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Volume  1,   Issue 4            November 2015
Class Meets Carson
Pleasant Hill, Iowa: 

   Former Harbor Alternative students at Southeast Polk High School had the honor of meeting Ben Carson and presenting to him the essays they had written in Dan Kline's English class.  

   The class read Ben Carson's Gifted Hands and were required to write about how some of the challenges he faced growing up mirrored their own.
   Mr. Kline's goal when choosing content for his English classes is to find something with which the students can identify and establish an emotional connection.
   Ben Carson grew up in a rough neighborhood in inner-city Detroit. He had a single parent mother who dropped out of school in third grade and Ben struggled with school early on. As a teenager, Carson had anger and self-esteem issues as his family struggled financially.
   Every student who took the class, like Ben Carson, beat the odds and graduated. Their essays were some of the best work to come out of Kline's English class and the opportunity emerged to give them to Dr. Carson at his book signing in Des Moines on Oct. 24th.
   Carson's people were expecting the Harbor students who were full of pride when escorted to the front of the line with a free copy of Carson's new novel, A More Perfect Union.
When 'Deshawn' And 'Greg' Act Out In Class, Guess Who Gets Branded A Troublemaker
Huffington Post
   Research has shown that young black students in American schools are expelled and suspended three times as often as white students. Now a disturbing new study from Stanford University reveals one factor behind such disproportionate punishment.
   The study showed that teachers tend to view black students more harshly than white students even when their disruptive behavior is exactly the same -- possibly triggering a destructive cycle.
   "We have shown experimentally, for the first time, that teacher responses can contribute to racial disparities in discipline," the researchers wrote in a paper describing their research, which was published online April 8 in the journal Psychological Science.
   "In fact, teacher responses may even help to drive racial differences in student behavior -- differential treatment by teachers, to some extent, may inspire repeated misbehavior by black students."
Read more....
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NAEA Board
Kay Davenport, President
Jacqueline  Whitt, Vice President
Edward Lowther, Secretary
Pat Conner, Treasurer
Denise Riley, John E. Holmes, Richard Thompson, Adrienne Lacey-Bushell, Ja’net Bishop, Pam Bruening, and Joel Shutte, Board Members
Robert L. Eichorn,, Immediate Past President (Advisor)
Tom Trautman, Regional Symposium Consultant
Newsletter Editor:  Dr. John E. Holmes                            
Love of Reading Creates Little Free Library Gift
Reprinted from Alternative Education -
Oklahoma Department of Education

   Aidan Darcey loves to read. He loves reading so much that when it came time to decide on a project to get his Eagle Scout badge he knew an adventure involving books was inevitable. On Friday, November 6 a ribbon cutting and dedication of Little Free Library number 31,475 took place at Street School.
     The Little Free Library is a “take a book, return a book” free book exchange. Anyone may pick up a book or two, or bring a book to share.  The project is not about providing free books but rather creating a neighborhood piece of art where there is an understanding that real people sharing their favorite books with their community create a carefully curated collection.
    Over the summer, Darcey, a home-schooled senior, reached out through Street Schools website to see if there were any projects, involving books, the the school could benefit from.
   “I didn’t know anything about Street School when I emailed them,” said Darcey.  “Part of achieving the Eagle Scout rank is to plan a project in service to others that helps a religious institution, school or community. Because Street School may have had a need for books, I wanted to see if I could turn their need into a project to secure my rank as an Eagle Scout.”
What’s an Adolescent Brain’s Weakness?   Other Tweens
   If adolescence has a poster child, it’s a teenager. In a car. Smoking, drinking, and driving badly while also, somehow, having sex in the back seat.
   But changes in the brain that lead to the famously bad choices of adolescence don’t start at 16 or 17 years old. They start around 11 or 12 and the beginning of puberty.
  This is the dirty little secret of adolescence: The cloudy judgment and risky behavior may not last a year or two. Try a decade. 
In short, an adolescent’s weakness is other adolescents. And we’re not just talking about peer pressure. The mere presence of peers makes them less cautious.
Read more here....
Colorado Teacher Shares Heartbreaking Notes From Third Graders
ABC News/Good Morning America

   Kyle Schwartz teaches third grade at Doull Elementary in Denver.
Although she says her students are a pleasure to look after, the educator of three years adds that many of them come from underprivileged homes.
   "Ninety-two percent of our students qualify for free and reduced lunch," Schwartz tells ABC News. "As a new teacher, I struggled to understand the reality of my students' lives and how to best support them. I just felt like there was something I didn't know about my students."
   In a bid to build trust between her and her students, Schwartz thought up a lesson plan called "I Wish My Teacher Knew."
   For the activity, Schwartz's third graders jot down a thought for their teacher, sharing something they'd like her to know about them.
"Building community in my classroom is a major goal of this lesson. After one student shared that she had no one to play with at recess, the rest of the class chimed in and said, 'we got your back.' The next day during recess, I noticed she was playing with a group of girls. Not only can I support my students, but my students can support each other."
 Read more
Owasso Ram Academy wins prestigious national award for dropout prevention, intervention

OWASSO, Oklahoma — Owasso Ram Academy has won a prestigious national award for dropout prevention, intervention and recovery.
The academy was the only school among six recipients of the 2015 Crystal Star Award, given by the National Dropout Prevention Center.
   “It was a tremendous honor,” said Principal Johanna Woodard, who recently accepted the award at the organization’s national conference in San Antonio.
   “Everyone here, including the students, are really thrilled and proud that we were recognized,” she said.
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March 16–19, 2016
Sawgrass Marriott, Ponte Vedre Beach, FL
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