High School Online Announcement
I follow Time4Learning pretty closely so this is a really big deal. Time4Learning has been a big vendor in the homeschool world providing online interactive curriculum to tens of thousands of families over the last ten years. b So Check this out:
Announcing Time4Learning High School Homeschool Courses -
just in time for the new homeschool year!
Time4Learning is thrilled to announce that high school courses will be
available for the 2013/2014 school year!
What subjects will be offered at the high school level?
High school will include:
- English: English I, II, III, and IV
- Math: Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, Trigonometry, and Pre-Calculus
- Science: Biology, Earth/Space & Physical Science, Chemistry, and Physics
- Social Studies: US History, World History, US Gov/Civics, and Geography
- Electives: Health, Economics/Personal Finance
When will high school courses be available? What’s the pricing?
Time4Learning’s high school courses will be available before the new school year begins.
Sign up to get notified when all the details including demos are available. By the way, the
high school materials are fantastic!
My cousin just sent this to me. It totally cracked me up. Apparently, it’s a new acronym that her kids are using. Her kids, btw, are a traditional private school. Very upper end and focused on college prep and all. Apparently, they text it to each other during class. HSMP (Home School Me Please!).
The Silent Majority
Who would ever have thought I might quote Tricky Dick? But, he coined the term of a silent majority and I’m now suggesting that in the homeschooling world, there might be a silent majority.
When I go to homeschool conventions, I see a lot of very Evangelically-oriented curriculum developers. When I look at homeschool websites and magazines, I see a much bigger mix of viewpoints and approaches than I typically see at the big homeschool conventions (FPEA in Florida, Southeastern Show in Atlanta etc).
But, I feel that there is a silent majority of secular homeschoolers who are quietly homeschooling their children in non-religious ways. What to you think?
Blogs that I like to read
I’m amused that I follow so many totally different blogs. Some are useful to me with pertinent information and great insights or commentary. Other blogs are just of interest to me but of no practical value. Lets start with them. I also follow a number of political and philosophical/religious blogs but I think I’ll keep them more private since they are bound to raise some eyebrows. I have some contrarian views on what we should be focused on.
Here are some blogs that I follow that are of no conceivable value to me but they have hit a vein of interest:
Karate blog for old men
Art Blog about Emeric Fejes
A blog about collecting jokers
A blog about old educational technology
Blogs that I follow that have useful information for me:
3D Learners - The 3D in the title can be confusing. This is not a graphics or computer animation blog relating to 3D. The use of the term is about the fact that many so-called dyslexics and ADD/ADHD students are better thought of as having a more holistic perspective on the world since they see it differently. This blog has tools useful for them and other learners. Very focused ultimately on visual learning games.
Broward Education K12 – This blog traces not just the realities of homeschooling but all the educational choices for K12 in Broward County Florida. Currently very interested in why the system of public schools is so crazy and charter schools is so successful despite low performance.
Homeschool Curriculum Resources – I could have put this site in either category. It’s dully written with no pictures and poor layout. But the questions that it raises and the thoughts about them mesmerizes me. I highly recommend it!
Each family has a variety of educational choices, depending on their state, district, and resources. Briefly.
2. Public neighborhood school
3. Public magnet school
4. Public charter school. Rapidly evolving.
5. Private or parochial schools.
6. Virtual schools, public or charter
One of my friends is working on a blog which studies in some detail what is going on with his local school district and school choice. It’s quite an education. Read all about Broward County Schools.
I’m thinking about a survey that I did of my community a few years ago and I wish that I had gotten it organized again this year.
The Thanksgiving question that I asked of the T4L members was, regarding their curriculum vendors, what were they thankful for. And what was on their wish list.
Here’s what I think. I am what I would call a “social entrepreneur.” It’s a phrase that means that I run the company with a “double” bottom line. I’m pursuing two sets of goals. On one hand, I’m a business trying to produce stability, growth, and profits. On the other hand, I have a sense of mission related to service. I want my members to truly benefit from their use of use of my services and I want my employees to truly benefit from their experience with T4L.
Balancing these goals can be tough especially was we get larger and it gets less personal. I use to know a good number of our members personally, to read the forum and the support emails regularly, to even take support phone calls on a regular basis, and to have a close relationship with each of my staff. However, we’re now too big for me to do this and it would be easy to get too commercial.
For instance, I look at some community sites which hope to attract users and build a community while making a profit and in pursuing this, they throw up soo many many google ads that it becomes unthinkable that serious bloggers would use that platform and community and instead, it ends up with a pretty mixed bag of bloggers.
So this Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for models of businesses like mine which have veered off track in both ways. Some are too commercial for me to be comfortable with. Others over compensate the other way. Lets look closely for instance, at two sites that I worked on this week:
Vocabulary.co.il – This vocabulary building site has ads but also has original useful content that other sites don’t. And the ads don’t interfere with the user experience, they’re only visible during navigation, not study. For instance:
Hig Pig Games
Latin Learning Games
Parts of Speech Games
Root Word Games
On the VocabSpellingCity site, there’s lots of original content such as:
Analogies – New!
Compound Words – New!
Dolch – Sight Words
Homophones, Homonyms, etc.
Literature Based Word Lists
Math Vocabulary – Most Popular!
Monthly Holiday Lists
Multiple Meaning Words – New!
Phonics & Sight Word Curriculum
Sample Lists By Grade
Science Vocabulary – New!
Sequential Spelling Program
Sound Alike Words
Syllables – New!
What Should We Teach
There’s a great blog post called What to Teach which starts to explore the question of standards and curriculum. Without divulging all of it, the article deals with the definition of educational curriculum and what should be taught as the standard for high school. It’s in the area of curriculum reform and uses the new Common Core Curriculum as the jumping off place.
What Criteria Were Used?
I would love to have been a fly on the wall in the search and selection of Robert Runcie, the new Broward School Board Superintendent. In addition to checking that he is a good administrator, honest, smart, hardworking, has some ideas on how to improve test scores (sad sad sad) and deal with unions etc, I wonder whether they queried him and the others on a number of questions such as:
- Homeschooling. What should the district’s position on it be? Right now, there is one person who “supports” homeschoolers. I have no idea if this is a full time or part-time part of his job, what he does, and whether he is popular with the homeschool community.
- Magnet and charter schools. Is the school board actively encouraging charters? Are magnets dead or is there life in them yet?
- Role of arts and sports going forward. Can it be cut? Vital? Needs growing?
- Curriculum reform. Are we just following the common core and other state-level initiatives?
- Principals. Is getting great principals a priority (I would hope so). Is giving them the liberty to run their school including hiring/firing teachers a priority?
What would you have asked him?
Robert Runcie is Broward’s New School Superintendent
|BROWARD SCHOOL BOARD SELECTS NEW SUPERINTENDENT
The School Board of Broward County has selected Robert Runcie as superintendent of the sixth largest school district in the country. Following final interviews this morning of the two finalists, Runcie and Dr. Bernard Taylor, Jr., Superintendent, Grand Rapids Public Schools, Grand Rapids, Michigan, the Board members held a final discussion and cast their votes. A motion to make the vote for Runcie unanimous was then approved.
Runcie currently serves as Chief of Staff to the Board of Education, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago, Illinois, the third largest school district in the nation, with 410,000 students. He holds both a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Harvard College and Master of Management degree from Northwestern University. He is also a Broad Fellow, having completed an education executive training program presented by the prestigious Broad Superintendents Academy.
In addition to serving the Chicago Public Schools as Chief of Staff, Runcie has also served as Chief Instructional Officer, Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Information Officer.
Prior to joining Chicago Public Schools, he served as a senior consultant for a computer science corporation.
From an applicant pool of 47, the Board selected six semi-finalists to be interviewed. That field was then narrowed to Runcie and Taylor. Prior to their final interviews, the finalists took part in one-on-one interviews with Board members, participated in a “Meet the Press” news conference, a “Meet and Greet” with community members and a Community Forum.
The School Board has authorized contract negotiations with Robert Runcie. His start date as Broward’s new superintendent has yet to be determined.
|ABOUT BROWARD COUNTY PUBLIC SCHOOLS
Broward County Public Schools (BCPS) is the nation’s sixth largest public school system and the largest fully accredited district with over 234,000 students in 231 schools and education centers and 76 charter schools.
My local schools – Whats New?
Its been awhile since I’ve posted, here’s the news here about my local schools and their school board.
The lady that I knew pretty well on the board resigned. It’s a shame. She was an X-teacher and totally dedicated to making the public schools work. She got criticized pretty heavily for being closely associated with the creation of a school near her home area. The school is a tremendous success and a real model in a number of ways. I think the criticism is unwarranted since it’s based on the fact that she seems to have focused on her own region, not that she derived any personal benefit from it.
The school superintendent, Jim Nutter, resigned. For a few months, there was an interim. Donnie Carter is the Interim Superintendent of Broward County Public Schools, the sixth largest public school system in the United States, the second largest in the state of Florida, and the largest fully accredited K-12 and adult school district in the nation.
Mr. Carter has over 20 years experience in public education administration. He has been with Broward County Public Schools for more than a decade, where he was named Deputy Superintendent in 2004 and Chief Operations Officer in 2007.
Prior to joining Broward County Public Schools in 2001, Mr. Carter was a Director with JM Family Enterprises; and Assistant, Associate, and Deputy Superintendent with Miami-Dade County Public Schools.
Mr. Carter is a graduate of St. Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina with a Bachelor of Arts degree. He is an experienced senior operations executive with a comprehensive background in operations and business management.