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Gates gives $20M for digital learning, Common Core curriculum

Grants to aid schools in adopting common standards through online and game-based learning tools

$3M will go to the Pearson Foundation to create 24 online courses supporting the Common Core standards; four of these courses will be free to schools.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced April 27 that it will be investing more than $20 million in game-based learning and other digital tools to help usher the new Common Core standards into the classroom.

The foundation wants to help teachers engage students in learning the challenging new standards being adopted by more than 40 states. It says some of the web-based games, social-networking platforms, and online courses will be available for any teacher to use free of charge.

The new tools will include video games that build proficiency in math, reading, and science, as well as a new game platform that can be used for various subjects. The grants also include money for web-based classes aligned with the new common standards.

Game developers and curriculum writers from around the world are involved in the project, including the Pearson Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Pearson PLC, which has announced the development of a complete digital curriculum to support the common standards. The Gates Foundation is providing research and $3 million in funding to help make these digital courses widely available.

Besides the Pearson Foundation, the Gates Foundation also is teaming up with Educurious Partners, Florida Virtual School, Institute of Play, Reasoning Mind, Quest Atlantis, Digital Youth Network, and EDUCAUSE to develop and promote new applications for learning and new assessments aligned with the Common Core standards.

“Teachers are telling us what they want, and we are listening,” said Vicki L. Phillips, director of education and college-ready programs for the Gates Foundation. “We believe these exciting world-class tools have the potential to fundamentally change the way students and teachers interact in the classroom, and ultimately, how education works in America.”

The Pearson Foundation is developing 24 online math and English language-arts (ELA) courses to help teachers and principals implement the common standards. These courses will be delivered through a combination of technologies, including video, interactive software, games, social media, and print. Funding from the Gates Foundation will support the development of this robust system of courses, including four—two in math and two in ELA—to be available at no cost on an open platform for schools.

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Comments:

  1. Education4All

    April 28, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    This is exactly what needs to be happening. Teachers need to be educating their students with up-to-date technology that will engage students with the kind of games they use outside of school. Students need to be prepared for the next generation of software, implementing games, ipads, and other fun educational software enables kids to be able to adapt and develop skills to use even more advanced technology as adults. The only problem with this is out teacher are far less tech savvy than the students. Teachers should be investing money into an education geared towards technology. A master of education in eLearning and Technology will give teachers the skills to pass on to students.

    http://education.cu-portland.edu

  2. Education4All

    April 28, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    This is exactly what needs to be happening. Teachers need to be educating their students with up-to-date technology that will engage students with the kind of games they use outside of school. Students need to be prepared for the next generation of software, implementing games, ipads, and other fun educational software enables kids to be able to adapt and develop skills to use even more advanced technology as adults. The only problem with this is out teacher are far less tech savvy than the students. Teachers should be investing money into an education geared towards technology. A master of education in eLearning and Technology will give teachers the skills to pass on to students.

    http://education.cu-portland.edu

  3. mgozaydin

    April 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    I was defending National Curriculum, national standards for the last 10 years.
    At least common core standards arrived.
    Now it is sponsored by Bill. That is great. That means the idea has been accepted by the most talented person .
    Thanks Bill. Now everybody should try to develop online courses according to common core standards .

  4. mgozaydin

    April 28, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    I was defending National Curriculum, national standards for the last 10 years.
    At least common core standards arrived.
    Now it is sponsored by Bill. That is great. That means the idea has been accepted by the most talented person .
    Thanks Bill. Now everybody should try to develop online courses according to common core standards .

  5. mbutler147

    April 28, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    This all makes so much sense. How would our Catholic school fit in any of this? Would we have a chance to work with any grant to implement any of these programs?

  6. mbutler147

    April 28, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    This all makes so much sense. How would our Catholic school fit in any of this? Would we have a chance to work with any grant to implement any of these programs?