11/21/2014 - 2:06am.
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This article highlights the cost of attending public universities depending on your state of residency. According to College Board, the cost of education for your family might be reduced by $50,000 by moving to states like New York, Wyoming and Florida. New Hampshire will be a very bad idea because it is the worst place to look for low-cost education. In other words, they have the highest cost of tuition.

Factors that determines tuition costs are tax rates, parents income and college tuition. Wyoming, with the lowest cost of tuition, has low tax rates but tuition demands are low and government invests most of its revenue in education. While New Hampshire also has low tax rates, most families earn higher income and government aid is very low, thus causing tuition to increase. This article shows a table with all the states rankings, categories and factors that determine their position.


What Happens to your Brain When You're Having a Brilliant Idea

Submitted by Maxine Kim on Thu, 11/20/2014 - 10:59am.
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Interesting article that I want to share with everyone.

"French post-Impressionist artist Paul Gauguin famously once said, “I shut my eyes in order to see,” meaning he shut out the rest of the world to come up with great ideas."


Contract Law and Breaching

Submitted by Ahmed Bagigah on Thu, 11/20/2014 - 1:21am.
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A contract is a legally binding promise enforced by two parties. Breach occurs when a promisor does not fulfill a contract. In this case, the promisor owes the promisee compensation for damages as if the contract or the promise is actually fulfilled. Damages are required in breach because without threat of damage payment, promisors might not consider the impact of his or her actions on promisee. In a breach situation, a key question is whether events were forseeable or whether the promisor should deduce the consequence of the contract breach. This means that the cost and benefit of performing a contract must be evaluated. Efficiency in contract law does not force promisor to perform the contract. However, what it does is compensate the victim.

Efficient breaching is the voluntary breach of contract and payment of damages resulting from the costs of fulfilling the contract being greater than the benefit from fulfilling the contract. In this case, it is rational for efficient breach because sometimes, random or unforeseeable events increases cost of executing a contract so that it is too high. Reasons that help determine damages for breach is when contract evolves over time and expectations change and different possible standards all seem fair. Expectation damages is what a reasonable or rational person could have expected to receive from the contract. Expectation damages is the usual standard because of good economic efficiency and incentives to all parties.


College Applicants Clean Social Media Profiles

Submitted by Malik Muftau on Wed, 11/19/2014 - 10:59pm.
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For some time now, admissions officers at numerous colleges have expressed disapproval for the kind of acts college applicants exhibit on social media. For some students, social media is a platform to express themselves and their opinions. However, certain issues are very controversial and some students decide to talk about it on social media sites. These students sometimes end up using provocative and offensive language as a result. Several reports indicated that most colleges are unlikely to grant admission to students that exhibit unacceptable behavior on their social media profiles.

In contrast, this article highlights there has been a tremendous change in how students interact on social media. The use of provocative language is reported to have reduced. The report also indicates that other social media sites like Snapchat allows students to use social media in a more private way. It is very interesting to find that college applicants are actually using social media sites efficiently. A major concern is whether students will continue this trend or revert back to misusing social media after gaining admissions.


Specialized Diplomas For High Schoolers

Submitted by Khalil Abubakar on Tue, 11/18/2014 - 1:46am.
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The New York Board of Education has recently approved the implementation of technical and career education for high schoolers after graduation. In my view, this amounts to an associate degree while in high school. This kind of education has advantages and disadvantages. It makes high school graduates college ready and saves time and money otherwise spent on remedial classes. Additionally, 14-17 year olds often find it hard to find their passion at such an age. This causes conflicts in students choosing a specialty. Various countries in Africa, Europe and the rest of the world have had similar systems of this kind of education for decades now. I think the US joining the trend will produce high school graduates better prepared for college and ultimately professional life.

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