Want to Go Back to School? A New Tax Credit Could Help

Have you, a friend, or a family member been desiring to return to school?  The American Opportunity Tax Credit is here for the 2009 and 2010 tax seasons.  It is a nice bump up from the current Hope Credit.  Not only does it allow for $700 more tax credit to students, it also applies the the first four years of post-secondary education as opposed to the first two years with the Hope Credit.  Not only does this credit apply towards tuition, you may also include expenses such as books, supplies, and equipment. The one other exciting addition is the inclusion of online education with accredited universities and colleges.

I for one am very excited about this. I plan to jump back in for the spring semester and this new credit has arrived just in time.  Tuition is hard enough to cover while trying to stay afloat with general bills… not to mention the horrendous cost of books these days.  The fact that I can basically have the cost of books reimbursed is a beautiful thing.  Jump on over the this blog post and see what it’s all about!

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Call for a Revision in Teaching Methodology

The ideas put forth in this blog posting discuss a new approach to teaching methods (as you likely derived from the title).  The main idea here is a more dialectic approach.  This means more discussion and debate in the classroom as opposed to the traditional “teacher speak – student listen” methods.  Allowing the students to become more involved fits very well with the stages of their development emotionally and mentally.  As adolescents they are naturally becoming more inclined to speak their minds and question information before readily accepting it.

Also, the author mentions a two-tiered system of learning, which I personally found to be brilliant and exciting.  Students obviously will need to be informed on a subject before being able to debate or discuss said subject.  The idea is that students would attend a class, such as European History, where they would listen and absorb while the teacher taught in a traditional manner.  After this class period, their next period would be a debate and discussion based class focused on what was discussed in the previous period.  I would have loved that in school and I think many young minds would respond very well to this.

He briefly mentions the fact that introducing children to this debate/discussion style of learning early on could also possibly help alleviate some of the major issues of anxiety and shyness of today’s youth.

I can’t do the article justice in my own words and it is not the end-all save-all of ideas but I do find it to be a great step in the right direction.  It is lengthy but a highly recommended read.  Enjoy! Let me know what you think! Leave me some comments!