Education at a Glance 2017: How is the OECD engaging with SDG 4?

Empowering our Future Pioneers with education, let them hit the pavement running and fly…

World Education Blog

oecdThe OECD flagship publication, Education at a Glance, has turned its attention to Sustainable Development Goal 4. This is important for confirming the universality of the agenda. But it also carries implications about how the OECD, as an organization representing rich countries, engages in global processes.

Adjusting Education at a Glance to the SDG era

Few organizations can match the innovative contributions of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to international education over the past 20 years. While the spotlight tends to fall on the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), its work on issues ranging from school resources to teacher motivation to early childhood education quality helps generate interesting debates on education policy, monitoring and evaluation. The Global Education Monitoring Report team has referred increasingly to OECD research, as a recent bibliometric analysis has shown.

A common thread links OECD innovations, going back to the…

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Child Development, Back to Nature: Eric Assadourian’s Interview on Nature Preschools with David Sobel.

Back to Nature and back to blogging for me.

Well the book “The World We Leave Our Children” by William Sosinsky is finally published. It is the first book from my publishing house The EUC2 Press. There is a lot of catching up to do since my last posted.

For now, I want to share this interview of Daniel Sobel. Eric Assadourian gets straight to the point and asks the question “What are the benefits of young children’s active involvement with nature?”

In previous posts I brought up concerns about the disconnect between children and Mother Earth.

In this interview, Professor Sobel explains this phenomena in more depth and in an relaxed and easy to understand manner. (Quite an eyeopener).

As one begins to see firsthand the benefits children receive from Interacting with nature, the more we will be compelled to keep our home, Mother Earth, vibrant and alive.

You know, there are plenty of discussions about us humans moving to other planets. Realistically, I don’t like long trips. Plus I hear the seating is very limited and the price per person is in the millions of dollars. (I wonder if the cost of the food is included, or will one have to pay more just to eat? For heaven’s sake, how many pieces of  luggage will they accept before adding overage charges?)

If you are like me, I would rather stay home and work in my own garden, that way I am damn sure of what is in the food I eat and get’s prepared for my family.

So heck,  if you plan to stick around, take time to come by, check out what’s happening with the book “The World We Leave Our Children”.

It is nice to be back,

Norma Burnson

TSM 16-47 Sustainable FOOD for the Globe

Sara is visiting her home childhood in England. So that is a good enough reason to revisit a show. Hum, let’s see? Hey how about my interview? 😎

Thank you Sara,

Norma Burnson

Self Discovery Radio

Their Story Matters with Sara Troy and her guest Norma Burnson on air from November 22nd 


In my heart and soul I am happiest in a garden. I believe that a garden is the closest we’ll get to God while here on Mother Earth.

Journaling since the age of 12, it wasn’t until I reached the age of 58 that I began writing books. Now I am working on my 3rd book, “Sustainable Food for the Globe; Future Pioneers, The Children”.

Sustainable Food for the Globe stands for wholesome food production, rescuing wasted food and educating our “Future Pioneers” to become ethical stewards of all things found us – here our home, Mother Earth. As a co/founder of Energime University she believes in our ability to sustain our world through education and innovations.

norma-burnson-portrait-pdfIn 2013, Mrs. Burnson received the Delegate Award from The International Women’s Leadership Association in…

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What Questions Are Our Children Asking Right Now?

Working on the book, “Sustainable Food for the Globe; Future Pioneers, The Children” this seems like the perfect time to ask the children in our lives what they think is Mother Nature’s job?

I am sure you have heard the phrase, “out of the mouths’ of babes”. Go ahead and ask the young ones around you what they think is Mother Earth’s job?

Invite them to share their ideas in the comments section below.

Stay Inquisitibve and Curious,

Norma Burnson

Photograph: Google Search



Can Debating Skills Help Children Become Self Sufficient?


Debating Skills for Children
By Louise Harding

Teaching debate skills to children should be pared down from adolescent or adult formats.

Children should be taught how to debate a topic effectively. There is more to having an opinion on something than simply having an opinion. Organization of a child’s thoughts is important to forming a convincing argument and having facts to support those thoughts is paramount. Teaching a child how to debate also involves a confident and persuasive presentation of the ideas and facts gained through research.

Forming an Opinion
Before children can tackle a designated debate topic, called a resolution, such as used in high school Lincoln-Douglas or Team Policy (also called Cross Examination) debates, they need to be shown how to have an opinion. Most children already have opinions on many topics; they might just not realize it. Present a list of topics on the overhead that can have preferences one way or the other (or several angles). Allow the children to write their opinion on each topic on paper or converse out loud. Topics such as current events and political platforms may not be age-appropriate, depending on the children’s ages. Topics such as hamburgers or hot dogs, fast food or homemade, salty or sweet, are simple topics that children usually have a preference for, and seeing these topics listed allows children to realize how many opinions they already have.

Organizing Thoughts
Once a child realizes he has opinions, he should be shown how to organize his thoughts to present a convincing debate. Depending on the age of a child, an organized format of debate, such as what is used in high schools and college, may or may not be effective. Organized debate requires a lot of research, preparation and public speaking skills. Children can effectively be taught how to organize their opinion into three main points. For example, the opinion may be: I like hamburgers better than hot dogs. The child needs to develop three reasons why hamburgers are preferred over hot dogs. For example: Hamburgers can be cooked fresh. Hamburgers can be cooked in more ways than hot dogs. Hamburgers are better for you. Once a child has three reasons why he believes his opinion is right, he is ready to research these thoughts.

Supporting Facts
In a convincing argument, it is not enough to simply have opinions. There must be facts to support opinion in order to persuade someone else that the opinion is correct (such as the debate judge). In organized debate, these facts are introduced in the constructive speech and later are used to refute an opposing argument from an opponent. Facts must be found from reputable sources such as national magazines or established newspapers (Time, Newsweek or The New York Times). Facts may be found in medical journals, educational resources (such as university studies) or reputable websites. Teach children how to find at least one fact that supports each reason for their opinion. For example, in the reason, “Hamburgers can be cooked fresh,” the child could find a fact that details how hot dogs are processed meats made with many preservatives.

Children should be taught that debating is not a verbal assault on another person, but rather persuasion based on facts. Organized debate features a series of timed presentations. Introducing the entire format of organized debate may be too involved for children, but an abbreviated form can be used; for example, using the topic of hamburgers versus hot dogs. One child can give a timed (three minutes or longer depending on the age group) oral presentation stating, “Hamburgers are better than hot dogs,” complete with three points and three facts to support her reasons. A second child can then give an oral presentation stating, “Hot dogs are better than hamburgers,” complete with three fact-supported reasons. Allow the class to vote individually (then tally the results) basing their judgment on the facts presented by both sides of the argument.


Sources: Article Originally Published In Classroom, #WhoIsJohnLakerman Live Streamimg. Photograph,