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February 1, 1997
Vol. 54
No. 5

Resources

Girls in the Middle

Girls in the Middle: Working to Succeed in School, Jody Cohen and Sukey Blanc.
"Development psychologists theorize that while boys are most psychologically at risk in childhood, for girls, the time of greatest risk is adolescence." So say Cohen and Blanc, who go on to observe that while some girls respond to the developmental crisis of adolescence by "devaluing themselves and feeling worthless, others disassociate themselves from institutions which devalue them—in this case, the school."
Cohen and her research team from Philadelphia's Research for Action studied girls at six diverse middle schools. They identified several key behaviors that seemed to transcend racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and geographic boundaries. In this compelling book, Cohen and Blanc show how these girls negotiate school, as seen through the eyes of their parents, students, and school staff. They also cite other studies, such as one by Carol Gilligan and colleagues. Among that group's observations: "Girls who were resilient, lively, willful, courageous, and honest through their early adolescence begin peppering their speech with 'I don't know' as they get older." This seemed to signal "a giving up of voice, an abandonment of self, for the sake of becoming a good girl and having relationships."
Girls in the Middle is the latest report in a research series supported by the American Association of University Women Education Foundation. It is available from the association at 1111 16th St. N.W., Washington, DC 20036-4873. (202) 785-7700. 1996. 116 pp., Paperbound. $12.95 for AAUW members, $14.95 for others. A video based on this report is also available for $19.95 (members) and $24.95 (nonmembers). Other reports in the series include Growing Smart: What's Working for Girls in School, Hostile Hallways: The AAUW Survey on Sexual Harassment in America's Schools, and How Schools Shortchange Girls.

Cable in the Classroom

Cable in the Classroom, Cable Television Industry.
Thirty-three national cable networks support this public service, providing a free cable connection and commercial-free educational programs to more than 7,000 elementary, middle, and high schools across the country. Some networks create programs specifically for this service (CNN's daily half-hour "Newsroom/WorldView"), while others, such as A&E, often reformat documentaries or other programs into teacher-friendly modules. Launched in 1989, Cable in the Classroom includes 8,500 local cable companies. In addition to current events, documentaries, dramas, and performing arts, the networks offer curriculum-related math, English, science, social studies, biology, foreign language, and health programming, many with accompanying curriculum guides. All programs are copyright cleared so that schools can use them to build their own video libraries. And the free cable connection often enables schools to access Internet resources.
Cable in the Classroom also provides hundreds of teacher training workshops. And home viewers may tune in to family-friendly programs. The Channel One youth news program with commercials is not a part of Cable in the Classroom.
For more information, contact Cable in the Classroom, 1900 N. Beauregard St., Suite 108, Alexandria, VA 22311. (703) 845-1400 or (800) 743-5355. Internet: http://www.ciconline.com or cicofc@aol.com.

What Matters Most: Teaching for America's Future

What Matters Most: Teaching for America's Future, National Commission on Teaching and America's Future.
The National Commission on Teaching and America's Future, created in 1994 and funded by the Rockefeller Foundation and Carnegie Corporation of New York, reports what the commission believes is the single most important strategy for achieving our educational goals: a blueprint for recruiting, preparing, and supporting excellent teachers in all of America's schools. The report presents five major recommendations, all of which "require a dramatic departure from the status quo": Get serious about standards, for both students and teachers; reinvent teacher preparation and professional development; fix teacher recruitment and put qualified teachers in every classroom; encourage and reward teachers' knowledge and skills; and create schools that are organized for student and teacher success.
Available from The National Commission on Teaching and America's Future, P.O. Box 5239, Woodbridge, VA 22194-5239. (212) 678-3015. September 1996. 152 pp., Paperbound. $18. Related materials include a summary report ($5) and a video and discussion guide ($15). The full report and summary are $20 and the complete package is $30.

Healthy Teens

Healthy Teens: Success in High School and Beyond, Alice R. McCarthy.
This concise, easy-to-read guide draws attention to the relationship between healthy lifestyles, family involvement, and academic success. McCarthy addresses family-school-community partnerships and the basics of family involvement (How does a parent open communication channels? How can families help their children learn?). She gives equal attention to mental and physical health, covering issues ranging from depression and suicide, substance abuse, and dating and sexual assault to eating disorders. An 11-page annotated resource list with help-line numbers is included.
Healthy Teens is the latest resource to come out of the Michigan Model for Comprehensive School Health Education, a program created in 1984 by several state agencies. It is being voluntarily used in 93 percent of Michigan public school districts and in more than 200 private schools.
Available from Bridge Communications, Inc., 1450 Pilgrim Rd., Birmingham, MI 48009. (810) 646-1020 (e-mail: bridgecomm@aol.com). 1996. 104 pp., Paperbound. $5.95, 11-49 copies $4.50; 50-999 copies $3.50; 1,000-1,999 copies $3.25.

Putting the Pieces Together: Comprehensive School-Linked Strategies for Children and Families

Putting the Pieces Together: Comprehensive School-Linked Strategies for Children and Families, U. S. Department of Education, Office of Educational Research and Improvement.
This book is designed for school leaders who want to improve the parent and community outreach efforts of principals, teachers, and other school staff. It can also be used as a guide to building strong partnership with other communities who share the same concerns. Schools, families, and communities across the country are developing partnerships in support of children and youth, families, and neighborhoods. Each chapter of this book is based on questions that collaborators ask, for example: How do we get started? What does a community assessment involve? How can we find and develop financial resources? Numerous brief examples, research findings, suggested resources, and reviews of federal legislation that aids schools in their work with families and communities are included.
Available from the U.S. Government Printing Office, Superintendent of Documents, P.O. Box 371954, Pittsburgh, PA 15250. (202) 512-1800. 1996. 100 pp., Paperbound. $8.

Education and Work

Education and Work: Designing Integrated Curricula, Walter H. Edling and Ruth M. Loring.
In response to the recent federal Tech Prep and School-to-Work legislation, many educators have been attempting to design curriculums that integrate academic, occupational, and employability standards. This research report tells how to go about it. In particular, it describes ways of integrating the concepts, skills, and values of separately taught subjects to make them mutually reinforcing. The report is based on the findings of the Center for Occupational Research and Development, which has been engaging more than two dozen states in weaving together education reform efforts such as learning styles, contextual learning, cooperative learning, and technology in learning.
Available from CORD Communications, Inc., Customer Relations, P.O. Box 21206, Waco, TX 76702-1206. (800) 231-3015. 1996. 34 pp., Paperbound. $6 plus $5 for shipping and handling.

This article was published anonymously, or the author name was removed in the process of digital storage.

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