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News from FABBS

To Make Every Child a Reader, Teach Them All Differently

It’s hard to believe that questions about how children learn to read could cause a war, but in the 1970’s and 80’s, that’s exactly what happened. During the “reading wars,” proponents of the phonics approach believed beginning readers needed to focus on sounding out letters and words, while whole language advocates argued for immersing children in interesting texts and focusing on meaning, with the faith that reading specific words would follow. That debate has long been settled

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For Teaching Math, Two Ways Are Better Than One

If you think you’re bad at math, you’re not alone. Large percentages of adults lack confidence in their math skills; even teachers have surprisingly low ratings of their ability in the subject. But it might be possible to reverse that trend for our children. Research suggests that one straightforward approach can help students develop a clearer understanding of math: teaching multiple strategies to perform the same skill. When teachers demonstrate two ways to do subtraction or multiply

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Believing is Seeing

Most of us can think of a time we engaged in wishful thinking, and it probably didn’t work out as we hoped. But the situation was likely out of our conscious control, because we are predisposed to see what we want to see – literally. Through a combination of social and cognitive psychology, Emily Balcetis of New York University has found that our desires influence our visual and cognitive attention, biasing us to see things in a certain way, even when we think we are being impartial. That

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No Single Solution for Bullying

Media reports of bullying and its consequences have become distressingly common, especially for parents of children and teens. A spate of high profile cases that ended in suicide or violence helped fuel a national movement for legislation to define and deal with bullying. All 50 states now have laws designed to prevent and address bullying in schools, but those laws vary widely and their impact isn’t clear. What is clear is that laws alone can’t stop bullying, because it’s a complex

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