4 innovative online learning practices educators should keep

Over the past two years, education systems across the nation have been challenged with oscillating shifts, from classroom learning to remote and online learning, and even hybrid approaches, due to COVID-19 precautions and responsiveness. Amid these ongoing changes, educators reimagined the ways they engaged with their students, and many turned to museums and other community organizations for support to better understand how to leverage our collections, educational resources, and expertise creatively for their students.

For the community of more than 300 museum educators at the Smithsonian, the sudden urgency to scrap our traditional modus operandi unleashed new levels of innovation. We reimagined how to share a vast library of artifacts, artworks, specimens, and content expertise with our audiences to best meet their teaching and learning needs.

As teachers and students return to schools and museums searching for a “new normal,” below are some practices from the past two years I know we’ll keep.…Read More

Transforming summer school with high-dosage tutoring

Summer school as we’ve traditionally known it hasn’t worked well for a long time, especially from an equity standpoint, but we all know that change tends to come slowly to educational institutions. I would submit that in 2022, after two years of extraordinary learning loss, a transformation shouldn’t wait any longer.

Today’s students have different summer learning needs, and we have better tools and methods to teach them. It’s time to start using them.

The old model of summer classes in school buildings every day from 9 a.m. to noon stopped being convenient decades ago, when stay-at-home parenting stopped being the norm. Even if families manage to find transportation for their kids to and from school at those hours, there remains the question of filling in the remaining hours with part-time child care — never a cost-effective option even when it is available.…Read More

AI’s pivotal role in authentic PD

Many people envision artificial intelligence’s (AI) role in education with a sci-fi twist, but in reality, AI is already embedded in promising new tools that address student learning, real-time feedback, and continuous professional development (PD).

AI-powered learning tools can offer students immediate feedback and a customized learning experience. And when used in PD, time-strapped educators can better reflect on their instructional practices and target areas for improvement.

Edthena, a provider of video-powered PD tools, is harnessing AI in its new AI Coach platform. The solution helps schools and districts give teachers access to supportive coaching to improve teaching effectiveness. AI Coach uses artificial intelligence to guide teachers through coaching cycles aligned to common growth areas.…Read More

How the COVID crisis caused K-12 to rethink testing

The pandemic reignited the debate over shifting away from high-stakes testing to a more balanced assessment approach that’s part of the regular instructional cycle. Many parents and education leaders alike hoped this would be the catalyst for ending high-stakes testing entirely, or at least shift the focus toward assessments that drive better supports for students. And while some progress has been made, new research suggests we’re at a pivotal moment for changing K-12 assessment.

In the spring of 2020, school closures forced the cancellation of state summative assessments in all 50 states for the first time since the No Child Left Behind era began in 2002. States did without the data used for high-stakes decisions such as A-F grading of individual schools, and educators were left to look to other methods to evaluate learning. 

Since then, there have been nearly unanimous calls to create assessments that provide teachers with real-time information to help guide and direct student learning. Now in the third year impacted by the pandemic as the effects of COVID-19 continue, measuring and addressing student learning is even more critical amidst the frequent disruptions. Nonetheless, schools around the country are once again preparing to head into another round of spring standardized testing.…Read More

3 edtech trends to watch in 2022

It is impossible to exaggerate how much the edtech sector is growing – in fact, exploding might be a better word! The edtech market in the UK is now estimated to be £3.2bn following growth during 2020 of more than 70 percent.

This phenomenal growth ensures that the sector is newsworthy, but what are the key trends emerging? These trends are the ones to watch throughout the coming year–and probably the coming decade.

Personalized learning…Read More

Riverside Insights Joins Forces with Renzulli Learning to Foster Instructional Equity through Engagement

ITASCA, Ill. – March 16, 2022 – Riverside Insights®, a leading developer of research-based assessments and analytics, today announced a new partnership with Renzulli Learning, an interactive online system for whole school enrichment that provides students with personalized learning resources based on their unique interests and learning preferences. With this new partnership, educators can now readily combine the ability insights from Riverside Insight’s Cognitive Abilities Test™ (CogAT®) with Renzulli Learning’s dynamic library of resources to better differentiate instruction and engage all learners in the classroom.

Riverside’s CogAT enables educators to understand students’ potential for learning while Renzulli Learning allows them to leverage students’ interests and preferences to unlock that potential. Educators can attest that aligning instruction with student interests encourages strong levels of engagement from all learners. Paired together, CogAT and Renzulli Learning provide a powerful combination to make learning accessible and fun for every student.

“Riverside Insights’ partnership with Renzulli Learning is a first step in our commitment to support the whole child and their ‘Limitless Learning’ to reach their full potential,” said Riverside Insights’ CEO, Rajib Roy. “We know students learn best when they are invested in the content. CogAT’s unique Ability Profile™ for each student combined with Renzulli’s interactive resources will empower educators to meet every student’s needs through interest-based instruction.”…Read More

3 edtech trends to watch in 2022

It is impossible to exaggerate how much the edtech sector is growing – in fact, exploding might be a better word! The edtech market in the UK is now estimated to be £3.2bn following growth during 2020 of more than 70 percent.

This phenomenal growth ensures that the sector is newsworthy, but what are the key trends emerging? These trends are the ones to watch throughout the coming year–and probably the coming decade.

Personalized learning…Read More

4 ideas to infuse critical thinking in ELA and social studies

Every teacher knows the importance of critical thinking in education. Strong critical thinkers make better decisions, are more informed, have more career opportunities, and are generally better equipped to navigate the challenges of everyday life.

In the classroom, critical thinking is essential to the growth and betterment of our students. It’s not enough for them to simply memorize that 6 times 6 equals 36; they also need to know the underlying principle behind the equation. And, when put into practice, it can unleash student potential in ways we’ve never dreamed.

Just consider Ann Makosinski (16), a student who created a flashlight that is powered by her own thermal energy. Kelvin Doe (13), of Sierra Leone, built a radio transmitter and generator for his village out of spare parts. Another student, Gitanjali Rao (12), was inspired by the crisis in Flint, Michigan, to build a way to send water-quality information via Bluetooth. …Read More

How to unlock the true power of student and teacher videos

When educators can create and share videos, districts are able to knock down content silos and better communicate with students, families, and colleagues.

Sharing asynchronous video knocks down barriers between your teachers and students in any classroom environment; gives parents and families more visibility into their students’ successes; and offers a simple and secure solution to provide secure spaces for students to grow.

Join a panel of educators and edtech experts to learn how making the sharing of video content simple for teachers and students will turn their creations into high-impact learning assets while maintaining a safe and secure learning environment.…Read More