American RadioWorks |
teaching-teachers

Teaching Teachers

Research shows good teaching makes a big difference in how much kids learn. But the United States lacks an effective system for training new teachers or helping them get better once they're on the job. This documentary examines why, and asks what it would take to improve American teaching on a wide scale. We meet researchers who are trying to understand what makes teaching complex, and how to determine whether someone is ready to be a teacher. We also visit U.S. schools that are taking a page from Japan and radically rethinking the way they approach the idea of teacher improvement.

Recent Posts

  • 08.27.15

    An American way of teaching

    In 1993, a group of researchers set out to do something that had never been done before. They would hire a videographer to travel across the United States and record a random sample of eighth-grade math classes. What they found revealed a lot about American teaching.
  • 08.27.15

    Rethinking teacher preparation

    In the United States, teaching isn't treated as a profession that requires extensive training like law or medicine. Teaching is seen as something you can figure out on your own, if you have a natural gift for it. But looking for gifted people won't work to fill the nation's classrooms with teachers who know what they're doing.
  • 08.27.15

    A different approach to teacher learning: Lesson study

    In the United States, we tend to think that improving education is about improving teachers - recruiting better ones, firing bad ones. But the Japanese think about improving teaching. It's a very different idea.
  • 08.27.15

    Thinking about math from someone else’s perspective

    "What you do when you’re teaching is you think about other people’s thinking. You don’t think about your own thinking; you think what other people think. That’s really hard." -Deborah Ball


in collaboration with Spotlight on Poverty and Opportunity

Eliminate the link between politics and money

File under: government, other

2 (1 votes)

From: Perry L., Devils Lake, ND

I have worked in the field of poverty reduction through the Community Action Network for more than 34 years, and in my observations, eliminating the link between money and politics is the only answer. To have an open, honest, truthful and productive discussion about what causes poverty, people who finance election campaigns need to be part of the discussion, but not have veto power over whether the discussion happens or not. If national and statewide elected officials have to raise huge sums of money to seek re-election, that reduces their ability to focus on the needs of the nation or state. This lack of time and the need for daily fundraising allows lobbyists to gain greater influence over the governmental decision making process at the expense of almost everyone else impacted by the actual decision being made.

Almost every issue of national significance that would positively impact those who live daily in poverty has been decided based on some political calculation that benefits those most involved in financing political campaigns. The recent Supreme Court decision Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission may have created a situation where those with the power (i.e., campaign resources) can have even more influence on the governmental decision making process.

Eliminating abject poverty is well within the grasp of this country. If the relationship between money and our political process is not changed, however, although there may be some things that can be done, ultimately we are dealing with various forms of income redistribution. And those with the highest incomes, the individuals that strategically finance political campaigns, will increasingly use our broken political process to insure that poverty remains a constant within our society. The Bible says the poor will always be with us. As a country, we continue to do everything possible to make sure that statement remains eternally true.


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American RadioWorks |
teaching-teachers

Teaching Teachers

Research shows good teaching makes a big difference in how much kids learn. But the United States lacks an effective system for training new teachers or helping them get better once they're on the job. This documentary examines why, and asks what it would take to improve American teaching on a wide scale. We meet researchers who are trying to understand what makes teaching complex, and how to determine whether someone is ready to be a teacher. We also visit U.S. schools that are taking a page from Japan and radically rethinking the way they approach the idea of teacher improvement.

Recent Posts

  • 08.27.15

    An American way of teaching

    In 1993, a group of researchers set out to do something that had never been done before. They would hire a videographer to travel across the United States and record a random sample of eighth-grade math classes. What they found revealed a lot about American teaching.
  • 08.27.15

    Rethinking teacher preparation

    In the United States, teaching isn't treated as a profession that requires extensive training like law or medicine. Teaching is seen as something you can figure out on your own, if you have a natural gift for it. But looking for gifted people won't work to fill the nation's classrooms with teachers who know what they're doing.
  • 08.27.15

    A different approach to teacher learning: Lesson study

    In the United States, we tend to think that improving education is about improving teachers - recruiting better ones, firing bad ones. But the Japanese think about improving teaching. It's a very different idea.
  • 08.27.15

    Thinking about math from someone else’s perspective

    "What you do when you’re teaching is you think about other people’s thinking. You don’t think about your own thinking; you think what other people think. That’s really hard." -Deborah Ball