Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Depression Cartoon

October is Depression Screening Month and I recently came upon this cartoon in the blog, Blogzuola.

I post the first two frames here, but please check out that blog for more.  It's really quite accurate and gives a positive message.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Emotions, Language, and the Untranslatable

This is a cross-post to both the Teaching High School Sociology and Psychology Blogs.  This chart shows primary emotions and the less-used words that are related.  The chart also offers us some untranslatable nuanced terms that are found in other, non-English languages.

It is an infographic that I found from Mental Floss at this address:

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

New TOPSS Lesson Plans are Here! New TOPSS Lesson Plans are Here!

If you're not yet a member of TOPSS, now would be a great time to join! New members can join now and get an extra few months of membership (through Dec. 2015)!

If you already are a member of TOPSS, now is a great time to rejoice!

Why you ask? All the great new lesson plans available for TOPSS members!
  • Psychological Disorders (DSM 5 compliant!)  This lesson plan was written by the fabulous (and college question leader at the AP Psychology reading!) Richard Seefeldt, EdD, of the University of Wisconsin River Falls, and reviewed by TOPSS members Scott Reed and Nancy Diehl, PhD.
  • Perspectives on Psychological Science, written by the equally fabulous Ken Keith (former college question leader and chief reader at the AP Psychology reading, and one of the reasons why high school psychology is a thing!). Lesson plan reviewed by a team of TOPSS members including Nancy Fenton!
  • And a "problem based unit plan" on Childhood Obesity - really well organized and complete unit plan that will get your students going on their inquiry/critical thinking skills! Written by Jeanne Blakeslee, high school psych teacher extraordinaire from MD.
Find the complete list of lesson plans at the link below - thanks TOPSS!
TOPSS Unit Lesson Plans

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Friday, October 17, 2014

Infographic on Hearing and Decibels

Was doing some other research/demo for students and discovered this little gem.

The actual infographic can be found at this link:

The entire article from DailyInfographic can be found here:

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

How Does Pain and Pain-Relievers Work

I am sitting at a volleyball match with my iPad and discovered this wonderful video. I cannot find a link to embed it, so here it is.  It's short, animated and talks about brain cells, nocireceptors, prostaglandins and more physiology.  In short, great for psych or ap psych.

Since it is a TedEd lesson, there are more links for you to check out and have your kids look deeper into the subject.

I will update the tags and links with pictures when I get to a regular computer. 

Post by Chuck Schallhorn 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Sleeping and Twitching--Why Do We Twitch??

I was doing some other research and shared this find with a couple students doing their own research on sleep.  This has information about the process of neurotransmitters and sleep I was not familiar with.  Great Stuff.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Your Brain on Games (Video/Phone)

I was listening to NPR this morning on the way to work.  I heard this story about video games and how game designers use behavioral scientists to get people to use, keep using, and eventually purchase within the game.  They talked about consumer psychology, economics, and the reporters desire to create a game about making toast.  So much fun and great awareness of the human psyche. Great source of insight for both teachers and students.  I arrived at school excited to share this information.

This is Your Brain on Candy Crush

Nir Ayal, one of the interviewees, wrote a book, Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products which comes out next month talks about this topic in more detail.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Monday, October 6, 2014

Crash Course Psychology videos - with reflection questions!

Does anyone use the Crash Course Psychology videos? I'm pretty impressed with them:

One limitation is that they move pretty fast, which gave me the idea that the videos may benefit from reflection/ "check for understanding" questions during the video. I learned about an online resource called "EdPuzzle" which allows you to add questions to a video (and you can get student responses to questions, etc.) I'm slowly working my way through the videos, adding questions. 

Video 1: Intro (history and perspectives)
Video 3: Neural structure and function
Video 4: Brain structure and function

I hope these are useful to someone - I think I'll keep working my way through them, and I'll add the links here as I get them done (bookmark this post if you'd like to keep track of it?) Please respond in the comments section if you use these Edpuzzle videos or have other ideas about how to use the Crash Course videos.
posted by Rob McEntarffer

Friday, September 19, 2014


The 15th annual Iowa Teachers of Psychology conference will be held Friday, November 7, 2014 at Central College in Pella, IA.  IToP welcomes psychology teachers from graduate programs, four-year colleges, community colleges, and high schools as well as graduate teaching assistants and secondary education majors interested in psych.  All psychology instructors, researchers, and students are cordially invited to attend!

This year’s invited speakers are Dr. David Myers, Professor of Psychology at Hope College, and Dr. Douglas Gentile, Associate Professor of Psychology at Iowa State University.  Dr. Myers will address the psychology of hearing and hearing loss and Dr. Gentile will speak about the effects of media violence.

For more information about registration ($35 for faculty, deadline 10/22), speakers, and proposal submissions for teaching demonstrations and roundtable discussions, please visit 

Also, IToP organizers are always looking for teaching demos or topic suggestions for our teaching exchange  roundtables - submit ideas using this online form

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Texas and AP US History

This is definitely a "non-psychology post," so please just scroll past if you are not at all interested in Advanced Placement courses and "politics."

If you're still reading this, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the recent "history wars" involving the revamp of the AP US History course. I'm a bit surprised (naively, probably) about the controversy surrounding US history. I thought the news stories would die down after a while, but recently the Texas Board of Education (not a local district board - the STATE board) voted that students "not be taught to the national test."

Texas Moves To Override New AP History Course

Why post this here on TeachingHighSchoolPsychology? The answer might be "you shouldn't" but there are at least a couple issues that are relevant to psychology teachers (especially AP Psychology teachers):
  • This may be another example of policy makers misunderstanding assessment score use. Assessments, like the AP US and Psychology exams, are built for a specific purpose. In this case, they are supposed to measure whether or not high school students acquired the knowledge/skills that college students do in their introductory courses. College Board does a lot of work trying to measure whether or not the tests do this ("comparability studies"). Test validity is a score USE issue, not an aspect of a test. If the Texas school board objects to the skills/knowledge measured on the AP US History test, are they objecting to how history is taught in their state funded colleges? It's much easier to pick on (and control) high school teachers and students...
  • Eventually AP Psychology will get a "re-vamp" and this controversy makes me wonder what we are facing in that process. Who gets to decide what "appropriate" skills/knowledge are for an advanced placement student? Will policy-makers assume expertise and authority in psychology as they are doing in history? 
My quick ending, emotional summation: Ugh.

posted by Rob McEntarffer