Spark Network Update for July 12th, 2012

A weekly round up of news, events, opportunities, and sundry items of interest to the Spark network.

Quick question: Are you more interested in upcoming events? More inclined to scope the news? Or both?
Let us know in this brief Spark Network Update Preferences survey, and we’ll specialize your Round Up!


Calling All Network Members:
We Need You on July 26th!

Help Spark Measure the Impact of the Kids+Creativity Network

Join The Sprout Fund for a strategic conversation about measuring the impact of the Kids+Creativity network on learning in the Greater Pittsburgh region.

We’ll be joined by colleagues from the University of Pittsburgh Learning Research & Development Center to discuss how we can “activate” children in ways that ignite persistent engagement in learning about science, technology, and the arts.

Thursday, July 26th
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Lunch will be provided.

Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel
107 6th Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Register Today!

This event is Free.


Playtesting Grant Deadline

The deadline for a playtesting grant sponsored by Spark and The MakeShop is next week, at 5 o’clock on Friday, July 20th. Grant recipients will gain the financial support and resources necessary to conduct the playtesting of a product at The MakeShop. Ready your applications!

iQ Kids Radio Gains JLP Support

Recently announced, the Junior League of Pittsburgh adopted iQ Kids Radio, a partnership project of JLP and WQED, as their three year signature project- promising administrative, volunteer, and financial support. Scheduled to debut in early 2013, iQ Kids Radio will feature a commercial-free, educational content driven radio station seeking to educate both youth and parents alike.

Mashable Releases List of 10 Summer Apps for Kids

Mashable Entertainment compiled list of ten iOS apps that are geared towards kids and released this summer. While some are educational and can keep the mind sharp, some are for sheer enjoyment and entertainment!

Pennsylvania Expands Cyber Charter School Options

The state Department of Education approved four new cyber charter schools to begin enrollment in the fall. While denying several other applications, the state saw these four as standout applicants- see why here.

Social Network Takes a Stab at 2012 Election Coverage

Facebook is teaming up with CNN to jump in on the election action through the development of apps, surveys, and candidate support groups under the title “I’m Voting”. Hoping to connect like-minded supporters, Facebook plans to question users about hot issues and current standings of those running for elections.

 Upcoming Events

Spark Night at Oglebay

Hurry down to Wheeling, West Virginia tonight to participate in the Spark Night at Oglebay Institute! The evening will include a presentation, reception, and tour of the Schrader Environmental Education Center. Last minute RSVPs welcome!

Public Screening of Hear Me 101 Students Videos

Taking place on July 15th at CCAC South Campus, Hear Me 101 presents “Students Speak Up,” a free event featuring screenings of short documentaries from teen advocates.

The Literary Arts Boom Experi-Mondays

The Literary Arts Boom (LAB) is hosting a variety of workshops on Mondays throughout the summer. Swing by The LAB on the 16th to get involved in creating Visual Narratives with Handmade Paper Collage.

Changing the Way We Game- A Lunch & Learn

Clear your calendars for Monday, July 23rd as The Sprout Fund hosts a Lunch & Learn featuring Nikki Navta, President of Zulama, and Todd Keruskin, Assistant Superintendent of Elizabeth Forward School District. The two traveled to the Games for Change Festival earlier this summer and will be sharing their observations over lunch.


Share With Us! Have something you’d like to share with the network? Send your item to or complete the Network Events & Opportunities Form and we’ll help spread the word.

Published July 12, 2012