Summer is in full swing. When you head to the beach, lake, mountains or wherever you are lucky enough to relax, here are some interesting stories and commentary to tuck into your bag.
- The Truth Behind the Word Gap – A thoughtful piece in The Dallas Morning News by researchers Kathy Hirsh-Pasek and Roberta Michnick Golinkoff explores why talking with your kids, not at them, could be a key to language development. It goes beyond the famous study by professors Betty Hart and Todd Risley that found children with college-educated parents may have heard 32 million more words than children whose parents are on public assistance. Instead, the story shows that conversation – “back-and-forth interaction” – is key.
- The Real Power of “Sesame Street” – A new report on how “Sesame Street” delivers some benefits of high-quality preschool generated a lot of buzz, and perhaps a bit of hyperbole. The Atlantic offers a more nuanced view of what the research means in “The Sesame Street Effect: How the children’s show has enhanced learning in America—and why it’s a reminder of what’s lacking from education today”
- Good News in Washington State – You can read one of the most encouraging headlines in a while – “Washington State To Spend More On Early Learning Than It Ever Has” – and then read the story about important investments policymakers made in early education during the recently concluded legislative session.
- Teaching History – If you are feeling ambitious, check out “The Teacher Wars” a book by Dana Goldstein. Goldstein chronicles the history of teaching in America, and today’s challenges in education. It might sound daunting, but it’s a fairly easy read.