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The Condition of Education 2016 presents 43 key indicators on important topics and trends in U.S. education. These indicators focus on population characteristics, such as educational attainment and economic outcomes; participation in education at all levels; and several contextual aspects of education, including international comparisons, at both the elementary and secondary education level and the postsecondary education level.
Students can use it to help them with reading comprehension. The way it works is easy: you paste your text, customize some of the tool’s settings and click on ’summarize’.
Smmry does the rest and provides you with a synopsis of the text containing few topic-focused sentences. The second application is an iPad app called Clipped and is especially ideal for news readers. Clipped summarizes long news articles into bullet points extracting unnecessary information and data leaving you only the gist of the story.
SMMRY's mission is to provide an efficient manner of understanding text, which is done primarily by reducing the text to only the most important sentences. SMMRY accomplishes its mission by:
• Ranking sentences by importance using the core algorithm.
• Reorganizing the summary to focus on a topic; by selection of a keyword.
• Removing transition phrases.
• Removing unnecessary clauses.
• Removing excessive examples.’
The American College of Pediatricians urges educators and legislators to reject all policies that condition children to accept as normal a life of chemical and surgical impersonation of the opposite sex. Facts – not ideology – determine reality.
1. Human sexuality is an objective biological binary trait: “XY” and “XX” are genetic markers of health – not genetic markers of a disorder. The norm for human design is to be conceived either male or female. Human sexuality is binary by design with the obvious purpose being the reproduction and flourishing of our species. This principle is self-evident. The exceedingly rare disorders of sex development (DSDs), including but not limited to testicular feminization and congenital adrenal hyperplasia, are all medically identifiable deviations from the sexual binary norm, and are rightly recognized as disorders of human design. Individuals with DSDs do not constitute a third sex. 1
2. No one is born with a gender. Everyone is born with a biological sex. Gender (an awareness and sense of oneself as male or female) is a sociological and psychological concept; not an objective biological one. No one is born with an awareness of themselves as male or female; this awareness develops over time and, like all developmental processes, may be derailed by a child’s subjective perceptions, relationships, and adverse experiences from infancy forward. People who identify as “feeling like the opposite sex” or “somewhere in between” do not comprise a third sex. They remain biological men or biological women. 2,3,4
When you hold in mind a sentence you have just read or a phone number you’re about to dial, you’re engaging a critical brain system known as working memory.
For the past several decades, neuroscientists have believed that as information is held in working memory, brain cells associated with that information fire continuously. However, a new study from MIT has upended that theory, instead finding that as information is held in working memory, neurons fire in sporadic, coordinated bursts. These cyclical bursts could help the brain to hold multiple items in working memory at the same time, according to the researchers.
“By having these different bursts coming at different moments in time, you can keep different items in memory separate from one another,” says Earl Miller, the Picower Professor in MIT’s Picower Institute for Learning and Memory and the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. According to the new model, information is stored in rapid changes in the synaptic strength of the neurons. The brief bursts serve to “imprint” information in the synapses of these neurons, and the bursts reoccur periodically to reinforce the information as long as it is needed.
Mikael Lundqvist, a Picower Institute postdoc, and Jonas Rose, now at University of Tubingen in Germany, are the paper’s lead authors. The bursts create waves of coordinated activity in the gamma frequency (45 to 100 hertz), like the ones that were observed in the data. These waves occur sporadically, with gaps between them, and each ensemble of neurons, encoding a specific item, produces a different burst of gamma waves. “It’s like a fingerprint,” Lundqvist says.
The study, published in the Journal of Child Neurology, is the first of its kind to link nighttime instant messaging habits of American teenagers to sleep health and school performance.
"We need to be aware that teenagers are using electronic devices excessively and have a unique physiology," says study author Xue Ming, professor of neuroscience and neurology at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. "They tend to go to sleep late and get up late. When we go against that natural rhythm, students become less efficient."
The American Academy of Pediatrics reports that media use among children of all ages is increasing exponentially; studies have found that children ages 8 to 18 use electronic devices approximately seven-and-a-half hours daily.
Ming's research is part of a small but growing body of evidence on the negative effects of electronics on sleep and school performance. But few studies, Ming says, have focused specifically on instant messaging.
"During the last few years I have noticed an increased use of smartphones by my patients with sleep problems," Ming says. "I wanted to isolate how messaging alone - especially after the lights are out - contributes to sleep-related problems and academic performance."
To conduct her study, Ming distributed surveys to three New Jersey high schools - a suburban and an urban public school and a private school - and evaluated the 1,537 responses contrasting grades, sexes, messaging duration and whether the texting occurred before or after lights out.
She found that students who turned off their devices or who messaged for less than 30 minutes after lights out performed significantly better in school than those who messaged for more than 30 minutes after lights out.
Most students study by rereading their notes, PowerPoints, or books. The problem is that rereading is the most ineffective way of studying there is! Why? Because reading is visually taxing and is the hardest way in which the human brain learns information. Reading is also passive. It’s kind of like learning to play basketball while watching your coach play. It won’t work. Research shows that the number one way to study is to make a practice test. Try to predict what your teacher may have on the exam. Look at your study guide, pull out old quizzes, find important parts of your notes, and ask others in your class what they think is important. Then, create a practice exam.
GREAT RESOURCE https://quizlet.com/
Don’t cram. Instead, spread out three hours of studying over four days, 45 minutes per night. This works for two reasons. The first is that when you review the material multiple times you gain more familiarity with it. Secondly, and most importantly, sleep on it. That’s right, sleep helps you learn. Studies show that you remember more when you take 10-15 minutes to review what you studied or learned earlier in the day just before you go to sleep. This doesn’t mean that you should do all your studying just before bedtime, but it does mean that reviewing those notes again just a few minutes before bedtime allows you to process the information as you sleep. You will remember more on test day if you reviewed it more often and have those memories stored during your sleep.
Thirty minutes of cardio a day, 4-5 days a week is an optimal strategy to improve learning. Aerobic exercise can improve focus as much as a low dose of a stimulant medication to treat ADHD. If you are a student athlete, study on the bus or the car as you travel home from an event. Consider studying right after practice, too. And if you don’t play a sport, run with your dog or shoot some hoops right before you sit down to do schoolwork.
Most people need to sleep 7.5-9 hours per night in order to encode memories, but teenagers typically need more, about 9.25 hours. Thirty minute afternoon naps can help, because your brain actually goes into a sort of sleep pattern in the early afternoon. Be sure these afternoon siestas aren’t too long since extended naps can interfere with sleep at night.
Breaks also help. In fact, studies show that students remember more when they have breaks between study sessions that when studying straight through for an extended period of time. Having downtime allows your brain to review information even when you don’t think you’re really processing it!
Did you receive affection, play freely and feel supported in childhood? Childhood experiences like these appear to have a lot to do with well-being and moral capacities in adulthood. University of Notre Dame professor of psychology Darcia Narvaez and colleagues Lijuan Wang and Ying Cheng, associate professors of psychology, show that childhood experiences that match with evolved needs lead to better outcomes in adulthood.
According to Narvaez, one of the reasons that the well-being of children in the United States lags behind that of children in other advanced nations is because "we have forgotten that we are social mammals with specific evolved needs from birth."
Narvaez emphasizes six components: Soothing, naturalistic perinatal experiences; responsiveness to a baby's needs including sensitivity to the signals of the baby before the baby cries; constant physical presence with plenty of affectionate touch; extensive breastfeeding; playful interactions with caregivers and friends; and a community of affectionate, mindful caregivers.
Adults who report receiving more of such parenting practices in their childhoods display less depression and anxiety, greater ability to take the perspective of others and an orientation toward compassion. Adults who report less of these parenting practices in their childhood have poorer mental health, more distress in social situations and are less able to take another's point of view.
Our brains weren't built to multitask.
Our brains are designed to focus on one thing at a time, and bombarding them with information only slows them down. MIT neuroscientist Earl Miller notes that our brains are "not wired to multitask well... when people think they're multitasking, they're actually just switching from one task to another very rapidly. And every time they do, there's a cognitive cost." This constant task-switching encourages bad brain habits. When we complete a tiny task (sending an email, answering a text message, posting a tweet), we are hit with a dollop of dopamine, our reward hormone. Our brains love that dopamine, and so we're encouraged to keep switching between small mini-tasks that give us instant gratification. This creates a dangerous feedback loop that makes us feel like we're accomplishing a ton, when we're really not doing much at all (or at least nothing requiring much critical thinking).
Multitasking lowers your work quality and efficiency.
Multitasking makes it more difficult to organize thoughts and filter out irrelevant information and it reduces the efficiency and quality of our work. A study at the University Of London showed that multitasking has also been found to increase production of cortisol, the stress hormone. Having our brain constantly shift gears pumps up stress and tires us out, leaving us feeling mentally exhausted (even when the work day has barely begun).
One of the biggest instigators of multitasking mayhem? Our inboxes. The constant thrill of a new bolded email in our inbox keeps us ever-distracted. A McKinsey Global Institute Study found that employees spend 28 percent of their workweek checking emails. Email is problematic, but texting is even worse, demanding even more immediacy than email, having us check it more adamantly as a result. Protect yourself from the multitasking mental massacre by establishing an e-mail checking schedule. Commit yourself to checking emails only three times a day, (maybe when you get into work in the morning, at lunch time, and before leaving work at the end of the day). Turn off texting notifications and choose specific times to check your phone as well.
The lesson? Multitasking is not a skill to add to the resume, but rather a bad habit to put a stop to.
Just one energy drink can cause potentially harmful spikes in both stress hormone levels and blood pressure in young, healthy adults, a new study shows.
After drinking a 16-ounce can of "Rockstar Punched," young adults had a 74 percent increase in blood levels of the "fight-or-flight" hormone norepinephrine, said lead researcher Dr. Anna Svatikova, a cardiologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. That's more than double an average 30 percent increase in norepinephrine the same participants experienced when they consumed a fake energy drink, Svatikova said. Blood pressure also spiked due to energy drinks. For example, mean blood pressure increased by 6.4 percent after energy drink consumption, compared with a 1 percent increase when the young adults downed the fake drink, the study found.The sham energy drink contained the same amount of sugar and nearly the same calories, but did not include natural stimulants found in the Rockstar drink, she said. The stimulants in the real energy drink include caffeine, taurine, guarana, ginseng and milk thistle extract.
These findings were presented at the American Heart Association's annual meeting in Orlando, and the results will be published simultaneously in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Energy drinks can contain up to five times more caffeine than a typical cup of coffee, according to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Emergency room visits involving energy drinks doubled between 2007 and 2011, rising from about 10,000 to nearly 21,000, SAMHSA said.
SOURCES: Anna Svatikova, M.D., cardiologist, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn.; Linda Van Horn, Ph.D., R.D., professor, preventive medicine and nutrition, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, spokeswoman, American Heart Association; Nov. 8, 2015, presentation, American Heart Association annual meeting, Orlando, Fla.; Nov. 8, 2015.
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