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In a time when teens spend hours on their laptops or mobile devices, new research is giving educators and parents a glimpse of hope, according to The Washington Post. Although pleasure reading on printed materials (books, newspapers and magazine) dropped 23 percent in 2008, compared with 2003, from 65 minutes a week to 50 minutes a week, experts say that teens are still reading, they are now using different methods.

“They could be reading on the cell phone, in games, on the Web, on the computer. It doesn’t meant they’re not reading, but they’re not reading using the printed page,” Sandra Hofferth, a researcher at the University of Maryland, told The Washington Post.

Read the entire Washington Post article.

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By Jeff Pett, Fleetwood Group

According to my records, this is my 24th monthly blog for NSSEA.  When the request was put out a couple of years ago, I thought that it might be fun to try it.  I like to write, and the guidelines simply said to write about what was of interest to me and there were no limits or minimums on size. Simple.  And I thought that I was keeping up with the times in social media use.

Since that time the use of social media, or “new media” has exploded… or at least that is what I read. We are not using it at the company where I work, and I do not know anyone in our business that is using it extensively.  That doesn’t mean it is not being used, but I do have a hard time imagining someone wanting to “friend” our company to learn about what is happening this week in school furniture.

A part of me would love to make it work for us, but I just have not been able to connect the dots to justify it.

This past week I have done some “touring” of other company’s blogs, and I cannot say I am seeing anything compelling to make me want to jump into the pond just yet. I attended a teleconference recently where the speaker was touting all the ways her company was benefiting by having all of their office people spend time daily working their Twitter and Facebook accounts. This particular company was a service company and depended a lot on continuous attraction of potential workers and customers. That probably makes sense. In addition, I can see where a school supply retail store would have a lot of reason to attract teachers and local administrators to a Facebook page, or be sending out tweets.  Even a catalog supplier would seem to make sense.  But a manufacturer with dealer distribution?

Am I missing something?

I would love to see a string of your responses to this blog. Please educate me as to what you are seeing, using, or why you are not using it.

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A new report called Time to Act-An Agenda for Advancing Adolescent Literacy for College and Career Success, released by the Carnegie Corporation of New York’s Council on Advancing Adolescent Literacy, has many experts in education policy, academia, and philanthropy, calling for a revamping of the way the nation approaches adolescent literacy.

 The panel of experts mentions that the reading and writing skills of adolescents between the grades 4-12 are lacking tremendously. The council worked on the report for five years, and is asking school leaders to use the analyzed data to help them truly assess where the disconnect in adolescent reading and writing is occurring.

The council also called on school leaders to hire teachers who have the skills needed to teach literacy across all subjects and to help teachers build on those skills.

The experts also mention that school leaders should set higher writing and reading standards, build statewide data systems to inform all literacy instruction, and push for the infusion of adolescent-literacy training in state teacher-certification programs and in professional development.

The council also released five separate companion reports that focus on specific issues in adolescent literacy. The reports include: Reading in Disciplines, Adolescent Literacy in Out-of-School Time, Measure for Measure, Adolescent Literacy Programs, and Adolescent Literacy Textbooks.

For more information about the report visit: http://carnegie.org/literacy/tta/.

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