Only 3 Weeks to go to AERO Conference
See Book Clearance Link at Bottom
Table Of Contents
  1. Only 3 Weeks to AERO Conference!
  2. Our Damaging Emphasis On Testing
  3. Why Peter Berg Thinks You Should Come To The AERO Conference
  4. An Invitation from Peter Gray
  5. AERO Job Listings
  6. K12 Embraces Video Games
  7. School Starters Course
  8. The Professional Education Revolution
  9. Addictive Education: The App Revolutionizing Literacy
  10. Big Book Clearance Sale!
  11. Links and Calendar

AOnly 3 Weeks  to AERO Conference!
It's not too late to register for the AERO Conference!
There are only 3 weeks to go before the AERO Conference in New York! We want as many people as possible to attend and don't turn people away for financial reasons. We have a ways to go to reach capacity. There are a number of special features

  • Cruise around Manhattan
  • Book launch party
  • Continuing education and graduate credit from Antioch University

The student, volunteer and low income rates are still available as well as the dorm rooms at LIU/Post. If you want to volunteer, want the special Canadian rate or have a group or are looking for a special room deal you must write to us or call. You can reply to this e newsletter,, write to or call the AERO office at 516 621 2195.

The 14th AERO Conference will be from August 3-6 at LIU/Post Campus, Brookville, NY. 
Register for the AERO Conferencer now HERE.

For the first time Jonathan Kozol will keynote AERO Conference

Akilah Richards

Hynes Hynes: Our Damaging Emphasis On Testing
Ed: LI Superintendent Michael Hynes will be delivering a mini-talk at the AERO Conference on August 3rd. The following article appeared as an op ed in Newsday.  

By  Michael J. Hynes

The term hypernormalization is widely credited to Alexei Yurchak's book, "Everything Was Forever, Until It Was No More: The Last Soviet Generation."

In his 2006 work, the University of California anthropologist argues that in the waning days of Russia's communism, "Everyone knew the system was failing, but as no one could imagine any alternative to the status quo, politicians and citizens were resigned to maintaining a pretense of a functioning society. Over time, this delusion became a self-fulfilling prophecy and the 'fakeness' was accepted by everyone as real."

Hence, an effect Yurchak dubbed hypernormalization.

If you have a newsday subscription you can read the rest here.

If not, we have the whole article here.
BergWhy Peter Berg Thinks You Should Come To The AERO Conference

Gray An Invitation from Peter Gray
The Alliance for Self-Directed Education (ASDE) will hold a "mini-conference" as part of this year's AERO conference,  August 2-6.

I will be giving a keynote address ( Friday evening) entitled "Why Now is the Time for Self-Directed Education to Take Wings"; and ASDE Board Member Akilah Richards will be giving a keynote ( on Sunday morning), entitled "On Race, Personal Power, and Lifelong Education: Unschooling as Means of Liberation for People of Color".

On Saturday afternoon, in the session entitled Meet With Your Group, we will hold a special workshop for ASDE members and would-be members to discuss and practice ways of advocating Self-Directed Education to people who don't know what it is or understand how it works.

Other keynoters are Jonathon Kozol, John Taylor Gatto, Dayna Martin, and Dennis Littky. What a lineup!

Akilah and I will also be part of a Panel Discussion, along with Dennis Littky, following his talk and my talk on Friday evening.
After Jonathan Kozol's talk, on Saturday evening, he and I will be on stage together as a two-person panel discussion. Yikes!

For more on the AERO conference, see: 

CAERO Job Listings: Principal of Ann Arbor Open School
AERO individual members, schools and organizations get free job listings in the e news and on our website. Please send us feedback on any results. If you are an AERO member just e mail us what you need to have posted.

Do you want to become Principal of Ann Arbor Open School?  The jobs section is one of the most visited sections of the AERO website. AERO members can post free. Lately several great schools and programs have contacted us, looking for teachers who really understand learner-centered approaches. These include such geographically diverse programs as Self Managed Learning College in the UKModern Academy, Cancun, Mexico,  A Child's Place School in NJ, Summa Academy in Portland, OR, Liberated Learners NetworkJefferson County Open School in Colorado, Prairie Green in Iowa, Pono in Manhattan, Little River School in upstate New York, Kalapa in Colombia and Los Ninos del Mango in Southern Spain
k12 K12 Embraces Video Games

By Regina Whitmer

Welcome to the second annual game-based learning special report in District Administration.

Games continue to grow in popularity in K12 lessons ranging from science and math to English and  social studies. They include alternate reality games that hook students' imaginations and introduce  social-emotional learning lessons to help students process feelings and thoughts.

In a soon-to-be-released study of eighth-graders in seven states, results reveal that game-based learning can not only engage students, leading them to perform better on assessments, but it can be easily incorporated into lessons.

The study, "Substantial Integration of Typical Educational Games into Extended Curricula," was spearheaded by Vadim Polikov, a research scientist. He partnered with Vanderbilt University. The study reveals that short games used in U.S. history lessons helped all students-particularly  special education students--think more critically.

Read the rest here.
ENext School Starters Course Starts in September, Limited to 25 Students
There are still Openings
We have extended the special offer to the AERO School Starter Course. It is also at a discount rate. The course is limited to 25 students or groups and will close when we reach that number. 

You can now enroll in this year's School Starters Online Course. If you register now we will immediately give you the benefits of the between courses School Starter Consultation Program, usually $300. You will have full access to last year's course, seeing all the resources and sections. This will get you well ready for the official course in September. At that point the Consultation Program ends, We then blind the course and start opening up one section at a time and guide you through the interactive process of starting a new alternative. 

Register for the course here. 

Reply to this e news if you have specific questions. 

There will also be a school starter thread at this year's AERO Conference
edrevThe Professional Education Revolution

Technology has brought deep changes in many industries. Back in early 2000, everyone was abuzz with the "segment of one". How would I know what you, as a single person, want to buy or is interested in? Technology has been rapidly evolving and nowadays the power of companies like Google or Amazon is tremendous. Thanks to complicated algorithms and Artificial Intelligence, their predictive models are quite accurate. They would know what your tastes in books or movies are; when you would be ready to buy a car, etc. What seemed far-fetched almost 20 years ago is becoming the norm today.

Meanwhile, on another front, technology started to disrupt the regular distribution channels. Amazon, which has been at the forefront, is an example of how the book (and other products as well) industry was revolutionized. Music followed the same path with Apple and the iTunes model of downloading a song for $0.99. Not only has it changed the delivery channels, it also changed the business model of the industry. In music, artists were starting to see their revenues from record sales diminish and had to focus on live events and concerts to generate revenues. Disintermediation of retail shops by online stores has put a stress on the brick and mortar model, leading to closures of outlets and rethinking the distribution channels ("omni-channels").

Read the rest here.
 appAddictive Education: The App Revolutionizing Literacy
By Vanessa Thompson

"Everyone just expected that I would work in the factory... there was no college in my village... So at age 16, I ran away with a bag full of clothes and five dollars to the Indonesian city of Bandung." From the poverty of a rural Indonesian village to becoming a Fulbright scholar, Talitha Amalia developed an unstoppable passion for education. Today, Amalia is working with Janine Teo, CEO of Solve Education!, and Peng T. Ong, Chairman, to bring education to children in Indonesia and soon all over Southeast Asia. Solve Education!'s new educational app is designed to teach English, math and science to children and adults who earn less than $2 a day. The hope for the app is to bring the engagement levels of Clash of Clans, Minecraft and Candy Crush to English-learning, math and science curriculum. Remarkably, many children in rural Indonesia don't have decent schools, but "they have phones," Amalia smiled as we sat down for the interview.

Read the rest here.
 booksBig Book Clearance Sale!
We apologize for the link problem we had with the book clearance we announced earlier this week. So here it is again, with book prices further reduced and even a few that have never appeared in the bookstore before. We're working on getting our books ready for the AERO conference and have ordered a ton of new books.

See the clearance sale here.
Anchor11Links and Calendar
Please send us feedback on this issue. also, we would like to have more articles written by AERO members and about AERO school and organizations.  Thank you for your ongoing support. With  your help , we will make learner-centered alternatives available to everyone!

In Service,

Jerry Mintz
Executive Director
Alternative Education Resource Organization

Please consider making a donation to AERO to help support our work. Thanks!