Trying Out Gamification In the Classroom? These Tools Are For You

September 15th, 2014

By Katie Lepi, Edudemic

Getting students actively engaged and learning by leveraging the power of gamification in the classroom is a hot trend these days. The idea of getting students learning, sharing, and laughing by using gamification shows great promise, to be sure. But where should you start in terms of finding the tools that will actually help you out?

http://www.edudemic.com/trying-gamification-classroom-tools/

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Brush Up On Your EdTech Vocabulary With This Cheat Sheet

September 15th, 2014

By Jeff Dunn, Edudemic

Do you know what a flipped classroom requires? How about a 1:1 classroom? If you’re a regular reader of Edudemic, then you probably are more than informed about what these terms mean and how they’re implemented in modern classrooms. That’s probably because we started Edudemic many moons ago on the same day Apple launched the iPad. Since then, a lot has changed in the world of education technology. For one, the edtech vocabulary has expanded quite a bit. As a modern educator, you’ll need to know what a lot of key phrases mean and how they could affect your day-to-day activities. This visual guide from Boundless is just for you, then. The guide is designed to help you understand “the latest trends in educational technology” but really – let’s be honest – it’s a great way to finally figure out what a lot of terms mean before your next staff meeting.

http://www.edudemic.com/brush-edtech-vocabulary-cheat-sheet/

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Can technology solve K-12 budgetary deficits?

September 15th, 2014

By Norman Rozenberg, Tech Page One

While technology has transformed K-12 education for the better — including innovations that go beyond conventional PowerPoints and Smart Boards and novelties that help children with autism communicate — it is a luxury for many districts. But perhaps technology can be leveraged to lower the costs of education. Blended learning, which combines traditional brick-and-mortar schooling with online education, could help stem these rising costs and ease the burden on schools.

http://techpageone.dell.com/technology/can-technology-solve-k-12-budgetary-deficits/

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Open-Source Texts Take Root At Md. Colleges

September 14th, 2014

by Alissa Gulin, Associated Press

The majority of participating students and faculty reported an overall positive experience and said they’d work with open-source materials again, according to the system’s recent review of the program, which was launched in collaboration with Lumen Learning LLC, an Oregon-based provider of open-source educational materials. Students saved a cumulative $130,000 in textbook costs, based on the prices of books that would have been assigned for those 11 courses. “Higher education needs to be more efficient at handling resources and course materials,” said Zachary McGee, a senior at Towson University and president of the University System of Maryland Student Council, which developed the idea for the MOST Initiative. “And I think this is the answer.”

http://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2014/09/07/open-source-texts-take-root-at-md-colleges/

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Class of 2015 is first required to pass a digital learning course

September 14th, 2014

By Kimberly Wiggins, Fox Orlando

The race is on for the class of 2015. This year’s Florida seniors are the first who must complete an online course to graduate, but numbers show many students still need to squeeze in the class. Call it a sign of the times. Sanjana Pratti is logging on for her school lesson. The 16-year-old is taking three courses at Florida Virtual School or FLVS. “Chemistry, Physics, Latin,” said Pratti. The Freedom High School senior enrolled in her first online course three years ago.

http://www.myfoxorlando.com/story/26462837/class-of-2015-is-first-required-to-pass-a-digital-learning-course

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So how will online P.E. classes work, exactly?

September 14th, 2014

by Randy Stapilus, Idaho Press

Here’s a concept to get your mind around: online physical education in schools. That is, taught from outside of school. Or something. This unlikely idea surfaced at the Lapwai School District after voters there on Aug. 26 turned down a quarter-million dollar one-year levy. It wasn’t close; just 41 percent of voters approved it. It was the second recent levy failure after voters rejected a larger one in May. Afterward, district Superintendent David Aiken said the effects will include elimination of in-person physical education. The school gym and equipment will remain available but, he told the Lewiston Tribune, “the teacher is on the other side of the computer.”

http://www.idahopress.com/members/so-how-will-online-p-e-classes-work-exactly/article_0e80a1f4-3574-11e4-9752-001a4bcf887a.html

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5 Ways Technology Is Disrupting Education

September 13th, 2014

by JESS BOLLUYT, Tech Cheat Sheet

In today’s classrooms, stacks of heavy paper textbooks, battered notebooks, and worn-down pencils are giving way to e-readers, tablets, laptops, and a multitude of digital tools, apps, and software that are completely changing the way that students learn. These new tools don’t just change the delivery of the same material, though. Instead, they’re kicking off an array of changes to how students engage with what they’re learning, how they collaborate, how they receive feedback from teachers, and even how they learn to think and interact with the huge amount of information available to them. Here are five big ideas about how technology is disrupting education, and some of the resources pushing them ahead.

http://wallstcheatsheet.com/technology/5-ways-technology-is-disrupting-education.html/?a=viewall

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Students at Maine’s online public school complete first week

September 13th, 2014

By Nell Gluckman, BDN

Students at the school, called Maine Connections Academy, finished their first week of online classes Friday. A breakdown detailing which school district each student came from — dated Sept. 2 — showed that 281 students from 88 different districts were enrolled. That list is expected to increase to up to 297 students as more complete the lengthy process of enrolling.

https://bangordailynews.com/2014/09/06/education/students-at-maines-online-public-school-complete-first-week/

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Smart Glasses Are More Than Just Google Glass

September 13th, 2014

By eduglasses, Edudemic

Today I am going to highlight the four main large companies in the mix of SmartGlasses, along with their estimated release dates. The following companies have patented, finalized, and developed working prototypes of their smartglasses and have presented their technology at recent summits. This means that within the next year or two these technologies will be over inundating the market…. so as educators we need to be ready to meet the needs of the students. (Not to mention these will be priced within reason for the modern consumer).

http://www.edudemic.com/smart-glasses-just-google-glass/

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Are College Students Really Obsessed With Technology?

September 12th, 2014

By Katie Lepi, Edudemic

Not too long ago, I read a post written by a teacher that said “Our students get younger every year”. While this is obviously not true unless you’re measuring their age in relation to yourself, as you move further and further away from being a student, your students may be harder to ‘get’. Every year, the re:fuel agency College Explorer does a huge study among all types of students in the 18-24 and 25-34 year old age groups. The key findings have been summed up in the handy infographic linked below that they’ve made to accompany the study. Keep reading and you’ll have a pretty good idea of what college students are looking like these days – in so many different aspects!

http://www.edudemic.com/college-students-really-obsessed-with-technology/

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Top 5 Tips For Blended Classrooms

September 12th, 2014

By Reannah Sartoris, Edudemic

What is a blended classroom? The blended classroom learning model combines face-to-face teaching with technology enhanced instruction. This includes having students use Apps, QR codes, websites, surveys, and videos integrated into the lesson. Effectively and efficiently blending the classroom with these technologies can increase student engagement, motivation and build a sense of community as students collaborate more together. Fortunately, if the students are using a school’s wireless network, many inappropriate sites are blocked; however, for students with 3G and 4G capabilities, unblocked content and social media access is still a concern. So, before you have your students take out their phones or devices, consider these suggestions to seamlessly turn your classroom into a blended classroom.

http://www.edudemic.com/top-5-tips-blended-classroom/

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Online learning offers pros, cons

September 12th, 2014

by Jennifer Pallay, Northwest Indiana Times

College professors and students agree that while online courses have their challenges, they also have many benefits. At Indiana University Northwest, the online classes fill up sooner than face-to-face ones, said Alicia Wright, a lecturer in IUN’s Department of Communications. “We were surprised by that,” she said. “I’m trying to get everyone in the department to learn about it and teach these classes. In the communications department, it’s a hard sell but it’s actually what the students want.” Wright, who was recently honored with IUN’s Online Design and Delivery Award, originally felt online courses would be too difficult for some topics, but since taking online teaching courses through the university and creating three classes of her own over the past year, she has seen the light, she said.

http://www.nwitimes.com/news/local/lake/online-learning-offers-pros-cons/article_5b61663d-2472-526e-9799-a779dac381cb.html

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6 ways texting can improve school communications

September 11th, 2014

By Barbara Palmer, eSchool News

A written note home can get lost, “eaten by the dog,” or sit on the kitchen counter to be used as a coaster for weeks on end. eMails get sent to spam, accidentally deleted, or aren’t read in a timely manner. And, honestly, how often do people pick up the phone anymore? Students touch their cell phones 43 times a day and send about 60 texts, showing that mobile technology is the best way to reach them. And with 91 percent of adults owning cell phones, texting is actually the most efficient means of communication with parents, too—especially for schools. Here are six ways that SMS texting can help improve your school’s communication with both parents and students.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/09/03/texting-school-communications-392/

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Mobile learning’s major impact

September 11th, 2014

By Laura Devaney, eSchool News

As mobile learning cements its place in U.S. education, its impact continues to expand throughout school districts across the nation. Last year, Apple’s education sales broke $1 billion for the first time ever, and iPads continue to hold the market share among education tablets. Mobile learning leverages the power of the internet to expand students’ learning opportunities. In fact, 92 percent of teachers said they have greater access to educational content, resources, and material due to the internet.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/09/03/mobile-learning-impact-309/

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5 education grants you don’t want to miss

September 11th, 2014

By Laura Devaney, eSchool News

School funding difficulties show no sign of abating, and school budgets are stretched to the limit. Many educators and administrators rely on school grants to fund important projects and opportunities for students. Each month, eSchool News compiles a list of the most current education grants expiring soon—from a focus on STEM learning to funding for financial education programs. You don’t want to miss out on these school funding opportunities for teachers, students, parents, and administrators.

http://www.eschoolnews.com/2014/09/05/september-education-grants-032/

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5 simple ways to streamline campus technology

September 10th, 2014

by Paige Francis, eCampus News

Somewhere along the line, it seems that higher-education technology leaders hit a development gap where the KISS principle [2] was routinely ignored. The “Keep It Simple Stupid” adage states that “systems perform best when they have simple designs rather than complex ones.” It appears this gap has coincided with significant advancements in technology, leading to near-immediate obsolescence—and resulting in an overabundance of clunky technology and an over-outfitting of space. In a nutshell, more has resulted in less. We oversupplied and over-indulged, and now many institutions are forced to maintain these cumbersome environments … or are they? Here are five suggestions for getting back to the basics and streamlining campus technology.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/streamline-campus-technology-329/

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Here’s how you do tablet integration

September 10th, 2014

by eCampus News

Dozens of Fresno State classes have introduced a new interactive tablet curriculum that began Aug. 21 when fall semester classes began. The first 1,200 students have enrolled in the university’s DISCOVERe program and 33 faculty members will teach a variety of courses incorporating tablet technology. Fresno State had been preparing to launch the DISCOVERe program since President Joseph I. Castro arrived on the campus a year ago, and on Thursday, Castro officially launched the program with a scissor-free, virtual ribbon cutting at the new DISCOVERe Hub, a technology help desk similar to Apple’s Genius Bar, located on the first floor of Fresno State’s Henry Madden Library.

http://www.ecampusnews.com/top-news/tablet-integration-fresno-436/

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Textbook giants are now teaching classes

September 10th, 2014

By Gabriel Kahn, Slate

This summer, Chad Mason signed up for online general psychology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. This spring, Jonathan Serrano took intro to psychology online at Essex County College in Newark, New Jersey. Though the two undergraduates were separated by more than 600 miles, enrolled in different institutions, and paying different tuitions, they were taking what amounts to the same course. That’s because the course wasn’t produced by either school. Instead, it was a sophisticated package devised by publishing giant Pearson PLC and delivered through a powerful online platform called MyPsychLab.

http://www.slate.com/articles/life/education/2014/09/online_college_classes_textbook_companies_offer_courses_with_minimal_university.html

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California Shores up Support for Computer Science Education

September 9th, 2014

By Tanya Roscorla, Center for Digital Ed

California computer science legislation could open doors for students to learn about a subject that’s gaining national attention. Computer science education is getting plenty of attention in the California Legislature, with four out of eight bills passing both the Assembly and Senate. And the Golden State’s efforts are part of a national push to bring more computer science into schools. With the national Hour of Code campaign last year and recent legislation in many states, lawmakers and educators on both sides of the aisle are making computer science education a priority. In 23 states, computer science now counts toward high school graduation requirements for math or science, according to Code.org, the nonprofit that drove the Hour of Code campaign.

http://www.centerdigitaled.com/news/California-Computer-Science-Education.html

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Equipped for interaction on campus: Hardware for the collaborative classroom environment

September 9th, 2014

By Esther Shein, University Business

Montana State had already standardized on switching and control gear, and officials opted to use several solutions from the same vendor, including a system that allows users to send 1080p video and high-definition audio, and shared Ethernet over a single cable. “From the most basic standpoint, it’s a massive reduction in cables,” says Packwood. The transmitters at the tables and the receivers at the flat panels can be remotely powered from the switcher location. In other words, an electrician isn’t needed to bring in additional power to transmit-and-receive locations, and the placement of these devices is much more flexible.

http://www.universitybusiness.com/article/equipped-interaction-campus

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How Students Could Get Access to Courses Their High Schools Don’t Offer

September 9th, 2014

by Lindsey Burke, Daily Signal

Less than two-thirds of high schools across the country offer physics. Just half offer calculus, according to Michael Horn, an education innovation guru. That only half of high schools offer calculus might come as a shock to a large portion of parents, who have worked to ensure their children have adequate educational opportunities. And it’s just one more reason why choice in education should be universal and not confined to choice among schools. What exactly is course choice? Course choice enables students to craft an à la carte education uniquely tailored to their learning needs. Louisiana’s course choice program enables K-12 students to take courses from colleges, public high schools, virtual schools and private online providers.

http://dailysignal.com/2014/09/02/students-get-access-courses-high-schools-dont-offer/

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