Posts Tagged ‘Critical Thinking’



September 23, 2013


“Can you imagine going to a 1913 hospital” asks Jeff Cacel, principal at North Park Elementary as he positions the REAL issue:  “Why do we subject our children to antiquated and outmoded learning environments?

So at North Park, they’ve made some changes and created a learning studio that houses 94 second graders and 6 teachers which was so successful, the concept has now been expanded to the third grade as well.

Work spaces include tables/chairs, genius bars, hokki stools, and carpeted floor space…plus small rooms for quiet space around the periphery.  YES! Twenty-first century spaces to build twenty-first century skills!

But equally important to me was the work done in redefining the curriculum.  The three “Rs” of reading, ‘riting, and ‘rithmatic have been replaced by the four Cs:  Collaboration, Communication, Critical Thinking, and Creativity!

Add a little small group work, hands-on learning, conversations, technology and flipped instruction and this is dream come true in revolutionizing education!

I wish I were in school now.  Just think what a better job I could do facilitating a revolution in adult learning – which is also sorely needed in order to succeed in our world today and into the future.



Before they automatically hired temp holiday staff, they asked their existing hourly team members if they’d like additional work over that time period.

But not to worry, they will still need 70,000 new faces…and if there is a repeat of last year, almost 40% of the newbies will be offered year-round positions after the holidays!



She’s laid it all out on the table:

“I don’t think in America we should throw tantrums when we lose elections and threaten to shut down the government and refuse to pay bills…The American people had a choice last November.  They had a choice between someone who said ‘Repeal Obamacare’ and President Obama”.

AMEN TO THAT!  What about majority rule do these folks NOT understand?  We can only hope they self-destruct in their attempt to destroy our nation.



Nice to see at least one news commentator (Jeffrey Goldberg-Blomberg) reads Obama’s stance and effectiveness like I do.  He doesn’t necessarily agree with all the steps to this point, but he acknowledges Obama has been both “tough and effective”…with Syria and Iran – a far different stance from poplar media celebs like NBC whiner, Andrea Mitchell!

Of course, we won’t know until sufficient time passes so UNEMOTIONAL judgment can be made, but it sure is comforting to see if one thinks in a context of today’s world rather than the 1935-1941 run-up to WW2 like George Will and Andrea, one can see a different Obama than the one most of my Boomer generation  see. 

Many of the critiquers might be well-served to spend some time in the North Park Elementary Learning Studio…maybe they would learn something about the century in which we now find ourselves!