I came across this great article posted on Edutopia on how a teacher at an elementary school shares student data with parents so they can help their kids with homework. Parents are used to seeing school reports but this teacher took it further. She has organized Parent Data Nights, events where she meets with each parent to demystify the reports, explain acronyms, test scores, and trouble areas for their child, as well as providing tips and tricks for helping their student at home. This type of work is becoming a new standard. It is no longer a question of IF but WHEN. These days Parents need to be engaged and data is an essential part of it. Parents are often confused about the school reports and results that are being shared either for their own children or wider statistics for the whole school and cohort. Having a data-informed culture also means getting this information to parents in a timely and accessible manner. Have a read and see if this might work for you and your school!
New graphics and data visualizations are emerging every day trying to portray the data and reality that surrounds us. However, like most things in the world, it is the law of Occam's razor that sets the bar. It is a principle of theory construction or evaluation according to which, other things equal, explanations that posit fewer entities, or fewer kinds of entities, are to be preferred to explanations that posit more. Or in other words the simplest solution is usually the best. This is especially true with graphics and data visualizations, a lot of times one can spend endless hours designing a new dashboard that no one is looking at later, simply because it is either too complicated or it's not answering the questions users want to pursue. Whether that is in education or not, we strive to present the information in the simplest way to enable teachers and schools take data-informed actions to ultimately benefit the learners. In this short, 5 min TED talk that is part history