Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

May 22, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
1 Comment

No Surprise: Study Finds Immigrant Students Have Trouble Concentrating When Laws Are Passed Attacking Them

In a surprise to…absolutely no one, a new study has found that Latino boys in Arizona had a harder time concentrating in the classroom after an anti-immigrant law was passed in Arizona (see The Best Sites To Learn About Arizona’s New Immigration Law).

Here’s an excerpt:


Of course, this shouldn’t surprise anyone (see The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher (& Outside Factors) Have On Student Achievement) and I don’t think it’s a stretch to see that the Trump Administration’s actions (see The Best Resources On The Trump Administrations New Immigration Enforcement Policies) might very well have a similar impact.

You might also be interested in:

‘Dear President-elect Trump’: Immigrant students write letters asking for ‘the opportunity to demonstrate we are good people.’




May 18, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Resources For Learning About Cognitive Bias

I’ve previously written about how teachers’ implicit bias (and “explicit” bias) can impact the classroom (see We Should Be Obsessed With Racial Equity).

I’ve also shared a lot about cognitive bias’ and thought a “Best” list would be useful.

But, first, I tried to clarify the difference between the two of them.  Here is a sampling of responses I received on Twitter:

Here are some resources related to cognitive bias (you might also be interested in The Best Resources For Learning About “Psychological Effects” Useful To Teachers and The Best Multimedia Resources For Learning About Fallacies — Help Me Find More);

57 Cognitive Biases That Screw Up How We Think is from Business Insider.

The 12 cognitive biases that prevent you from being rational is from Farnam Street.

Cognitive Bias Cheat Sheet

Cognitive Bias Survival Guide

QUIZ: How Good Are You At Detecting Bias? (with Lesson Plan) is from KQED.

Confirmation and Other Biases is from Facing History.

May 16, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

Statistic Of The Day: Students Feel Safer At School

Students Feel Safer at School, Fewer Incidents Reported, Federal Data Show is the headline of an Education Week article about a new report out today.

Here’s an excerpt:

I’m adding this info to The Best Articles Pointing Out That Our Schools Are Not Failing — Please Suggest More.

May 14, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2017 – So Far

Time for my third mid-year “Best” list this year.

You might also be interested in:

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2016 – Part Two

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2016 – So Far

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2015 – Part Two

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2015 – So Far

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2014 – Part Two

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2014 – So Far

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2013 – Part Two

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2013 — So Far

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2012 — So Far

My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2011

Here are my choices for My Best Posts On New Research Studies In 2017 – So Far:

Big Meta-Analysis Says Four Teaching Strategies Are Most Effective For Low-Income Students

Statistic Of The Day: School Bullying Reduced

The Best Resources For Learning About The Value Of “Self-Explanation”

New Research Suggests That “Community Trust” Enhances Self-Control & Long-Term Thinking

New Study Finds That Threats & Using Guilt Tend Not To Produce Student Engagement – Duh!

Here’s a simple way to boost your learning from videos: “Prequestion” is from BPS Digest. Daniel Willingham writes about the same study. I’m adding both links to The Best Popular Movies/TV Shows For ESL/EFL, where you’ll find other resources related to effective student video viewing.

The Best Resources Explaining Why We Need To Support The Home Language Of ELLs

The Importance Of “Purpose”

Quote Of The Day: Bilingual Is Better!

Another Study Highlights Importance Of Teacher Diversity

The Best Articles, Posts & Videos On John Hattie’s Research

“Unpaywall” Is New Tool For Accessing Research Papers For Free

Another Unsurprising Research Result: Students Less Likely To Drop-Out If Teachers Encourage Them To Continue

The Best Resources For Learning About The Issue Of “Learning Styles”

New Report Connecting SEL To Standards Should Be On “Must-Read” List For Most Educators

Nice Article On Metacognition

Video: “This is what happens to your brain when you stop exercising”

What ‘Scarcity’ Does To The Mind & Why Social Emotional Learning Isn’t Enough

Quote Of The Day: Reflection Is Important

Teaching Critical Thinking In History Reduces Belief In Pseudoscience

New Study: The Milgram Experiment Is Replicated

How P.A. Announcements Affect Student Learning

The Best Resources For Learning About Teacher Action Research – Help Me Find More

New Study On Reading Takes Right Idea & Messes It Up

Study Finds That It’s True: Good Teaching Conditions For Educators Equals Good Learning Conditions For Students

New Study Reaffirms What Teachers Know: Relationships Matter

You’ll Want To Read This Interview With Education Researcher Kirabo Jackson

Another Depressing Statistic On Wealth Inequality

No Surprise: Study Finds That If Teachers Show Bias, Then Students Don’t Trust Them Or School

Finally, Developing Leadership Is Recognized as Improving Educational Outcomes! is from Ed Week. I’m adding it to The Best Posts, Articles & Videos On “Teacher Leadership” — Contribute More!

New Study Connects Growth Mindset & “Bouncing Back” From Mistakes

Yet Another Study Finds Advantages To Being Bilingual

Study Finds Lecturing Not Best Way To Teach – Shocking (NOT!)

Surprise – NOT! Study Finds That Money Matters To Education

Quote Of The Day: Studying & Listening To Music Don’t Mix

New Study Finds Connection Between Empathy & Self-Control

Big New – & Useful – Federal Report Out Today On Helping Students Develop Self-Regulation Skills

Statistic Of The Day: Less Physical Activity For Boys Equals Less Academic Achievement

Statistic Of The Day: This One Should Make Everyone Learning A New Language Happy

“Practitioners’ Instincts, Observations” Have Important Role In Research

Mathematica Releases “Must-Have” Guide For Any Educator Trying To Interpret Research

New Study Finds That PD, Collaboration, Safety, Expectations Important For Schools – What A Surprise!

The Elephant In The Room In The Talent vs. Practice Debate

Round Two: How Much “Content” Knowledge Do You Really Need To Be An Effective Teacher?

A Decent Post About The Value Of Guided/Assisted Discovery Learning – Too Bad It Uses The Wrong Comparison

May 13, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
1 Comment

Big Meta-Analysis Says Four Teaching Strategies Are Most Effective For Low-Income Students

There really isn’t any shortage of research trying to identify the most effective instructional strategies (see The Best Articles, Posts & Videos On John Hattie’s Research and The “Best” Lists Of Recommendations About What “Effective” Teachers Do).

However, a new study takes a view I haven’t seen much of before – it’s a meta-analysis focusing on effecting teaching strategies specifically for students from a low “socio-economic status.”

Unfortunately, it’s behind a paywall, but there are still ways to access it.

The paper itself begins by giving a good overview of why low-income students face academic challenges (see The Best Places To Learn What Impact A Teacher & Outside Factors Have On Student Achievement).

Here are the four top instructional strategies they suggest are most effective with low-income students (from number one to number four), along with how they describe each one:


Tutoring interventions were activities where students got supplemental pedagogical support from an instructor, either one-to-one or in a small group (five students or fewer). Tutors could be volunteers, paid non-teachers, or professional teachers. The interventions included in the tutoring category were often highly structured programs (e.g., manual based) implemented over a limited time period, typically 12 to 20 weeks.

2. FEEDBACK & PROGRESS MONITORING (see The Best Resources For Learning How To Best Give Feedback To Students)

This category included interventions that added a specific feedback or progress monitoring component, where teachers or students received detailed information about the students’ development. The objective was often to customize instruction to the individual student’s needs. Note that tutoring and cooperative learning are also likely to contain increased feedback, but because such feedback is embedded in the regular set up of these programs, these interventions are not coded in this category. Interventions had to add an extra component of feedback or progress monitoring to be coded here.

3. SMALL GROUP INSTRUCTION (see My Best Posts On The Basics Of Small Groups In The Classroom)

Interventions in this category included instruction where students are placed in groups smaller than regular class sizes. These interventions differed from those in which learning in small groups are built in, such as cooperative learning and tutoring. There was no cooperative learning element explicitly included in the interventions coded in this category, and the groups were larger than what normally counts as tutoring (here defined as more than five students per group).

4. COOPERATIVE LEARNING (see The Best Sites For Cooperative Learning Ideas and The Best Posts On Helping Students Teach Their Classmates — Help Me Find More)

Cooperative learning, or peer-assisted learning, referred to interventions where students work together in pairs or small groups in a systematic and structured manner. Examples included students acting as pedagogical instructors for each other, as when more able students help less able students.


What was the least effective, you might ask?

Extrinsic incentives offered to either students or to their teachers.

No surprise there – see The Best Posts & Articles On “Motivating” Students and The Best Resources For Learning Why Teacher Merit Pay Is A Bad Idea.

May 5, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Resources For Learning About The Value Of “Self-Explanation”

The Harvard Business Review just published a piece on “self-explanation” and described it this way:

The approach revolves around asking oneself explanatory questions like, ”What does this mean? Why does it matter?” It really helps to ask them out loud. One study shows that people who explain ideas to themselves learn almost three times more than those who don’t.

I’ve previously shared resources around this concept and thought it would be useful to bring them all together in a short “Best” list (you might also be interested in Best Posts On Metacognition):

Talking to Yourself (Out Loud) Can Help You Learn is from Harvard Business Review.

Should Students Explain Their Thinking? Not Always, Research Saysis from Ed Week. It’s a helpful study, though I think it uses a “straw man.” It basically says that student self-explanation is effective as long as they’re giving a correct one. It’s difficult for me to believe that many teachers don’t use guidance to ensure that this is the case. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen researchers use straw men to prove their point.

The “Best Learning Techniques” Are Useless If Students Won’t Do Them — A Critical Take On A Well Done Study

“What I Cannot Create, I Do Not Understand”

Self-Explanation as a Study Strategy for Math is from The Learning Scientists.

Self-Explanation: A Good Reading Strategy for Bad Texts (& Good) is from Thinker Academy.

Self-Explanation and Metacognition: The Dynamics of Reading

May 4, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

New Research Suggests That “Community Trust” Enhances Self-Control & Long-Term Thinking

I’ve written and shared a lot about how uncomfortable I am with the “Let Them Eat Character!” agenda of some who try to co-opt Social Emotional Learning and use it as a substitute for challenging political, race and other socio-economic challenges facing out students and their families (see The Best Resources Showing Social Emotional Learning Isn’t Enough). In fact, SEL is just a tool, though it can be an effective one (see The Best Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Resources).

That “pull yourself up by the bootstraps” perspective doesn’t only break along party lines, but this report that came out yesterday was interesting:

One of the characteristics of “blaming” low-income people for their economic plight sometimes focuses on a supposed lack of self-control. I’ve dealt with that issue several times (see Quote Of The Day: Poverty & Self-ControlThe crippling thing about growing up poor that stays with you foreverAnother Study Finds That Poverty Helps Create Lack Of Self-Control – Not The Other Way Around).  In addition, relatively recent research has also shown the role of trust in self-control (see Marshmallows & Trust).

Now, some brand new research takes on the idea of trust again as it relates to self-control and long-term planning.  And it finds that if people who are living in economically challenging circumstances feel like they are a part of a supportive community that has their back, they are more likely to have better self-regulation skills:

There has been plenty of research on the role of trust in schools (see The Best Posts About Trust & Education) and, if we needed any further evidence documenting the importance of our promoting and building it in our schools and classrooms, these new studies might provide it.

They just reinforce what key Social Emotional Learning researchers have found – it’s not just about pushing our students to put their nose to the grindstone:


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