Free resources for middle and high school.

Philippe Cousteau, Jr.’s environmental youth leadership organization EarthEcho International offers its free environmental education resources to teachers, students, and families affected by school closings due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Resources are available immediately via the EarthEcho Website: www.EarthEcho.org

The resources, many of which are designed to satisfy national and state education standards, are a collection of live virtual events, recorded videos and short activities designed by teachers and EarthEcho’s education team to support high-quality experiential learning. Most of the videos and activities are intended for middle and high school students but can be utilized with upper elementary students as well.

These materials serve as a unique alternative to assist teachers, parents, and homeschoolers looking for options to keep students engaged in science and conservation during these challenging times. They also equip young people to explore and protect their local natural resources.…Read More

Online summit for all special education stakeholders

The 2020 Special Kids International Summit, presented by Kidskintha in partnership with UNESCO’s New Delhi Office and MindRocket Media Group, is a free online conference set to take place April 7-11. Session videos will also be archived for later viewing. The event is for all education stakeholders, including teachers, administrators, counselors, and special educators. Presenters include 30+ experts from the fields of neurology, psychology, teaching, entrepreneurship, and medicine, who will cover topics such as understanding ADHD and autism, supporting emotional regulation, advocating for the rights of your learners and much more. Register for free at https://www.kidskintha.com/kidskintha-spins-2020

 

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Six things I learned bringing online learning to international schools

For the last 15 years, I’ve been introducing schools all around the world to the value of online learning. It started at the Colegio Internacional de Caracas in Venezuela, when I first discovered the courses from global nonprofit VHS Learning.

We began offering online courses to our students for enrichment. As a relatively small international school, we liked the opportunities that the platform offered us and the fact that our kids could take part in courses that we couldn’t offer.

Related content: 4 ways online learning leads to physical equity…Read More

Is STEM getting ‘IT’ right for female students?

March 8th was memorable for many reasons. Not only was it International Women’s Day, but Meghan Markle made one of her first official public appearances with her future husband, Prince Harry, at an event in Birmingham, England. Significantly, the event was organized by the STEMettes, an award-winning social enterprise working across the U.K. and Ireland to inspire young women to pursue STEM careers. The STEMettes were founded in 2013 by a math and science prodigy who had been motivated by the fact that only three of the 70 students in her math and computer science class in college were female. In its first five years, the organization has worked with nearly 40,000 girls, 95 percent of whom have expressed an increased interest in STEM.

Organizations all over the world, such as EngineerGirl in the U.S., are working hard to encourage more women to seek careers in STEM fields, and it is clear that these bodies and their events are having an impact. However, my feeling is that we can and must do more in our schools to increase the number of women represented in STEM careers, not just because of the drive for equality but because we are potentially missing out on a massive pool of talent. It is widely recognized that a career in STEM is more than technical knowledge; increasingly, it requires soft skills such as flexibility, creativity, and judgement. We need to look above and beyond people who rate highly in cognitive ability as it would typically be defined, and create an intentional plan to acquire talent from diverse sources.

One great example is that set by the Haysfield Girls’ School in the U.K. The school has won awards for its efforts in promoting STEM, including specialist days, a science fair, visits to science attractions and from female science role models, and encouraging STEM scholarship programs. The school’s STEM initiatives have been supported by corporations, including Dyson, and The James Dyson Foundation has developed brilliant resources and activities to teach STEM in fun and dynamic ways. Thirty percent of Dyson’s engineers are female, five times the percentage of the overall engineering workforce in the U.K. and almost three times the percentage in the US. When an effort is made to engage girls in STEM, great things will result.…Read More

CoSN 2018 Annual Conference and Global Symposium

For three days in March (12-15), almost 1,000 edtech leaders will descend on Washington, DC to connect, learn, network, and share solutions.

Starting with an international focus, CoSN/UNESCO Global Symposium will highlight the essential digital-citizenship skills needed by students to be successful in today’s global environment. The one-day program will feature an engaging and interactive format with panelists, keynote speakers, Passport to the World, and Global Ignite sessions seeking answers to questions like:

  • Can technology be used to improve digital citizenship?
  • To what extent is technology providing new challenges to digital citizenship?
  • How should we access information effectively and form good mechanisms to evaluate its accuracy?

CoSN 2018 Exponential Change: Exponential Change: Developing Leadership in the 4th Industrial Revolution begins in earnest on March 13th. More than 130 sessions are available to attendees on topics relating to student data privacy, digital equity, future classroom learning, the role of AI in future learning, emerging technologies and more.…Read More

ISTE issues Digital Citizenship Week challenge

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) will leverage Digital Citizenship Week (Oct. 16-20) to raise awareness of the importance of teaching digital citizenship to students of all ages. ISTE challenges students, educators and parents to take time each day during Digital Citizenship Week to explore what it means to be good citizens in a digital world.

“The need to teach digital citizenship skills has never been greater. These skills include concepts like how to use tech to organize around good causes, how to respectfully disagree online, and how to distinguish between true and false information. As our interactions with friends, community members and government leaders become increasingly mediated by technology, we must model and teach the behaviors we hope to see in our next generation of digital leaders,” said ISTE CEO Richard Culatta.

ISTE is providing a number of resources to support schools and families in taking the Digital Citizenship Week challenge:…Read More

Report warns a decline in language learning could spell bad news for U.S.

A diminishing share of United States residents speak languages other than English–a trend that could have important consequences for business, international affairs, and intellectual exchange, according to a new report from American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The Academy’s new report, The State of Languages in the U.S.: A Statistical Portrait, summarizes the nation’s current language capacity, focusing on the U.S. education system. A joint venture of the Academy’s Commission on Language Learning and Humanities Indicators, the report draws on the most recent national, state, and local data sources available to draw a more complete picture of language use in the nation.

“This very important work is ongoing and we look forward to the Commission’s final report and recommendations that will be available in February [2017],” said Jonathan F. Fanton, president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.…Read More

ISTE seeks your opinion on its Standards for Teachers

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE®) announced that it is seeking public comment on the first draft of the refreshed ISTE Standards for Teachers. More than 600 individuals from around the world provided insight into the contents of this initial draft and, by the time the second draft is released in early 2017, ISTE anticipates that thousands more will have participated in the process.

HOW:  Similar to the recent refresh of the ISTE Standards for Students, the refresh process for the ISTE Standards for Teachers is open and inclusive, soliciting input from educators around the world at every step. To help educators participate in the process, ISTE today released a free toolkit for facilitating a public forum, Twitter chat, or conference session with colleagues to provide feedback to the process.  The toolkit includes a facilitator’s guide, surveys for gathering feedback and annotated presentation slides.  For more information, visit http://www.iste.org/TeacherRefresh

WHERE: The first draft of the refreshed ISTE Standards for Teachers is available for comment at http://bit.ly/2eU05Rl…Read More

Are you using your school’s PLC to its fullest?

When professional learning communities (PLCs) meet frequently to examine and analyze student work and data, higher levels of teacher morale emerge, according to a new report from the Learning Sciences International (LSI) research team.

The report, Did You Know? Your School’s PLCs Have a Major Impact, expands on existing research about the role that human and social capital, collaboration, and knowledge sharing all play in education. Researchers looked at teacher morale and student achievement as they relate to PLCs.

Looking specifically at the impact of PLCs on teacher morale, the research team, led by LSI senior research analyst Lindsey Devers Basileo, Ph.D., asked educators about the amount of time their PLCs spent discussing various practices, as well as their feelings about how PLC meetings impacted their own morale.…Read More

What’s next in ed-tech? These 18 trends

I do a lot of speaking about technology trends in education, and none of my talks seem to get larger audiences than those that address new or emerging technologies. Part of this is our never ending interest in what is “new,” and also that little voice in my head that says, “maybe I am falling behind.”

So, as an educator interested in technology — after all, you are reading eSchool News — what is the best source for tracking emerging technologies for learning? And, even more important, which of these emerging technologies address the chief problems you are trying to solve in your school or school district?

The answer to the first question is easy. Each year the New Media Consortium (NMC) and CoSN—the Consortium for School Networking — jointly create the Horizon Report. Produced with the insights of an international panel of experts, and with nearly one million downloads per year, this report on emerging technologies for learning is likely the most well-read report identifying key technology trends for primary and secondary education. (The 2016 Report is made possible by Share Fair Nation at go.nmc.org/2016-k12). This comprehensive report helps education leaders and practitioners develop future-focused digital strategies and learning approaches that mirror the needs and skills of the real world.…Read More