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Loris Malaguzzi on the Active Child

Loris Malaguzzi centers everything on the active child who, together with a nurturing and experienced guide, actively constructs her own learning.

Loris Malaguzzi was an Italian educator and the founder of the Reggio Emilia approach to education, which is similar to other models like Montessori and Waldorf. Like other theorists of the late 20th century, including Bruner, Piaget, and Vygotsky, Malaguzzi centers everything on the active child who, together with a nurturing and experienced guide, actively…
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Cultivate Your Moral Imagination by Reading Fiction

The moral imagination is our spirit’s capacity to understand, respond to, and appreciate Beauty.

You know that guilty feeling you get when you start reading a novel…that feeling that says there are a million non-fiction books you should be reading now. Well, that feeling is wrong; you can enjoy that novel without guilt! We need — yes, need — to read fiction. We live in a culture that continually…
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Read to Kids and Talk to Adolescents

Reading aloud to young children and having open and thought-provoking conversations with your teens are a form of involvement.

In her keynote at the National Summit 2014, Amanda Ripley shares a story about receiving an automated call from the school principal: “Wednesday is Chipotle night. Go to Chipotle and if you buy a burrito, ten percent will go to the school.” Amanda gets the call and says, “Oh alright. I’ll put it in my…
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How Education in Poland Transformed with 4 Changes

Education in Poland was the one of the worst in the world in the year 2000. By 2012, Poland was near the top of the list. How did this happen?

In the year 2000, Poland had one of the worst education systems in the world. By the year 2012, Poland was near the top of the list. Today, Poland is considered to be an education powerhouse and its 12 year transformation provides us with hope that the United States can also transform its education system.…
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What Do Exchange Students Think About Education? [Survey]

202 exchange students completed a survey about their experiences with education in their home country versus abroad.

In May 2012, journalist Amanda Ripley and researcher Marie Lawrence worked together with AFS Intercultural Programs to conduct a survey of exchange students. 202 students completed the survey. It should be noted (as a limitation of the study), that of the respondents, “a significant number (19%) had studied in Italy. Of international respondents, a large…
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The Smartest Kids in the World [Book Review]

The Smartest Kids in The World is filled with powerful insights as well as counter-intuitive truths.

Amanda Ripley, an accomplished journalist, stumbled upon a mystery: America spends more money on education than almost any other country in the world and makes use of more technology in the classroom than most other countries and yet it continues to underperform. Why are American kids not doing as well as their peers around the…
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Cultivate A Healthy Parent-Child Attachment [4 Tips]

Cultivating a healthy attachment bond empowers to be parents.

A child is an eager observer and is particularly attracted by the actions of the adults and wants to imitate them. In this regard, an adult can have a kind of mission. He can be an inspiration for the child’s actions, a kind of open book, wherein a child can learn how to direct his…
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Hold On To Your Kids: Parents Before Peers

The home, as a safe refuge, becomes a protective space allowing each child to find their identity and grow as an individual.

A ship is sailing at night, navigating treacherous waters in the darkness. Suddenly the captain sees a beam of light from a lighthouse a mile away. This light from this lighthouse allows the captain to get his bearing and his navigation is oriented around the lighthouse. We have a natural internal drive to orient ourselves…
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The Strength of an Attachment Relationship

A modern danger is found when the primary attachment between parent and child/teen is replaced with an attachment to peers.

“My daddy can beat up your daddy.” When they’re young, children think their parents are superheroes. Young children enjoy spending large amounts of time with their parents; tagging along to the grocery store can be seen as a great big adventure. Usually, near the onset of adolescence, things change dramatically. Suddenly, parents are seen as…
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Engaged Parents Are the Future of Education

We should allow parents to make choices regarding their child’s education; we should encourage them to be involved in their child’s learning.

Condoleezza Rice trusts parents. In a dinner keynote at the 2014 National Summit for Education Reform, the former Secretary of State addressed the misconception that somehow parents – particularly poor parents – are not capable of making good education choices for their children. Rice mentioned the normal system of a zip-code determining the quality of…
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