• My Favorite Question My Husband Ask Me

    My absolute favorite question my husband asks me on a regular basis is, “Are you wanting empathy or a strategy right now?” He asks this when I’m finding a situation challenging or when I just need to vent about something frustating. Sometimes he asks …

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    I Was One Metro Stop Away When Brussels’ Maelbeek Station Was Bombed

    When the train lost power, I immediately thought mechanical failure. When the security, metro staff, and police instructed us to evacuate, I thought it was just a precaution. It was after all just one hour ago that bombs had detonated at Brussels Zaven…

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  • ‘Dance-Off Juniors’ Aims To Find The Next Maddie Ziegler

    Break out your phones, because there’s a dance party coming to your screen in April! 

    On Wednesday, DanceOn and go90 announced that they’ll be adding the competition series “Dance-Off Juniors” to their music and dance offerings. The 10-show series will premiere April 20 and take place every Wednesday. (AOL, The Huffington Post’s parent company, is owned by Verizon). 

    According to a press release, the 20-minute episodes will feature three junior dancers competing for $5,000 and the chance to be “the dance world’s next sensation.” Hosted By Devon Werkheiser, the show will feature new contestants each week. The dancers will learn choreography from Matt Steffanina while also being able to showcase their freestyle talents.

    The U.S.-based junior dancers will face a panel of judges including Todrick Hall, Alyson Stoner, Ladia Yates and Steffanina. 

    “DanceOn aims to elevate rising stars of music and dance through engaging, high quality programming,” DanceOn CEO Amanda Taylor said in a statement. “We’ve assembled an incredible group of contestants, some of which dance for the biggest names in music including Katy Perry, Missy Elliott, and Mariah Carey. We’re confident that every week, viewers will be blown away by their undeniable talent and passion.”

    Will the show find the next Maddie Ziegler in its mix? You’ll just have to tune in April 20 and find out! 

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Ed Vectus posted a discussion

    Ed Vectus posted a discussionConsidering an International Move?Making the decision to leap into an international teaching opportunity can be both stressful and exciting. There are lots of job possibilities abroad in international schools where you can…

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    Teacher training is like a TV survival show – and we all need a Bear Grylls

    The right school and mentor can make or break you as a student teacher in a dark jungle of unruly pupils, pedagogy and paperwork

    I think I deserve a big high five and a lie down, given that the day before I started my PGCE I had to Google the definition and pronunciation of “pedagogy”. I’ve come a ruddy long way. Now that I’ve just passed the halfway stage of my training, it’s an opportune moment to reflect on what I’ve learned so far – which is infinitely more than my 150 or so students (sorry kids).

    The inordinate amount of reflection required during my training has conditioned me to reflect on everything: the sequencing of my planning, the quality of my resources, whether my students have the foggiest idea of what I’m talking about, whether I have the foggiest idea of what I’m talking about and, less officially, why I ever thought becoming a teacher would be a deft move. Needless to say my conclusions are often inconclusive. While much of the time I feel utterly bewildered by my role as an educator, recently I’ve had some realisations that I want to share (because teaching has taught me that sharing is caring).

    Continue reading…

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  • Having Pet Goats Is The Cutest Trend On College Campuses Right Now

    Happy Valentine’s Day Yo

    A photo posted by Bella Russe (@psugoat) on

    Alex Buckley’s fraternity at Penn State University always wanted a pet. Most Greek houses that want one usually get a dog, because cats make for a bad frat pet and fish are boring. Since Buckley’s fraternity is Lambda Chi Alpha, the brothers often joked they should get a “Lambda Chi Lamb” as a mascot, but Buckely said nobody really acted on it. 

    Well, Buckley did. 

    He and a few friends found out that getting a Nigerian dwarf goat or Pygmy goat was much more realistic than buying a lamb. They got one from Trout Run, Pennsylvania, that they named Bella Russe. She’s adorable, and if you have any doubt about that, you probably haven’t seen her popular Instagram account, @psugoat, that “gets DM’d on the reg,” as Buckley put it. 

    “She’s not just our frat’s pet, she’s a friend and peer to the community,” Buckley told The Huffington Post. “We would like her to eventually become not only an icon for our fraternity, but an icon for our school. We have plans to bring her to sporting events, philanthropic events, and are hoping that Bella can become an asset to the community.”

    In February, the fraternity and the Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority hung out with Bella as a morale booster just before the annual THON, a 46-hour dance marathon charity event for cancer where participants cannot sleep, sit or drink caffeine. The two Greek houses raised over $220,000, and let two of the kids they sponsored, Trent and Michael, play with Bella for over an hour.

    “What started from a funny idea of getting a frat goat, turned into a campaign to improve and better the Penn State greater community,” Buckley insisted.

    Bella Russe is part of a trend on some American college campuses of students getting small goats for pets — dwarf and Pygmy goats, to be specific. 

    Evan Marinis got a Pygmy goat off of Craigslist and often brought it to Chicago Cubs games, though they had to hang out outside of the ballpark. Marinis also brought his pet goat, Littleton, over to his fraternity house where his brothers described it as being like a cuddly dog, but one that doesn’t bark. 

    But Marinis was originally looking for a puppy, according to Littleton’s co-owner, Quinn Hagan. People thought it was a crazy idea to get a goat, Hagan said, but they decided to split the vet costs for Littleton and his brother, Waller. 

    “He loved being around people and playing but he was happy to get his brother back and have another goat to be with,” Hagan told HuffPost. 

    Hagan and Marinis are both from the Chicago area. They got the goats as students at the University of Missouri, where Hagan still attends, though Marinis transferred to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. 

    Littleton and Waller behaved much like dogs. For instance, on car rides they would hop onto someone’s lap and watch things go by outside the window. Their life expectancy is similar to a dog, Hagan said, anywhere from 8 to 18 years. 

    “I’ve met plenty of puppies that have given me a much harder time than them,” Hagan said. “They are really well-behaved and extremely friendly to people. When we first bought Littleton, everyone on campus was dying to meet him and take pictures with him. He would never get irritated or try to run away. As long as he was fed and got a few naps in, he loved meeting everyone at Mizzou.”

    It’s not all fun and games, however. 

    Some students bought a goat for $80 on Craigslist at the University of South Carolina, but had trouble with it repeatedly escaping. One day it took 25 guys three hours to capture the goat, and soon after, animal control took it away. But this was a full-sized goat, not a miniature one, as they told WJBF.

    The Kappa Sigma fraternity at Tennessee Tech University had a pet goat named Ranger that got to be quite popular in 2015, but he died in July from kidney stones he had trouble passing. 

    Aaaaaand he put on his dancin shoes @Rangerthegoat pic.twitter.com/lshBkSmLtf

    — James Francis (@jfrancis8104) April 23, 2015

    Most Pygmy goats are raised as companion animals like cats and dogs, according to Lionel Dawson, an Oklahoma State University professor with expertise in herd farm animals. Some are raised in backyards and some are trained to live inside a house, Dawson said. The key to whether they can be raised as pets is how well the owners do with the goats’ nutrition, he explained: “They need to be fed roughage like hay and some grain.”

    Whether you can keep a pet goat also depends on local city ordinances and neighbors. 

    Hagan said they “built a sweet pen” for Littleton and Waller in his parents’ backyard in Glenview, Illinois, but neighbors got annoyed so they had to move them to a farm. They plan to pick them back up this summer for more Chicago Cubs games. 

    At Penn State, some Lambda Chi Alpha alumni weren’t thrilled, but Buckley said they explained to them that Bella was a domesticated pet, not an animal being kept for livestock purposes.

    Bella is “essentially potty-trained,” according to Buckley. She’s never left alone, either — Buckley mildly complained people are so interested in spending time with Bella he sometimes has trouble getting to hang out with her himself. And she sleeps on a bed made of rocks and straw, and enjoys playing on couches.

    Had to give Ma a kiss goodbye before returning to my life as a fraternity #PSUGOAT

    A video posted by Bella Russe (@psugoat) on

    Buckley has plans for the near term as well to make sure Bella is taken care of. Over spring break they brought her back to the farm they got her from to spend time with other goats, and when Buckley is away on an internship this summer, she’s being boarded at a farm outside Pittsburgh. But there’s a cost to that, and the large animal veterinarian visits and vaccinations, so they have a GoFundMe to help cover the expenses.

    “Bella is truly a remarkable animal. She’s friendly, personable, fun and very spoiled,” Buckley said. “She lives in a frat house with a dad and 40 uncles that love and care for her, and lives on a campus with 46,000 people that are dying to meet her. Bella Russe is not your average goat. She’s a frat goat and she’s living the life.”

    This article has been updated with comments from professor Lionel Dawson.


    Tyler Kingkade is a national reporter that covers higher education and is based in New York. You can reach him at tyler.kingkade@huffingtonpost.com, or find him on Twitter: @tylerkingkade



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    Alice Moore posted a status

    Alice Moore posted a status”Exciting way to prepare for your PARCC Assessments! http://goo.gl/7NDVMj”

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  • Teens Don’t Want Driverless Cars — And That’s Kind Of A Death Wish

    Cars of the future may drive themselves, but teenagers aren’t excited to give up their keys.

    A full 72 percent of American high schoolers said they don’t like the idea of driverless cars and prefer “a vehicle that I can control myself,” according to new research by Nielsen. That’s understandable, given that a driver’s license is a rite of passage to sweet open-road freedom. But their opinion might be a dangerous one.

    Teen drivers are known to be unsafe. In fact, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention says car crashes are the leading cause of death for American teenagers.

    Driverless cars of the sort Google is developing are supposed to be more efficient vehiclesAdvocates say they’re safer, too, despite minor accidents so far.

    “The autonomous car doesn’t drink, doesn’t do drugs, doesn’t text while driving, doesn’t get road rage,” Bob Lutz, former General Motors vice chairman, told CNBC in a 2014 interview.

    Teenagers can do all of those things. (Duh.) As The New York Times recently pointed out, they’re also liable to ride with distracting friends. And because of the myriad pressures they face academically and otherwise, a startling number of teens are sleep-deprived, which has obvious health consequences — perhaps especially behind the wheel, where drowsy driving is a life-threatening problem. 

    All this said, there are a couple of caveats to Nielsen’s report.

    The company’s data surveyed only 1,133 kids between the ages of 8 and 18. Of them, 151 had drivers licenses when they were polled. Needless to say, while Nielsen tries to accurately represent a population, errors in the reporting are possible, and the picture may not be complete. It’ll also be a while before anyone could conceivably own a driverless car. 

    So, you might take the report as a cue to have a conversation about safe driving with your kid. If nothing else, the data indicate that teens may not fully understand everything they should about driver safety.

    That same Times article has some tips everyone should follow. One of the best ones: Block notifications on your smartphone when you’re driving. An easy way to do that is to flip your phone to the “do not disturb” setting and put it out of sight. If you absolutely must use a phone when you’re driving — for navigation, perhaps — the only safe place, the Times reports, is in a dock attached to your dashboard, at eye level.

    Stay safe.

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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  • 6 Afro-Latinos Open Up About What It Means To Be Black And Latino

    Too black to be Latino and too Latino to be black is a feeling many Afro-Latinos know too well — but the reality is that these two identities are far from mutually exclusive. 

    Not only is it possible to be both black and Latino, it’s also fairly common within the Latino community. In the United States 24 percent of Latinos self-identify as Afro-Latino, according to survey results the Pew Research Center released in March. 

    HuffPost Latino Voices asked six Afro-Latinos to share what it really means to grow-up black and Latino. Because as writer Janel Martinez explains, it can be quite complicated at first.

    “Growing up black Latina, was a bit complex for me,” she said in the video. “I didn’t always want to identify as Black, there were times when I didn’t want to identify as Latina.” 

    Watch Martinez and others discuss everything from pride in their African roots to the challenges with erasure in the Latino community in the video above.

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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  • ‘Kids Are The Worst’ Instagram Account Gets Totally Honest About Parenting

    As much as parents love and adore their children, there are times when the tantrums, spills and lack of respect for personal property can start to wear on moms and dads.

    A hilarious Instagram is letting parents air their grievances and have a good laugh at the same time. Created by mom Anna Macfarlane, the account is fittingly called @KidsAreTheWorst. “I have four children who are really quite fantastic, but sometimes they do things that can make me want to pull my hair out,” Macfarlane told The Huffington Post.

    “Sometimes parenting is adorable in the little squares of Instagram, and sometimes you haven’t taken your pajamas off for three days straight. And that’s just fine,” she added. “I sincerely believe that most of us are trying our best to raise good humans, we need to give ourselves a break and other parents a break and support each other.”

    As for the name of the account, Macfarlane insists it’s meant to be hyperbolic. “Of course they are not the worst, but saying something so dramatic gives us permission to laugh and not take it all so seriously.”

    Macfarlane invites other parents to celebrate the “not-so-Pinterest-worthy” moments of parenthood by sharing their own photos of kid-created disasters with the hashtag #KidsAreTheWorst. “I hope parents can find a place to laugh together instead of crying alone,” she said.

    Keep scrolling for photo evidence that kids really are the worst.

    The little squirt! #NewbornPhotoOhShoot #kidsaretheworst

    A photo posted by #kidsaretheworst (@kidsaretheworst) on

    No longer a-peeling. #PushHereForRuiningAPerfectlyGoodFruit photo thanks to @mummzyx3 #kidsaretheworst

    A photo posted by #kidsaretheworst (@kidsaretheworst) on

    Bubble bubble, boys in trouble. #CoolTileThough photo thanks to @nicolemarellano #kidsaretheworst

    A photo posted by #kidsaretheworst (@kidsaretheworst) on

    I said “pretend drive” not “pee where I drive.” #PeeTendDriver photo thanks to @morgana85 #kidsaretheworst

    A photo posted by #kidsaretheworst (@kidsaretheworst) on

    One more square… yep, that should do it. #TPHogTPClog photo thanks to @kristenog #kidsaretheworst

    A photo posted by #kidsaretheworst (@kidsaretheworst) on

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Alvaro Baquero-Pecino liked Alvaro Baquero-Pecino’s discussion BLOG # 3—- SP 219—- SPRING 2016

    Alvaro Baquero-Pecino liked Alvaro Baquero-Pecino’s discussion BLOG # 3—- SP 219—- SPRING 2016

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  • Hilarious Video Shows ‘How To Bake Easter Cookies Like A Toddler’

    Some say cooking with kids is a recipe for disaster. Well, the mess factor is only amplified when you try baking with toddlers. In the latest installment of his “New Father Chronicles” series, dad La Guardia Cross presents, “How to Bake Easter Cooki…

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  • Lori Loughlin Explains Those Olsen Twins Jokes On ‘Fuller House’

    If you watched “Fuller House,” everywhere you looked the show was throwing shade at the Olsen twins … or was it? 

    The Olsens were notably missing from Netflix’s “Full House” spinoff, and it didn’t take long for the show to address it with a very meta moment. After explaining Michelle Tanner was absent because she’s running her fashion empire in New York, something the Olsen twins are actually doing, the cast looks directly (and judgingly) at the camera.

    This is just the first of a few moments like this that happen on the show, another including Kimmy Gibbler (Andrea Barber) commenting on the prices of the Olsens’ fashion line. Though many fans online have called it “shade,” that seems like an overreaction when talking to Lori Loughlin, aka Aunt Becky from “Full House”/”Fuller House.”

    “You know, it’s funny. I think I was only a part of one of those moments, and it was just fun and tongue-in-cheek,” Loughlin told The Huffington Post.

    “But again, creatively, it wasn’t my decision,” added Loughlin. “I just showed up, read my script and took direction.”

    The actress also shared what she could about the upcoming second season of “Fuller House,” saying she hasn’t heard “storyline-wise what’s going to be happening,” but she’ll likely do only three episodes, just as she did in the first season.

    As far as a possible Olsen appearance, Loughlin said, “I don’t really know. I’m sure they’ll always be welcome, though.”

    In addition to appearing on “Fuller House” and Hallmark Channel’s “When Calls the Heart,” the actress is teaming up with Emergen-C and charity: water to help bring clean and safe drinking water to people in Ethiopia. 

    (Have mercy! Aunt Becky’s been busy.)

    Loughlin explained that women and children often walk hours every day to collect clean water in jerry cans that weigh up to 40 pounds when full. Because of that time-consuming task, many can’t hold down a job or get an education.

    “As a working mother with two teenage daughters, that really hit home for me,” said Loughlin.

    In order to help, Loughlin explained you can use Twitter or Instagram to post pictures of yourself holding objects that are around 40 pounds, add the hashtag #40Pounds and tag @EmergenC. For each photo, Emergen-C will donate $5 to charity: water to help fund sustainable water in Ethiopia.

    “In a lot of these communities, the water is underneath and you can’t get to it, so charity: water comes in and drills, and they hit that water. Within one week, people have access to water. It’s amazing,” said Loughlin.

    Wow! What do you think about that, Michelle?

    Find out more about the #40Pounds challenge at emergenctransforms.com.

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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  • Children’s Books on Holi, the Hindu Spring Festival

    Children's Books on Holi, the Hindu Spring Festival

    Today is Holi which I know very little about so I asked author of Dev and Ollie: Colour Carnival to help me out. Please welcome my guest blogger today Shweta Aggarwal! ———- There’s only one thing that comes to mind immediately when the festival of Holi is mentioned – bright, vibrant colours everywhere! Holi is literally one of […]

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    Rebekah replied to Ed Vectus’s discussion Experience teaching in China

    Rebekah replied to Ed Vectus’s discussion Experience teaching in China

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  • Another Effort To Discriminate Against Transgender Students Just Failed

    • The bill sought to block transgender students from using certain bathrooms.
    • Tennessee’s GOP governor opposed the measure.

    A controversial Tennessee bill that discriminated against transgender students died in the state legislature Tuesday.

    The legislation would have required students to only use school restrooms that corresponded with the gender they were assigned at birth. Lawmakers on the House Education Administration and Planning Committee sent the bill for further study, effectively killing it this year, according to a press release from the LGBT advocacy group Freedom for All Americans.

    Gov. Bill Haslam (R) had expressed concern that the bill could jeopardize the state’s federal funding, and opponents argued that the legislation was unnecessary and would harm transgender students.

    “Today’s decision by Tennessee lawmakers is a victory for the dignity and equal treatment of all children in the state,” said Matt McTighe, executive director of Freedom for All Americans. “House Bill 2414 would have endangered the personal safety of all children, particularly transgender youth; and codified discrimination in public schools.”

    Transgender students who testified before the committee believed that their experiences had swayed lawmakers’ votes, The Associated Press reported.

    Currently, Tennessee schools can make accommodations for transgender students at their discretion, and some lawmakers were concerned the legislation would only lead to more confusion, according to the AP.

    State Rep. Mark White (R), who initially supported the legislation, said he changed his position after talking with a transgender high school student and determining the bill was unnecessary, The Tennessean reported. The student had previously testified that he could only use the teachers’ restroom at his school and he often returned home dehydrated and with stomach aches.

    A number of similar bills to restrict which bathroom transgender students use have been popping up in states across the country. Earlier this month, South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R) vetoed legislation that would have made his state the first to impose such restrictions.

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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  • Cheeky Campaign Encourages Women To Dump Dudes Who Support Trump

    PSA: If you vote for Trump, be prepared to (maybe) get dumped.   

    A new project called “Vote Trump Get Dumped” is encouraging women everywhere to not date, sleep or canoodle with anyone who’s a Donald Trump supporter. “The Greeks did it. Women during the temperance movement did it. This is a tried and true method of getting men’s attention when they’re being dumb,” the website reads.

    Created by 28-year-old Chandler Smith and her husband Blake earlier this month, the cheeky project is a reminder to men that if you support Trump you’re also supporting his misogynistic ideologies

    “To cast a vote for Trump is to agree with his sexist, perverted, demeaning, backwards, offensive treatment of women,” the project’s website reads. “Join us by wielding your influence. Until Trump is defeated, we don’t date, sleep with, or canoodle with Trump supporters.”

    Trump is well-known for his outlandishly sexist comments that range from referring to women as “bimbos” and “fat pigs” to (a personal favorite) “Women, you have to treat them like shit.” 

    As of Tuesday afternoon, “Vote Trump Get Dumped” had 49,000 Instagram followers48,000 Twitter followers and 13,000 Facebook followers.

    This could be our next leader #votetrumpgetdumped #mydistainmakesmeabstain #makeamericadistain

    A photo posted by VoteTrumpGetDumped (@votetrumpgetdumped) on

    Smith explained to The Huffington Post why it’s so terrifying to imagine what a Trump presidency could mean for the welfare of American women. 

    “A President Trump really freaks me out. I don’t want a sexist, racist, war-crime-threatening man leading my country,” Smith said. “If Donald objectifies women, he’s objectifying 50.8 percent of America and that’s not cool. So we’re doing something about it.” 

    A few ways to get involved in the “Vote Trump Get Dumped” project include changing your social media profile picture to an image of you crossing your fingers or legs or creating a video on the project’s homepage quoting one of Donald Trump’s most sexist comments.

    As a “Vote Trump Get Dumped” spokesperson told HuffPost: “Unfortunately, this is what it’s come to: Four years of Trump, or four years of sex. Choose wisely.”

    Sounds more than fair, guys.  

    Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liarrampant xenophoberacistmisogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.

    H/T The Cut

    — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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    Francisco Salgado-Robles added a discussion to the group Varieties of Spoken Spanish

    Francisco Salgado-Robles added a discussion to the group Varieties of Spoken Spanish


    Análisis (II) de noticia periodística

    Incluye aquí la reflexión del Blog 2 (mínimo 250-300 palabras), siguiendo las siguientes instrucciones:(1) Antes del miércoles, 30 de marzo a las 23:59, escribe tu reflexión de la noticia en dos párrafos:El primer párrafo (entre 125 y 175 palabras) debe incluir un resumen de la noticia (¡de manera objetiva!)En el segundo párrafo (entre 125 y 175 palabras) debes dar tu opinión/crítica sobre la noticia (¡de manera subjetiva!) (2) Pega el enlace de donde se ha publicado la noticia, por ejemplo:Fuente online: http://blogs.publico.es/strambotic/2015/03/andalu/ (3) Abajo de la página, haz clic en “Añade tu respuesta”. ¡Ojo! (1) Acceso al listado de noticias y asignaciones: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1Ct6jNqy9BNax2I04q4SzaH3bELb_7oRxdqySiohMKlI/edit?usp=sharing (2) No olvides dejar un par de comentarios (50-100 palabras cada uno) a dos compañeros antes del miércoles, 6 de abril, a las 23:59. See More

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    Ο #fabulous τοίχος μας με τα έργα τέχνης των παιδιών

    Στο παλαιότερο post Διακόσμηση με τις ζωγραφιές των παιδιών σας είχα δείξει πώς κορνιζάραμε 3 έργα των παιδιών και τα βάλαμε στο πιο πολυσύχναστο και αγαπημένο σημείο, στην ψυχή του σπιτιού, στην κουζίνα μας! Δύο χρόνια πέρασαν από τότε και ήρθε εποχή για ανανέωση. Εννοείται φυσικά ότι προτιμήσαμε και πάλι τις αγαπημένες μας μικρές ζωγράφους που το Σαββατοκύριακο έπιασαν  τους μαρκαδόρους τους […]

    To Ο #fabulous τοίχος μας με τα έργα τέχνης των παιδιών είναι ένα post από το blog Aspa Online.

    Ας συνδεθούμε και στο Facebook!

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  • Kaitlin Gu: #FlawlessHacker

    From “I’m A Girl Who Codes”


    “It is rare to meet people that will make a lasting impact on your life and I had the luck of meeting 20 of them. These girls are my friends, my family, and my number 1 supporters and I will never forget them.” – Kaitlin Gu

    Meet Kaitlin Gu, a senior in college whose ultimate goal is to make an impact and she is. Learn more about how Kaitlin is pairing her love of music with technology and helping inspire our sisterhood of Girls Who Code in the Q&A below.

    Q&A with Kaitlin Gu:

    What did you want to be growing up? What do you aspire to be now?

    Growing up, I wanted to be an accountant. I didn’t really know what it meant – and if I’m being honest, I still don’t really know – but my mom told me that it was an important job and I wanted to be important. At 7 years old, there were no courses for how to be an accountant so it was difficult to maintain that aspiration. However, the desire to make a significant impact still hasn’t gone away.

    Now, as I’m about to graduate college, I get the question, “So, what is it that you want to do?” almost every day. The truth is, I don’t really know. There are a lot of roles that are appealing to me: teacher, software engineer, designer, etc. What I aspire to be in all of these roles is the same as it was when I was 7: important.

    What is your definition of important?

    To have a meaningful impact. For instance, Girls Who Code was very meaningful – or important – to me. Some people might think important ties to fame but that’s not it for me, it’s about affecting peoples’ lives.

    Were you always interested in computers?

    Yes and no. My brother always played on the computer so it was really hard to get access to it. I loved the access I had when I finally got ahold of it. I wish I had gotten more time with it.

    What made you apply to be a TA at Girls Who Code?

    I wanted to be a Teaching Assistant at Girls Who Code because I wanted to make an impact on young girls’ lives. I didn’t have the opportunity to do computer science in high school, and I wanted to help give that opportunity to others.

    What was unexpected was the impact that my students made on my life. They gave me courage, confidence, and a family that I could go to if ever need be. If you (the reader of this blog) are asking me if you should join the Girls Who Code movement by joining a club or applying for the Summer Immersion Program, I will always answer yes! You not only get to learn how to code but you build a network of people who are your #1 champions.

    Is coding creative?

    Of course! I create things all the time with code. I get to do a lot of projects that I’m really passionate about. Recently, my friend and I did a printing project for our school where you could see which printers are broken. There were pictures of computers that worked and computers that were broken. So, you could see where you could print based on these images.

    Another thing that I made was Meowsic, which was a hack for a hackathon that I helped run at Spotify. You can bring together any song and then add meows to the downbeat of the song.


    That sounds like the most fun app ever! Was it hard to create the app? Do you think coding us hard?

    The hardest part about coding is the initial confidence gap. I remember having this sense that computer science was incomprehensible unless you were a natural born talent. And you feel even more like an outsider when you don’t see a lot of people that look like you. The truth is, most people feel this way. So much in fact that there’s a name for it: “impostor syndrome.” Unfortunately, more women are likely to feel this way. This feeling doesn’t ever go away, which I don’t necessarily think is a bad thing. It means that you feel like you can always learn more and that is always true. What’s important is to not let those feelings get in the way of your own desire to learn.

    Why do you think it’s important to teach girls Computer Science?

    It’s interesting, you can immerse yourself in supportive environments that empower you and make you feel like you can do anything that you want! Every so often, though, you will meet someone outside of that environment that makes you question everything you’ve ever accomplished because of your identity. Those moments happen from time to time and they stick out more than I’d like.

    I remember feeling weird being the only female developer at my job and not being assigned projects. I would wonder if it was because of my gender. I was also paid less than my male peers. At my school’s club fest, people scoffed at the existence of a women in the computing club. Those moments are the hardest because they fabricate doubt and doubt is incredibly dangerous. What has always saved me is a power pose. Just standing like I’m superwoman for about one or two minutes reminds me that I AM superwoman. I tell myself everything that I’ve accomplished, everything I’ve worked for and stand like I have all the power in the world and it shuts down all the noise.

    Would you say that coding has made you feel more confident?

    Working through a problem, struggling through it and then solving it gives me an immense amount of confidence. When I wrote my first “Hello World” program in Java, I did a little dance after. Fast forward two years and I’m debugging a lab for operating systems and doing the same dance when a program runs. The ability to look at my code, understand how it works, and being able to point to that program and say “I did that” makes for a great feeling. What ultimately makes me the most confident is being able to give that feeling to another person by teaching them how to code. Giving someone the ability to celebrate their code and claim ownership of it is so rewarding and I hope that I can always offer that to others.

    Tell us about a time you overcame failure.

    The worst thing about failure is that sometimes it can really consume you. I remember quitting a job prematurely, and I felt like a complete failure. Then, I started feeling like a failure for not being able to get over that failure quickly enough. In hindsight, I realize that in quitting that job, I was standing up for my values. Despite promises of a paycheck, I worked there for a long time without any compensation, the work was not challenging enough for me and took up time that I could have been dedicating to honing my skills or bettering myself in some way. Nevertheless, at the time I was panicking. I would try to reason with myself, telling myself that successful people will fail at one time or another, that I would be ok. Still, I couldn’t shake the feeling that if I were to put this job on my resume, the previous employer would make sure that I would never get hired again. I viewed these feelings as an even deeper sign of failure, and I tried to suppress them immediately.

    I think is is important to let yourself feel like a failure. No one can ride on the highs of their successes forever. You need to be taken down sometimes so that you can learn from your mistakes and rise up even higher.

    How does computer science tie to your other passions?

    I help organize a hackathon called the Monthly Music Hackathon. I strongly encourage everyone who is reading this to attend! I don’t really know much about music – I’ve been told I’m tone deaf by a variety of people- but I love it. I thought I would never be able to pursue my music passion but Monthly Music Hackathon provided me with a space to do it.

    What advice would you give to another girl to inspire her to code?

    The biggest hindrance I find in computer science is people saying, “Oh, you don’t look like the type of person who would code.” There isn’t a typical type. Look for mentors who tackle that standard. A lot of people think I can code because I’m Asian. It’s a back-handed and racist compliment.

    Can we come to one of your hackathons?

    NYU WinC is the largest community of technical women at NYU, with over 200 members and we’re throwing a hackathon called FlawlessHacks on April 16. We’re bringing together over 100 women engineers from the greater New York area and from colleges such as NYU, Columbia, Barnard, Pace, and Cooper Union for a day of coding, mentorship and awesome projects!


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You can’t nurture families as you are uprooting them | Polly Toynbee

A report advocating a reprise of the original Sure Start vision is heart-warming but seems unreal as the coalition cuts and cuts

‘I have a belief I am right,” says Iain Duncan Smith. What can you do if ministers defy facts, despite an official reprimand from the Office for National Statistics? Using figures his own pollsters say are “a correlation, not causal”, he keeps saying that thousands are moving into work as a result of his benefit cap – ignoring the huge churn of people in and out of marginal jobs and on and off benefits.

His “belief” is founded on one undeniable truth: 76% of people support his benefit cap, including 71% of Labour voters. So who needs evidence? With equal effrontery he denies claims of any increase in homelessness, when the figures show a 23% rise in two years, with rough sleeping in London up 62%. Worst of all, he says: “We believe that in London there is plenty of accommodation and the vast majority of accommodation is available.” The facts? The Resolution Foundation shows how his benefit cuts and caps have rendered the south-east a no-go zone for private renters on middle to low incomes.

This government may prove Abraham Lincoln wrong: you can fool enough of the people enough of the time. Whether it’s Jeremy Hunt on health, Michael Gove on education, Eric Pickles on council finance or Duncan Smith on benefits, all that matters in the Lynton Crosby playbook is what will fly, not what’s true. This new political rulebook keeps catching Labour off guard, unable to quite comprehend how a government dares disregard all evidence to construct its own facts.

Labour’s habit of finessing figures and re-announcing the same spending as new was always greeted with a wall of Tory press outrage about “spin”. But this government is in another league. It has presented misleading accounts in the budget itself, spotted by the LSE’s Tony Travers. In the spending review for 2015-16, George Osborne shifted funds from health into social care but he double-counted, so it appears in both columns, a creative total adding up to more than 100%.

That’s not “spin” but a new realm, where reality is whatever the government says it is – Newspeak joined by Newstats. Who has the objective credibility to call them out? The BBC’s coverage on these issues has been craven, its online report of the benefit cap virtually reprinting government press releases. Having worked for seven years in a BBC newsroom during a Conservative government, I know it operates not on bias but largely on fear. It tends to lean towards whoever frightens it most – and that’s not Labour. When all the noise is from the Conservative-dominated press and the Lynton Crosby war room, it loses its bearings without the balancing bullying that once came from Alastair Campbell and Peter Mandelson.

Housing benefit cuts are causing an exodus of the young and the middle to low paid from the south-east. Social housing continues to shrink as soaring property values and the government’s more generous terms prompt more council house sales. Forced out by housing benefit cuts, and leaving family, schools, jobs and communities to travel far away, many families won’t move just once but every few years, as house prices catch up with benefit caps. Families on the edge will be knocked into a life of insecurity, moved to cheap places with no jobs.

No wonder David Cameron no longer talks of the “big society” or of his general wellbeing index. The ONS warns that cuts mean it may not collect figures on embarrassing wellbeing indicators – infant mortality, the crime survey, smoking, drinking, teen pregnancy and inequality itself. No stats may suit the government even better than Newstats.

Today an excellent report from an all-party parliamentary group calls for a great revitalisation of Sure Start children centres, shifting money towards early intervention for the under-twos before it’s too late. Tory MP Andrea Leadsom and Labour’s Sharon Hodgson present all the evidence – yet again – that babies at risk of falling behind need early help. Families need children’s centres that join up local services under one roof, pooling the budgets of health visitors, midwives, speech and language therapists, mental health, childcare, nursery education, job-training and drop-in playgroups where isolated parents can meet. Here is a heart-warming reprise of the original Sure Start vision with children’s centres as the social hub of every community. Their new good idea is that every new baby should be registered here, so none vanish.

I read the report with sadness, as it seems to belong in a reality far removed from the one inhabited by a government that uproots families, pulling children recklessly from their communities and schools. Sure Start’s 3,500 centres are Labour’s proudest boast, the missing cradle in the 1945 cradle-to-grave welfare state. But since 2010, 558 have been shut. Only 500 of the remaining still offer any childcare after Sarah Teather, as children’s minister, removed that obligation. Since councils lost 40% of the funding, more are closing: Kent is shutting 23. Current children’s minister Liz Truss wants to deregulate childcare so a childminder can warehouse six two-year-olds. Nurseries are closing fastest in poorest places, where Ofsted finds them of lower quality, so the promise to offer 296,3000 deprived two-year-olds free nursery places can’t be delivered, says the Family and Daycare Trust.

There is a vision in this report of a better society in which babies are welcomed, families nurtured, problems caught early, and the one in 10 mothers of all classes who suffer postnatal depression are helped. Services work together, communities bond and no parent needs to struggle alone. Labour got halfway there. The birth rate rose across all classes in the decade when Sure Start arrived, with better childcare and the Child Trust Fund. Causal or maybe just a correlation? Either way, there was a social welcome where now babies are a burden. (Except royal ones.)

• This article was amended on 16 July 2013. An earlier version said that 39 children’s centres were to close in Warwickshire. That is not the case. Warwickshire has 39 children’s centres in total and of the three proposals the county council has put out for consultation, one involves no closures and the other two involve six.

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China’s disabled pupils face exclusion amid pressure to adapt, warns HRW | Jonathan Kaiman

More than a quarter of children with disabilities don’t receive education they are entitled to, says Human Rights Watch

Li Jiajun stands with her blind 12-year-old son in the rain. She is canvassing for a disability advocacy group by giving commuters free cups of green bean soup. To Li, the volunteer work is a subtle way of protesting against institutional discrimination against children with special needs. Mainstream schools cannot accommodate her son’s disability; special needs schools would prepare him only for jobs such as a masseur or piano tuner.

“My son’s abilities are really strong – his critical thinking and logic are even better than other students,” said Li, who requested the use of a pseudonym to protect her identity. “But how could regular teachers interact with him? I just don’t know.”

China’s official accounts paint a cheery picture of the country’s disability programmes – enrolment in primary schools is widespread and there are ample special needs schools. Yet the government’s policies contradict its stated commitment to providing equal access to education, according to a report by Human Rights Watch (HRW), published this week.

“Children with disabilities have the right to attend regular schools like all other children, and are entitled to support for their particular learning needs,” the New York-based group’s China director, Sophie Richardson, said. “But instead, some schools fail – or simply refuse – to provide these students what they need.”

China is home to at least 83 million people with disabilities, 40% of whom are illiterate. About 28% of children with disabilities are not receiving the basic education they are legally entitled to, having been barred from enrolling in mainstream schools until they show an “ability to adapt”.

The report, As Long as They Let Us Stay in Class, is based on 62 interviews conducted in China between December 2012 and May 2013 – mainly with children with disabilities or their parents – and reveals a gulf between the government’s promises and its actions.

In 2008, the Chinese government ratified the convention on the rights of persons with disabilities, an international treaty drafted by the UN that obliges China to provide equal access to education for children with disabilities. The same year, it passed the law on the protection of people with disabilities, which “pledged greater funding for the education of people with disabilities”, HRW said.

Yet many schools fail to accommodate the needs of their disabled students, and some simply turn them away. Even if disabled pupils complete their compulsory education, colleges require them to undergo physical examinations and are permitted to reject them based on the results.

“For the Chinese government, it’s important to be seen as doing quite a lot of things for people with disabilities – and it has done quite a few things,” said Maya Wang, a researcher at HRW’s Asia division. “The problem is it has not gone far enough, or put its resources and effort in the right places.”

Children who are enrolled in special schools are frequently separated from their parents at a young age, according to the organisation. Many parents do not even know the schools exist.

“It is often the parents themselves who don’t know that their children have equal rights,” said Wang. “And at mainstream schools, the teachers there don’t know about teaching kids with disabilities. They have very little support, very few resources, very little training.”

Mainstream schools typically place the burden on the child to adapt to their environment, claiming that the school is “normal” and ill-equipped to change. Many have expelled disabled students because of inadequate performance.

The HRW report includes testimonies from students with disabilities and their families. A nine-year-old boy with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder was turned away by a public primary school; a disabled 13-year-old girl could not attend a school because it was too far from her home; a medical college refused to admit “students with disabilities in the torso or the limbs”.

“Human Rights Watch found little to no accommodation in mainstream schools for these students at all stages of education,” said the organisation. “One parent was explicitly told by the school that since her child is in ‘a normal environment’, it is the child with the disability who must adapt, not the other way round.”

• This article was amended on 16 July 2013 to correct the name of HRW’s China director and clarify the proportion of children with disabilities missing out on education.

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How university stopped me hating my face

I was trapped in self-loathing and thought I was hideous, writes a student blogger. University life changed the way I saw myself and the world

Suffering from body dysmorphic disorder (BDD) was like living trapped in a box lined with distorting mirrors. All I could see was my face, contorted and disgusting.

BDD is a form of obsessive compulsive disorder that affects around 1 in 200 people, according to the International OCD Foundation. Sufferers mistakenly believe an aspect of their appearance is deformed, which can drive them to undergo repeat plastic surgery procedures and, in some cases, even attempt suicide.

Five years ago, my disorder was at its height. I used to scratch at my face, or slap it, when looking in the mirror because I was so disgusted by my reflection. Now when I see myself I think I look fine – maybe pretty, certainly not hideous.

What brought about this change? Recovering from BDD is a long and ongoing process, made up of lots of small steps, but moving to university definitely made a huge difference.

If you are beautiful, everyone will love you forever and you’ll be perfectly happy. If you’re ugly, you’ll be hated and miserable. Clearly these assumptions are just plain wrong, but I believed them for years.

It wasn’t until year 12 that I first heard of BDD, and it took another six months for me to realise that I was suffering from it. The revelation that it was my mind (and not my face) that needed fixing marked a turning point. I started receiving counselling, doing more exercise, and making attempts to manage my anxiety. I began to feel like a different person…

But at school I was always shy, introverted and chronically lacking in confidence – it wasn’t easy to get people to notice that I’d changed. University was different. Being in a new environment, with new people, helped me leave my obsessions behind.

Battling against BDD, I felt like an electrician trying to rewire my short-circuiting brain. The same image-obsessed thoughts used to play on a loop in my head. Preoccupied only by my hideous appearance, my world was a very narrow place. But with moving away from home, that began to change.

My university has 240 societies for students to join – 240! Signing up to take on lots of new challenges inspired me to think differently. BDD can be self-perpetuating: the more you hate the way you look, the more you isolate yourself; the more you isolate yourself, the more time you have to dwell on your physical imperfections. Simply being busy helped me break the cycle.

“Think critically.” This maxim, hammered into my head by university professors, pushed me to reconsider my ideas about “beauty” and “body confidence”. At school I was always flicking through fashion magazines, eager to soak up their advice on how to be thinner, prettier and all-round better. But as I got older I started to lose faith in these glossy weeklies and their pages full of perfect, primped models.

In my first year, I made the decision to stop buying women’s magazines. I traded in Heat for books like The Beauty Myth by Naomi Wolf. Suddenly, I started to see that some of my most deeply held beliefs (like the idea that beauty equals happiness) were just nonsense – and it felt pretty good.

Can BDD be permanently cured? I’m not convinced. When things are going well for me, I forget I ever suffered from it. But when my life isn’t running smoothly, I notice the obsessional thoughts and behaviours starting to creep back, so I know I can’t become complacent.

Thankfully there are a number of organisations that provide information and ongoing support for BDD sufferers, including the BDD Foundation and the OCD Foundation. Going to university has played an important part in my recovery from BDD by showing me just how many exciting opportunities the world has to offer. I want to focus on them, not my face.

• This student blogger has chosen to keep her identity anonymous.

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Τι θέλει η κόρη μου από μένα

Κάρτα που μου έφτιαξε η Εβελίνα πριν από λίγες μέρες… Και στο πίσω μέρος εξηγεί περισσότερο… «Είμαι χαρούμενη γιατί έχεις ένα μεγάλο χαμόγελο!» Μία υπενθύμιση για όλους εμάς τους γονείς. Άλλωστε, πώς μπορεί ένα παιδί να μη γελάει όταν γελάει η μαμά του;  

To Τι θέλει η κόρη μου από μένα είναι ένα post από το blog Aspa Online.

Ας συνδεθούμε και στο Facebook!

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Μηνύσεις κατά συντακτών της εγκυκλίου του υπουργείου Παιδείας

Η ΕΛΜΕ Αρκαδίας καταγγέλλει την παράνομη δημοσίευση από το υπουργείο ονομάτων και προσωπικών δεδομένων αυτών που θέλει να απολύσει και σημειώνει πως « μπορούν να υποβάλλουν μηνύσεις κατά των συντακτών της εγκυκλίου η οποία στηρίζεται σε μη ψηφισμένους νόμους».

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Help – I’m a career changing mum about to train to be a teacher

Career changer Cassie Lockwood is relishing the prospect of a new job in teaching, but she has some unanswered questions

I am just about to be disowned by my parents. This may seem a little odd for a 36 year-old, married, mother-of-two, who is just about to become a student again, but it is pretty accurate.

With a primary school headteacher for a mother, and a head of humanities for a father, career chats for me usually went along the lines of: “We will support you in whatever career you choose, darling. Just so long as you don’t become a teacher.”

So what on earth makes me want to become a teacher? And why now?

My degree was in politics, and on graduating I wanted to be a writer. I followed that dream, and got a lucky break, securing my first proper job with a national newspaper. After a while I decided I wanted to move into the voluntary sector, and I became a copywriter. I progressed up through the creative ranks to senior manager of a creative studio. However, the higher I progressed, the further I felt from that one thing I always wanted: to make a difference.

And I suppose that is my starting point for this career change. I’m not so daft as to think I will go in like some kind of Robin Williams character and revolutionise a class of children, but what I really want to do is to inspire, challenge and stretch those I teach. To help them fulfil their potential in anyway I can. Lofty dreams perhaps, I can hear my teacher friends now: “she’s deluded,” “mad,” “naive,” “hasn’t she heard about KS1 phonics tests?” but if those of us just starting out in teaching don’t believe in these ideals, we have no place in a classroom.

It isn’t just me in the Lockwood household who is starting school in September; my youngest child is starting reception this year too. I can’t help but share some of his apprehension. While he is more concerned about still being able to play the part of the Emperor at playtime; Star Wars baddies are a staple at the moment, I realise I am entering a profession low on morale, where performance-related pay is becoming a reality, where the focus on creativity in the curriculum is being replaced with a drive towards recollection of facts. All of these weigh on my mind, however, I need to learn the basics before I get caught up with the politics. Basics such as classroom management, assessments, targets, how will I ever get up to speed? My focus for the next year will be on how I can get the very best out of this experience; in terms of learning what it takes for me to be an excellent teacher.

I need to learn how PGCE students fit into the broader school community. With various entry options now available, how do school-centred initial teacher training (SCITT) students, like me, slot in alongside the Teachfirst/School Direct/PGCE students? How will recruiting schools perceive the graduates of the different entry routes; will there be a hierarchy? What will the job prospects be like this time next year?

The impact of my career change on my family is one of my greatest concerns. How do teachers juggle family life with home life, especially with two youngsters – my children are four and six? While the holidays are greatly exaggerated, it is certainly some comfort that I will be around at similar times as my children, as opposed to trying to stretch out 26 days’ annual leave to fit in with a school year, or simply tag team holidays with my husband.

Finances will also be tight, so if anyone has any thoughts how to stretch a student budget, I would love to know. And I know it won’t stop at the end of this year, with teacher salaries hardly in the big league. I know I will have to adapt my own and my family’s lifestyle, but hopefully, my children will get back what has been missing for a while now; a mum who may still work long hours, look frazzled on a Friday, but gets genuine career satisfaction.

And back to my parents, my response to the question of why I am becoming a teacher is pretty simple. It’s not so much that I’ve taken a long time deciding on this career path, it’s more that I’ve spent the past 13 years of my working life trying to resist it. Quite simply, it’s in my blood.

Cassie Lockwood is starting a SCITT (primary) course in Bromley, Kent in September. You can follow her on Twitter @cassielockwood.

• What advice would you give to trainee teachers? What can they expect from their studies and the job? Post your tips and experiences in the comments.

This content is brought to you by Guardian Professional. Looking for your next role? Take a look at Guardian jobs for schools for thousands of the latest teaching, leadership and support jobs.

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Υπάρχει σχολείο που το έχει λύσει αυτό το πρόβλημα;

Στο σχολείο μας, κατά έναν περίεργο τρόπο, επιμένουν να καλούν τους γονείς να ενημερώνονται για την πρόοδο των παιδιών, πρωινές και μόνο ώρες. Φαίνεται να αγνοούν ότι όπως οι ίδιοι οι δάσκαλοι εργάζονται το πρωί -και οι δασκάλες, το ίδιο συμβαίνει και στους γονείς! Λες και βρισκόμαστε στο 1970 που η μαμά στο σπίτι μαγείρευε και σκούπιζε το πρωί. Έβγαζε […]

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Ο Χρ.Λαμπριανίδης, νικητής διεθνούς διαγωνισμού φωτογραφίας για την κλιματική αλλαγή

Την πρώτη θέση στο διαγωνισμού The CoolClimate Art κατέλαβε ο Χρήστος Λαμπριανίδης, για τη φωτογραφία του με τίτλο «No Pollution Please». Στο διαγωνισμό με αντικείμενο εικόνες που αποτυπώνουν την επίδραση της κλιματικής αλλαγής δήλωσαν συμμετοχή περισσότεροι από 1.000 καλλιτέχνες από όλο τον κόσμο. Ο διαγωνισμός διοργανώθηκε από την ομάδα The CoolClimate, σε συνεργασία με το deviantART.com, τη μεγαλύτερη ιστοσελίδα για […]

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Πώς το παιδί θα αγαπήσει το σχολείο!

Πώς να πείσετε το παιδί σας να αγαπήσει το σχολείο! Χρήσιμες συμβουλές για τις πρώτες μέρες της σχολ var addthis_language = ‘en’; Original post by ELC School

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Τάδε έφη Κασσάνδρα

cowboy is actually a girl with a gun and a hat (by Cassandra Alogoskoufi)Όταν μια αξιόλογη και βραβευμένη ποιήτρια της νεώτερης γενιάς -όπως είναι η Κασσάνδρα Αλογοσκούφι- σου αφιερώνει ένα ολόκληρο ποίημα, τότε τα σχόλια είναι περιττά. Η Κασσάνδρα, μεταξύ άλλων, εκπροσώπησε τη χώρα μας στον τομέα της λογοτεχνίας, μαζί με την Αντιγόνη Κατσαδήμα στη 14η Biennale Νέων Δημιουργών της […]

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Μια Ελληνίδα σε διεθνή online διαγωνισμό κομμωτικής

Η Ειρήνη Φουστέλλη , επαγγελματίας κομμώτρια, συμμετέχει στο διεθνή online διαγωνισμό κομμωτικής που διοργανώνει το Hairnet6.com με μια δημιουργία, με θέμα την “Νύφη του 2050″, η οποία συνδυάζει εξαιρετική τεχνική και καλαισθησία, Ελληνικούς συμβολισμούς και μια μεθυστική ατμόσφαιρα. Δεν είναι τυχαίο ότι αυτή τη στιγμή η συμμετοχή της Ειρήνης είναι με μικρή διαφορά στην 2η θέση, κερδίζοντας την αγάπη και […]

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Σχέδιο για ελεύθερη είσοδο στις πλαζ!

Κατάργηση του εισιτηρίου στις οργανωμένες πλαζ και γκρέμισμα όλων των εμποδίων και των εξωτερικών περιφράξεων προκειμένου να υπάρχει ελεύθερη πρόσβαση σε όλες τις παραλίες είναι το νέο δόγμα του Οργανισμού Ρυθμιστικού Σχεδίου της Αθήνας (ΟΡΣΑ). Η πρόταση για την κατάργηση του εισιτηρίου στις εκμισθωμένες-οργανωμένες πλαζ θα κατατεθεί μέσα στις επόμενες μέρες στο υπουργείο Περιβάλλοντος, Ενέργειας και Κλιματικής Αλλαγής από την […]

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Wine expert Susannah Gold on Greek wine

The below post comes to us courtesy Susannah Gold (left), a New York City-based sommelier and wine expert. While she writes primarily about Italian wine at her excellent blog Avvinare, Susannah often branches out into other fields of her expertise like the wines of South America or France, or in this case — luckily for us! — Greek wine. We couldn’t […]

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Μοναδικό αυτοκίνητο made in Greece..

Αν σας έλεγε κάποιος ότι μπορεί να κατασκευάσει ένα επιβατικό όχημα που θα κινείται με 265 χλμ./ώρα, θα επιταχύνει από 0 στα 100 χλμ./ώρα σε 3,8 δευτερόλεπτα και παράλληλα θα μπορεί να κινείται στο χώμα όπως ένα αγωνιστικό αυτοκίνητο, σίγουρα δεν θα τον πιστεύατε. Αν, πάλι, συνέχιζε να σας λέει ότι αυτό το υπεραυτοκίνητο μπορεί να το κατασκευάσει Έλληνας, τότε […]

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Εσείς πόσους «αριστούχους» είχατε στο σχολείο σας;

Στο δικό μου 56 (πενήντα έξι) !!! μαθητές είχαν πάνω από 18,5 και πήραν βραβείο. Το σύνολο των μαθητών 410. Ποσοστό: 1 στους 8!!! Η φάμπρικα στο απόγειό της. Σε κάθε ένα από τα έξι τμήματα (25 μαθ/τμ) της Α γυμν του σχολείου μου, μόνο 5-8 μαθητές δεν απεφοίτησαν με 9-10 (άριστα) από το δημοτικό. Άρα το 70-80% των μαθητών […]

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Τι σας τη σπάει στο σχολείο σας;

Θα τα αναφέρω συνοπτικά. Το κτήριο: παλιό και βρώμικο. Οι φωνές των παιδιών: γυμνάσιο γαρ. Η μεγάλη ηλικία των συναδέλφων: Πολλοί είναι αξιόλογοι αλλά αυτό δεν φαίνεται πουθενά. Ή φροντίζουν να το κρύβουν Ο διευθυντής: το μεγαλύτερο πρόβλημα του σχολείου. Το ψάρι βρωμάει κλπ. Το χειρότερο είδος διευθυντή είναι αυτό που διοικεί με το περίφημο «τελευταίο συρτάρι». Ο μεγάλος αριθμός […]

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Πρόσληψη babysitter και πρώτη συνάντηση με το παιδί σας.

Η πρώτη συνάντηση. Βασιστείτε στην πρώτη εντύπωση. Έρευνες έχουν αποδείξει ότι η εντύπωση που μας δημιουργείται τα πρώτα 5 δευτερόλεπτα, χαρακτηρίζει την σχέση με το άτομο που έχουμε απέναντί μας.Εάν η πρώτη εντύπωση δεν είναι ευχάριστη, μήν δώσετε πολύ χρόνο στην συνέντευξη – η γνώμη σας δεν θα αλλάξει ακόμα και μετά απο συζήτηση με το άτομο – έρευνες έδειξαν […]

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Σχετικά με το “αδιάβλητο” των πανελλαδικών εξετάσεων

«Μη χτυπάτε τις πανελλαδικές εξετάσεις. Είναι το μόνο αδιάβλητο σύστημα που έχουμε». Η θέση αυτή ακούγεται συχνά και πολλές φορές εμμέσως πλην σαφώς αφήνεται να εννοηθεί πως κρύβονται συμφέροντα που ευνοούνται από την κατάργηση των πανελλαδικών εξετάσεων κάτι το οποίο δεν ευσταθεί. Πανελλαδικές εξετάσεις (Π.Ε) υπήρχαν , υπάρχουν και θα υπάρχουν αφού είναι προϋπόθεση αντικειμενικού φιλτραρίσματος για την εισαγωγή στην […]

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Η “ζήλεια” του μεγάλου προς το μικρότερο αδερφάκι ή σωστότερα, η δυσκολία των γονιών να βοηθήσουν το μοναχοπαίδι στο νέο του ρόλο ως πρωτότοκο.

Η έλευση ενός νέου μέλους στην οικογένεια συνήθως αγχώνει τους γονείς: Πως θα αντιμετωπίσουμε τη ζήλεια που θα νιώσει το μέχρι πρότινος μοναχοπαίδι μας; Είναι δε τόσο δεδομένη η αντίληψη αυτή που δεν διστάζουν να την εξωτερικεύουν και στα ίδια τα παιδιά που πρόκειται να αποκτήσουν αδελφάκι: «Δεν θα ζηλεύεις, έτσι; Εσύ τώρα είσαι μεγάλο παιδί!». Από τη μία λοιπόν […]

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Eileen Lennon posted a blog post

Eileen Lennon posted a blog post

I’m just a book club girl in a book club world.

My book club has been together since 1998. We were all moms with little kids at home, and once a month on a Monday night was a big deal to get out and talk to adults for a few hours. The challenge was to stay awake for the meeting. Now we discuss how those same kids are doing in college, but we still have a hard time staying awake.Late last year, Harper Collins had a contest to become a sponsored book club for a year and I entered our book club. I had completely forgotten about it until I got an email telling me we won. We get to pick a book from a bunch of choices every month and they send us the free copies. Once this year, an author will Skype or call into our meeting to discuss their book! We got our first shipment of books today, and I am thrilled. They have sent us a copy of a book that hasn’t been released yet, it’s our job to start a word of mouth campaign for these books which seems like an honor. Mostly we are relieved to not have to figure out what we should read every month, the pressure is off to find a great book because it’s already been done for us.We have been through a lot together: a bunch of babies, a handful of divorces, a few re-marriages and our first grand-baby. We even survived Hurricane Sandy, when many of us had to relocate for months while our houses were repaired. What is wonderful about our book club is that for a few hours every month we have a glass of wine, maybe some cheesecake, and discuss how a book has touched our lives. These are the things that make for a lovely life. Thank you to my friends and to the authors who enrich our lives. We are forever grateful.See More

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The 9 Essentials To Planning A College Education

It’s that time of the year. Another academic year ending. Thousands of students across the world are ready to cross over the chasm into what might be called ” a leap into their future”. That experience called College.  A first step into the adult world! 

The big questions to ask here- How prepared are the children? And, how prepared are the parents? What is the right time? How can we reduce disappointments (we all agree they cannot be completely avoided!)? What are the steps required to develop the various facets- Social, emotional, financial?

Here are a few things that can smoothen the ride:

Start planning early:

Experts recommend beginning to prepare your child very young- as young as sixth
grade. Jason Ma, an expert on educational consulting recommends starting this early to help them focus by reducing distractions and pruning neurons. In his method, he recommends establishing a ritual of regular check-ins with your child for directional guidance. Though he doesn’t rule out change of hearts and minds, he recommends the periodical meetings to interrupt the tween’s social media and gadget habits. Others recommend even starting something like a college journal to keep track of your child’s waxing and waning interests. This helps a great deal in eventually finding the right balance between skills and interests. 

Inculcate great money habits: 

Undoubtedly, affordability is a huge factor in the final choice. Obviously, like most other things- a little planning goes a long way in being college-ready. Not only should you actively explore and make use of State-guaranteed tuition plans. Other countries have many insurance schemes covering educational expenses. Starting when the children are very young gives ample time for the fund to build up into something meaningful. This is also a great time to introduce your kids to good money habits. 

Don’t rule out any possibility:

My daughter was in second grade when she came home with a major dilemma. And she sought my help. “Ma, I want to be a clown (no kidding!), a parkour artist, an ecologist and a scientist. Help me choose one.”  My first reaction was amazement. I was thrilled at the way she saw everything as equal opportunity. It would be sabotage to slash any choices for her. So, I told her, “Why don’t we research what skills are required for each of those?” She is still trying to decide between being a parkour artist and an ecologist. While I am not sure what she will end up choosing, I am rest assured in the fact that she will grow up truly believing she can be whatever she chooses to be! 

Emphasize on training

The choice of the right college and major for your child becomes much easier when the training begins early. Taking college courses during school can help them in three critical ways:

1. It provides a compass for their subjects of interest. 

2. It eases their transition into the freshman year by reducing their load while holding down a job and trying to fit into a new social group. 

3. It helps bring down the cost of their courses, because most credits at that level cost
less per hour than a college. 

Get their hands dirty:

There is no better time than this to introduce them to real life skills while being under your watch. Stressing on managing their own time, doing their own laundry, managing feedback, etc. are all skills that will go a long way to free up time for other important stuff during their freshman year.

Pick the right size:

Most parents would be thrilled if their child had a chance at Harvard or Stanford.
However, the right college for your child should be based on several other parameters.
How socially adept is the student? Does this college have opportunities for undergrads to get involved in Research? In other words, pick what’s right for your child and his interests. The answer is not always being at a top school. Dr. Lomax recommends beginning to visit colleges or other significant travel destinations as part of family vacations. This not only helps the whole family get a better picture, but also helps the child start thinking early about where to go. 

Nag them:

The search phase for the right college can be an operational nightmare. Taking the SAT or other admission tests, application deadlines, writing cover letters- it’s likely to get a little overwhelming. It’s okay to nag a little – only because you don’t want any chances run over because of something silly that was overlooked. 

Ask the right questions:

Once your child has picked up a school of his choice that aligns with their interests and skills; it is now time to reflect on how to best use this opportunity. Dr. Richard J. Light recommends a regimen of questioning that introspects what aligns with their core values. In a routine experiment he has been running on students for years, Dr. Richard suggests this simple 5-part exercise that have proven powerful enough consistently to steer students towards making better decisions about how to spend their time in college, to what they would major in, to what extra credits and activities they want to be involved in; and think about the ways they can make their time in college help not just their educational goals but also their long-term life goals. 

Work on the emotional overhaul: 

Finally! Yes, this is difficult for your teen and you! While your teen is busy struggling to steady himself in a new environment and learning new social skills to fit into a whole new culture; you will perhaps be spending sleepless nights alternating between grief over your empty nest, worry about your child, pride that he made it and wonder- where the hell did the years go? Dr. Gail Gross recommends an empathetic process to sail through this phase, which encourages you to draw strength from the rest of your family as well as provide support to them- including your teen.

About the Author:

Devishobha is the founder of Kidskintha– where parenting is inspired by kids. It’s a specialised content zone for two important facets that touch a child’s life- Parenting and Education. Get your own FREE eBook “53 Timeless Parenting Hacks To Raise Happy Kids” here. Watch out for her soon-o-be-launched line of merchandize exclusively inspired by everyday quips of children!

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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Following Brussels Attack, U.S. Universities Reach Out To Students Abroad

Following Tuesday’s deadly explosions in Brussels, major American universities with study abroad programs scrambled to locate students who are currently in Europe.

The WorldPost reached out to a number of U.S. schools where it was mentioned on social media that students are currently abroad in Belgium. Officials from more than a dozen universities told The WorldPost they were making contact with their students abroad, their partner schools in Europe and officials at the U.S. State Department.

At least 34 people were killed in two attacks Tuesday, one at Brussels’ Maelbeek metro station and another in what appeared to be a suicide attack at the Zaventem airport. The militant group that calls itself the Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign told The WorldPost it has 57 people in Belgium. So far, the school said, it has confirmed 55 of those people are safe. UIUC was still working as of 11 a.m. EST Tuesday to connect with the remaining two people.

The University of Missouri reported that 16 journalism students studying in Belgium are all “accounted for and are safe.”

“Their safety is our top priority right now, and we are working with the lead faculty member there to make sure everyone stays safe,” said Christian Basi, spokesman for Mizzou. “No other decisions have been made at this time.”

James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, has a study abroad program in Antwerp, Belgium, which is about 27 miles from Brussels. JMU told The WorldPost it has confirmed that all of its students and faculty are safe.

The University of Michigan told The WorldPost it has only one student registered as being in Brussels, and that student has been confirmed safe. The University of Mississippi and the University of Wisconsin-Madison similarly reported their students were safe.

Some schools, like the University of Texas, said they have no students studying abroad in Belgium.

No @UTAustin students on study abroad programs in Brussels

— UT Int’l Office (@WorldandUT) March 22, 2016

UT Austin’s “overall posture for travel in Europe is not changing at this time,” school spokesman J.B. Bird told The WorldPost. However, he added, school officials are “in the process this morning of reaching out to students in Western Europe to offer resources and support, and to reiterate travel precautions.”

Furman University, in South Carolina, pulled its students from Brussels last fall following the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in Paris. School officials explained Tuesday that Furman does not operate a study abroad program in Belgium in the spring semester, so there were no students to contact this time. 

UPDATE: 1:50 p.m. — A New York University spokesman said the school has four students in Belgium, although none of them are there on a study-abroad program or in any other school-sponsored context. “All are safe, and three of the four are currently in transit out of the country,” spokesman Matt Nagel said.

The University of California, Berkeley confirmed it has three members of the campus community who are studying abroad in Brussels, and all are fine.   


Tyler Kingkade is a national reporter covering higher education, and is based in New York. You can contact him at tyler.kingkade@huffingtonpost.com, or on Twitter: @tylerkingakde.



For additional coverage in French, visit Le Huffington Post and their live blog; For coverage in German, visit HuffPost Germany; For coverage in Spanish, visit HuffPost Spain; For coverage in Arabic, visit HuffPost Arabi.  

— This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.

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Students Design Backpack To Help Kids With Autism

A new Kickstarter campaign aims to help kids with autism by providing a necessity for school or travel: a backpack.

The Nesel Packis a backpack specifically geared toward 6- to 12-year-old students with autism. Inspired by existing sensory tools like compression vests and weighted blankets, the Nesel Pack features pouches for weights, different strap options (with fuzzy, comfortable linings), clips for accessories like “chewies” and a very durable base. 

There is also a display slot that gives kids the option to customize their backpack with their initials, name or a photo of their favorite stuffed animal or pet.

The Nesel Pack is the brainchild of a group of University of Minnesota students, led by senior Martha Pietruszewski. “We had hundreds of meetings with parents, occupational therapists, teachers, and leaders in the autism community to learn what exactly we could do to most benefit the students,” she wrote on the Kickstarter page. 

“Think about walking through the hallways at school, or maybe going to a busy airport,” she added. “For some, these are normal, mundane things. For students on the autism spectrum, the amount of sensory input can be overwhelming and stressful.”

Thus, the university students created the Nesel Pack, “to provide a comfortable and durable solution to those in need.” They’ve nearly reached their fundraising goal of $10,000, which will allow them to finalize the design and put in their first production order.

As of now, one Nesel Pack backpack costs $115, which Pietruszewski says is a reflection of its incredible durability, though she added that they aim to reduce the price in the future. They’ve also partnered with Fraser — a leading provider of autism-related services in Minnesota — which will facilitate Nesel Pack donations to kids in need. So, those who want to support the new brand but don’t necessarily need to buy a backpack are still encouraged to pledge money as it will go to the Fraser initiative.

Said Pietruszewski, “With your help, we want to get these bags into the hands of as many students as possible.”

H/T PopSugar

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