The Fessy Den Blog

Fourth Grade: A Time to Encourage Complex Conversations

Fourth Grade: Encouraging Complex Conversations The need to educate socially adept global citizens and learners is more crucial now than ever before. Shaping compassionate, agile, and resilient children is becoming increasingly important in the 21st century, as complex national and global issues are omnipresent and we are connected by continually advancing technology. But when is...
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How Questions Shape Cognitive Development in Pre-K

Parents of preschool-aged children are subject to daily, hourly, and even minute-by-minute questions. Queries about what things are and how they work can be heard from car seats, at the dinner table, and in the morning, afternoon, evening, and night. If you find yourself growing tired of answering so many questions—sometimes the same question three...
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Fourth Grade: Fuel a Desire to Learn During this Critical Year

Fourth grade is a critical year in a student’s academic journey. As children become some of the oldest students in elementary school, they find themselves caught between two worlds: a warm, nurturing environment and an increasingly stimulating setting in which they encounter rich social and academic adventures. Fourth graders still need hands-on support and guidance,...
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3 Ways to Turn Your Fourth Grader into an Avid Reader

In a world where technology is ubiquitous, games and entertainment are available at our fingertips, and attention spans are shrinking, is there a sweeter sight than your child engrossed in the pages of an actual book? Fourth grade is one of the most critical years for your developing reader, and this year can make a...
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How Our School Got Second Graders Excited About Research

Given how radically the world of information has changed in the past decades, and how it will continue to change, your child can’t expect to spend much of his time pouring through the indexes of densely-printed books, jotting down notes quietly on index cards, compiling them and rewriting them in his own words. If this...
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Private Schools and “Teaching to the Test”: Why Lack of State Testing is an Advantage

Standardized testing, to measure how well schools and educators are teaching children, is constantly under debate. Government programs, such as “No Child Left Behind” and “Race to the Top,” were implemented to give states a standard by which to hold our education system accountable. Instead, these programs have created divides among parents, teachers, and politicians....
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How to Teach Your Son Good Character When His Middle School Won’t

Teach Your Son Good Character

How do you raise a compassionate, honest, and respectful son in an age that is anything but? Too often, character education seems “tacked on” at America’s middle schools (as one English teacher describes): signs posted—and ignored—in the hallways saying “share with others” and “be honest,” single-semester classes unconnected to the rest of the curriculum. “All...
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