By Jen Newton

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This topic contains 9 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by  Jen Newton 2 years, 9 months ago.

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    Jen Newton

    Introduce yourself!  Tell us your name, your connection to the group, and the reason for your interest in joining us for this book discussion.



    Kim Muldoon

    Week 1 – Book Introduction
    Introduce yourself! Tell us your name, your connection to the group, and the reason for your interest in joining us for this book discussion.
    After reading the Introduction, what do you most hope to learn in this book?
    After reading the Introduction, what questions/concerns do you have about this book?

    Hi! I am Kim Muldoon and I am a James Madison University Grad Student. All three of the lovely ladies running this site I have met during my time at JMU, and have been great mentors to me.

    I am interested in joining in on this discussion because when I walk into schools I notice a lot of disengaged students, students who don’t want to be there, and teachers who want to say their students are “lazy.” I want to read and see what it is that students don’t like about school and what we can do to promote strategies for teachers to use to increase engagement and make school a safe and enjoyable environment for their students. Also to ensure that I am doing the most I can to make a school a place students want to be!

    After reading the introduction, I am super excited to learn more about how the mind works, especially the concept of thinking. I am also excited to see Willingham’s 9 principles and the implications for teaching.


    Courtney Pfanstiel

    Hi! My name is Courtney Pfanstiel and i am a junior in the physical therapy program here at SLU. I am getting my minor in special education, as i hope to someday practice physical therapy with children with disabilities. I am doing my practicum for the seminar class at Bayless Elementary School in a self contained classroom.
    After reading the introduction of the book, i am most looking forward to learning about how to bridge the gap between research and practice. I am also interested to read about why the author says it is more beneficial to view humans as bad at cognition.


    Jen Newton

    Welcome Kim and Courtney! We’re so glad you’re here!


    Sarah Reich

    Hello, my name is Sarah Reich I am also a junior in the physical therapy program at SLU. Just like Courtney, I too am getting my minor in special education. This semester, I am completing my practicum at Lindbergh Early Childhood Education. The classroom I am in is reverse mainstream, 8 of the students have IEP’s and 2 are typically developing.
    After reading the introduction, Im interested in reading about the nine principles that are so
    fundamental to the mind’s operation that they do not change as circumstances change. I will be interesting to see how this is related to students in a classroom.


    Jill Sweeney

    Hello, my name is Jill Sweeney. I am a junior at SLU studying Early Childhood Special Education. I am currently in my practicum at Bayless Elementary in a K-2 Resource Room. I am excited to learn from my hands-on experiences during my practicum.
    I look forward to reading this book throughout the semester because I think it will be a great way to make connections while I am also learning from my practicum as well as all of you. I am excited to read your opinions on this book in order to give me support in my ideas or to challenge them, which is just as important.
    After reading the introduction, Im interested in reading about the nine principles, similar to what others have already said. I think it will be a different outlook on learning in comparison to what I have already learned in classes.


    Ariel Welch

    Hello! I’m Ariel Welch, a junior at SLU! I am studying Early Childhood Education, and I am set to begin my practicum at Julia Goldstein Early Learning Center.
    I am looking forward to reading this book because I want to understand how I can effectively teach my students in the future, and now in practicum! After reading the introduction, I am very excited to learn how the brain works, especially in children. I think this is an important concept to know as an educator. I am curious to know how the author came about with these studies, and how they may differ for each child. I look forward to connecting my reading to my practicum this semester!


    Emily Blazevic

    Hi, there! I’m Emily Blazevic and I am a sophomore at Saint Louis University! I am majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders and minoring in Special Education with the hopes of going to grad school for Speech Pathology. This semester I am doing my practicum at Brentwood Early Childhood Center with their Speech Pathologist.
    After reading the introduction, I am intrigued by the 9 principles and finding ways to apply them during my practicum and in my future work with children. I am hoping that this book will deepen my understanding of how the brain works and strengthen my skills for working with children.


    Jared Tschohl

    My name is Jared. I am currently working as an educational consultant at the Shenandoah Valley Child Development Clinic based at James Madison University (JMU) in VA. We provide neuro-developmental evaluations to children up to the age of 21 and my role is to assess reading, writing, and math skills as part of a team of psychologists, nurses, and social workers. Prior to this, I was a special education teacher for three years and I am also licensed to teach History/Social Sciences (6-12). I am currently working on an MEd in Equity & Cultural Diversity at JMU.

    I’ve always been a lifelong learner, which is how I met Jen. I had the opportunity to take her class on assessing younger children, when I was randomly taking electives before deciding on my current program. She had a way to challenge my thinking, without disregarding my perspective or making me feel it was wrong. I am excited for this book club, because I want to read more books in the realm of education/teaching, but never know where to start or what “the good books” to read are. On top of it, reading is more fun when being able to discuss it with others!

    After reading the introduction, I was really caught by surprise when the author said “it’s more useful to view the human species as bad at thinking,” because this is a huge paradigm shift for me, particularly in the realm of special education & ELLs, where we try to focus on children’s strengths, not weaknesses.

    One concern I have with this book, is that I hope it is not going to try and preach about how to solve “motivation” through building relationships. Although it is important to do, I feel that idea is overrated and been exhausted, particularly when no one offers explicit ways to implement that idea.


    Jen Newton

    Jared, I am so glad you’re here!! I think you’ll love this book and I’m thrilled to have your voice in the conversations!! THANK YOU!!!!

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