Texthelp Names Christine Mullin as Chief Operating Officer

WOBURN, Mass., Dec. 20, 2021 /PRNewswire/ —  Texthelp, a global leader in literacy and accessibility technology, announced that it has named Christine Mullin as its Chief Operating Officer. Mullin will be the first chief operating officer in the twenty-five-year history of Texthelp.

Christine brings to Texthelp more than two decades of experience in growing and developing technology businesses across multiple roles, including strategy, business development, finance, and customer operations. Most recently, she served as COO/CFO and a Board Director of Dext, a UK-based global SaaS business that provides productivity software solutions for accountants and was successfully sold to Hg Capital earlier this year. Prior to Dext, Christine was the COO/CFO of MetaPack Limited, an e-commerce delivery mgt SaaS business that was sold to Stamps.com in August 2018.

Previous roles include being the COO of Microsoft UK’s Advertising and Online division and the Finance Director of AOL UK. Christine started her career at Arthur Andersen in London where she qualified as a Chartered Accountant and has a BA (Hons) in Mathematics from Trinity College Dublin. She currently resides in London, England.…Read More

5 ways to teach students about Veterans Day

The history of Veterans Day is one of the most important we can share with our youth.  Learning about how our nation was shaped, the various perspectives that make our country whole, and the sacrifices made for our freedoms is important.

Sometimes as an educator, though, it can be hard to know how to bring up the importance of duty. We’re happy to share with you a new virtual field trip exploring the importance of service.  This unique virtual field trip called Voices of U.S. – Why We Serve is the first installment in a series that introduces students to the principles, people and perspectives that shape our nation, and inspire service.   

There are so many lessons around civic duty and service that are relevant in our classrooms today and digital resources, like the virtual field trip, can help bring these lessons to life. Five ways that teachers in grades K-8 can teach about the power of service include: …Read More

How peer feedback can improve student writing skills

The art of writing, invented roughly 5,000 years ago, represents a blip in human history. It’s younger than agriculture, music, and construction. And as recently as the Revolutionary War, a majority of Americans couldn’t put pen to paper. In short: Writing remains a new feat of technology. We’re still figuring it out. 

Despite its relative youth, writing has evolved into a vital skill. Today, we broadly recognize that citizenship requires the ability to read and write. As Orwell put it: “If people cannot write well, they cannot think well, and if they cannot think well, others will do their thinking for them.”

Perhaps as importantly, writing is a key skill for professional success. Hiring managers, for example, are more likely to cite writing skills as “very important” for new hires, compared to technological and quantitative reasoning skills. If students leave campus without refined writing skills, we’ve done them a great disservice. …Read More

If Not You, Then Who? Children’s Book Series Launches Classroom Program Encouraging Students To Explore The World Of Inventions And Inventors

DALLAS (October 1, 2021) — If Not You, Then Who?, the popular book series for early and grade school children, has launched an educational curriculum for teachers designed to introduce the vast world of inventions and inventors through history to contemporary times into the classroom. 

Each of the If Not You, Then Who books showcases how Inventions and Inventors can come from anywhere, how inventions solve everyday problems and how many of our most enduring inventions were actually created by accident.

To further expand the educational mission of the book series, If Not You, Then Who? has developed a Young Inventors Club  website for in-school and home use along with an Educator’s Guide to help teachers implement the many associated themes in the classroom. The guide aligns the If Not You, Then Who?  books with Next Generation Science Standards sharing such topics as:…Read More

APM Studios Inks Partnership With Listenwise To Bring Award-Winning Science Podcast Brains On! Into Classrooms

ST. PAUL, Minn., September 30, 2021APM Studios, the podcast production division of American Public Media (APM), today announced that it has partnered with listening comprehension platform Listenwise to bring Brains On!, APM Studios’ award-winning science podcast for kids, into classrooms nationwide as a learning resource for grades 2-5.

Since its launch in 2012, the mission of Brains On! has been to encourage kids’ natural curiosity using science and history, with host Molly Bloom and a rotation of young co-hosts asking and answering questions about the world that surrounds us. Through the partnership with Listenwise, educators are able to access Brains On! audio segments, accompanied by transcripts and other teaching resources.

“I couldn’t imagine a better home for Brains On! than a platform that advances equitable learning and teaches kids to be better listeners,” said Alex Schaffert, Chief Operating Officer of APM Studios. “Our organizations share the same educational mission. It was a natural fit to partner with Listenwise and bring our stories to life for teachers and students.”…Read More

3 ways to teach about Juneteenth all year long

Research shows that only 8 to 9 percent of class time, equivalent to 1-2 lessons, is currently dedicated to Black history. Juneteenth being established as a federal holiday is an opportunity for educators to make a shift and expand upon the history, cultures, and experiences discussed in the classroom.

Celebrated annually on June 19, Juneteenth marks the date some of the last enslaved people in the Confederacy became free. While mainstream awareness of Juneteenth is somewhat recent, it is a long-celebrated event that should be a core part of history–social studies and other courses.

Here are three tips for incorporating discussion of Juneteenth throughout the school year.…Read More

Here’s why civics education should teach students how to self-govern

In April, Supreme Court Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Neil Gorsuch called for improving civics education, saying the future of the republic depends on it. Indeed, the United States has never needed civics education more. The differences between opposing parties on the governing principles of our country are greater today than at any time in our history, even during the Civil War.

That’s not hyperbole. Looking at the Constitution of the Confederate States, it’s clear that both sides felt they were defending the U.S. Constitution. On the other hand, today’s battle is between two opposing views of how we govern ourselves.

There is a lot at stake. Congress is debating major changes to the core constitutional principle of checks and balances by increasing the number of Supreme Court justices and abolishing the electoral college. If implemented, these ideas would fundamentally change the Constitution. Our citizens, especially our student citizens, should understand the ramifications, whether they believe the country needs such dramatic changes or not.…Read More

5 ways IT leaders can inspire digital transformation post-pandemic

The past year propelled IT teams and leadership into the spotlight with never-before-seen digital transformation and multi-year technology plans executed practically overnight. After a year of awe-inspiring progress, Hillsborough County Public Schools CTO Jeremy Bunkley believes K-12 IT leaders need to keep the momentum going to ensure the year’s gains translate to long lasting technology and culture transformation.

A veteran IT leader and change agent, Bunkley embraced the pandemic’s challenges as a catalyst for district transformation. After building a collaborative ecosystem of partners, he executed some of the largest technology projects in the district’s history in a span of only 11 months, including migrating to a new, more effective email client, increasing technology staff through additional federal funding opportunities, creating the blueprint for a dark fiber WAN, and overhauling the district’s Wi-Fi network to a cloud solution.

Additionally, Bunkley worked directly with an OEM–a move rarely leveraged in K-12–to design custom Windows laptops tailored to the needs of district students and the technology environment, enabling HCPS to roll out 190,000 devices with a focus on 1:1 in grades second through twelfth while saving the district $5.6M. Future projects on the horizon include building a private LTE network and integrating application usage data analytics.…Read More

8 awesome podcasts for kids, families, and teachers

As podcasts skyrocket in popularity, news buffs and true crime addicts shouldn’t have all the fun. There are a growing number of podcasts for kids, covering topics from SEL and history to book clubs and brain challenges.

Below, we’ve collected a handful of fun and engaging podcasts for kids. You might be inspired to incorporate them into your virtual, hybrid, or in-person classroom when appropriate.

1. Ooh! You’re in Trouble: Ooh! You’re in Trouble is a podcast for tweens, parents, and teachers about the rules we broke growing up…and what those moments teach kids about making smart decisions when grownups aren’t around. Each episode features young people sharing stories of a moment they broke the rules growing up. The series explores why kids defy rules and what we can learn from it. …Read More

Defining Future Ready by reflecting on the past

Confession: I’m a bit of a hoarder. I’ve kept every email, text message, and document I’ve ever written.  It’s probably the journalist in me. Or it’s being the daughter of two antique collectors and the granddaughter of a collector of everything. 

Yet quite often, calling on history can help us make more informed decisions about the present. 

As I reflected on the structure of this article, my archived files got some exercise as I reflected on the origins of Future Ready Librarians® and why the journey we took to create the program has never been more important than today. …Read More