July 31, 2006

Scientific American: The Expert Mind

Scientific American: The Expert Mind: "The preponderance of psychological evidence indicates that experts are made, not born. What is more, the demonstrated ability to turn a child quickly into an expert--in chess, music and a host of other subjects--sets a clear challenge before the schools. Can educators find ways to encourage students to engage in the kind of effortful study that will improve their reading and math skills? Roland G. Fryer, Jr., an economist at Harvard University, has experimented with offering monetary rewards to motivate students in underperforming schools in New York City and Dallas. In one ongoing program in New York, for example, teachers test the students every three weeks and award small amounts--on the order of $10 or $20--to those who score well. The early results have been promising. Instead of perpetually pondering the question, 'Why can't Johnny read?' perhaps educators should ask, 'Why should there be anything in the world he can't learn to do?'"

July 27, 2006


Upside-Down-Ternet: "My neighbours are stealing my wireless internet access. I could encrypt it or alternately I could have fun"

July 18, 2006