ACT to move toward computer-based testing

The New York Times reports that high school students will take the ACT college admissions exam by computer starting in the spring of 2015 — but at least for a while, the paper and pencil version will be available, too. “We are moving to a computer-based version, but for the foreseeable future, we will also have the paper and pencil test as an option for schools that don’t have the technological capability,” said Jon Erickson, the president of ACT’s Education Division. “We will probably have the option for students to choose paper and pencil, as well. But all the anecdotal evidence is that students prefer the computer.”

Read the full story

tags

Report: Why it is hard to monitor bullying at schools

The Washington Post reports that a new report that reviewed years of research says that it is hard to accurately monitor levels of bullying in schools because there is still no consensus on exactly what it is and that educators and scholars “should not limit themselves to the traditional definition” as they seek ways to combat it. The report, called “Prevention of Bullying in Schools, Colleges and Universities” and just released by the American Educational Research Association at its 2013 meeting in San Francisco, is the work of a blue-ribbon task force that was charged with finding short- and long-term recommendations for institutions to address bullying of young people…

Read the full story

tags

The quest for a third mobile platform

Some of the world’s biggest handset makers and telecom carriers are embracing alternative mobile operating systems this year in a quest to become credible challengers to smartphones run by Apple Inc. and Google Inc., the Wall Street Journal reports. These companies are hoping they can outgun attempts by Microsoft Corp. and Research In Motion Ltd. to emerge as a third alternative platform to the iPhone and Android devices, which have a virtual stranglehold on the market…

Read the full story

tags

Chromebook vs. iPad: How do they compare?

The Lenovo ThinkPad X131e Chromebook was designed to make teachers more effective, IT managers less stressed, and students more empowered. Here’s how it stacks up against Apple’s iPad in several key characteristics.

tags

Getting kids to learn is about relationships

“Kids don’t learn from people they don’t like,” says Rita Pierson, a veteran educator and recent TED Talks Education speaker. According to Pierson, connecting with students on a real, human level is the key to improving student performance.

Pierson, who’s been a professional educator for 40 years, has worked at every level of the public school spectrum from elementary through high school. Having been in education for such a long time, she says she’s witnessed many changes, all aimed at school improvement and boosting student performance.

“Needless to say, not all the suggestions have been sensible,” she says in a recent CNN article.

(Next page: Pierson’s TED video on what teaching means)

tags

Up to $60K in prizes for energy projects

America’s Home Energy Education Challenge inspires student interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), while encouraging elementary and middle school students to make smarter energy choices and save energy at home.

tags

Why America’s ‘hacker generation’ can thrive as teachers

Nearly half of all teachers leave the profession within the first five years, Christian Science Monitor reports. Recently, two veteran teachers – Gerald Conti in New York and Randy Turner in Missouri – have decided to call it quits with recent public resignations on Facebook and in the Huffington Post. Their high-profile statements speak to their frustration and disillusionment with teaching. Both of their resignations contain numerous unfortunate truths about the challenges facing today’s public school teachers. I have been teaching high school science for five years and I, too, have experienced the stress and devaluation they describe so poignantly..

Read the full story

tags

Zynga to give education-tech startups a boost

Zynga wants kids to play more games in class, the Wall Street Journal reports. The San Francisco-game company’s non-profit, Zynga.org, plans to announce Wednesday that it is investing $1 million in a new program to help technology startups build games to help children learn. It has selected an initial handful of startups to join an accelerator this summer at its offices and will supply Zynga employees to help improve their products. Zynga’s non-profit is partnering with NewSchools Venture Fund, an Oakland, Calif.-based nonprofit that has invested $250 million in early-stage education programs, including startups and charter schools…

Read the full story

tags

Early childhood education, technology and games: What Mario didn’t teach your kids

Anyone who grew up with a Nintendo more than likely has memories of their parents telling them to stop playing before it rots your brain, the Vancouver Sun reports. We’re swapping stories at the table about what it was like as a kid growing up with video games, and everyone on the team has an experience that is similar to that old catechism. In the early days of gaming it was hard to see the potential for teaching games had, and they were certainly not associated with Early Childhood Education…

Read the full story

tags