Here are a few of the education stories we've bookmarked recently.
In a recent viral video, fourth graders at an Atlanta elementary school shout positive affirmations to themselves in a mirror to start off their school day. Neffiteria Acker and Cierra Levay Broadway, The teachers behind the moment, shared that it is was an important way to boost students’ self-confidence. "We get seeds planted in our minds and in our spirits every day and we don't realize how we're watering those seeds, and a lot of it is negative," Acker said. "So planting a seed of self-love is the best seed to plant, and all me and Cierra have to do is water it."
On average, students across grades 3–8 made reading and math gains in 2020–21, according to a recent report from NWEA. However, student outcomes during the pandemic-affected school year were lower on multiple dimensions, and students made gains during the previous school year at a lower rate compared to pre-pandemic trends, ending the year with lower achievement compared to a typical year.
The things teachers say can have a huge impact on their students. Being intentional and reflective about the language used in the classroom requires a lot of practice and awareness. “One of the hardest things I had to do was learn how to change my ‘teacher’ language so that I could encourage and empower students on a daily basis,” said sixth-grade teacher Alyssa Nucaro. Here’s a list of phrases educators can use to empower their students and create a supportive environment for learning.
In a series of videos, students and educators from across the United States share what they’re hopeful for as they head into the 2021–22 school year and reflect on the changing state of the pandemic.