Category Archives: L&B Blog

Don’t Hate on Comic Sans; It Helps Dyslexic Readers (Asterisk)

People have surprising passions. Some friends regularly announce that the Oxford comma is a hill they’re ready to die on. (I’m an English teacher, and yet I wonder: you’re willing to die over a punctuation mark?) With equal energy and



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Perspectives on Critical Thinking: Can We Teach It? How Do We Know?

Imagine the following scenario: A school principal gathers wise cognitive scientists to ask a straightforward question… “Because critical thinking is an essential 21st century skill, we know our students need to develop critical thinking skills. If we want to create



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Do Classroom Decorations Distract Students? A Story in 4 Parts…

Teacher training programs often encourage us to brighten our classrooms with lively, colorful, personal, and uplifting stuff: Inspirational posters. Students’ art work. Anchor charts. Word walls. You know the look. We certainly hope that these decorations invite our students in



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Why Time is a Teacher’s Greatest Commodity…and What to Do When You Don’t Have Enough of It

Today’s guest post is by Jim Heal, Director of New Initiatives, and Rebekah Berlin, Senior Program Director at Deans for Impact. Long-time readers know how much I respect the work that Deans for Impact does. Their Resources — clear, brief,



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A Little Help, Please…

I’ve got a problem, and I’m hoping you can help me. Here’s the situation… I work as a high school English teacher. And I’m also a consultant – presenting psychology and neuroscience research for teachers and students and parents. In



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Does Higher Engagement Promote Learning?

Long-time readers know: I thoroughly enjoy research that challenges my beliefs. After all, I (probably) have lots to learn when a study makes me think anew. In this case — even better! — I’ve found a study that (I suspect)



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The Downsides of Desirable Difficulties

For several years now, we’ve been talking about the benefits of “desirable difficulties.” For instance, we know that spreading practice out over time helps students learn more than does doing all the practice at once. Why? Because that schedule creates



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Too Good to be True: When Research and Values Collide

Let’s start with some quick opinions: Flipped classrooms… … can transform education and foster students’ independence, or … are often a waste of time, and at best just rename stuff we already do. A growth mindset… … allows students to



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New Research: Unrestricted Movement Promotes (Some Kinds of) Creativity

Teachers like creativity. We want our students to learn what has come before, certainly. And, we want them to do and think and imagine new things with that prior knowledge. We want them, in ways big and small, to create.



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The First Three Steps

Early in January, The Times (of London) quoted author Kate Silverton (on Twitter: @KateSilverton) saying: It’s the schools that have the strictest discipline that have the highest mental health problems. Helpfully, they include a video recording of her saying it.



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