Essentially people see a lot of "emotionally ambiguous" faces throughout the day. How we feel internally is directly related to how we interpret this external ambiguity. If we are depressed, we will see sadness. If we are anxious, we will see fear. And if we are aggressive, we will see hostility.
The NPR story discusses an experiment that aimed to retrain how a sample group of troubled teens interpreted ambiguous faces.
And guess what... it worked! Check out the story get the details, but what this reminds me of is how important a teacher can be.
As teachers we are primary agents in creating the atmosphere of our classrooms. If we enter our classrooms and approach our students in negative or even ambiguous ways, students may be confused and best and hostile at worst.
So put a smile on your face, be positive, and make sure that you are contributing to the atmosphere you want in your classroom.
Handwriting... it can be put on the back burner as teachers focus on reading, writing, math, science, history, and everything else that we're required to teach. I've often heard comments like, "We write so much--he'll get better with practice," and "She's young--it'll get better when she's older."
As a former high school English teacher and current reading specialist, I can tell you poor handwriting doesn't "just get better" and many kids don't "just grow out of it."
While practice does help, if a student keeps practicing incorrect letter formation then no progress will be made.
I use the Print version more than the others (cursive is not heavily required at my school), and I see improvement quickly. Plus, students love seeing their improvement from their Pre-Test to their Post-Test!
Today is International Autism Awareness Day. If you are looking for information about autism and/or want to know more about it, I highly recommend Autism Speaks.
In honor of International Autism Awareness Day, many companies who provide services and materials for children and adults with autism have made their apps through itunes available for reduced price or even free.
If you use iPads or iPhones in your classroom, then you should be able to find quite a few good apps from these two websites that list many of the participating apps: