All posts in "Education"

Mindfulness for children

By Cathryn Wellner / October 2, 2015

When Julie Bayer Salzman and Josh Salzman overheard their 5-year-old son talking about things like the amygdala and the prefrontal cortex and how they were affected by emotions, they wanted to know more. The Citizens of the World Charter School in Mar Vista, California was teaching the children mindfulness. It was making a difference. You […]


A most compassionate child

By Cathryn Wellner / September 28, 2015

This three-year-old child does not want to eat the deep-fried octopus on his plate. Each question he asks moves him and his mother deeper into his ethical dilemma: He does not want animals killed so he can eat them. The octopus is an animal. So are chickens and cows and pigs. He insists humans must […]


Kindergarten for the real child

By Cathryn Wellner / September 23, 2015

Real children do not sit in rows or at work stations, at least not for long. They jump up, run around, tumble, laugh and explore. Architect Takaharu Tezuka designed a kindergarten for real children. It is a big circle where children can rum and jump, climb trees, hang their legs out over space, move cubes […]


Singapore’s pint-sized superheroes

By Cathryn Wellner / September 7, 2015

A Singapore pre-school is churning out pint-sized superheroes, all of them from disadvantaged families. When it comes time to graduate from their beloved school, these children have a unique graduation ceremony. Instead of parading in mortarboards, they don the costumes they have designed and announce their special powers. Superhero Me sends them out into the […]


The world’s improving in many ways, and he can prove it

By Cathryn Wellner / August 28, 2015

Don’t take my word for it. We have a lot to be optimistic about. So on days when worries about the state of the world are bringing down your spirits, head over to Max Rosen’s Our World in Data or check out his Facebook and Twitter streams. The Oxford economist provides data on the big […]


Toddlers and oldsters play together in this care center

By Cathryn Wellner / August 26, 2015

Homes for the frail elderly can be some of the most depressing places on the planet, though residents like my Aunt Grace (Is your door open? I need to talk) brighten the lives of those consigned there. Splitting old people off from the rest of society may be convenient, but it is no better practice […]


Vending machines offer free books

By Cathryn Wellner / August 12, 2015

JetBlue and Random House are not the first to offer books through vending machines. John Geoghegan wrote A Brief History of Book Vending Machines for Huffington Post. In it he described the generally unsuccessful efforts to sell books that way. Some libraries have tried it as well, making it easy to borrow books in such […]


White woman, black man shock the audience awake

By Cathryn Wellner / July 15, 2015

Darius Simpson and Scout Bosley step up to the microphone and do something completely unexpected. They change places. If that sounds like a simple matter of switching mikes, watch what happens when they also switch roles. Simpson speaks his lines as though he were a woman, Bosley as if she were a black man. The […]


Best summer homework assignment ever

By Cathryn Wellner / July 1, 2015

An Italian teacher’s unusual summer homework assignment has gone viral. Cesare Catà told his students at Don Bosco High School to turn off their devices and go outdoors. They have a beautiful place to do that, in Fermo, an ancient Roman colony in the hill country above the Adriatic Sea. Catà posted his vacation homework […]


Your heart will break open reading these notes

By Cathryn Wellner / June 1, 2015

Some people were born to teach. Kyle Schwartz is one of them. Wanting to know her students better, she gave them an assignment: Take a note card and write on it things “I wish my teacher knew.” She could never have anticipated the deeply personal responses she would receive. Or perhaps she could have because […]

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