NEW JERSEY ASSOCIATION OF SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS
Anne H. Gallagher, NJASA Director of Communications, 609-599-2900, ext. 126, firstname.lastname@example.org
Tips for Engaging Students in Learning
NJASA Sponsors Special Session at New Jersey School Boards Association
TRENTON, N.J. — November 16, 2012 — Danny Forster, host of Discovery Channel’s Build It Bigger, architect and college professor shared tips for engaging students in the classroom at an NJASA sponsored special session at the New Jersey School Boards Association meeting in Atlantic City, N.J. on October 24, 2012. His remarks inspired New Jersey’s chief education officers to seek opportunities to bring the real world experience into the classroom via technology, visuals and story telling.
- Dr. Richard Bozza, executive director of the New Jersey Association of School Administrators, is available to discuss Danny Forster’s keynote address.
“We’re working to prepare our students for the 21st century,” said Richard Bozza, Ed.D., executive director of the NJASA. “We were intrigued with the resource that Discovery Education can bring to the classroom and wanted to share that with our members.”Discovery Education works with schools to support common core curriculum standards. The network can stream engaging, rich media. It can offer virtual labs and simulations. It also can customize a digital science textbook. In addition, Discovery Education offers customized professional development experiences for educators. The company maintains a global learning community where educational professionals can communicate through blogs, virtual conferences and in-person events, such as the one Danny Forster keynoted.
“We take the TV shows and give them a second life by bringing them into the classroom to enhance the curriculum,” Danny explained. “These types of real world applications, where students can become part of the process ‘virtually,’ are very compelling.”Forster was well received by the audience, whom he held mesmerized in the room for more than two hours. “Architectural design,” said Danny, “can be exciting.” He noted that it also ties nicely into math, science, the environment, and the local culture. Educators can use a multi-disciplinary approach that has a real world application.
He offered the following tips to engage students in learning:
- Engage a student’s power of observation. Ask questions about what they notice and use their answers to start the discussion.
- Tell the story. A good narrative will engage students.
- Incorporate cultural elements. Broaden students’ understanding of various cultures, and relate their assignment, when possible to their cultures.
- Incorporate the environment. Make projects sustainable and environmentally sensitive.
- Inspire students to career choices. What elements of this project relate to specific careers? That may pique their interest.
Danny admitted choosing architecture as his field of study because of one inspiring teacher. She told him the story behind the buildings, and he was “hooked.”
The New Jersey Association of School Administrators is an organization of chief education officers and school administrators who lead school districts in New Jersey’s 21 counties. The association’s mission is to ensure a superior statewide system of education. Through ongoing professional training and education, the association shares knowledge among its members about best practices from both educational and administrative perspectives. Its goal is to move education forward by ensuring the highest quality of instruction for all New Jersey children.
Education Brief Videos Explain Budget Considerations
What schools can offer to students is directly affected by budget. Due to the complexity of the school budget cuts and the effects that will be felt in schools across the state, the NJASA has released a series of videos to help parents and taxpayers better understand the issues, and the potential aftermath of the events and changes. Each video can be accessed on a special NJASA YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/user/TheNJASA or by clicking on the YouTube icon on the NJASA website, www.njasa.net.
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