STEM careers are among students’ top choices

Students’ interests in various career fields had an overwhelming STEM and digital focus, according to a survey from the nonprofit American Student Assistance (ASA).

ASA, which aims to change the way middle and high schoolers learn about careers and navigate education-to-career opportunities, used its free immersive digital Futurescape platform to survey more than 2,000 students as they explored real-world careers beyond the classroom.

“We need to set students up for success by exposing them to career choices that they can explore where they live, which is on their mobile devices. We also have to reach them as early as middle school, before a world of career and postsecondary options begins to narrow,” said ASA President and CEO Jean Eddy. …Read More

Slooh’s ‘Online Telescope for Families’ Brings the Wonder of Space Exploration to Homes Worldwide

Washington Depot, Connecticut, April 6, 2022 – Slooh, the only organization offering live online telescope feeds to students, is now making its award-winning learning platform and network of online telescopes accessible to families worldwide. Described by educators as “the complete package” that is truly “out of this world,” The Online Telescope for Families enables families to explore, capture, and analyze more than 1,000 real-world space objects and events using professional-grade technology together – all from the comfort of their homes.

“We want to make space exploration accessible to everyone, everywhere,” said Michael Paolucci, founder of Slooh. “For less than $10 a month, The Online Telescope for Families provides parents and children alike with an engaging – and fun – learning experience they can participate in together. Rather than having to buy expensive equipment that will end up collecting dust, families can now explore space just like real astronomers as they embark on starry expeditions, view and capture dynamic phenomenon, and ignite their love for space.”

Available for $9.95/month or $99/year, The Online Telescope for Families gives up to five family members control of a network of professional-grade online telescopes located in the Canary Islands and Chile. Families can book time on a telescope to view a specific space object or event or join other families in the Slooh community that have already reserved time to view and photograph astronomical phenomena.…Read More

Osmo From BYJU’s Names Former WarnerMedia Executive Shawn Smith as Its First Global Head of Communications

Palo Alto, CA–March 23, 2022–Award-winning STEAM brand, Osmo from BYJU’S, announced today that former WarnerMedia executive Shawn Smith is joining its leadership team as its first-ever Global Head of Communications, effective immediately. Smith brings her extensive experiences leading multimillion dollar campaigns for global entertainment brands and franchises to the newly-created role. She will lead Osmo’s communications strategy and narrative messaging across all aspects of its business, including corporate communications and brand publicity campaigns. 

“As we continue to build the Osmo brand and bring more inspiring and impactful learning experiences to students around the world, we’re excited to have Shawn’s leadership and talent at the helm of our communications division at this exciting time in our company’s journey,” says Cherian Thomas, Senior Vice President of International Business at Osmo from BYJU’S. 

Smith most recently held the title of Executive Director of Publicity and Communications for WarnerMedia Global Brands and Experiences, where she developed global communications campaigns for DC franchises including Batman, Wonder Woman, Superman, and more, and led franchise publicity campaigns for WarnerMedia’s animated properties such as Looney Tunes, Space Jam, Scooby-Doo, and other fan favorites from the Kids, Young Adults and Classics portfolio.…Read More

10 cool AR and VR tools for the classroom

We all know that augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are super fun, but AR and VR tools can also be incredibly powerful when integrated into classroom learning.

What’s the difference? AR is the idea that the user brings something into their real world and using a device to see something that isn’t actually there–animation or 3D images come into the real world. VR immerses a person in the experience, as if they’re actually there.

AR and VR tools have a number of benefits for students, and because the tools are engaging, students are more likely to absorb classroom lessons and concepts. Plus, students are engaged in active learning with AR and VR tools.…Read More

Playing to win: The vital role of research in the future of esports

You stand, triumphant in front of a crowd cheering your name. After years of dedicated training and countless hours of practice, you’ve made it to the pinnacle of your game, the moment of enjoying the spoils of being a world-class athlete. Just a few months later, the pressure, stress, and injuries due to maintaining that top position have had a severe impact on your mental, emotional, and physical health and you’re forced to retire at 23.

While this may sound like a tragic story of a basketball or football athlete struck down as they were beginning their career, it happens for esports athletes too.

Esports–commonly accepted as “a multiplayer video game played competitively in front of spectators, by both professional and amateur gamers”–is quickly becoming a household term along with esports game titles such as Rogue Company, Call of Duty, and Rocket League. Over the last several years, schools and universities have realized that esports allows students who felt excluded from other extracurricular activities to finally find their “place” doing something they are passionate about within their scholastic environment. Research shows that students involved in an extracurricular activity are more engaged in the classroom and in their studies.…Read More

When edtech concepts become practical classroom realities

In this week’s episode of Getting There: Innovations in Education, host Kevin Hogan explores the following:

  • Bringing the world to life through augmented reality
  • 3 wireless technology trends to track in 2022
  • How artificial intelligence can transform professional development for teachers




 

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Bringing the world to life through augmented reality

My school, located in London, is a rich and diverse community with over 40 languages spoken at the school. Affectionately known as a ‘village school in the United Nations of Brent,’ we can see the arch of the iconic Wembley Stadium from the end of our street. However, like some of our American counterparts, we serve students who have never been able to visit–let alone step inside–the iconic landmarks like Wembley, Buckingham Palace, or the Tower of London, in their own backyard. 

This fact was brought home to me several years ago when a 10-year-old student from Brazil, whom we will call Lucas, made a sobering observation on a school trip to center city London. Looking up at the glass, the skyscrapers, the abundance of wealth, Lucas casually remarked, “I didn’t know London could look like this.” 

In that moment we knew we were failing our children. If our neighborhood of Cricklewood in North London was all they knew, how could they have aspirations beyond it? It was augmented reality that began to bring the world to life for our learners.…Read More

Are banned books challenges, or opportunities for innovation?

When I finished Dan Brown’s DaVinci Code, I began researching the validity of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene sharing a bloodline protected by a secret society. When J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter was accused of promoting the devil and witchcraft, I dove into the series. When Oprah pulled Jeanine Cummins’ American Dirt off her Book Club, I put it on hold at the library. 

When the world makes a fuss about a book, consider my attention piqued.

Skimming the American Library Association’s list of most banned and challenged books over time, I’ve read more than my share, from To Kill A Mockingbird, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, and The Diary of Anne Frank to Captain Underpants and 13 Reasons Why. I have to say I’m quite surprised Flowers in the Attic didn’t make the list as it made the 10-year-old me… well… blush.…Read More

Using tracking sites to bring current events to students

There is a lot of conversation about supply chains and logistics in the news these days. As a picture is often worth a thousand words, maps and tracking sites that allow students to visualize the traffic making up these supply chains can be helpful.

It is possible to track much of the shipping traffic through websites like Marine Traffic. The site is an interactive map showing the movement of many types of commercial ship traffic throughout the world. It is possible to see the general build-up around southern California ports and the normally heavy traffic around the Panama Canal. VesselFinder is a similar tool but seems to include at least some river traffic as well. It allows one to track a specific cruise ship, for instance.

Marine Vessel Traffic allows for tracking through the Great Lakes and appears to allow one to track naval ships. AdsbExchange provides similar information for air traffic. It allows one to filter by type of aircraft–Boeing 777s, for instance–by airline, or only to show military aircraft. FlightAware is a similar interactive map showing flights. It allows filtering by destination or departure location as well as by airline or aircraft type. FlightRadar24 is a third option that provides some additional features with a paid subscription.…Read More

Does learning happen if you don’t see it?

As we settle into another academic year filled with uncertainty due to the pandemic, educators are taking a deeper look into what can be learned from the tumult of the last two years. Schools around the world were forced to quickly pivot to virtual learning and many have just recently returned to a traditional, in-person model.

Many parents still want an online option, but critics of online learning have questioned whether students really progressed academically without in-person supervision. The question on everyone’s mind: “Do students learn when you don’t see it?”

The short answer is yes, and it becomes abundantly clear why–once we update our mindset around what education can and should look like, and how we measure its success. Online learning provides access to a wealth of data that educators can use to personalize learning for students. Once educators and districts understand the unique advantages of online teaching and learning, they can update their approach to take advantage of the best of both worlds.…Read More