Reading to some purpose

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  • If I had to recommend one book that could change the way you view the world, “Seeing Like a State” would be it. Sociology, Political Science, History and Economics all wrapped into one compelling explanation of the world that we see. Taking a month off to digest this would be an excellent use of almost anyone’s time IMHO.
  • Fascinating LRB article reviewing “Empire of Tea: The Asian Leaf that Conquered the World.” Another amazing LRB article shows a breadth of knowledge that is absolutely astounding. From Weber and Durkheim to Israel, Gorbachev and Confucianism. A long but satisfying read!
  • Social Foundations of Education” 2011 University of Michigan course outline by Ball and Cohen. Looks like an incredible course.
  • Word of the week: ‘Nomenklatura‘ “a select list or class of people from which appointees for top-level government positions are drawn, especially from a Communist Party”
  • Important new (2015) research article “Teacher Supply in South Africa: A Focus on Initial Teacher Education Graduate Production” by RESEP’s Hendrik van Broekhuizen. Exhaustive. Meticulous. Important. My take home point is that we win or lose the initial teacher education battle with UNISA!
  • Dr Linda Zuze writes an interesting article “Desperate to be Digital” where she unpacks a demand from COSAS “We must get tablets just like the Chinese students.” Also  see the BBC article “Computers ‘do not improve’ pupil results, say OECD.” I am a little wary of these bivariate scatter-plot type comparisons of countries that do well and also a bunch of other things and then saying that those things cause the good performance, but nevertheless an interesting article.
  • There’s a new book by Hanushek and Woessman (2015) titled “The Knowledge Capital of Nations” – see Lant Pritchett’s review here (thanks Elbie!)
  • “Is our determination to achieve excellence in reading skills in our children killing their love and enjoyment of a good book?” This is the question asked by Ryan Spencer in his article “Reading teaching in schools can kill a love of books” (via Lilli Pretorius). Also see this article by Donalyn Miller titled “Cultivating Wild Readers” (via Sarah Murray)
  • An article from a month ago on DBE-SADTU relations by Leanne Jansen that some might of missed: “Motshekga said Sadtu was “more bullish” in the Eastern Cape because of the “culture of chaos” in that province, and within its education department. “Corruption plays a major role in destabilising the sector. Structures like Sadtu don’t create problems for the sake of creating problems. “It’s about patronage, access to government tenders … It’s deeper than being disruptive for the sake of being disruptive … It is leadership in provincial education departments to a large extent. There is Sadtu in the Western Cape, why is it not behaving the way it is behaving in the Eastern Cape?
  • Corrupting Learning: Evidence from Missing Federal Education Funds in Brazil” -via John Aitchison

One response to “Reading to some purpose

  1. christinedownton

    Not sure Scott pays enough attention to the null hypothesis!

    From: Nic Spaull <comment-reply@wordpress.com>
    Reply-To: Nic Spaull <comment+eqn43wttkf9_yevx89ph6uv@comment.wordpress.com>
    Date: Monday, September 21, 2015 at 8:06 PM
    To: Christine Downton <christine@cvdownton.com>
    Subject: [New post]Reading to some purpose

    Nic Spaull posted: “If I had to recommend one book that could change the way you view the world, “Seeing Like a State”would be it. Sociology, Political Science, History and Economics all wrapped into one compelling explanation of the world that we see. Taking a month”

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