Monday, November 22, 2010

ATTENTION SPAN AND TECHNOLOGY, PART I. A looong article in The New York Times examines the effects of technology and immediate reward/feedback on young people. The issue: whether "developing brains can become more easily habituated than adult brains to constantly switching tasks — and less able to sustain attention." The story profiles several students, including one "whose ability to be distracted by computers is rivaled by his proficiency with them"; his grades range from F to A. Also profiled: a young woman who sends and receives 27,000 texts a month. Find the article, and consider what it means for your twice-exceptional child or student.
ATTENTION SPAN AND TECHNOLOGY, PART II. Are attention spans increasing? Being diminished? A short essay in The New York Times Magazine considers "attention span." From the essay: "A healthy 'attention span' becomes just another ineffable quality to remember having, to believe you’ve lost, to worry about your kids lacking, to blame the culture for destroying." The author's conclusion? Find it.
AD/HD PERSPECTIVE. The author of the new book Buzz about herself and her son as the family dealt with his (and her) AD/HD wrote a column in the Washington Post summarizing some of her experiences and her opposition to the $5B "AD/HD-industrial complex." If you thought you spent a lot of time and money as you tried to deal with your gifted-AD/HD child, check out her column.
GIFTED COMPETITORS. The annual Siemens Foundation competition in math, science, and technology is coming to a close. Regional winners are being announced, and the final judging occurs on December 6th. If you'd like to read about some amazing young people and some amazing projects, check out a press release about regional winners from New York and Indiana; and see other press releases at the Siemens Foundation site. Separately, the Wendy's  High School Heisman competition, which recognizes high school seniors for excellence in academics, athletics, and leadership, has posted state winners at the competition's site
IDEA'S ANNIVERSARY. The Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act (IDEA) is 35 years old, and the U.S. Education Secretary expressed his commitment to it while also acknowledging that not every child with a disability gets a "world-class education."  Read more. Separately, an Education Week writer notes that the number of students identified with specific learning disabilities has dropped in recent years; find out how and why

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