Blogging and brain

Drs. Fernette and Brock Eide believe that blogging changes our mind and offers many positive opportunities for (critical) thinking.

Recent international surveys have shown that students in the United
States have fallen far behind most of their first world peers in problem
solving and critical thinking. This fall has coincided with a shameful
decline in school-based instruction in critical analysis, rhetoric, and
persuasive writing. However because professionals like attorneys, philosophers, and academicians run many excellent blogs, we all can benefit from their intellectual rigor, and
their use of analogical thinking when communicating to the common world of the
blogosphere. Back-and-forth blog-based exchanges between experts also provide a
unique opportunity for young thinkers to witness and evaluate arguments from
analogy on an ongoing basis, and to develop their own abilities to think analogically.

Look at the article


Educational climate in Europe is not yet progressive

Twenty seven pre-service teachers, from eight European countries, following an international class in the Netherlands, were asked to evaluate the educational climate in their countries.

The participating countries were: Spain, Portugal, Czech Republic, Sweden, Germany, Turkey, Austria and the Netherlands.
What is their opinion? Does Europe support a progressive educational climate, in which mathetics could develop? What is their opinion about the school of education in the Netherlands and about Dutch primary schools?

Only one out of five students indicates to live in a country with an open progressive educational climate.
Most progressive scores come from the Netherlands (50%) and Spain (28.6%). Lowest score is for Turkey, where the climate is seen as very closed and traditional. Sweden is in the middle with a neutral judgement about their own climate.

What do pre-service teachers in Europe think about the educational climate at their schools of education? Are they being trained in a progressive way and prepared for Europe of the future?
Only one out of four students (25.9%) thinks that the school of education has an open progressive climate.
So the majority of the European teachers are not yet prepared for the open constructivistic goals that are mentioned in many European reports. Students from Austria and Turkey give the lowest scores to the educational climate at their schools of education. German and Dutch students are positive about the climate at their institutes. Boys make a more negative judgement than girls.

The climate at the Dutch guest institute is seen as open bij > 75% of the students.
The climate at Dutch primary schools is also seen as open/very open by > 75% of the foreign students.

If this little pilot study is right, than Europe still has a long way to go towards the desired emphasis on open education.