Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Illusion of the Year

Whether you use these as a hook at the beginning or as a fun activity at the end, illusions are always an attention-grabber for students, made even better when we understand the visual and brain mechanics behind them.  A colleague shared this site with me.  We have a new "Illusion of the Year" and it is pretty cool.

Below is a screenshot from their site, but I will urge you to check out their site wonderful illusion wares at:

Happy illusioning!

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Monday, May 26, 2014

Meme Factory Post

Meme factory is a fun, free app to create your own class memes using popular images in the app or using your own.

Here is the link for those on iTunes/Apple/iPhone.  I'm not sure if it works for Android.

For those who do not know, this character below is philosoraptor.

Posted by Chuck Schallhorn on his iPad

Psych Week--TV Alert

Just wanted to let everyone know that there are several episodes about various disorders this week on Discovery Fit & Health for their annual Psych Week.  Topics include childhood schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism, OCD, PTSD, and more.  There is also an update on Jani and hear brother, both of whom suffer from severe mental disorders.

Posted by Chuck Schallhorn on his iPad

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Now THAT'S a conversation I'd love to hear!

This transcript of a fascinating conversation might be great for your disorders/treatment unit:

Apparently Martin Seligman and Aaron Beck get together every month and have a chat over lunch! This transcript of one of their conversations is worth reading, and might show students how scholars talk to each other (and disagree) in productive ways. I suspect this is one of the most significant ways psychology "gets done": thoughtful psychologists having great conversations with each other.

(thanks to Jaime Farrington for sending me this link!) 

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Friday, May 16, 2014

Brief update about the DSM5 changes

The following was posted on the e-mail list for the College Board's AP Psychology community by moderator Pat Santoro. As you are probably already aware, the College Board will be changing the AP Psychology course description next year to reflect the DSM-5 changes. This is obviously not an official change as the course description (the "acorn book") will be officially changed next year, but I wanted to make sure you all knew what changes were in store.

Here is the text of Pat Santoro's e-mail:

....a revised AP Psychology Course Description (CD) will be published by next October that reflects the DSM-5. The 2015 exam will reflect changes from the DSM-5 that appear in the revised CD.  These changes fall under the topic of Abnormal Behavior, and include the following:

Under Topics and Learning Objectives, bullets #2 and 3 have been changed under XII Abnormal Behavior. Below is a DRAFT of proposed changes:

XII. Abnormal Behavior
Recognize the use of the most recent version of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) published by the American Psychiatric Association as the primary reference for making diagnostic judgments.

Discuss the major diagnostic categories, including anxiety disorders, bipolar and related disorders, depressive disorders, dissociative disorders, feeding and eating disorders, neurodevelopmental disorders, neurocognitive disorders, obsessive-compulsive and related disorders, personality disorders, schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorders, somatic symptoms and related disorders, and trauma stressor and related disorders and their corresponding symptoms.

Under the Topic Outline, “D. Types of Disorders” under Roman Numeral XII has been changed as follows:

D. Types of Disorders
1.       Anxiety
2.       Bipolar and Related
3.       Depressive
4.       Dissociative
5.       Feeding and Eating
6.       Neurodevelopmental
7.       Neurocognitive
8.       Obsessive-Compulsive and Related
9.       Personality
10.   Schizophrenia Spectrum and Other Psychotic
11.   Somatic Symptoms and Related
12.   Trauma Stressor and Related

(Not a member of this community? Click here for more information on how to join.)

--posted by Steve

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Skype in the Classroom - APA Experts visit your students!

Interesting project by the APA! They recruited expert APA member-presenters to Skype with classrooms/students in the big mental health discussion. Here's the description of the project from the APA site:

"Giving students accurate and accessible information about mental health is the goal of a new APA partnership with Microsoft and Skype in the classroom. The three organizations have joined forces to create a series of Skype lessons that bring psychologists to classrooms nationwide to talk about mental health issues. The 50-minute Skype presentations are designed to increase students’ understanding of mental health issues and help reduce the stigma sometimes associated with seeking mental health care."

Looks fascinating! If you decide to participate, please let us all know how it goes in the comments section!

Information from the APA:

Looks like you can "join" here in order to participate:
(image source: above site)

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Monday, May 12, 2014

"end of the year" topic idea: Human Factors psychology

Sometimes toward the end of the year, I had time in my AP and non-AP psych classes to dive into some topics we didn't talk much about during the "march" through the curriculum. If you're in the same boat and hive time for some "enrichment" stuff, Human Factors research might be a great topic. Resources listed below.
 Eyes in the Aisles: Why is Cap’n Crunch Looking Down at My Child?
(also source image)

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Time for class pictures

I've really enjoyed seeing pictures of the psychology classes many people have been posting on Twitter, so I thought I would collect them here. If you'd like to add a photo of your group, sent them to me ( and I'll add them in a future post. (Apologies to those with multiple class photos - I just randomly selected one to represent you.)   -- Steve

The class of Isabel Morales, Los Angeles High School of the Arts, Los Angeles CA

The class of Amy Mahmaljy, Universal Academy of Florida, Tampa FL

The class of Daria Schaffeld, Prospect High School, Mt. Prospect IL

The class of Amy Ramponi, Kimberly High School, Kimberly WI
The class of Becky Magee, Crown Point High School, Crown Point IN 
The class of Steve Jones, City of Medicine Academy, Durham NC

--posted by Steve

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Phineas Gage--What Really Happened?

Phineas Gage is the most well-known neuroscience patient in history.  Teachers of all topics like to trot out his picture and talk about his accident when the explosion drove the tamping iron through his skull. After that, he survived, but, as was indicated in the early Psychology/Brain videos, "Gage was no longer Gage."  I enjoyed reading the author's examination of the early press accounts and how the stories about Gage changed throughout time.  There is also a great deal of context added that many of us have not read about,

Today, printed an extended essay discussing the history of the stories about Gage and how they have changed through the years, perhaps being influenced by neuroscientists personal preconceptions.  It is a fascinating read and possibly a great one for this post-AP exam time for those students who love both psychology and history.

The Slate link:

This photos below are ones I had not seen before.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Friday, May 2, 2014

Good vibes abound - The AP Psychology test is coming!

The fabulous Dana Melone sent me these pictures and I had to share: she gave her students "magic pencils" with the message "I mustache [must-ask - get it?] you to get a 5" , with a mustache on the other side. Very cool, very cute, very motivational!

What are you all doing to help get your students "up" for the test? Share in the comments if you want to. Good luck to all!

posted by Rob McEntarffer

Thursday, May 1, 2014

#Psychat Archive for Review Ideas and Activities

One option for compiling a series of tweets is the online tool called Storify.  I'll go into a post later about using this technology in your classroom.

In the meantime, here is the Storify compilation of Tweets from the #psychat conversation we had on April 30, 2014 while we discussed reviewing for the AP Psychology Exam.

The direct link is here:

In addition to Steve Jones @highschoolpsych and Chuck Schallhorn @psydways, there are many high school psych teachers worth following as well as hundreds of college and professional psychologists and organizations (yet another post).  Check them out.  The more you follow, the more great suggestions you will receive.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Review Files-Brain and Neurotransmiters

Rebecca Magee from Crown Point High School in Northwest Indiana was on #psychat last night and shared these wonderful review documents.  Thanks to her for these updates.  Below is the link on my dropbox where you can find the sheets.  Below is a screenshot of the top portion of the neurotransmitters sheet.

posted by Chuck Schallhorn

Speed Dating the Psychologists Review Activity

I had a really fun time last night with the Twitter PD group, #psychat.  Best PD/PLC time I have had since the 2012 Reading in KC.  Steve Jones wrote about it in the fall, but I had never participated.  It is definitely worth you while.  Big smiles all around.  

One of the fabulous review ideas that came from that was from Allison Shaver.  She was kind enough to send it along for me to share with everyone.  You can find her work below.

Thank you Allison!!!!!!!

Speed Dating to Review for AP Psychology Exam:

Day 1: 
·         Have students choose a name from a hat. 
·         That night for homework they should review “their” major contributions to the science of psychology.  And be prepared to share this information quickly in class tomorrow.

Day 2: 
·         Set up your classroom so the desks are facing each other and students can rotate easily from date to date. 
·         Hand out the chart with all names (see attached)
·         Project an online stopwatch and set it to 75 seconds. 
·         Explain that they have 75 seconds TOTAL to date each other, not for each of them to speak.
·         Once everyone has a partner (there many need to be a date of 3 if you have an odd number) let the dating begin.  When the buzzer rings they rotate and the 75 seconds starts again.   
·         Once you have done a full rotation – hold a “cocktail hour” where students can mingle to connect with those they may have missed on a one-on-one date or those they are “interested in” and need more time with.

My students find this to be a great way to review the people they need to be familiar with for the exam.  They walk away with a sheet full of facts and have had fun doing so! 

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions:  @allisonshaver  or

This is not an original idea, but I have tweaked it to work for my classroom – feel free to do the same!