Here are some interesting articles District Deeds received and discovered during the past week…



4 Tech-free Ways to Personalize Learning in Your Classroom



Quote from Article:

We’re in the middle of a guided math lesson and my students are scattered around the room like two dozen Cheerios that just exploded out of their box. Some are in groups, backs arched over skill-specific games, giggling and rolling dice. Others are hidden, tucked away in cozy nooks within the room, exploring and discovering in pairs. A few are sitting around a bright, McIntosh-apple red table, bouncing on yoga balls as they work together with manipulatives, making math make sense. 

Soon, I will ask students to rotate, moving with them to provide the direct instruction each one needs.

This is personalized learning at its best—and it’s not nearly as chaotic or difficult to pull off as it may sound. It also requires little-to-no technology. With a few simple strategies in mind, students can have a unique experience, tailored to their needs and interests. 

District Deeds Synopsis:

Quite a refreshing article!

Although it was about a 4th grade classroom, there are many ways to provide the same types of strategies in all grades.

In our experience, many teachers attempt to personalize learning as best as they can within their classrooms.   Unfortunately, without strong professional development around the skills described on the article and other strategies/tactics, some teachers may struggle…or may not see the value of the extra effort to personalize their approach.

Most of what we hear about personalized learning in the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) does not feature the type described in the article but centers around some sort of technology.  In fact when you search for “personalized learning” or “personalized learning environment” on the SDUSD website you turn up the same following 4 results:

All four talk about how i21 is going to do this or how “digital tools” are going to do that.

Not one of the search results on the district website mentions the primary source of personalized learning in classrooms…the skill and the ability of the Teacher to successfully engage and teach each student in their own unique and personalized way.

We all know of strong and skilled Teachers that provide “personalized learning” in their classes every day.

Maybe it is about time the leadership of the SDUSD begins fully supporting Personalized Learning in a personal way through extensive Professional Development and for the benefit of students and not just the electronic version used to falsely increase graduation rates.




How We Are Ruining America

David Brooks Editorial – New York Times


Quote from Article:

Upper-middle-class moms have the means and the maternity leaves to breast-feed their babies at much higher rates than high school-educated moms, and for much longer periods.

Upper-middle-class parents have the means to spend two to three times more time with their preschool children than less affluent parents. Since 1996, education expenditures among the affluent have increased by almost 300 percent, while education spending among every other group is basically flat.



David Brooks and the Language of Privilege

Robert Pondiscio – Fordham Institute “Flypaper”

Quote from Article:

Notwithstanding his prosciutto-handed tale of privilege made suddenly self-aware, Brooks is correct to be concerned about the social barriers to upward mobility. “Feeling at home in opportunity-rich areas means you’ve got to understand the right barre techniques, sport the right baby carrier, have the right podcast, food truck, tea, wine and Pilates tastes, not to mention possess the right attitudes about David Foster Wallace, child-rearing, gender norms and intersectionality,” Brooks notes. I think he overstates the case, but only in his focus on the accouterments of privilege. There is, without question, a language of privilege in America that excludes those who do not speak it fluently. And unlike assortative mating, blood-sport parenting, and legacy admissions to the Ivy League, it is within our power as educators and policymakers to influence children’s acquisition of that language. But doing so will require a degree of clarity and candor to which we are unaccustomed when we talk about education. E.D. Hirsch, Jr., has long been making the social justice case for giving disadvantaged children access to the knowledge and language that have long been assumed by the privileged and powerful. It earned him contempt for years, and more recently begrudging acknowledgement that he might have a point.

District Deeds Synopsis:

Ah…language, class and equity…and how we choose to use or exploit it.

San Diego Unified Stakeholders have their own daily discussions regarding those issues from widely different perspectives depending on whether you reside north or south of Highway 8.

We encourage our readers to review each article and see if their own approach to language and educational equity for all fits within any of the conclusions illustrated and explored. Only you can decide that…and only you can choose how to deal with it.

On  the subject of “equity” here is the “Quote of the Week”:

Our inequality materializes our upper class, vulgarizes our middle class, brutalizes our lower class.”

–Mathew Arnold

Have a Great Week!!!



District Deeds Recommends the following past blog posts exposing the fake SDUSD Principal Selection Process:



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