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PBS LearningMedia Spotlights PD Resources for American Education Week

November 19, 2015 - Posted in Education

To mark American Education Week (11/16-20), PBS LearningMedia is spotlighting a range of professional development resources that provide insight, inspiration and practical strategies for engaging students.

TED Talk Education: Personal Grit as Key to Success

What’s the best predictor of success in a person’s life, including success in education? When it comes to predicting the latter, psychologist and former educator Dr. Angela Lee Duckworth says we need to better understand students and learning from a motivational and psychological perspective. “In education, the one thing we know how to measure best is IQ,” Duckworth says. “But what if doing well in school and in life depends on much more than your ability to learn quickly and easily?” 

Duckworth, an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, studies non-IQ competencies, including self-control and grit that predict success both academically and professionally. Over the course of her research, she says one characteristic emerged as the key predictor of success – GRIT. So what exactly is grit? Find out in her TED Talk.

Organizing for Innovation Success

In order to be successful, innovators must produce products that are viable. In this lesson from NOVA Education, your students will learn mechanisms by which to filter their ideas and narrow their focus to select only the best, most viable potential innovations for further strategic development. “It’s not just the idea by itself, the single post-it note, but more the novel combinations of trying to find really interesting and engaging cross-fertilized ideas that really stimulate the creative process for these students,” says James Barlow, lead instructor (featured in the lesson).

After generating a large quantity of ideas for innovation, students then undertake the task of organizing their ideas by grouping individual ideas together into clusters of related content. Once the organization process is complete, students generate a list of criteria that they will use to judge the viability of their ideas in the real world. LESSON:

Supported by ETV, PBS LearningMedia offers teachers more than 100,000 videos, images, interactives, lesson plans and articles drawn from critically acclaimed PBS programs and from expert content contributors like The National Archives and NASA. Educators in South Carolina are invited to sign up at


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