Inquiry Magazine Northwestern School of Education and Social Policy

SPRING 2010

Penelope Peterson

MESSAGE FROM THE DEAN

Dear Friends,

Over the past 10 years that I have written this message, I have sometimes wondered if anyone reads it. Needless to say, you overwhelmed me with the number of responses to my message in last fall’s issue of Inquiry in which I described my near-death experience. Thanks so much to all of you who took the time to write and share your own experiences with me! I was truly touched.

While I don’t have any adventures as exciting to relate to you this time, I will tell you about a personal experience that occurred when our older son, Andrew, was four years old...

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  • Beyond the Schoolhouse: New Visions of Learning

    In this issue: Beyond the Schoolhouse: New Visions of Learning

    Matthew Brown (PhD02) and other alumni created a high-tech, interactive exhibit at the Illinois Holocaust Museum to teach children about taking a stand when they see something wrong happening. In varied ways, School of Education and Social Policy alumni and faculty teach with, and about, new media.

  • Don't Pull the Plug on that [Video Game/TV/Cell Phone] … They're Learning!
    Don’t Pull the Plug on that [Video Game/TV/Cell Phone] … They’re Learning!

    Video games are pervasive, controversial and largely ignored in learning research — and that’s why professor Reed Stevens chooses to study them, along with other outside-of-school activities like TV watching, texting and how families handle money. His overriding goal is to understand how people learn.

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  • Mapping How Young Children Learn
    Mapping How Young Children Learn

    David Uttal, professor of education and psychology, is known for inventive research on how young children acquire knowledge. As a skeptic about traditional views of early childhood learning, he believes we overemphasize reading and math and underemphasize spatial learning.

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  • Robots, Blogs and Frogs: New Media and Kids' Learning
    Robots, Blogs and Frogs: New Media and Kids’ Learning

    A visitor to the Robot Park exhibit at the Museum of Science in Boston will see children doing something that children have been doing for a long, long time: playing with wood blocks.
    But these kids aren’t just building structures. By placing the interlocking wood pieces in a certain order, they are also writing basic computer programs that will control the movements of a robot.

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