5 Ways to Keep Social Media From Being a Legal Headache

March 24th, 2015

By Bradley Shear, THE Journal

Most states don’t require their school districts to create social media guidelines. However, some states, such as New Jersey, require their schools to draft and implement policies that adhere to certain principles. There is no one-size-fits-all social media policy for students, teachers and school administrators. State law and community standards differ around the country, so what may be acceptable in one jurisdiction may not work in another. If your district decides to draft a social media policy, leaders should discuss the plan with the proper stakeholders to avoid a major backlash when the new policies are implemented.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/03/17/5-ways-to-keep-social-media-from-being-a-legal-headache.aspx

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How to Crowdfund Your Classroom

March 24th, 2015

By Amanda Ronan, Edudemic

Because of budget cuts, and the need for a tremendous amount of new technology due to the latest testing requirements, a lot of school coffers are running on empty. Teachers who want to do anything beyond sit in the classroom all day with their students reading ancient textbooks have to come up with the money to do so. Some get creative by finding free field trip locations and using public transportation. And still others find help online. In fact, crowdfunding has become an indispensible resource for teachers looking to find money for classroom projects, materials, and field trips. There are several crowdfunding websites out there, a few of which are designed to raise money specifically for educational projects.

http://www.edudemic.com/how-to-crowdfund-your-classroom/

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5 Questions to Ask About Online Community College Courses

March 24th, 2015

By Ian Quillen, US News

The vast majority of two-year schools offer at least some online learning options. And as far back as 2008, a third or more of community college students in states like Virginia and Washington took at least one online course during their studies, according to the Community College Research Center at Columbia University’s Teachers College. But online learning at public two-year schools presents some unique challenges students may not expect. So before students choose a partial or fully online route for their community college experience, they might want to answer the following five questions about any potential program.

http://www.usnews.com/education/online-education/articles/2015/03/18/5-questions-to-ask-about-online-community-college-courses

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K-12 Digital Curriculum Growing; Print Shrinking

March 23rd, 2015

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

Curriculum publishers in K-12 have been shifting their product development to digital and away from print, according to Education Market Research, which surveyed around 100 publishers and manufacturers. The most common medium mentioned for delivering supplemental products was “online/digital” delivery; 82 percent of respondents cited that. Print followed with 65 percent. Over the course of 2013, the entire population of digital products grew by 43 percent; non-digital offerings dropped by 8 percent.

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/03/16/digital-curriculum-growing.aspx

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Beyond Programming: The Power of Making Games

March 23rd, 2015

By Lisa Castaneda, Manrita Sidhu; THE Journal

“I gained a lot of skills! These skills include more computer skills which I did not have before, along with a different outlook on life. I began to see all of the opportunities in everyday life for different games and ideas. I gained a new perspective on an old picture.” — 8th grade student…. “Creating something out of nothing. It’s the closest thing to magic I can think of.” — Game developer

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/02/18/beyond-programming-the-power-of-making-games.aspx

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Add Coding to Your Elementary Curriculum. . . Right Now

March 23rd, 2015

by Matt Harrell, Edutopia

As you well know, teachers are already stretched pretty thin, and often it seems like there’s just no bandwidth to add something new to a very full schedule. Additionally, some schools have few or no computers and/or tablets for classroom use. But the earlier we introduce children to coding, the more comfortable they will be when presented with more in-depth learning opportunities in middle and high school. Also, early exposure to coding helps teach children how important it is to understand computers as the valuable tools they are rather than merely fun playthings.

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/add-coding-elementary-curriculum-now-matt-harrell

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5 Tech Implementation Challenges for Teachers

March 22nd, 2015

By Kristen Hicks, Edudemic

In all the excitement around what technology can do for education, the frustrations of the teachers faced with using it often get drowned out. Even educators who embrace the idea of using more technology with their students have found that it brings its share of challenges. And many of them feel powerless to address those challenges on their own. The most common complaints teachers have about bringing more tech into the classroom can be boiled down to the five categories below. To fix them, teachers and administrators will have to work together. Obviously, that’s easier said than done, but we’ve got a few ideas to help.

http://www.edudemic.com/5-tech-implementation-challenges-for-teachers/

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10 free online resources that will make you more successful

March 22nd, 2015

by SUJAN PATEL, Business Insider

We’re never done learning. As an entrepreneur, it’s not hard to feel caught in your own niche — stuck, and feeling your personal growth slow dramatically. Taking time for a class can seem tiring, time-consuming, and expensive. It’s almost too hard to justify. Then these free educational resources came along. For those who think they don’t have the time or resources to spend on a class, think again. I’ve compiled a list of the top free online learning sites for you to choose from.

http://www.businessinsider.com/the-best-free-online-learning-resources-2015-3

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Videos Find Their Place In and Out of the Classroom

March 22nd, 2015

by Casey Fabris, Chronicle of Higher Ed

Among today’s students, videos as an educational tool are as expected as textbooks. A new study has found that 68 percent of students watch videos in class, and 79 percent watch them on their own time, outside of class, to assist in their learning. Elisabeth Leonard, author of the study and executive market-research manager for SAGE Publications, said many of the students she spoke with said they couldn’t remember a time when videos weren’t part of their educational experience.

http://chronicle.com/blogs/wiredcampus/videos-find-their-place-in-and-out-of-the-classroom/56113

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Stanford Chief Wants Higher Ed to Be ‘Affordable, Accessible, Adaptable’

March 21st, 2015

By Jennifer Howard, Chronicle of Higher Ed

Mr. Hennessy sounded dubious that online credentials would ever entirely replace undergraduate degrees. Those degrees amount to more than a bunch of courses strung together, he said. But he predicted that online-only professional degrees would continue to grow. To be effective, online learning must overcome several challenges, he said. It has to help students learn better, and it needs to offer a customized experience. “In a live classroom, a good instructor can see what works and what doesn’t,” Mr. Hennessy said. Online instruction might be able to do that using real-time data and analytics on how students are engaging (or not) with the material. “We can get instant feedback,” he said.

http://chronicle.com/article/Stanford-Chief-Wants-Higher-Ed/228505/

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Educators: Technology enhances learning

March 21st, 2015

by Paul Penders, Daily Commercial

ProCon.org, a nonprofit public charity, released a report weighing the pros and cons of tablets in the classroom. According to the report, some of the benefits of tablet use include: helping students learn more material faster; improved achievements on standardized tests, according to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt which showed students scoring 20 percent higher on standardized tests by using an iPad version of a textbook; and 77 percent of teachers found technology to increase student motivation to learn, according to a Public Broadcasting Service study. The report also listed several downsides to the use of technology.  “Tablets cause distractions; enable students to cut corners or cheat on schoolwork; and shift the focus of learning from the teacher to technology,” according to the study.

http://www.dailycommercial.com/news/article_bf5ff106-4e7c-5311-b379-186742ee7a40.html

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“Become a HTML champ”

March 21st, 2015

by Emmanuel Lund, AppsZoom

You always wanted to learn web development, but you didn’t know how to begin, right? You can begin by downloading “Learn HTML”. Don’t be scared: unlike all those tedious books you’ve tried to read, “Learn HTML” features a fresh and dynamic way to learn the basics of web development. The course will guide you through different lessons. Each lesson is split in topics and each topic is explained in a clear and concise way in video lecture from the most-known online learning site lynda.com. In order to strengthen the new concepts, a quiz question will show up after each video asking for something related to what you just watched. In addition, at the end of the lesson, you’ll have to pass a short quiz test.

http://www.appszoom.com/android_applications/education/learn-html_hshst.html

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Google launches digital training classes

March 20th, 2015

By Tereza Pultarova, Engineering and Technology

Internet giant Google has launched a six month scheme offering digital skills training to businesses and educators. The multimillion-pound project will see Google opening several ‘pop-up garages’, starting in Leeds this month, running workshops and classes. “While the majority of UK small businesses recognise the importance of having a website and using basic digital tools, less than 30 per cent of small to medium-sized enterprises have an effective online presence,” said Eileen Naughton, Google’s managing director for UK & Ireland. “We want to help jumpstart the other 70 per cent.

http://eandt.theiet.org/news/2015/mar/google-digital-skills-training.cfm

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A principal offers insights from his teachers on Digital Learning Day.

March 20th, 2015

by Matt Renwick, Educational Technology

Matt Renwick is an elementary school principal in Wisconsin. Prior to becoming an administrator, Matt was a 5th and 6th grade teacher. You can follow him on Twitter at @ReadByExample and read his blog, Reading by Example. Across the world last Friday, educators celebrated Digital Learning Day by sharing the strategies that have worked in the classroom. Technology’s role in schools includes connecting the informational dots, capturing and reflecting on student artifacts and helping teachers personalize their approaches.

http://www.edtechmagazine.com/k12/article/2015/03/digital-learning-success-about-more-technology

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How online learning can fix the broken teacher labor market

March 20th, 2015

by Mallory Dwinal, Clayton Christensen Institute

As the link between teacher quality and student performance becomes increasingly apparent, education leaders have invested significant time and energy into recruiting high-quality educators. Unfortunately, chronic teacher shortages have undercut these efforts, and many school leaders continue to struggle with staffing each year. A closer examination reveals the causes and characteristics of these teacher shortages, as well as the promise online learning holds in resolving the most challenging teacher vacancies.

http://www.christenseninstitute.org/publications/solving-the-nations-teacher-shortage/

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Cutting-Edge Student-Centric Classrooms Handle Many Pedagogies at Drexel

March 19th, 2015

By Michael Scheuermann, Campus Technology

Two reconfigured classrooms are facilitating student collaboration and providing flexible options for teaching and learning. Over the past year, the Information Resources and Technology (IRT) department at Drexel University (PA) has reconfigured two classrooms in its Korman Computing Center, Korman-111 and Korman-110, for these key reasons: to facilitate student collaboration, and to provide professors with pedagogical choices, as well as a multitude of teaching and student-engagement options.

http://campustechnology.com/articles/2015/03/11/cutting-edge-student-centric-classrooms-handle-many-pedagogies-at-drexel.aspx

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10-terabyte hard drive coming soon to a server near you

March 19th, 2015

By Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols, ZDNet

What looks like an ordinary HDD, which could fit into a drive bay on your PC, actually holds 10 terabytes of data. It’s not meant for your PC, though. Its destination is your datacenter. This drive, better known as the 10TB SMR HelioSeal HDD, has been in the works since September 2014. At the show, sources close to the company said it would be shipping in the second quarter of 2015. To access these drives from Linux, a new device manipulation library had to be added: libzbc. With this library, Linux can access Zoned Block Commands (ZBC)-based and Zoned-device ATA command set (ZAC) HDDs, such as the 10TB HelioSeal. The ZBC standard details how to handle devices that require writing to occur at specific locations on their media while allowing random reading of already written data.

http://www.zdnet.com/article/hgst-gets-closer-to-shipping-10tb-hdd/

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New technology enriches online learning

March 19th, 2015

by LINDA WHITE, Toronto Sun

The virtual trips are but one example of the way education — including online learning — continues to evolve. With information available at the click of a button, there’s really no need to hand students a textbook to “read, memorize and regurgitate.” Instead, savvy instructors are taking advantage of technology to develop critical thinking, observation, collaboration and other skills that are in demand in today’s workplace, says Mouton, manager of distance education at Durham College in Oshawa, Ont.

http://www.torontosun.com/2015/03/12/new-technology-enriches-online-learning

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Numerous Hurdles Challenge Performance-Based Funding in Online Learning

March 18th, 2015

By Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

The idea of funding education based on measurable student outcomes rather than seat-time is gaining momentum in some states as an incentive to encourage schools to be innovative. A new 54-page report by International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) delves into the funding models and policies related to that practice in order to guide states that are considering a similar structure. The primary question addressed by the report is how performance-based funding “would work to incentivize increased student performance and performance-based education systems, and ensure adequacy and equity.” iNACOL teamed up with education research firms Augenblick, Palaich and Associates and the Evergreen Education Group to develop the data examined in “Performance-Based Funding & Online Learning: Maximizing Resources for Student Success”

http://thejournal.com/articles/2015/03/11/numerous-hurdles-challenge-performance-based-funding-in-online-learning.aspx

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Teaching Machines: Learning from the Intersection of Education and Technology

March 18th, 2015

by Bill Ferster, Times Higher Ed

Efforts to enhance education with technology did not begin with the digital age. In reality, educational technology has enjoyed a much longer history, arguably starting in the 15th century with the introduction of horn-covered textbooks, as University of Virginia academic and former technology entrepreneur Bill Ferster argues. The overriding thesis is simple: learning is paramount, and technologies are tools that can support it. Via a series of historical narratives, lucid cultural insights and keen exploration of major theoretical perspectives, Ferster attempts to determine just how effective technology has been in supporting and enhancing learning. His view, as he sums up in the final page, is that “Teaching machines can be only as effective as the pedagogical methods they employ…and how they stay focused on the learner”. And he clearly believes that insights into the educational technology of the future can be found by looking at its past.

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/books/teaching-machines-learning-from-the-intersection-of-education-and-technology-by-bill-ferster/2018940.article

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Online School Offers Real Life Learning

March 18th, 2015

by Good4Utah

Mountain Heights Academy is an online school that helps students achieve real life learning. The school, for students grades 7 through 12, is an accredited, online public charter school that offers real teachers, one-on-one help, even extracurricular activities. The School provides one-on-one teacher and student interaction. Student can reach out to a teacher by email or chat and know the teacher will respond right way. Mountain Heights Academy’s model provides flexibility to students. Students can work at their own pace through each week’s assignments.

http://www.good4utah.com/story/d/story/online-school-offers-real-life-learning/16510/lbA081y5A0iLWChlmF_rfQ

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