Saturday, September 8, 2007

In the news: what's going on in my head.

Cross posting from my Vox blog...As I was writing it, I thought this belongs on my teacher/librarian blog. So, here it is:

I have been feeling a lot of mixed emotions lately over different news stories. This is what happens when you try to stay informed, you go from feeling happy, to feeling pissed, to feeling scared, to feeling paranoid, then what? What do you do with this information? How do you make a difference?

Anyway, so here are some things that have been stuck in my brain

  • Boing Boing has a great list of articles on the subject of global warming. - No more polar bears? I can't even fathom it and I have too.
  • No Child Left Behind Act & how it is placing unreasonable requirements on students and teachers. Teachers are leaving their jobs...good teachers...
    • Good editorial from the NYT
    • Jim Leher News Hour did a great feature on good schools failing "no child" marks. If you have time, you should definitely watch it or read the transcripts or listen to the audio. Anthony Cody, one the teachers, quit over how ineffective he felt due to the requirements of NCLB and it's effect on his students and his teaching. As Ambookgeek stated, "you cannot test thinking."
  • Sleep study from Japan - ok, I am all about waking up early because I get a lot done but now..forget it. I need to learn how to sleep in
  • The report coming out on Iraq - there are a lot of editorials out on this report. It actually made me think of an Excel lesson we give about how you can modify charts to reflect either a positive or negative look to the data you collect. How inappropriate would it be to use the report as an example of statistical manipulation?
  • Google and the OCA (Open Content Alliance) - After reading Google and the Myth of Universal Knowledge, it was great to read this interview with Brewster Kahle of the OCA, called "Scan This Book!". He also questions how one company and other companies can hold all this control over items that are in the public domain. Ideally, libraries and librarians provide access to information for all people, but if corporations are taking control and things are being based on a for-profit model, what effects does that have on our culture? Or access to information?

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