reDesign Seeks 250 Content Experts to Reimagine the K-12 Educational Content Map this Summer

Educators, academics, and industry experts are invited to apply or nominate others for a paid one-week Design Studio to create inclusive, future-oriented content maps across 25 discipline areas

reDesign, an educational design consultancy, is launching an all-call for K-12 content discipline experts from diverse backgrounds and geographies to join together this summer to re-envision the “canon” of K-12 content.

Content experts will be selected across 25 discipline areas, and will convene for a virtual Design Studio the week of June 27th to reimagine a 21st century K-12 Content Map that defines essential topics and concepts, develops critical consciousness, and fosters deep connections to community.Selectedparticipants will receive an honorarium of up to $2,000 for their contributions. To learn more, and to apply or nominate colleagues, visit: K-12 Content Mapping.…Read More

App of the Week: Sworkit Kids

What’s It Like? 

Both physical education (PE) and classroom teachers can use Sworkit Kids to get kids exercising. It’s a perfect short activity to get students moving after a long lesson or first thing in the morning, or as a longer activity during gym class. Sworkit Kids can be used anywhere that the app can be shown to students: in PE class, in a regular classroom, at home, outside, inside, while watching television, while doing homework, or with friends or family.

No sign-up is needed to use Sworkit Kids, and there are no ads. Because the exercises are demonstrated visually, it’s useful for English language learners (ELLs) as well as students with hearing impairments. Very little space is needed for each student, but the exercises will still get them moving enough to get a good workout. Students can share their favorite workouts with friends and family, and students can also do these workouts at home.…Read More

App of the Week: One-stop shop for research and writing

Ed. note: App of the Week picks are now being curated with help from the editors of Graphite.org, a free service from Common Sense Education. Click here to read the full app review.

Citelighter Education

What’s It Like? Citelighter is an engaging online platform designed to support students and teachers as they tackle the intricacies of the writing process. Students simply sign up and download the Citelighter toolbar or work on the Citelighter website. Students can work on Citelighter’s platform to research topics and construct their own written work or use the Citelighter toolbar to search and cite from the open Web. On the platform, students follow a series of scaffolded steps predetermined by their teacher; they’ll explore leveled articles and various multimedia content (videos and images) before they begin writing a paper. As students find useful excerpts, capturing and organizing is as simple as highlighting, clicking, and dragging. Citations are automatically saved and referenced in a bibliography.

Price: Free/subscription

Grades: 3-12…Read More

App of the Week: A game that teaches game design

Ed. note: App of the Week picks are now being curated with help from the editors of Graphite.org, a free service from Common Sense Education. Click here to read the full app review.
Update: Microsoft is shuttering Project Spark. It is no longer available for download and online services for existing players will end Aug. 12.

Project Spark

What’s It Like? Project Spark is a digital game creator that lets students build their own games. Students can browse, play, and learn from other community-designed games and from plenty of genres: action/adventure, first-person shooter, arcade, puzzle, strategy, and platformer. Students will build 2-D or 3-D environments, write dialogue and scripts for their characters and stories, and execute complex lines of logic. This “kode,” as Project Spark calls it, dictates what the game world, objects, and characters will do and how they will behave. Once finished, students can upload their creations for others to play and/or remix.

Price: Free

Rating: 4/5…Read More

App of the Week: The total package for middle school ELA

Ed. note: App of the Week picks are now being curated with help from the editors of Graphite.org, a free service from Common Sense Education. Click here to read the full app review.

iTooch 6th Grade Language Arts

What’s It Like? iTooch 6th Grade Language Arts is a resource for middle school language arts classrooms. Its five sections offer lessons, practice questions, and quizzes on a wide range of topics, including reading comprehension, grammar, composition skills, vocabulary, and communication. The quiz questions are notable for their depth: There are tough questions about tone and thoughtful questions about writing mechanics and grammar. Passages include fiction, nonfiction, and poetry and offer a range of topics, from a speech to children about staying in school from President George H.W. Bush to a speech about American values from President Barack Obama.

Price: Free/paid

Rating: 4/5…Read More

School leadership under the microscope

Catch up on the most compelling K-12 news stories you may have missed this week

Every Friday, I’ll recap some of the most interesting and thought-provoking news developments that occurred over the week.

I can’t fit all of this week’s news stories here, though, so feel free to visit eSchoolNews.com and read up on other news you may have missed.

Don’t miss our interactive thought leader interviews from ASU+GSV! Click here.…Read More

Will your students excel in the Innovation Age?

Catch up on the most compelling K-12 news stories you may have missed this week

Every Friday, I’ll be bringing you a recap of some of the most interesting and thought-provoking news developments that occurred over the week.

I can’t fit all of our news stories here, though, so feel free to visit eSchoolNews.com and read up on other news you may have missed.

In this week’s news:
The 4 essentials of a successful Genius Hour
What are you passionate about? What do you want to do more than anything in the world? Well I hope you said what you are doing right now. This is not always the case. Some people hate what they are doing. They may hate it because it pays too little, but being a teacher doesn’t make me very wealthy and I love what I’m doing. More importantly, people may hate their job because they would rather be doing something else. This is where I think we can do better in education.…Read More

App of the Week: Shakespeare for the iPad generation

Ed. note: App of the Week picks are now being curated with help from Common Sense Graphite. To read the full app review, click here.
shakespeare-in-bits

What’s It Like? Within Shakespeare in Bits: Romeo & Juliet, the full text of the play is featured side-by-side with an animated reenactment. While the style of animation is somewhat simplistic, there are professional actors voicing the parts. Within the text, simply tapping any highlighted words offers a more modern-day term. Tabs at the top of the text let students move easily between the text, section notes, a synopsis, and their own notes. A navigation bar at the bottom of the screen shows all options — viewing by scene, examining characters, reading analysis, and reviewing notes.

Graphite Rating: 4/5

Price: $15…Read More

The Hour of Code’s nationwide momentum

Catch up on the most compelling K-12 news stories you may have missed this week

news-picEach Friday, I’ll be bringing you a recap of some of the most interesting and thought-provoking news developments that occurred over the week.

I can’t fit all of our news stories here, though, so feel free to visit eSchoolNews.com and read up on other news you may have missed.

In this week’s news:…Read More

App of the Week: Skaffl

Ed. note: App of the Week picks are now being curated by the editors of Common Sense Education, which helps educators find the best ed-tech tools, learn best practices for teaching with tech, and equip students with the skills they need to use technology safely and responsibly. Click here to read the full app review.
 skaffl

What’s It Like? Skaffl is a tool for distributing, completing, and grading work on the iPad. Teachers create classes and then share each class’s unique access code with their students, who can then use that code to enroll in the class via their own Skaffl login. Teachers then create three types of activities: an in-app assignment, a student dropbox, or a handout. A handy workflow for these activities appears every time teachers create a new one. Teachers can distribute activities instantly (to some classes, some students, or all at once) or schedule them for a later date.

Price: Free/subscription

Grades: 6-12…Read More