What We Learned: The Sprout Fund & Digital Badges
Sharing a new collection of resources covering the history of digital badges in Pittsburgh, plus key considerations and design principles for developing high-quality digital badges for learning.
Librarians Lead the Way to Digital Literacy
Unfettered access to information and news is essential for learning—but it can also be a hazard when learners lack the right tools for parsing that information. Nobody knows this more than librarians.
Maker Video Challenge Does Double Duty
Student groups can enter the FilmMAKER challenge until March 24.
Creating Safe Environments for Learning
The election has posed some serious challenges for educators around the country. In recent months, a variety of resources have cropped up online aiming to help teachers address students’ concerns and shut down bullying and hate speech.
4 Maker Project Ideas for Your 2017 Classroom
Whether maker education is old hat or brand new, we could all use inspiration as school starts up again and the weather traps everyone inside.
A Class Where Students Create the Curriculum
In even the most innovative learning settings, there are things a student can expect: a curriculum, or assignments. A new course in Vermont does away with such pesky conventions.
How Do You Spell "21st Century"?
Some say cursive and spelling are two education fundamentals that have been rendered dispensable in the 21st century, thanks to word processing and autocorrect. But on the heels of the 90th Scripps National Spelling Bee, it is worth taking a look at where these seemingly “20th century skills” fit into modern learning.
End of Cell Phone Bans in Class Opens New Possibilities for Learning
Traditionally, cell phones have been the bane of teachers’ existences. Even with bans and threats of consequences for using cell phones, students have developed an arsenal of tactics for maintaining access to their devices during class. In New York, such covert cell phone use will soon be unnecessary. The city’s disposal of its stringent cell phone ban in its 1,800 public schools is partially a simple acknowledgment that cell phones are here to stay. It’s also a whole new educational horizon.
Teens and Social Media? “It’s Complicated”
When it comes to teens and technology, social media researcher danah boyd thinks parents and educators should nix the anxiety and embrace the possibility.
Helping STEM Learning Take Root Outside the Classroom
Schools are working hard to engage students in computer programming and engineering, but resources are tight. And some kids lack access to high-tech tools at home. Can afterschool programs help bridge the gap?
Robust Digital Environments for Every Student
Move over, Sochi. The biggest event this week is Digital Learning Day—24 hours devoted to incorporating new, meaningful technology into classrooms and libraries.
For #HourOfCode, Young Programmers In Pittsburgh Teach Their Peers
Last week’s Hour of Code was designed to give millions of US students who have never taken computer science their first taste of programming. The Pittsburgh Science and Technology Academy took it one step further by putting high school students in the teaching role.
Beyond IT: The Changing Role of The School Technology Specialist
With more technology in classrooms than ever before, schools need technology specialists to do a whole lot more than keep the network running. Here's how these educators are collaborating to leverage tight budgets and stay ahead of rapidly changing technology.
Growing the Innovation Economy, One Young Technologist at a Time
In Pittsburgh’s East End, building a new generation of technology entrepreneurs.
Beyond the Bubble Tests
How will “big data” transform assessment? Rather than waiting to assess students at the end of a unit, can technology help give educators more nuanced information about learning while it’s happening?
Do Digital Tools Belong in Preschool?
With guidance from Fred Rogers, early childhood educators in Pittsburgh are putting today’s technologies into classrooms in ways that make sense for young learners.
Why More Educators Should Collaborate Online
It’s Connected Educator Month and experts say more teachers should take advantage of online communities for collaborating, sharing best practices, and getting needed support.
Why They Love to Learn
What does it take for today’s students to succeed? What is it exactly that makes some learners so self-directed, while others lack motivation? Pittsburgh students let us in on what keeps them engaged, and why it’s not all about grades.
Remaking Math Education for Young Children
Making math concepts click with students is more important today than ever before. We take a look at innovations in teaching mathematics for today’s younger learners.
Beyond Playing: How Games Work for Learning
Games-based learning is about much more than playing. Experts say when used well, games can give students powerful learning experiences in and out of school.
Creating “Need to Know” Children
Today we design our classrooms around the question, What do we want our kids to learn? Authors of a new report suggest asking instead, How do we create “need to know” in a child?
An Exploration Into Inquiry-Based Learning
Melissa Butler writes a guest post for the Spark blog on her use of inquiry-based learning in her Kindergarten classroom at Pittsburgh Allegheny K-5.
Proposal Submission Deadline for DML2013 Quickly Approaching!
Ready your submissions- the DML2013 proposal deadline is coming up on November 6, 2012!