PreK-12 Schools

LGBT Athletics
5:22 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

"Keep Telling as Many Stories as We Can": How Outsports Helps Athletes Come Out

Cyd Zeigler sits at Philadelphia book signing for his book "The Outsports Revolution: Truth and Myth in the World of Gay Sports."
reflexblue Flickr

Cyd Zeigler said the idea for Outsports.com came from the simple desire to talk about sports with other gay men.

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Agriculture and Harvest Public Media
3:34 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

Sprouts and Scholars

Davenport Central's backyard garden
Credit Courtesy photo

  The student organization Sprouts and Scholars at Davenport Central High School has planted an organic vegetable garden and is now harvesting their first crops.  They are enjoying a bumper crop of tomatoes, peppers, herbs, and onions. The group secured grants from both Hy-Vee and Lowe's to help offset the cost of the project. As they've discovered, part of the reward of having a garden is being able to share the bounty with others. So they've allowed the cafeteria staff to have the ingredients for salsa and soup and they recently presented Mayor Bill Gluba with a basket of tomatoes.

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Unexpected Iowa
5:07 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

The Perfect Score: Iowa and Standardized Testing

Standardized testing has become the norm, not only for college-bound high schoolers but for students K-12. What many people don't know is that the origins standardized testing like the ACT lie in Iowa.
William R. Goodwin Wikimedia Commons

Most of us have filled in those tiny rows of bubbles with a No. 2 pencil. But who creates standardized tests? Who tests them? And why do we have to use a No. 2 pencil in the first place?

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News
5:30 am
Fri September 5, 2014

Star-Spangled Birthday

Joseph Giunta conducts the Des Moines Symphony
John Pemble Iowa Public Radio

One week from today (Sept. 12), a commemoration begins for the song most-identified with America. It’s the bicentennial of the Star-Spangled Banner and Iowans are getting ready for the nationwide observance. IPR’s Rick Fredericksen has the story, with a technical assist from John Pemble.

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River to River
4:05 pm
Thu August 28, 2014

Des Moines' School District Tries New Approach with Grading

The school year has begun once again, and students heading back to Iowa’s largest school district may notice a difference in the way they are graded.

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Education
3:17 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

Preventing Sexual Violence Through Mentorship

Grinnell College's MacEachron Field. The college implemented the MVP program on campus in 2012, first among student athletes.
Wikimedia Commons

One in five women are sexually assaulted during college. In the fight to combat that trend, peer-to-peer mentorship can make a difference.

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News Buzz
10:06 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Iowa Teacher's Invention Could Save Lives

The "sleeve" fitted on a classroom door
Fighting Chance Solutions

Since the December 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, there have been more than 70 shootings in schools around the country. Just this week, there was another at Reynolds High School in Oregon.

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Environment
5:00 am
Wed May 7, 2014

River Curriculum Helps Decorah Earn Statewide Honor

A trout hatchery and recreation trails make the Upper Iowa River appealing to residents and visitors.
Amy Mayer/IPR

Each year, the statewide nonprofit organization Iowa Rivers Revival honors a community for its commitment to the river that runs through it. This year the group named Decorah as its River Town of the Year. 

On a cool spring day, fish splash at the trout hatchery in Decorah as a few hearty men in waders angle nearby. Alongside the Upper Iowa River is a multi-use, four season trail. The recreation options are among the reasons Iowa Rivers Revival selected Decorah and the Oneota Valley for this year's award. 

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Education
11:37 am
Mon April 28, 2014

Homework's Role in School

"If you don't struggle a little bit [with homework], you don't learn to un-stick yourself," says Joy Walker, K-12 Math Curriculum Coordinator for Iowa City Schools
Bart Cayusa

Homework can be a source of frustration, tears, and sleepless nights. Most kids hate it and parents curse it. Today on Talk of Iowa, how homework has changed since you were a kid and what it has to offer today.

Host Charity Nebbe talks with Joye Walker, K-12 Math Curriculum Coordinator for Iowa City Schools, Haley Moehlis, an English Teacher at Roosevelt High School in Des Moines, and Deb Linebarger, Associate Professor of Education at the University of Iowa.

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Education
2:29 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

"Big" Ideas at an Innovative Iowa School

Student McKenna Cole stands with poplar trees used in her experiment to treat wastewater.
Shawn Cornally Iowa BIG

Most high school classwork goes unseen after it’s graded, but a group of teachers in Cedar Rapids is trying to change that. Today on River to River - host Ben Kieffer takes a look at Iowa BIG. This group is a project-based school that gets students out of the classroom, working on projects with a lasting impact on the community... projects including investigations on so-called cancer-causing products, gender bias, robotic prosthetics, and wastewater treatment.

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Talk of Iowa
1:51 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Decoding Dyslexia

Up to 20 percent of the population has some gradiation of dyslexia.
Steve Harris

Thanks to new legislation, a definition of dyslexia will now be included in the Iowa Code.  The neurological condition, which often runs in families, causes individuals difficultly with learning to read, write and spell.

The law is the result of strong advocacy from a number of groups, including the parent-lead, grassroots organization Decoding Dyslexia. DD aims to bring attention to educational intervention for dyslexic students.

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Education
7:30 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Schools Adapt to Rapidly Diversifying State

Meredith Middle School students learn about the planets in Jillea Bueso's classroom.
Credit Clay Masters / IPR

At Meredith Middle School on Des Moines’ northwest side there are more than 30 ways students say hello. The number of languages can change week to week. This school year the Des Moines school district will receive more than 6 million dollars from federal and state funds for ELL services, and will also spend more than a million dollars of its own money. Next year the district plans to have more than 6,000 ELL students.

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Education
4:36 pm
Tue February 25, 2014

How Education Fits Into the Poverty Trap

Free and reduced lunch being served as part of the National School Lunch Program, a federally assisted meal program administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service to provide food and nutrition to students living in poverty.
USDA Photo by Bob Nichols

The poverty rate of black Iowans is more than three times that of whites. For Hispanics, it is more than twice the poverty rate of whites.

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Talk of Iowa
2:13 pm
Mon December 23, 2013

Acts of Kindness

Talk of Iowa host Charity Nebbe with her seventh-grade English teacher Mimi Zischke.
Charity Nebbe

Host Charity Nebbe celebrates acts of kindness by interviewing the people whose lives have been positively affected by others.

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Education
6:16 pm
Thu November 21, 2013

Classroom Creatures

A Pacman frog is a favorite classroom visitor
IPR's Pat Blank

A Wartburg College professor hopes to bring biology classrooms back to life. Michael Bechtel says students should be studying living creatures not ones that are dead and floating in formaldehyde. He's been growing a collection of snakes, frogs, tortoises and others for about 19 years. He's sharing them in his college classroom and beyond.

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River to River
1:32 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

News Buzz: Obamacare Fix and Cholesterol Guidelines

Iowa State Univeristy professor Matt DeLisi testifies before the Senate Judiciary Committee about recommendations to reduce the prison population.
U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee

While support to reduce prison sentences has been growing, Iowa State University sociologist Matt DeLisi recently testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee that for certain offenders this would be a mistake. 

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Talk of Iowa
2:09 pm
Mon November 4, 2013

Foreign Language Learning in Elementary School

Miguel Vaca

Join host Charity Nebbe to hear about out how foreign languages are being taught in some elementary schools in Iowa and about the benefits of introducing a new language early in life.  Guests include administrators and teachers of foreign language in Iowa.

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Talk of Iowa
12:46 pm
Thu October 10, 2013

Raising Girls

Joe Lencioni

From Cinderella to Miley Cyrus our girls grow up in an environment rich in images of femininity.  Host Charity Nebbe gets insight into the challenges and dangers girls face as they grow and how the media influences their development.

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River to River
3:14 pm
Wed September 25, 2013

Iowa Legal History

Pictured above is a bronze statue of Arabella Mansfield on the campus of Iowa Wesleyan College. Mansfield was the first female lawyer in the U.S. She resided in Mount Pleasant and passed the Iowa Bar in 1869.
Gerry Chamberlin

In 1965, 13-year-old Mary Beth Tinker arrived at her Des Moines junior high wearing a black armband to protest the Vietnam War.  Little did she know that this simple act would lead to a historic and controversial U.S. Supreme Court decision.

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Education
6:58 am
Wed September 25, 2013

State Education Report Finds Some Iowa Schools Falling Short

Credit Iowa Department of Education

As the Iowa Department of Education releases its annual State Report Card, officials say they should be graded differently.

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News
3:33 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Run Hide Fight

Teachers and students fight back by throwing tennis balls which simulate objects like staplers and coffee mugs
Pat Blank

Nearly 400 teachers in the Cedar Falls School District spent today learning some new options should they ever have to deal with someone with a gun in their classroom.  The training was provided by the Cedar Falls Police Department and focused on updated protocols from the Department of Homeland Security. Much like the fire drill, Stop, Drop and Roll,  public safety officials have developed Run, Hide, Fight for use in an active shooter situation.The Cedar Falls School District is one of the first in the state to involve all teachers, not just administrators.

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River to River
1:51 pm
Tue September 3, 2013

Binge Drinking and Safety in Schools

According to a 2004 study published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology on the trajectories of college students' drinking, students drink heaviest during Spring Break followed by New Year's week.
Torch Magazine

Last month the University of Iowa was ranked as the #1 party school by The Princeton Review.  Binge drinking is a problem on not only the Iowa City campus, but on college campuses across Iowa and the U.S. What is the nature of binge drinking and what can be done to curb it?

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River to River
2:51 pm
Thu August 22, 2013

Science Literacy in Iowa

Des Moines Middle School Science Fair in February 2012.
Phil Roeder Flickr

Does drinking coffee prevent dementia? Will diet soda give you cancer?  Science and health reporting is often misleading and confusing.

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River to River
1:18 pm
Fri August 16, 2013

Sexual Education In Iowa

Jeremy Wilburn / flickr

How sexually active is your teen? It turns out that 34% of Iowa high school students are currently sexually active. So what do you know about the sex-ed being taught at your kids’ school?

In the first part of our program, host Ben Kieffer learns about a nationally recognized sex education program that many Iowa schools use, which focuses on the financial impact of having a child. Then we broaden the discussion to find out what’s being taught in Iowa’s public schools and Catholic schools. What’s appropriate? What’s effective at preventing teen pregnancy?

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Business and Economy
6:05 am
Mon August 12, 2013

Iowa Business Beat: The Economics of Early School Start Date

Crowds at the Iowa State Fair.
Credit Iowa State Fair

    

The Iowa State Fair wraps up next weekend. IPR's Clay Masters talks with Sarah McCammon, who's on assignment with Marketplace, over the economics and controversy over when schools should start and how that affects state fairs and tourism. Masters also talks with McCammon about the energy stories she's done on Transocean, the company that owned the Deepwater Horizon oil rig that was involved in the BP oil spill three years ago, and a solar company that’s also ahead of its peers.

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River to River
10:23 am
Fri August 9, 2013

Social Studies and Civics, Football Concussions and Athletics

U.S. Army Garrison Yongsan / flickr

As students prepare for classes, the social studies classroom in Iowa’s public schools might be a little different than it was when you were in school. Today on River to River, we talk about the modern social studies classroom with the Iowa teacher that won a 2013 American Civic Education Teacher Award.  And as high school football practices are starting, we talk with a coach that’s using new technology to assess concussions in athletes.

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Talk of Iowa
11:38 am
Mon April 29, 2013

Poetry In American Sign Language & A Look At Iowa's Specialty Schools

Dakota Meyer, second from the left
Iowa School for the Deaf / facebook

The winner of this year’s state Poetry Out Loud competition didn’t make a lot of noise.  Dakota Meyer is a student at the Iowa School for the Deaf.  Today on Talk of Iowa, Charity Nebbe talks with Meyer about his performance. She also sits down with the superintendent of the Iowa School for the Deaf and the Iowa Braille and Sight Saving School to learn about education for deaf and blind students in the state of Iowa.

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Education
8:43 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Iowa Experiments with Online Education

Christine Larson and her son, Isaac, are part of an online education experiment in Iowa called the Virtual Academy

Iowa is nearing the end of the first year of a three-year experiment with the Iowa Virtual Academy.

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River to River
1:29 pm
Fri March 8, 2013

Violent Incident Training in Iowa's Schools

In the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, schools are changing their intruder response procedure from a stay put and hide method, to a fight or flight response. Today on River to River, we talk with violent incident trainers and educators who are changing the way our schools and our children prepare for the worst case scenario, and how these changes are empowering teachers and students in order to keep them safe.

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Talk of Iowa
11:20 am
Mon January 14, 2013

The Power Of Compliments

Franco Flickr

Everyone can appreciate a sincere compliment and a few high school students in Iowa City are embracing that truth. Charity Nebbe talks with the West High Bros about their efforts to make their school a better place. Then we explore the power of kindness and positive thinking.

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