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In my last post I suggested that equitable schools are those that contribute to happiness in children. Now I’d like to offer some suggestions for actions that school leaders and teachers can take in order to cultivate happier schools.
When we slow down, we notice more, we appreciate more, we take stock of relationships, learning, and goals. Everyone can benefit from slowing down: students, teachers, and administrators. There’s a direct correlation between our levels of contentment and the pace at which we live our lives. In the classroom, this might look like spending more time in a morning meeting with students, or lingering over a read aloud, or taking an extra 10 minutes to engage kids in a game outside after recess.2. Get Outside
Being outside, even for just a few minutes a day, can heighten our state of well-being. We breathe fresh air, feel the elements on our skin — the warmth of the sun, the sting of wind, the moisture of rain — which connects us to the natural world. Even when it’s cold out, or when it’s warm and glorious, we can take our students outside for a quick (5 minute) walk, or we can do silent reading outside and our feelings of happiness might increase.
Furthermore, when the weather is comfortable, why can’t we have some of the many meetings we all have to sit in outside? Last year I took my instructional coaches to the forest for one of our professional development days. In addition to hiking, we read, talked, learned, and wrote — all of the activities we usually do in our office.3. Move Your Body
Furthermore, when the weather is comfortable, why can’t we have some of the many meetings we all have to sit in outside? Last year I took my instructional coaches to the forest for one of our professional development days. In addition to hiking, we read, talked, learned, and wrote — all of the activities we usually do in our office.
We all know this already, but I’m going to remind you anyway: Moving our bodies increases our happiness. Even if you can’t take your kids outside, you can incorporate stretching breaks into their days, play quick games that get their hearts pumping and their energy out, or put on music and dance. During the rainy winter months when my son was in preschool, his teacher regularly played “I like to move it,” (from the movie, Madagascar) and the kids danced and wiggled all over their tiny classroom. In any meeting that I facilitate, if we’re together for more than two hours, I schedule ten-minute “Walk and Talks” for participants. Moments of movement are great and our brains start producing the endorphins that make us happy right away.4. Blast Good Music
Music in a fast tempo and in a major key can make us feel happy and it has a measurable positive impact on our bodies — it can even boost our immune system, decrease blood pressure, and lower anxiety. Playing music as your students enter the classroom can be welcoming and can create a positive atmosphere. Those of us who facilitate learning for adults can also do this. Imagine coming into an early morning staff meeting to the sounds of salsa or to Johnny Nash singing, “I Can See Clearly Now.” You probably feel happier just thinking about this.5. Sing
Now sing along with those tunes, or sing in your car or in the shower — and see how you feel. Singing requires us to breathe deeply, which makes us happier. Singing along to some of our favorite music makes our brain release endorphins. If you teach elementary school, then it’s easy to get your kids singing every day. Teach them a simple song and start the day with it. Use singing during transitions or to signal the end of an activity. Find songs that connect with the content you’re teaching — they’ll remember it better — and they’ll feel happier. And if you teach middle or high school, then I challenge you to get your kids singing.6. Smile
Even if you’re not a smiley person, try smiling more often — aim for authentic, genuine smiles, but if you can’t produce one, go ahead and fake it. Yes, even fake smiles can move you along towards a more content state of being. And more than that, they can have an affect on those looking at you. So teachers, administrators, just see what happens if you smile more often at the people you interact with on a daily basis.7. Incorporate Quiet Time
My new email pen pal in Bhutan, a teacher in a school for boys aged 6-18, describes how all students in Bhutan practice meditation. Of course, this makes sense given that this is a Buddhist nation. He describes this as a primary way in which his country works to build a happy populace. There’s an abundance of evidence about how meditation causes changes in our brain chemistry that produces feelings of calm and wellbeing. In our country, some schools are incorporating mindfulness meditation, but I also think we could work towards similar ends by simply incorporating more quiet time into our daily routines.
There’s so much more to say and do on this subject, but I hoped to start with some simple and actionable ideas. What ideas do you have about integrate activities that cultivate happiness in schools?
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Facing the pressures of the current reality in the classroom can sometimes make teachers feel that they must rush through their curriculum at a rapid pace to make up for lost learning time over the course of the pandemic. Stressful teaching situations, however, can make planning joyful, exploratory learning experiences for students a challenge for teachers.
In reading Zaretta Hammond’s Culturally Responsive Teaching and the Brain, I was struck by the science behind the benefits of allowing students to experience joy and exploration in their learning. In chapter 3, Hammond explains how the brain is a social organ and emotions have a physical component. As the brain experiences joy, the stress hormones that make learning impossible diminish, and new neural pathways are able to form and strengthen.
In short, when students are happy, they learn more. Here are some simple ways ELA teachers might incorporate more joy and exploration with students in the middle grades to increase their learning capacity.
Give Students Time to Explore, Experiment, and Make Mistakes
Teachers do so much to set the tone in their classrooms. Explicitly giving students permission to explore and find joy in their work can be a norm that teachers set from the beginning. In these time-poor days of teaching and learning where everything feels like it was due yesterday, it’s critical to shield students from those feelings of the pressure to rush. Students need time to think and ruminate on ideas, formulate questions, and analyze arguments from multiple perspectives if true, deeper learning is going to take hold.
Giving students time for freewriting is one way middle-grades ELA teachers can give students an opportunity to explore different topics, text structures, writing styles, or writing purposes in deep and meaningful ways. Students ought to be able to take some time to write about any topic they wish without the fear of graded evaluations. This can also give teachers insight into the nuances of their students’ varied learning needs and help set authentic, differentiated writing goals with their students.
Time for freewriting also helps students build stamina, especially after so few had authentic writing experiences during the pandemic. It can be powerful to take a piece of their choosing all the way through the writing process from pre-writing to publishing. Students won’t see themselves as real writers without these opportunities or if their writing purpose is always an academic extended response question.
Just as students deserve time to develop as writers, they also can benefit from time to explore as readers of a wide variety of books. Giving students time to read for joy is one way ELA teachers can help their students develop a lifelong love of learning. The pandemic increased our access to devices, and we can use these same devices to broaden our access to a rich variety of reading materials to engage any learner. For a non-tech approach, teachers can create bingo boards with various genres or types of reading material to encourage student exploration.
If we prioritize student choice, interest, and curiosity, and are careful not to limit what kids might be allowed to read based on perceived reading levels, we will note a change in how our classrooms feel. Shifting our rooms from pressure cookers to places of joy and exploration in reading can be transformative for student learning.
Celebrate Thinking Over Correctness
Traditional ELA classrooms may have once taught grammar as a set of right or wrong rules in isolation. ELA teachers who wish to cultivate joyful exploration in their classrooms can instead affirm students who speak a variety of English grammars and allow all kids to explore the brilliant ways that real authors play with diction, structure, and syntax.
Jeff Anderson’s Mechanically Inclined and Everyday Editing have great lesson ideas about how to use mentor texts with rich, meaningful language that give students plenty to think about and discuss. Teachers might use these texts to inspire students to try the authors’ various techniques intentionally in their own writing.
Joyful, exploratory ELA classrooms will encourage students to build community, develop meaningful relationships, create cross-curricular connections, and learn how to read, write, and think without even realizing that they’re working. The joy that comes from exploratory learning will create happier, more engaged middle-grades students and ultimately happier, more engaged ELA teachers.
While Windows does offer a native solution to switch between MBR and GPT, you have to delete all data from the disk to be able to use it. Luckily, we do have ways to do this without data loss, and today, I’ll show you exactly how to. So without further ado, let’s take a look at how to convert the disk partition style in your PC from MBR to GPT. But before that, we’ll also take a look at what is MBR and what is GPT, and how they affect the way you use your computer.What is GPT and MBR?
MBR (Master Boot Record) and GPT (GUID Partition Table) are two different partition styles for hard disks, and both are widely used for disk partition management in Windows computers. The latter is the relatively new technology and is slowly replacing the legacy one because it’s faster, more secured and can natively address larger storage disks. While MBR disks use the standard BIOS partition table, GPT disks use UEFI.How is GPT Better Than MBR? What to Remember While Converting From MBR to GPT or Vice Versa
If you want to convert the boot disk in your PC from MBR to GPT, make sure your motherboard supports UEFI. That’s because motherboards with legacy BIOS don’t support GPT partition as boot drive.
Another important point to note is that while there are multiple free and paid utilities that help you convert from MBR to GPT, most of the free methods to convert between the two formats will result in data loss. However, there are one or two ways to get it done for free without losing data, and today we will show you exactly how to do that.Method 1: Convert MBR to GPT Using Disk Management (Data Loss)
Note: Backup all your data before using this method.
Method 2: Convert MBR to GPT Using DiskPart (Data Loss)
Note: Backup all your data before using this method.
Open Command Prompt as Admin. (Search ‘cmd’ in the Windows search bar and below the Command Prompt option, select ‘Run as Administrator’).
In the command prompt window, type in ‘diskpart’ (without quotes) and press Enter. Next, type in ‘list disk’ and press Enter.
From the disks listed by the utility, select the disk you want to convert using the ‘select disk X’ command, where ‘X’ is the number assigned to the disk you want to convert. Now delete all data from your chosen disk by running the ‘clean’ command. You’ll get a message saying “DiskPart succeeded in cleaning the disk”.
Finally, type in ‘convert GPT’ and press Enter. Wait a few seconds for the command to be executed. You’ll have successfully converted the disk from MBR to GPT.
Note: Running the clean command will delete all partitions or volumes on the disk.Method 3: Convert MBR to GPT Using Gptgen Without Data Loss
First off, download and install an utility called ‘gptgn’ (Free). Remember the installation directory.
Run the ‘list disk’ command as described earlier. To convert the partition table of your target disk from MBR into GPT, type-in the command: ‘gptgen.exe -w \.\physicaldriveX‘ (without quotes) and press Enter (Note that ‘X’ denotes the disk you want to convert).
Once the command is executed, you will successfully convert MBR to GPT without data loss. You might get a warning saying that there’s no guarantee of successful conversion, but select the option to proceed anyways.Other Methods to Convert MBR to GPT Without Data Loss
If the above processes seem too cumbersome, you can use other, more user-friendly ways to convert your disks from MBR to GPT. All major disk partition software, including Easus Partion Master, AOMEI Partition Assistant, MiniTool Partition Wizard and others, offer you the ability to convert MBR to GPT without losing data, but not with the free version. So if you’re willing to pay up, they might be the easiest way to switch between the two without data loss.Frequently Asked Questions Q. How Do I Convert MBR to GPT Using Rufus?
Rufus is a software that helps format and create bootable USB flash drives, such as USB keys/pen-drives, memory sticks, etc. You can also use it to assign partition style during the setup process.Q. How Do I Boot Into UEFI mode? Q. Is NTFS MBR or GPT? Q. Is GPT or MBR Better? Q. Can Windows 10 Install on MBR Partition?
Yes, it can. However, MBR comes with some inherent shortcomings that you need to remember before installing Windows 10 on an MBR disk. We’ve discussed those in detail earlier in this article.Q. Will Converting to GPT Delete Data?
There are both lossy and lossless ways to switch between the two file systems, and we’ve discussed both in this tutorial.Q. How Can I Convert C: Drive to GPT?
To convert your computer’s current boot drive from MBR to GPT, you’ll need to employ one of the lossless methods. You can use either third-party utilities like GTPGN or the paid version of commercial programs like, Easus Partion Master.Q. How Do I Know if a Disk Partition is GPT or MBR? Q. Does My Laptop Support GPT?
As mentioned earlier, whether your device supports GPT or MBR depends on whether it runs UEFI or legacy BIOS. To check which type of motherboard firmware your PC uses, follow the instructions in our detailed article on this subject.Q. How Do I Make my SSD GPT?
You can follow the methods described in the tutorial above to convert your SSD partition layout to GPT. They work for both SSDs and mechanical hard drives.Q. Can You Use GPT Without UEFI?
No, you can’t. GPT was introduced as part of the UEFI initiative. So to use it, the motherboard must support UEFI. If your motherboard does not support UEFI, you can’t use GPT partitioning style on the hard disk.Q. How Do I Get Rid of GPT Partition?
You can convert GPT partitions to MBR much the same way you convert MBR to GPT. You can change the partition style as long as the disk is empty and contains no volumes. Before conversion, backup all data on it and close any programs that are accessing the disk.Convert MBR to GPT Without Data Loss
While all three methods detailed above will help you convert your disk from MBR to GPT, the third one will do so without any data loss – and for free. So in case you’re searching for ways to covert your storage disk(s) from MBR to GPT, try out one of the above methods and let us know how that went.
Group Policy Not Applying? 5 Simple Ways to Force it Group Policy not applying? How about trying a reset
Group Policy is one of the most powerful features of the Windows operating system.
It allows you to control the way users and computers behave on your network.
However, it can take some time for group policy to take effect or fail to apply especially if you have a large number of clients that need to apply the policy.
INSTALL BY CLICKING THE DOWNLOAD FILE
To fix Windows PC system issues, you will need a dedicated tool
Fortect is a tool that does not simply cleans up your PC, but has a repository with several millions of Windows System files stored in their initial version. When your PC encounters a problem, Fortect will fix it for you, by replacing bad files with fresh versions. To fix your current PC issue, here are the steps you need to take:
Download Fortect and install it on your PC.
Start the tool’s scanning process to look for corrupt files that are the source of your problem
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Group Policy applies settings to users and computers in Active Directory domains. A domain is a collection of objects that belong to one another — users, groups, computers and so on.
You can use Group Policy to configure settings and preferences for these objects at the domain level. Once configured, all the members of the domain will receive those settings as soon as they’re applied.
This makes Group Policy ideal for managing large networks. It saves you from having to set up individual configurations for each computer or user.
Group Policy should apply almost instantaneously depending on a number of factors. However, if you wait several minutes or longer and the policy isn’t applied, then something is wrong.
Although it is a core Windows feature, it is not available on each version. Nonetheless, no need to worry as we have covered ways how to install the Group Policy Editor using the Group Policy Management Console.How long does it take for Group Policy to apply?
Applying a Group Policy is not an instantaneous process. The answer depends on a number of factors. The size of your Active Directory domain, the number of GPOs linked to the domain, and how many policies are being applied at once all play a role.
If you have a small number of GPOs that targets a few computers, it will take a relatively short time for them to apply. On the other hand, if you have many GPOs that target many computers, it will take much longer to apply.How often is Group Policy applied?
Group Policy objects are applied every 90 minutes by default. However, this interval can be changed using the Gpupdate command.
Group Policy is applied in two phases:
Background refresh – This phase occurs every 90 minutes by default and forces a refresh of Group Policy in the background. It does not require a user logon or computer restart and results in a new version of the GPO. The background refresh operation continues even if there are no changes to GPOs in a domain.
User logon – This phase occurs when a user logs on to a system and applies any changes made since the last logon or reboot occurred. It always applies policies from all domains in that forest, regardless of whether they have been updated since the last logon or reboot occurred.What can I do if Group Policy is not applying? 1. Ensure you are signed in to the administrator account
If you’re logged in as a standard user, you won’t have access to the resources needed to fix the problem. You’ll need to log off and sign back in again before making any changes. An administrator account has administrative privileges that can modify settings.
You will need to set the account as an administrator. Alternatively, you can create another user account and then assign yourself the administrator privileges.2. Create another user account
If you’re struggling to get Group Policy to apply, it might be worth checking your user account. If the account is corrupt, it can cause problems with Group Policy.
To check whether your account is corrupt, try logging on with another account. If this works fine, then there’s a problem with your user account. You may need to fix it by deleting and recreating it.3. Uninstall recently added programs
This can cause problems with the GPO application. Some GPOs require certain registry values to be present in order for them to be applied successfully. You’ll need to find out if any changes were made in this area and restore them if necessary.
You can quickly uninstall these programs with CCleaner. This tool helps you manage your apps more easily because it lists all of them in one place and lets you uninstall any program you prefer. It can also remove junk and build-up files that can cause issues to your PC.
⇒ Get CCleaner4. Refresh policy settings
Hit the Windows key, type cmd and select Run as administrator.
Type in the following command and press Enter: GPupdate/force
If you have recently made changes to your policies and want them immediately applied, running this command will force them to be refreshed immediately even if they haven’t been refreshed since your last logon.
You don’t need to restart the computer after running this command because it doesn’t change anything in memory but rather refreshes policy settings from the server.5. Reset Group Policy Editor
Hit the Windows key, type cmd and select Run as administrator.
Type in the following commands and press Enter after each one: RD /S /Q "%WinDir%System32GroupPolicyUsers" && RD /S /Q "%WinDir%System32GroupPolicy" gpupdate /force
Restart your PC.
If the group policy update is not working, you may have to reinstall your Windows version and see if this resolves the problem.How do you check if Group Policy is applied or not?
To check if Group Policy is applied to a computer, you can use the Gpresult command-line tool. The Gpresult command accepts a number of parameters that allow you to view different parts of the Group Policy settings that are applied to a computer.
To check, follow the steps below:
Hit the Windows key, type cmd and select Run as administrator.
Type the following commands and press Enter after each one: chúng tôi gpresult /r /scope:user gpresult /r /scope:computer
The two commands specify different policies applied. Computer-based policies affect only computers and not users. User-based policies affect only users.
You may also run into a problem where Group Policy is greyed out but we have adequately covered various ways to address this issue.
If you find out that your version of Windows doesn’t have Group Policy installed, we also have a guide to help you get around it.
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In my previous article, we talked about information retrieval and how machines can read the context from free text. Let’s talk about the biggest web information retrieval engine, Google, and the algorithm that powers its search results: the Google PageRank algorithm. Imagine you were to create a Google search in a world devoid of any search engine. What basic rules would you code to build such a search engine? If your answer is to use a Term Frequency or TF-IDF framework, consider the following case:
But, do search engines like Google face this challenge today? Obviously not! This is because they take help of an algorithm known as PageRank. In this article, we will discuss the concept of PageRank. In the next article, we will take this algorithm a step forward by leveraging it to find the most important packages in R.An artificial web world
Imagine a web which has only 4 web pages, which are linked to each other. Each of the box below represents a web page. The words written in black and italics are the links between pages.
For instance, in the web page “Tavish”, it has 3 outgoing links : to the other three web pages. Now, let’s draw a simpler directed graph of this ecosystem.
Here is how Google ranks a page : The page with maximum number of incoming links is the most important page. In the current example, we see that the “Kunal Jain” page comes out as the most significant page.Mathematical Formulation of Google Page Rank
First step of the formulation is to build a direction matrix. This matrix will have each cell as the proportion of the outflow. For instance, Tavish (TS) has 3 outgoing links which makes each proportion as 1/3.
Now we imagine that if there were a bot which will follow all the outgoing links, what will be the total time spent by this bot on each of these pages. This can be broken down mathematically into following equation :A * X = X
Here A is the proportions matrix mentioned above
X is the probability of the bot being on each of these pages
Clearly, we see that Kunal Jain’s page in this universe comes out to be most important which goes in the same direction as our intuition.Teleportation adjustments
Now, imagine a scenario where we have only 2 web pages : A and B. A has a link to B but B has no external links. In such cases, if you try solving the matrix, you will get a zero matrix. This looks unreasonable as B looks to be more important than A. But, our algorithm still gives same importance for both. To solve for this problem, a new concept of teleporatation was introduced. We include a constant probability of alpha to each of these pages. This is to compensate for instances where a user teleports from one webpage to other without any link. Hence, the equation is modified to the following equation :(1-alpha) * A * X + alpha * b = X
Here, b is a constant unit column matrix. Alpha is the proportion of teleportation. The most common value taken for alpha is 0.15 (but can depend on different cases).Other uses of PageRank Algorithm & End Notes
In this article we discussed the most significant use of PageRank. But, the use of PageRank is no way restricted to Search Engines. Here are a few other uses of PageRank :
Finding how well connected a person is on Social Media : One of the unexplored territory in social media analytics is the network information. Using this network information we can estimate how influential is the user. And therefore prioritize our efforts to please the most influential customers. Networks can be easily analyzed using Page Rank algorithm.
Fraud Detection in Pharmaceutical industry : Many countries including US struggle with the problem of high percentage medical frauds. Such frauds can be spotted using Page Rank algorithm.
Understand the importance of packages in any programming language : Page Rank algorithm can also be used to understand the layers of packages used in languages like R and Python. We will take up this topic in our next article.
Thinkpot: Can you think of more usage of Page Rank algorithm? Share with us useful links to leverage Page Rank algorithm in various fields.
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Digital Divide was produced by Studio Miramar, San Francisco, for the Independent Television Service (ITVS) with funds provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Funding for educational outreach was provided by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Ford Foundation.
As part of an outreach effort launched in connection with the PBS broadcasts, series executive producer David Bolt convened a succession of town hall meetings with parents, teachers, administrators, legislators, and other interested parties. These discussions convinced him that beyond technology access, other challenges must be surmounted on the way to bridging the digital divide. The challenges facing educators were the subject of a recent interview between Bolt and staff of The George Lucas Educational Foundation.
The documentary series Digital Divide (PBS, Spring 2000) explored the role of technology in widening gaps in society, especially among young people. The series dedicated one episode each to the divide as it affects classrooms, gender, race, and work, respectively.
Editor’s Note: Since we published this article in 2000, PBS has retired its Digital Divide website . While much of the information in this article is no longer current, it remains an interesting interview, with ideas about how to address the digital divide that are still pertinent. For more current information, visit our Digital Divide Resource Roundup .
The term digital divide is often used to describe the disparity in access to technology between the “haves” and the “have nots.” But as Digital Divide series executive producer David Bolt stressed during his recent interview, access is only one of the challenges. “The single biggest thing is for people in general to recognize all the aspects of the digital divide beyond simple access,” Bolt says.
In the following excerpts, Bolt highlights aspects that are especially relevant to the divide in schools: teacher training, maintenance and support of technology, and curriculum integration. He also discusses plans for his next project.
Digital Divide series executive producer David Bolt
Credit: PBS and Studio MiramarTeacher Training
Credit: PBS and Studio Miramar
“There needs to be a comprehensive, organizational attempt at training — not just for excited techies, but for everyone in a school,” Bolt says. The notion that educators need training in order to successfully use technology to improve student learning, he says, is still not widely accepted. “Relatively few people get it,” he says. The effort, he adds, needs to be ongoing and must expand with the needs and interests of the school community.Maintenance and Technology Support
Since many teachers do not have the technological understanding to use the machines they have, it makes no sense to expect them to maintain them, but this is the case more often than not. Schools and districts that have successfully integrated technology into their teaching and learning processes have learned that hiring trained staff to maintain their computers allows teachers to focus on how computers can be used in teaching and learning, enhancing the existing curriculum, and preparing students for success in the digital age.Curricular Integration
Least understood of all, according to Bolt, is the importance of integrating technology use into the curriculum. “We can talk all day in the abstract about the digital divide,” he says, “but what do you say to the third-grade math teacher or the sixth-grade science teacher, given all the standards and criteria within which they have to operate? How do you find software to support them? Helping teachers move beyond seeing the Internet as a research library towards its dynamic and integrative aspects is critically important, and it’s an awesome task.”Next Project
Bolt is planning to film a new set of episodes that explore technology as it relates to adults, including adult education and adult training in digital tools. “Our whole notion of adult education has to change,” he says. “In fact, all of us are going to be participating in adult education for the rest of our lives. There’s an enormous conceptual shift that is occurring in all of us.”
But, Bolt cautions, “digital adult education must go beyond simply teaching about software; we need to give people a perspective on how to survive in the digital economy and not just teach them, for example, Photoshop.”
Bolt is also concerned about two other topics: technology availability and use by people with disabilities; and what he calls “digital democracy,” which includes the proliferation of political process and content on the Web. “It may be fine to vote online,” he says, “but there are huge implications for those without access — how can there be a democracy where not everyone can vote?”
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