Teaching is a complex job. How can we prepare teachers to attend to myriad issues while still fostering a sense of play in their classrooms? Patrick Sexton, assistant dean of teacher education programs, describes how he encourages pre-service teachers to think creatively by incorporating theatre games into their preparation.
What makes kids strong? How can we help young men of color thrive? Can school bureaucracy actually be a good thing?
These and other pressing issues in education have been tackled during EDU Talks, a fast-paced series of talks by University of Washington College of Education faculty members working to unlock the potential of all students.
Watch each EDU Talk and dive into leading edge research that is opening new opportunities in education.
Setting the stage
Slipping into character
Young children regularly engage in role playing during their earliest years, yet it almost disappears after preschool. Teaching associate Kimberly Mitchell details why schools should integrate role playing throughout our classrooms.
Vamos a dormir, niños
Ed Taylor, professor of education and vice provost and dean of Undergraduate Academic Affairs, shares how his experience working with preschoolers as a teenager led him to a career in education.
The healing power of play
Experiencing psychological pain is unavoidable. Yet play can provide a safe space for children and set the foundation for emotional healing. Professor Janine Jones shares how play can help build connections that are essential to healing.
Playing your way to resilience
Resilience isn't something children are either born with or without. Polo DeCano, a PhD candidate in school psychology, discusses how the experience of play can help children develop the skills necessary to deal with adversity.
Playful learning matters
What's the role of joy in what children learn, how they learn and why they learn? Philip Bell, Shauna C. Larson Chair in Learning Sciences, shares his work making the exploration of science a joyful experience for children that can open future pathways.
Changing the conversation
How was your day at school? It's a question millions of parents ask, yet kids have trouble answering. For children with disabilities, the challenge is even greater. Ariane Gauvreau, teaching associate in special education, describes how she's helping children have richer conversations with just a cell phone.
You can't learn if you don't play
Children are experts at play. They love to explore and try new things. Yet too many schools don't take advantage of children's inate curiosity. Elham Kazemi, Geda and Phil Condit Professor in Math and Science Education, shares why schools must tap into this curiosity to encourage students—and teachers—to play with new ideas and ways of learning.
Mobile City Science
Mapping, and understanding related technologies, is quickly becoming a new kind of civic literacy for participating in community-level problem-solving. Professor Katie Headrick Taylor discusses her work with urban youth mapping community assets for learning and new learning opportunities.
Great teaching is ... magnified by professional development
Tremendous knowledge resides within a school's teachers, but using that collective knowledge to improve teaching practice can prove challenging. Jessica Thompson outlines her work creating networked improvement communities of teachers to scale great teaching across schools and districts.
Great teaching is ... student-centered
Great teaching puts students at the center of the learning process. Megan Kelley-Petersen, who directs the UW's elementary teacher education and acclerated certification (U-ACT) programs, discusses her experiences as a new teacher and her current work preparing future teachers.
Great teaching is ... rigorous, authentic and fun
Making coursework rigorous, ambitious and fun is crucial to student learning. Professor Walter Parker discusses a UW partnership with high school teachers to recreate AP Government by making a series of simulations the spine of the course.
The Biology of Resilience
Implicit bias, racism and trauma are core elements in a virus that African American adolescents have to fight every day. A pilot study led by Professor Janine Jones is exploring how to strengthen the cultural identity of African American girls and fight this virus in order to improve their social-emotional health and academic success.
Do Dads Matter?
Fathers in low-income households are widely neglected when it comes to support for stronger parenting skills. Professor Holly Schindler discusses a community research project with promising results for helping fathers play a positive role in the development of their children.
Solving the Reading Puzzle
For millions of children, starting school comes with the exciting promise of learning to read. But while most children become successful readers, some encounter tremendous difficulties. Professor Roxanne Hudson delves into her work developing interventions for children with reading challenges.
Difference, not deficit
While students with learning disabilities are often seen as having deficits, they actually devise ingenious methods to figure out the right answers to questions. Professor Katherine Lewis tells her story of overcoming a learning disability and how she's now designing math instruction to take into account the differences in how students learn math.
Starting a Revolution in Teacher Learning (with FaceTime and earbuds)
Providing teachers with in-the-moment feedback can drive significant improvements in their practice. Professor Kathleen Artman Meeker discusses how using FaceTime and earbuds to connect coaches with teachers as they worked with children led to improvements in teaching and learning for young children with developmental disabilities.
The Bright Side to Youth Suicide
Mental health problems continue to be under-identified in young people, despite their connection to academic difficulties and disciplinary issues. Professor James Mazza discusses his work developing a social emotional curriculum that aims to help students learn adaptive coping strategies and decision-making abilities.
Why Should We Care about Young Men of Color?
Having a positive mentor from one's community can make a significant impact in the lives of young men of color. Professor Joe Lott describes his work building a network of men of color in the Puget Sound who will support young men from historically marginalized communities throughout their college experience.
Got Talent? Equity in Gifted Education
If you're a student of color, you're 20 times less likely to be identified as gifted and talented and be placed in a program for gifted youth. Professor Nancy Hertzog describes how the University of Washington is leading efforts to ensure all children have an equal opportunity to receive the instruction found in gifted education services.
What's History Got to Do with It?
History is a tool for understanding the present and charting a path toward the future. Professor Joy Williamson-Lott delves into Seattle's history of school segregation to explain how historical understanding is necessary to truly address racial and economic inequity in schools.
Competition, College Athletics and the Academy
The gridiron isn't the only place where universities are locked in a battle for prestige and bragging rights. Professor Jennifer Hoffman explains how competition permeates both college athletics and the academy.
Bureaucracy the Beautiful: Reimagining the Right Work of the School District Central Office
School district central offices are much maligned, yet they are crucial to large-scale school improvement. Professor Meredith Honig argues for a radical transformation of the central office's work around improving student learning.
What Exactly Is School Math for?
Math didn't just develop in Europe. Many cultures have rich mathematical traditions that can be drawn upon, Professor Filiberto Barajas-Lopez argues, to improve the achievement of young people from historically marginalized communities.
Path Dependence in Federal Education Policy
Tracing how we arrived at the Every Student Succeeds Act takes us down the twisting path of federal education policy back to the years following the Civil War. Professor Nancy Beadie offers insights into how policy is shaped.
Toward equity through measurement & statistics
Knowing what to measure and finding the right way to measure what's happening in our schools can be a complicated matter. Professor Elizabeth Sanders describes how collecting good data and making proper measurements is essential to addressing educational inequities.
Who's Driving the Youth Sports Bus?
Sports can provide young people with powerful opportunities for learning and leadership, but only if coaches and other leaders in athletics know how to create positive connections between athletics and education. Professor Sara Lopez discusses how the UW's Center for Leadership in Athletics works to maximize the positive, educational impact of athletics.
Living Sustainable Futures? Changing How We Learn Now
How do we live sustainably in this generation and in those generations to come? Professor Megan Bang examines how outcomes for Native youth can be improved by shifting learning outside of the traditional classroom and into environments connected to indigenous people's culture and history.