5 tips to create a successful hybrid learning environment

Over the past year and a half, “hybrid learning” has become quite the buzzword when it comes to education. With the COVID-19 pandemic impacting learners across the world, we’ve witnessed the growing need for hybrid learning, an education option that combines the benefits of a traditional in-person classroom and online learning. But the need for this option won’t just be a fleeting trend. The future of hybrid learning is bright, and the benefits are unmatched. I’ve seen it for myself.

As an educator for 10 years, I’ve worked in in-person, online, and hybrid classrooms. I’ve experienced the dos and don’ts of creating learning environments where my students can not only learn but be their best selves. When my colleagues ask me for my secret for success, here are the tips that I share: 

1. Establish a positive hybrid learning culture and a strong learning community. …Read More

Labster’s STEM Excellence Awards Winners Revealed

  • 10 teachers hand-picked as part of Labster’s Teacher STEM Excellence Awards supporting the changemakers across the globe
  • The Labster awards recognizes global changemakers in the education sector 
  • Winners have developed student-centered learning programs and applied creativity and innovation to teaching during a difficult year

BOSTON, ZURICH and COPENHAGEN  – Wednesday, December 8, 2021 – Ten educators across the globe that have blazed a trail of innovation and creativity in schooling the next generation have been recognized for their transformative course stewardship work by Labster, the world’s leading platform for virtual labs and science simulations.

The educators selected include seven higher education professors and three high school science teachers.

Labster founder Michael Bodekaer Jensen said: “The STEM Excellence Awards honor the changemakers in education who are embracing edtech innovation to make a measurable impact within their community.  Their achievements create greater awareness of the remarkable work happening in the sector.” …Read More

5 must-haves for school makerspaces

School makerspaces have emerged as centers of creativity, problem solving, collaboration, and more. These skills–often referred to as soft skills, but also known as durable skills for their importance in the workplace–are a focus of 21st-century classrooms.

These days, school libraries often include makerspaces and librarians are becoming well-versed in the coding, robotics, engineering, and tinkering skills necessary to help students bring their ideas to fruition.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, students set up personal makerspaces at home, logging onto school-provided resources and gathering materials from their homes to keep their creativity going when learning moved online.…Read More

5 tools for classroom comic creation

While it may not seem a traditional learning tool, comic creation helps across an array of core subjects and learning objectives. Comics are engaging, fun, and help students take ownership of their learning.

Comic creation gives students flexibility for self-expression, while at the same time unleashing creativity and giving students a new way to demonstrate their learning.

And comics aren’t limited to art and English classes, either. Students can use comic creation to illustrate science concepts, translate historical events into informal stories, and break down complex topics into easily-digestible snippets.…Read More

5 tools for student voice

As we prepare students for college, career, and life, it’s vital that we foster skills that will ensure students are successful. As educators, we’ve heard about the importance of the “21st century 4 C’s” to our students’ future success. Post-secondary schools and employers are looking for students and a workforce that can communicate effectively, work collaboratively, think critically, problem-solve, and use creativity in various settings. I believe there is a 5th C that is also important–and that is Choice. If our scholars have a choice, they have a voice.

In my experience as an Educational Technology Specialist (ETS) and many years as a middle school teacher, one thing I have learned is that if students have a choice in demonstrating their knowledge and showcasing their skills, they are often more invested in the task or end product. When I was a gifted English Language Arts teacher, I used project choice boards for all my units. Furnishing students the opportunity to choose the means and methods for practicing acquired skills, modeling newly learned concepts, and creating original content increases student engagement.

As an ETS, I collaborate with teachers and assist in developing technology-infused standards-based lessons and activities.…Read More

3M and Discovery Education Announce State Merit Winners in the 2021 3M Young Scientist Challenge

SILVER SPRING, Md. & ST. PAUL, Minn. (Wednesday, June 23, 2021) – 3M and Discovery Education today announced 30 State Merit Winners in the 2021 3M Young Scientist Challenge. As the nation’s premier middle school science competition, the 3M Young Scientist Challenge features outstanding innovations from young scientists that utilize the power of STEM to improve the world.

The 3M Young Scientist Challenge asks students in grades 5-8 to identify an everyday problem in their community or the world and submit a one- to two-minute video communicating the science behind their solution. An esteemed and diverse group of judges, including 3M scientists and leaders in education from across the country, evaluated entries based on creativity, scientific knowledge, and communication effectiveness.

“The 3M Young Scientist Challenge demonstrates the transformative power of young minds to address global challenges by combining their unique and diverse perspectives on innovation, creativity, and a passion for a better world,” saidDenise Rutherford, senior vice president and chief corporate affairs officer, 3M. “This year’s state merit winners prove the efficacy of STEM thinking. We are proud of this year’s competitors and remain committed to building greater STEM-equity that unlocks the power of people, ideas and science and imagines what’s possible.”…Read More

Scholastic Launches Early Childhood Program to Start Every Child’s Learning Journey with Both Academic and Social-Emotional Support

PreK On My Way™, Designed in Collaboration with UTHealth’s Children’s Learning Institute and Yale Child Study Center, Brings Together the Latest Early Childhood Education Research in Language, Literacy, Math, and Social-Emotional Development

NEW YORK, May 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Scholastic has announced the launch of PreK On My Way, a comprehensive PreK program, with print and digital resources available in both English and Spanish. At the heart of the program is the Mind Builder™ skill-building methodology, developed with the Yale Child Study Center to support social-emotional learning, executive function skills, motivation, and creativity. PreK On My Way also incorporates UTHealth’s Children’s Learning Institute’s Developing Talkers/Hablemos Juntos research model, which is proven to significantly expand children’s receptive and expressive vocabulary skills.

To learn more, visit: www.scholastic.com/prekonmyway.…Read More

5 tools to amplify student voice

As we prepare students for college, career, and life, it’s vital that we foster skills that will ensure students are successful. As educators, we’ve heard about the importance of the “21st century 4 C’s” to our students’ future success. Post-secondary schools and employers are looking for students and a workforce that can communicate effectively, work collaboratively, think critically, problem-solve, and use creativity in various settings. I believe there is a 5th C that is also important–and that is Choice. If our scholars have a choice, they have a voice.

In my experience as an Educational Technology Specialist (ETS) and many years as a middle school teacher, one thing I have learned is that if students have a choice in demonstrating their knowledge and showcasing their skills, they are often more invested in the task or end product. When I was a gifted English Language Arts teacher, I used project choice boards for all my units. Furnishing students the opportunity to choose the means and methods for practicing acquired skills, modeling newly learned concepts, and creating original content increases student engagement.

As an ETS, I collaborate with teachers and assist in developing technology-infused standards-based lessons and activities.…Read More

MiEN Company Releases White Paper on How Flexible Furniture Creates Active Learning Environments

Districts and schools are increasingly adopting active learning practices in order to address businesses’ demand for employees capable of creative and collaborative work. But one commonly overlooked factor in this transition is classroom design. However, research shows that the physical space that supports active learning is quite different from one designed for lecture-focused teaching. To help educators, Dr. Christina Counts, the vice president of education at MiEN Company, and Dr. Kristen Brittingham, the chief learning officer for Modern Teacher, have co-authored a white paper titled “Active Learning Environments Support Student Engagement, Collaboration, and Critical Thinking.”

Active learning not only promotes student engagement and the development of critical thinking and collaboration but also creativity and communication all of which are skills that employers are seeking. The paper focuses on research regarding the role of active learning environments in the development of these critical skills.

“Classrooms need to become active learning environments supported by technology integration,” said Brittingham. “So, the physical makeup of the classroom needs to change in order to support active learning environments. Unfortunately, most classrooms look the same as they did 20-30 years ago. We need changes in classroom design that mirror the new emphasis on collaboration in education and in today’s workplace.”…Read More

3D printing, STEAM are on the rise in classrooms

3D printing is becoming an increasingly important part of educators’ interactive and engaging STEAM learning strategies, a new survey reveals.

As teaching methods progress from more traditional learning environments to more dynamic and active, educators are seeking new ways to help students build important 21st-century skills such a critical thinking and problem solving, according to a new survey from 3D printer manufacturer MakerBot.

The survey is based on more than 1,000 responses from educators across the globe and paints a picture of how 3D printing is becoming more accessible in classrooms.…Read More