Innovation Education Comments to IPTV story

This is a part two of a post about the innovations at Iowa schools not covered in our TIJ #323. You can read about those other innovations here.

Here’s the background on The Iowa Journal that aired April 1, 2010.

Now to the comments we received leading up to the broadcast.

Did we miss yours? Send it to or post a comment below.

Evan Abbey of Des Moines wrote: “Nice piece on #vanmeter in your episode on Iowa Journal. I then asked where we could another discussion on the topic. Evan’s answer: “At some point, talking about the IA online learning system being developed, both for K-12 and teacher professional development.”

John Carver, guest on the show from Van Meter, spent the last few days in Nashville at an education seminar and is sharing The Iowa Journal’s discussion with others. “We are still in Nashville have shared the show’s link with folks here. It is creating a BUZZ,” said John via Twitter Friday morning.

The middle school principal at Okoboji schools, Ryan Cunningham, said, “watched the show via the web–outstanding!!!! Thanks for promoting the gr8 things in IA schools!”

The Superintendent of Newell-Fonda CSD, Jeff Dicks said, “Good piece on innovation in Iowa.” Jeff also gave us a lot of publicity before the show. Big thanks to him.

Brian Downing, the Secondary principal in Lisbon, told us “Great program. U did nice job tightroping between 2 very different guest viewpoints. Great stuff on Sigourney, too!”

We featured Deron Durflinger, secondary principal at Van Meter, in our program. He added his thoughts on the show. “You did a great job w/ the show. Still not clear on DE’s position on innovation but you’re promoting good discussions.”

8th-grade science teacher and editor of the Iowa Science Teacher Journal, Jerrid Kruse had some points to share about the topic. He wanted to know about “standards, testing, & how cripple innovation;). More realistically: more focus on critical thinking, inquiry, web 2.0.”

Bridgette Wagoner of Cedar Falls, Director of Price Laboratory School on the campus of the University of Northern Iowa, writes: “Watching your ed innovation show this morning. Thanks for building momentum! My soapbox w/ innovation: It’s not about tech-but what students do w/ it. HOT (Higher Order Thinking) about important stuff &value beyond school.” She adds: “I agree with VM. It’s all about constructing knowledge, developing imp skills/concepts.”

Nadene Davidson of UNI said to not overlook critical thinking and the skill sets need to get us to the next level. Wagoner agrees with that as well. “The Universal Constructs (ICC) are the byproduct of high quality teaching and learning.”

Western Iowa was watching too. Bob Miller, Superintendent of the Okoboji Community Schools, said, “Good job leading the discussion tonight. Great to see local boy David Thorson as well. His photography is simply amazing.”

And I want to end with a view of career worker who recently started substitute teaching. His views are well thought out and come from life experience. His life is in rock ‘n’ roll, government and law. His words:

Most educators spew bull$hit…the pathetic part is that they don’t really know they’re doing it. In America we have been discussing education for more than 200 years and we still don’t really have a good handle on it. Every year there is some new theory about how to best engage our youth…some of those theories are successful, others not. Whether it’s eSEAL or ‘rigor & relevance’ or some other nonsense it generally has little or no practical effect.

A recent NY Times Magazine article tried to define a “good” teacher and even they stumbled. The ideal teacher is curious, engaged, caring, and worldly. (without acting like they’re God’s gift to children) The ideal student is one open to life’s possibilities. Without those things all of the goddamned educational theories in the world ain’t worth crap.

Thanks for the time and comments, we really appreciate it.


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