Unschooling, greater independence for the student and teacher, and getting in touch with our social and emotional selves are just some of the topics that have inspired educators and life-long learners.
Reading. Writing. Math. Those are the big ones, right? Up until recently, a lot of people would have probably said that was correct. But since it is 2013 and so much of our lives happen online, digital literacy is being added to the list.
President Obama on Monday said his administration will take major steps to protect the privacy of students who use software in the classroom — and make sure that the data collected in schools is only used for educational purposes.
"Parents have a legitimate concern about those kinds of practice," said Obama in a speech at the Federal Trade Commission. "I hope Congress joins us in this national movement to protect the privacy of our children."
Obama also announced that companies have signed onto a pledge to "enhance privacy for students" by providing parents, students and educators with "important protections" against data misuse. Pledge signers promise not to do things such as sell student information, target students with behavioral ads or use data for anything other than authorized educational purposes. The pledge is backed by the Software & Information Industry Association and the Future of Privacy Forum. Companies that signed the pledge included Apple and Microsoft, as well as textbook publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
Notably not on the list? Major education data players such as Amazon and Google, which both provide data, e-mail and other services to schools. Both tech firms are also making pushes to get their hardware — Google's lightweight Chromebook laptops and Amazon's Kindle tablets — in front of students of all ages.
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Monica Brown has written more than a dozen children's picture books with English and Spanish text side by side. Raised by a South American mother and North American father, she says, "I wanted to write stories that reflected the multi-ethnic, bilingual nature of my own family."