Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Emma Hart Willard

Emma Hart Willard was born on February 23, 1887, in Berlin Connecticut. Emma Hart Willard was an American Women's Rights activist who dedicated her life to education. Willard wrote and voiced her views and opinions on opening higher education to women. With the original support from Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and James Monroe, Willard eventually gained enough support from other people within the community to commence an academy for women. Willard opened Troy Female Seminary, which was an institution dedicated towards preparing professional teachers. This institution provided teacher education programs with experience and training years before the first normal teacher training school was founded. Emma Hart Willard also began to write textbooks on how to teach and how to teach more humanely compared to the stile of teaching that was occurring at the time. 

The curriculum at the Troy Female Seminary consisted of subjects that Emma Hart Willard most desired to include in women's education such as mathematics, philosophy, geography, history, and science. Her success led to an enrollment of over 300 students, attracting students from extremely wealthy families and families that were of high position. Although the women that came out of the Troy Female Seminary mostly continued to marry into a housewife position,  Emma Hart Willard still fought for women's rights and never hindered her student's pursuit towards women's education. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Coaching Philosophy

Coaching is my opportunity to inspire and motivate young athletes throughout many aspects of life. Athletics does not only entail specific skill work and competition, it also teaches teamwork, responsibility, communication, and respect for one another. These are just a few qualities and characteristics that are learned through athletics and that can be incorporated into a classroom setting as well. Through coaching I am given the opportunity to share my knowledge and experiences in the world of athletics amongst others. I believe that as a coach it is essential to promote team cohesiveness and to overall create a positive environment for my players and team.
There are numerous aspects of athletics that I value, however; they are dependent upon the age level as well as the skill level. As a coach, I believe that younger athletes around the ages of elementary school should focus on having fun and the creating an overall enthusiastic learning experience. At the early stages it is critical for young athletes to develop their skills and be involved as much as possible, which is why i believe equal playing time is necessary amongst young student athletes. However, when coaching a varsity program, I will focus more on skill development, social interaction, and winning in order for my players to be successful. As a coach, I will continue to emphasize three components amongst my team, including, character, civility, and citizenship. I believe student athletes should contain character and continue to be accountable, responsible, and dedicated to the program. They should also encompass civility, that way they consistently demonstrate respect and fairness to their teammates, myself as the coach, and themselves as well. The last component I will stress as a coach is citizenship, which I will promote through the values of teamwork, cooperation, and leadership. These three components will be the basis to our athletic program and will teach the students athletes more to life than just sports skills. 
As a coach, I will always be a positive role model to my athletes and the community. There is more to coaching then just teaching the basic fundamental skills, instead it is a coach’s responsibility to lead by example and demonstrate leadership at all times. Respect will be a huge factor to the success of my programs. Without respect from the athletes, parents, and community, it will be very hard to implement my knowledge and experiences accurately and efficiently. Forming relationships is also a tremendous part of coaching. Through the experience there will be many people who will help you along the way, including parents, athletic secretaries, the community, and most importantly, your players. Forming those strong relationships from the very beginning will have an incredible effect on the athletic programs instantly. 
As an athlete, I have realized that there are several different values and opinions when it comes to coaching. My dad has been an extremely successful coach for years and growing up he taught me the importance of dedication, commitment, and most importantly making connections with the players. Another coach and role model who I have looked up to has been my college lacrosse coach here at SUNY Cortland. She has shown me the true meaning of going the extra mile and doing whatever it takes to be successful. Through my father and my coach’s success as well as their mistakes, I will take in my experiences working with them and incorporate my own viewpoints and philosophies as a coach into them. One of the best pieces of advice I have received from them is to never be predictable, always change up your methods of teaching, continue to look for better answers and approaches, and always remember to take in the moment’s one at a time. 

Teaching Philosophy

"Ideal teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross, then having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create bridges of their own" (Nikos Kazantzakis). As a teacher, I believe that it is our responsibility to guide our students in the right direction and inspire them to create their own path. Where that path takes them, is their own decision and fate, however; our role is to prepare them for what may come. Education is a door open to endless possibilities and as a teacher I believe it is my job to share these possibilities with my students in the best ways that I can. Through the help of the other staff members, the school, and the community, our job as educators is to work together to provide our students with a positive learning environment in order to prepare them for the real world. 
School is viewed as a sense of unity and a place where people come together to learn, share ideas, and inspire from within. To some, a school is a safe ground and a welcoming environment where students can be themselves and feel comfortable without judgment. School is where students join together, create every lasting memories, and grow as individuals. As a teacher, experiencing a student's growth and success is extremely rewarding and motivating knowing you have made an impact. In my classroom, I will educate and drive my students to be unique, to be responsible, and to be avid learners at all times. I believe that these qualities are essential for student growth and future development. As a community, education will be promoted continuously and I will do my best to prepare my students for the future. 
School leaders are professionals that work together to find the best possible resources for their students, making them their main focus. A leader consistently has the student’s best interest in mind and will sacrifice "the me for the we" at any given time. Students need someone who they can look up to as a positive role model which is why school leaders are vital in every school setting. A school leader is approachable, understandable, and accommodating to students in need of advice and guidance. As a teacher, I will understand the diversity among the students and will work together with my staff members to create a warm and inviting environment within the school and community. 
Students frequently learn through their own curiosity and experiences. I believe that students should be given opportunities to explore their interests and discover on their own what they are passionate about in life. Through the school's curriculum, students can explore various settings and obtain deeper knowledge based upon the subjects and sections that captivate them the most. I believe that it is a teacher’s responsibility to teach their lessons in numerous styles in order to adequately reach out to every student. Teachers need to guide their students more often and drive them to their own success by just believing in them and giving them that initial drive. 
As a community, it is extremely important for the teachers, parents, and other members to join forces and work together. When everyone is behind the students best interest that is when the school is the most effective and successful. Parents must continuously be aware of their child's achievements and progress in order to support the teachers and what they are doing in the classroom. Through simple notices or memos, any sort of communication is essential towards the effective learning process. Parents have a significant impact on their child's life and with their support and influence; I truly believe that any student can achieve greatness. 
As a teacher, I believe that students learn through their own mistakes, their own experiences, and through their own success. There is only so much a teacher can do before the students must take it upon themselves to make the right decisions and become aware of their own potential. Through the countless lessons taught and the advice given, teachers can only hope that their students believe in themselves as much as we believe in them. Knowledge is power and it derives from various physical, emotional, and social occurrences that any student may experience. As an educator, I will do my best to teach my students push them into believing that anything is possible at any given time.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Promoting Educational Performance

There has been much talk about how educational performance can be improved through nutrition, however; there has been no action in the matter. The most critical times for a child to develop mentally, physically, and emotionally is during the first years of life, as well as when they are in the womb. Although the first three years are known as the most critical times, growth failure still happens to occur most frequently between 6 and 24 months of a child's life.  We are aware of this crucial time period, yet we are still allowing growth failure to occur due to malnutrition and poor physical conditions. Knowing these problems we are already a step ahead of the game, though there needs to be preventative programs instated and nutrition needs to accorded as more of a high priority. 

Childbirth is clearly a unique experience for all, especially the mother and the infant. Health, family planning, and nutrition programs are essential elements for the best overall physical and mental conditions and experience for the mother and the infant. During pregnancy, nutrition is just as important as the after birth. Parents need to become more educated in the areas that will continue to effect the rest of their lives such as growth promotion, development programs, integrated childhood programs, and parent education are just a few critical sources to name. I believe that if everyone, especially parents of new born infants are more educated on the subject matter of nutrition, then growth and development amongst children will significantly positively increase. Nutrition as we know it has a tremendous influence on academics and educational performance, so why not do what we can to benefit the lives of our futures leaders. 

Resource: http://www.unscn.org/files/Publications/Briefs_on_Nutrition/Brief2_EN.pdf

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Height and Earnings

Evidence shows that nutrition affects school performance indirectly for various reasons.  Children who are undernourished, meaning that they have a low height for their age,  tend to be enrolled in school later than well-nourished children generally are. One could simply argue that this is because they want their child to be one of the eldest in class rather then the youngest. Though another reason behind this decision is be because parents frequently deem shorter children to be younger. This case is more common then one would believe to be, however; majority of time bystanders would deem a shorter child or person to be a few years younger then their actually age. Most people would admit this to be true because they instantly see someone who is short as too tiny and small rather then their actual age. Children who are physically large enough to attend school are generally seen as too old for their class. The size, height, oh physical qualities of children do not determine their age or class at all times. Most stereotypes regarding physical appearance and age are often incorrect in fact. 

Parents believe they are doing their children justice by enrolling them into school late if they have not yet reached the specific growth mark they were hoping for. Though in reality, they should enroll their children when they are on track to because there has been evidence showing problems of intellectual impairment caused by nutritional deficits. "There is ample evidence showing that increased height, working both through physical capacity and through learning capacity and school performance, results in increased adult wages and productivity." Analysis have found that an increase in birth weight of one pound allows for the child to increase 7% of their lifetime earnings. There was also a study completed in Brazil finding that 1% of increased height can lead to a 2.4% increase in the earnings of an adult male. Clearly there seems to be a commonality amongst height and earnings, especially for men. The common judgement that height gains power seems to be deemed somewhat true in this case. 

Resource: http://www.unscn.org/files/Publications/Briefs_on_Nutrition/Brief2_EN.pdf

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Good Nutrition Essential For Learning

Intellectual power is one of the greatest resources anyone could have. In our world today, intellectual resources continue to overpower physical resources in the determination of national power. Our nations are continuously compete amongst one another for first step in any new direction or area. In our nation, 20-50% of the population is intellectually compromised which shows our need to implement a better quality of life and health plan amongst our country. 

Nutrition is known to be directly related to intellectual and educational power through evidence and results. Worldwide, an estimated 1.6 billion people are iodine deficient, which has been associated with an average 13.5 point reduction in IQ for a population. This statistic illustrates the reduced cognitive functions in a school setting amongst children who obtain the deficiency. Another health defect that negatively effects cognitive performance settles with infants who are born at low birth weight. During infancy cognitive performance is extremely effected due to low birth weight, though it also is due to malnutrition within the infants. Low birth weight has been known to be associated with poor attention span in school, effecting seventeen percent of our population. These two deficiencies are unfortunate cases that we cannot have control over, however; there are other reasons for poor cognitive performance that we can have control of. Children to go to school without eating breakfast have found to decrease their performance during the regular school day by around 0.1 standard deviations. This statistic does not effect students who normally eat breakfast everyday and only skip one meal. Instead these results generate from those students who are typically malnourished as well as those who are from more unfortunate backgrounds. 

Resource: http://www.unscn.org/files/Publications/Briefs_on_Nutrition/Brief2_EN.pdf

Friday, April 13, 2012


This week at SUNY Cortland has been dedicated to recognize the NCAA Division III Athletic programs and their tremendous success. Here at Cortland our athletic programs run a lot different compared to most typical Division III schools. As we all know, the coaches run and work their athletic teams just has often and hard as a typical Division I school would. Our facilities and beautiful stadium is nicer then a majority of Division I schools in the nation. For a Division III school we have the most support and commitment from our professors and faculty compared to many other Division I schools. At my lacrosse games I see numerous professors coming to cheer on the students they have in class time after time. We also have numerous staff members here at Cortland who are always willing to go that extra mile, which is why SUNY Cortland Athletic's are always at the highest level compared to other schools. We do not always take the time to acknowledge and thank those faculty members who have made our program as successful as it is. Today at the Women's Softball game, the athletes of SUNY Cortland recognized several names of those people who are constantly putting the efforts and commitment into making our program a success. We wanted to thank all the professors, Dan who announces at every home game, Pardge who helps keep us looking sharp for game days, President Bitterbaum for being in attendance at every home game, and several other people for their consistent help towards making Cortland the best school to be at, play for, and represent. Being a part of this appreciation day has been rewarding and a great experience.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Activity for the Day

Today has been a crazy physically active day for myself. Starting off with lacrosse practice we ran two and a half miles within the first few minutes. Coach had us sprint a 400, 800, 1200, 800, and another 400 just for warm ups. Her motive behind this craziness was to retouch upon all the hard work and running we completed through out season. Since our next game is not until Sunday, she felt the need to run us into the grounds a little more then the usual. After the warm up we completed our shuttles to warm up our sticks and then moved on to a full field high intensity drill that works on our transition in the game. We continued to run the length of the field over and over and over again after completing the three man weave, a 3v3 fast paced drill practicing moving the ball up the field, and a half field clearing drill for our goalies to work on their saves and clears. We then moved on to working on the draws, which are a key component to the game of lacrosse. Coach also had us working on our offensive stall if we are ever up in a game by two goals or more, that way the defense can practice putting pressure on the ball and the attack can get comfortable with the pressure being put on them in the last few crucial moments of the game. Generally lacrosse players run up to 5.2 miles per day; in today's case if you told me 10 miles I wouldn't be the least bit surprised. Perhaps I am exaggerated a little, however; we did get a great work out in! Though to our surprise that was not the end of the day. We then lifted together as a team for 45 minutes and cranked in a great strength and core exercise into our routine. We are hoping to come out of this week faster, stronger, and more physically fit, that way we can knock out our opponents with our speed and strength. We will see how the results prove to be on Saturday's Senior Day matchup against New Paltz.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Healthy Choices

The holidays are always a fun time spent with families, friends, and a lot of food. Generally the holidays bring together all the loved ones together to celebrate the good times over a grand meal and delicious desserts. Today numerous people celebrated Easter as well as life in general on this beautiful sunny day. Easter is known for the large amounts of candy, treats, and food in store for children of all ages, even the adults! Eggs were hidden in the back yards filled with jelly beans, M&M's, reeses, snickers, and chocolate eggs all over the world today. The amount of candy that was produced to celebrate this holiday must have been massive. One of the world's biggest problems today, especially in the United States is the rate of obesity amongst the population. Day's like today prove why people in the United States are so overweight due to the amount of candy and junk food they intake whether it is on a holiday or on a daily basis. Rather then fill your children's easter baskets with giant chocolate bunnies, giant gummy bears, marshmallow peeps, and bags of jelly beans, why not try something different, something more healthy? There are several options that parents can use to fill their children's easter baskets such as granola bars, fruit snacks, and toys intend of giving into their sugar intake. To help lower the huge obesity problems we have in this country we should be promoting healthier snack items rather then indulging in a giants snickers bar. Simple steps such as filling easter baskets with healthier snacks will make a tremendous different on a child's life.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Diet and Cognition

Diet can influence cognition and behavior in numerous ways. Diet issues including not enough food and insufficient intake of specific nutrients are just a few to name that effect brain cognition and behavior. An insufficient supply of foods has been found to influence brain neurochemistry and the development of the nervous system. The brain needs nourishments to continue to function and to maintain its strengths. Unfortunately there are some children and families that do not receive a sufficient food supply daily, causing them to be more likely to be prone to health issues, psychosocial behavior, and academic learning.  According to the Third Nutrition Examination Survey, in the United State there is a little over four precent of people in the population who suffer from insufficient food problems. Another issue that is common amongst cognition and behavior is insufficient nutrients. The amount of calories one intakes is not always the cause and effect of learning and behavior. Malnutrition is a huge part of the insufficient nutrients problems and can lead towards changes in brain neural-receptor functions as well as functions that are closely related to emotional responses to stressful events. Infants have been tested and proven that a deficiency in the intake of particular nutrients such as iron, zinc, and long chain fatty acids have been associated with lower performance on cognitive tests. I can be a prime example for this test as well, because I know that when I do not eat a proper meal or if I start to eat fast food and junk food, my entire body feels off set and I am much more lethargic then usual. In class I will not be able to stay awake the entire time and I will have trouble paying attention if I am malnourished or lacking sufficient supplies of nutrients. 

Resource: http://www.childrensdisabilities.info/allergies/dietlearningbehavior1.html

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Nutrition Education Programs and Related Initiatives

The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) and the Team Nutrition Initiative are programs that focus on promoting the value of nutrition and education amongst students, teachers, and the community. The EFNEP and Team Nutrition Initiative support and promote eating healthy and they both work to ensure that the food resources within a household or organization are being utilized correctly and to their full potential. The EFNEP and Team Nutrition Initiative both play a tremendous role trying to shape the knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors of children and adolescents throughout the communities. They both aim their efforts towards the children, adolescents, families, as well as teachers, school foodservice's, and members of the community who claim guardianship over children. Both organizations want to make sure that they are shaping every member of the community and teaching them the values of food and the environment in which children and adolescents live and learn in.

There are some people who claim that they cannot eat healthy and live a nutritious lifestyle because they do not have enough money to afford the products. The EFNEP steps up at this point and provides individuals and families with a low income education and training sessions to assist and improve their nutrition knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors. The EFNEP effectively steers families with a low income in the right direction towards a healthy nutritious lifestyle through their designed skill-based and interactive activities that teach them the value of nutrition. In 1995, the USDA launched a program known as Team Nutrition to restore child nutrition programs and to assist schools within the community that are promoting the nutritional healthy of children through their education curriculum. Team Nutrition creates available training and technical assistance for school foodservice's that are in need of lessons and information to provide their children with healthy food choices.

"Position of the American Dietetic Association: Child and Adolescent Nutrition Assistance Programs" , Nutrition Education Programs and Related Initiatives. Journal of American Dietetic Association

Monday, April 2, 2012

National School Lunch Program

The National School Lunch Program is a federally assisted meal program that runs through over 101,000 public and non-profit private schools as well as residential child care services. In 2010, the NSLP provided more than 31 million children with a nutritionally balanced low-cost or free lunch at school each day.  The schools that decide to take part in the NSLP receive cash subsidies as well as USDA foods front eh U.S. Department of Agriculture to create healthier meals to serve the children. In order to meet the requirements, those schools participating must serve lunches that meet the Federal standards and they also must offer free or reduced priced lunches to those students who are eligible of obtaining them. The nutritional requirements for school lunches must meet the applicable recommendations stated by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. There recommendations state that no more than 30 percent of an individual's calories can should come from fat and less than 10 percent of the calories should come saturated fat. The regulations also state school lunches must provide the students with one third of the recommended Dietary Allowances which includes protein, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, iron, calcium, and specific calories. The school food authorities are allowed to prepare and provide the students with whatever meals they wish as long as the follow and complete the standards and regulations. If we could get more schools to hop on the band wagon and participate in this healthy school lunch program obesity rates would tremendously decrease and academic performance in schools would increase and sky rocket towards success.

Resource: http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/lunch/AboutLunch/NSLPFactSheet.pdf

Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Healthy Schools Program

What would you rather? 

All across the country there is a huge concern regarding student performance and health. "The Healthy Schools Program" implemented a program to be incorporated throughout public and private schools in America. This program is being used to promote healthier choices and to create an overall healthier school environment for the students. The purpose of The Healthy Schools Program is too exam schools policies, meal plans, health education, and school programs and make them more effective. There already have been several schools in the country that have banned fast food, french fries, and chemically processed foods from their cafeteria menu's. Instead of the unhealthy foods that are known to cause laziness, behavior problems, and poor performance levels amongst students, schools are trying to incorporate a new food program to promote the healthier choices students can turn too. School's are starting to serve whole-grain breads, fruits, vegetables, salads, and lean proteins because these natural and un-processed foods have proven to provide students with more energy, the ability to stay more focused and less lethargic. This Healthier Schools Program began in 1997 and since then, the "Healthy Schools" across the country have reported a significant amount of lower incidences of high school dropouts, expulsions, drug use, weapons and fighting, amongst their students. They have also reported a significant increase in student performance indicating their overall grades have improved tremendously.  This program is a work in progress and they are trying to spread their research and wisdom to every school district. We know from consistent research that the food students intake daily has a tremendous effect on students overall performance and behavior, therefore every school in the country should be buying into The Healthy Schools Program. To improve this problem we need the support and dedication to spread this philosophy across the country rapidly and promote the importance of healthier choices in schools. This will help us to create a better country, healthier children, and make smarter decisions for our futures. 

Resource: http://www.publicschoolreview.com/articles/28