Unmotivated Child? 6 Ways to Get Your Child Going

6-Ways-to-Get-Your-Child-Going_Article“There’s something wrong with the picture if you care more about your child’s grades than he does.”

It is hard to motivate kids. Parents believe that if we ground them, take away their iPhones, iPads, laptops or TV time, then maybe they will listen. It has turned  So how can we motivate kids in ways that will not work against us? Debbie Pincus, a parent and marriage coach, shares how to approach unmotivated kids and get them to respond. The first thing she points out is for us parents to understand what our role is in motivating kids. Next, teach them about the concept of consequences.

As parents, we oftentimes micromanage our kids to ensure that they will not make the wrong choices. Ultimately, as Ms. Pincus points out, our kids are solely responsible for the choices they make...

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Genius Hour – Where Passions Come to Life

genius hourDuring genius hour, personalized learning come to life when kids of all levels become empowered to pursue their passions and work on projects that spark their interests. This allows them to take a break from the usual routine to discover things that they really wanted to do.

Teacher Dallas Thompson from the Centennial Arts Academy encourages his students to pursue their passion projects during genius hour.

“There are no tests, no studying, no curriculum. The students just enjoy learning about something they are truly interested in, by choice.”

His students have different ideas and projects. One student was into karate, another was finding ways to teach gymnastics while another was into cats. Find out what happens in genius hour here.

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These School Lunches From Around The World Should Embarrass The U.S.

A healthy and balanced meal not only fuels the body but it also helps fuel our brains. Let us take a look at what our cafeterias are serving here in the U.S. for lunch and let us see what the rest of the world eats.

Italy Breakfast


Local fish on a bed of arugula, pasta with tomato sauce, caprese salad, baguette, and some grapes

Spain Breakfast

Sautéed shrimp over brown rice and vegetables, gazpacho, fresh peppers, bread, and an orange

When you come to realize how many students are eating lunches provided by the school cafeteria, you will understand how important it is to promote healthy meals and healthy eating. Read more and see these cool and mouth-watering meals from around the world.


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Kids From The Other Side Of The Globe Learn How Racism Feels

Do Remember Me“The World Is as Big or as Small as You Make It” is a powerful documentary that takes us to an amazing group of teens in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as they connect with kids in New York, Tanzania, Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, Paris, and Kazakhstan through Skype. In the documentary, Sannii Crespina-Flores runs the Do Remember Me Project, designed to let kids examine, explore and discover that their worlds are not as different as one might think.

The project aims to invoke positive discourse between the youth and eliminate myths of hopelessness, media stereo types and cultural differences. One powerful moment was when a girl from across the globe asks, “Have you experienced racism?” and the 12-year old from Pennsylvania said, “Yes.”

Watch the entire video here.

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The Secret to Raising Smart Kids

smartkidsWe often assume that the most talented or smartest kids in class will most likely excel in life. Our society believes that by telling kids they are smart will further encourage them to do extremely well in whatever they do. It looks like we are wrong.

It’s dumb to tell kids they’re smart.

In an article by Carol S. Dweck, a Professor of Psycology at the Stanford University, an overemphasis on intelligence and talent – and the implication that such traits are inherent and predetermined, leave people to be fearful of challenge and ultimately, become failures. Studies reveal that those students who welcome challenges will most likely outperform their colleagues. They view challenges as energizing rather than intimidating.

So how can we correctly give praise to students without encouragi...

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Are You Technology Rich, Innovation Poor?

technology richAlan November, an international leader in education technology lists 6 questions that help educators qualify if they are leading an innovative school with the use of technology.

The questions are:

  • Did the assignment build capacity for critical thinking on the web?
  • Did the assignment develop new lines of inquiry?
  • Are there opportunities for students to make their thinking visible?
  • Are there opportunities to broaden the perspective of the conversation with authentic audiences from around the world?
  • Is there an opportunity for students to create a contribution (purposeful work)?
  • Does the assignment demo “best in the world” examples of content and skill?

Technology and devices may seem like a positive change for learning but they constantly need to be evaluated...

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Checking Under the Hood: Choosing a Learning Management System

questions_on_LearningChoosing the right Learning Management System (LMS) to direct and deliver your learning is one of the most critical decisions any learning institution can make. Mary Burns, a senior technology specialist at Education Development Center, gathered a number of questions and categorized them to make the process of learning management system easier.

The LMS is not your e-learning program, but it is the vehicle that transports your students to a certain destination–and not all e-learning systems are the same.

Check out the complete list here.

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Task Idea! A Visual History of …


This was inspired by a seventeen-year-old student who wanted to illustrate the story of people that inhabited the Earth in 120 seconds (assignment for a Video Productions class). Take a look…

Can you imagine other ideas based on this example?

  • Student’s life?
  • Family tree?
  • Town or city?
  • Country?
  • The Internet?

He also commented on YouTube that he knows that he left out a lot. Another great task might be to suggest images to add to the mix while still sustaining peoples’ attention. Or consider what the thesis statement was behind these images and demonstrate that using key photographs from the video. Or create the same video using a different thesis statement. Or consider a sound track that sets the mood to go with the images.

We want to know what you came up with! Email to share your ver...

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Celebrity in the Mix! #BookItForward

We are so excited to share our guest blogger this week: Mrs. P from Mrs. P’s Magic Library!

Wanda’s Wart – written and illustrated by Robin Robinson http://www.robinillustration.com/books/

Wanda’s Wart is an all-ages indie picture book about the importance of friendship, honesty—and not being afraid to stand out for what makes you an individual.  This story may be a tool for dealing with certain kinds of bullying, and for kids who run the risk of suppressing their interests and talents just to fit in.  I love the message that we could all be a little more fearless about being ourselves, warts and all. You can enjoy a reading of this story at my free website too.

Thank you so much, Mrs. P, for sharing your favorite book and helping us to #BookItForward! If you’d like to see and ...

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Family Book Club! #BookItForward

By 13 year-old Cuda, 10 year-old Zoe, and Mom

How do we begin to understand the pain of others?

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Steve Feuer, president of Gihon River Press, sent three memoirs to provide insight into the pain of Holocaust victims. While Holocaust remembrance has come and gone (January 27th), what is still very much needed is to grow compassion for the horrors of genocide, both then and now. Here is highlights of our family book talk — each of us read one memoir and described moments where we felt compassion and struggled to figure out how people can be so brutal to one another.

Where did you feel the most emotion?

Zoe: When the 2 year old son Hanrie and the mother Anna died. They were shot in the head by the Nazi soldiers. On page 46 of Ursula’s Prism, “My baby, please! And when she was just a fe...

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