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High-tech desks help kids do better at math | gizmag.com

High-tech desks help kids do better at math | gizmag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Mathematics has always been one of those subjects that poses a lot of difficulties for some young students. In the 3-year SynergyNet project conducted by Britain’s Durham University, however, it was found that something might help – multi-user multi-touch networked desks.

 

The study involved over 400 children at 12 schools, most of whom were between eight and ten years old. The NumberNet desks used by some are capable of responding to touch-based commands from several users at once, via vision systems that detect infrared light. These desks allow groups of pupils to work together to solve arithmetic problems.

 

The teacher views live feeds from all the desks, and can intervene if they see that a group of students is going about solving their equation the wrong way. They can also send new problems out to specific groups, send one group’s work to another for review, or bring it up onto the main smartboard at the front of the classroom for discussion.

 

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LA School District Reluctantly Gives Up The Grenade Launchers The Pentagon Gave Them | Mike Masnick | Techdirt.com

LA School District Reluctantly Gives Up The Grenade Launchers The Pentagon Gave Them | Mike Masnick | Techdirt.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

We've been detailing the issue of police militarization for quite some time around here (though the best resource on the issue has been Radley Balko, who wrote an excellent book on the topic).


The issue has finally become at least somewhat mainstream, thanks to the high-profile appearance of militarized police responding to the protests in Ferguson, Missouri.


This has, at the very least, resulted in at least a few police departments thinking better of their decision to accept surplus military gear from the Defense Department via its 1033 program. And the latest is the Los Angeles School Police Department.

Just last week, MuckRock posted on its site about a FOIA request from California, detailing the military equipment given to school police forces. Just the fact that any military equipment is being given to school police should raise some serious questions, but the one that really stood out was that the LA School Police had been given three grenade launchers, along with 61 assault rifles and one MRAP (mine resistant vehicle -- the big scary looking armored vehicles that have become one of the key symbols of police militarization).


Asked to explain itself, the LA School police chief, Steve Zipperman, claimed that the district had actually received the grenade launchers and the rifles all the way back in 2001 (though the MRAP is brand-spanking-new).


But, he claimed, we shouldn't worry too much, because the police didn't think of them as "grenade launchers," but rather "ammunition launchers," and they were mainly kept around in case other police needed them:


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IN: Education discussed as key to Gary revitalization | Christin Nance Lazerus | Post-Tribune

IN: Education discussed as key to Gary revitalization |  Christin Nance Lazerus | Post-Tribune | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Neighborhood revitalization and blight elimination efforts are bright spots on Gary’s horizon, according to Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson, but creating an effective education system is paramount to the city’s future success.


“Nothing happens until we have an education system that meets the needs of all of our students,” Freeman-Wilson said. “Employers don’t come and invest, and other institutions don’t grow until we have an education system that all of us can be proud of.”


How that change takes shape was the focus of a community conversation on Tuesday at Indiana University Northwest. Speakers discussed a new state pilot program for 4-year-olds, informing parents of summer and after-school programs, creating better education environments, and the best methods to mobilize the community to improving education.


Keynote speaker Katy Stillman, strategic assistance director for StriveTogether, talked about the efforts to improve education outcomes in the Fort Wayne area. What started as an effort to tackle economic development became a call to action on education, she said.


“We wanted a collective impact on every child from cradle to career because educational outcomes shouldn’t be determined by your ZIP code,” Stillman said.


They examined data, such as research indicating that by 2025, 60 percent of all jobs will require some sort of postsecondary education or training.


Stillman said the city should look at four key pillars as it moves forward: establishing a shared community vision, developing evidence-based decision making, emphasizing collaborative action, and investing and sustaining the commitment for long-term success.


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The giant Rubber duck by Florentijn Hofman | Rakesh | NetDost.com

The giant Rubber duck by Florentijn Hofman | Rakesh | NetDost.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The Giant rubber duck by Florentijn Hofman is an inflatable rubber duck created using 200 pieces of PVC.


The 54 foot high floating duck is created to resemble a popular childhood toy.


The artist planned to exhibit the duck in 14 cities and has already been exhibited in many cities.


While on display in Belgium the duck was stabbed 42 times by vandals.


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Culture Clash: Minecraft Fans Fear Microsoft | Evelyn Rusli & Shira Ovide | WSJ.com

Culture Clash: Minecraft Fans Fear Microsoft | Evelyn Rusli & Shira Ovide | WSJ.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

If Microsoft Corp. succeeds in buying the company behind the hit videogame "Minecraft," it will have to placate 14-year-old Henry Levenson and his pals.


"A majority of my friends don't think Microsoft is cool," said the Boston-area teenager, who plays "Minecraft" at least once a day. At the moment, he is obsessed with using the game's Lego-style virtual blocks to build courthouses with palatial marble columns.


News that Microsoft is negotiating to acquire Swedish company Mojang AB for more than $2 billion sets up a clash of cultures between the corporate giant and "Minecraft" loyalists—spanning from middle-school children to videogame die-hards.


To many of its fans, Mojang's antiestablishment swagger has always been part of "Minecraft's" mystique. Mojang, which has only about 40 employees, is run by programmer Markus Persson, who has gained a cult following by publicly blasting big tech companies, including Microsoft, Electronic Arts Inc. and Facebook Inc. Microsoft, pushing 40 and worth about $387 billion, is seen as the software industry's Goliath.


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Demand For 3D Printing Skills Is Accelerating Globally | Louis Columbus | Forbes.com

Demand For 3D Printing Skills Is Accelerating Globally | Louis Columbus | Forbes.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

35% of all ads posted for engineering jobs in the last 30 days prioritize 3D printing and additive manufacturing as the most sought-after skill.


Wanted Analytics’ latest analysis of the 3D printing and additive manufacturing job market found that IT and management expertise were the second most common skill sets mentioned in ads seeking to recruit engineers.  Key take-aways from their study and the growing market for engineers with 3D printing skills are provided below:


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Digital Learning Is Just Different | Terry Heick | TeachThought.com

Digital Learning Is Just Different | Terry Heick | TeachThought.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

This article has been updated and republished from an earlier 2013 post.


Digital learning is different than non-digital learning from the moment an experience starts.


That’s not to say it’s better or worse–just different.


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10 Quotes On What Inspires Creativity, And What Most Definitely Does Not | Priscilla Frank | HuffPost.com

10 Quotes On What Inspires Creativity, And What Most Definitely Does Not | Priscilla Frank | HuffPost.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Creativity is phenomenon that occurs when something new, be it an image, an idea, an invention, or some combination thereof, comes into being. Whether in the field of art, science, philosophy, writing, mathematics, physics, or whatever your discipline of choice may be, the stroke of creativity bears a similar sensation. Somewhere inside, doors open, lights turn on, distractions fade into oblivion. Yes, it is intense.


Over the years, many a brilliant mind has tried to pin down, in greater detail, what exactly creativity is and how best to go about finding it. Like the most nebulous and precious of concepts, it is often easiest described by what it is not. We've gathered a selection of our favorite tips from great minds throughout a variety of fields, all helping point us in the direction of finding that creative spark.


Some offer warnings, others advice; some in jest, and others very, very seriously. We hope some of the wise words will strike a chord within you, and serve you well in your quest to become the next Picasso or Plath.


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MA: Radical Librarianship: how ninja librarians are ensuring patrons' electronic privacy | Alison Macrina and April Glaser | BoingBoing.net

MA: Radical Librarianship: how ninja librarians are ensuring patrons' electronic privacy | Alison Macrina and April Glaser | BoingBoing.net | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Librarians in Massachusetts are working to give their patrons a chance to opt-out of pervasive surveillance. Partnering with the ACLU of Massachusetts, area librarians have been teaching and taking workshops on how freedom of speech and the right to privacy are compromised by the surveillance of online and digital communications -- and what new privacy-protecting services they can offer patrons to shield them from unwanted spying of their library activity.


It's no secret that libraries are among our most democratic institutions. Libraries provide access to information and protect patrons' right to explore new ideas, no matter how controversial or subversive. Libraries are where all should be free to satisfy any information need, be it for tax and legal documents, health information, how-to guides, historical documents, children's books, or poetry.


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The trouble with older kindergarten. | Emily Bazelon | Slate.com

The trouble with older kindergarten. | Emily Bazelon | Slate.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

At what age should children go to kindergarten? At what age should your child go to kindergarten? What if these questions appear to have different answers?


Increasingly, that seems to be the conclusion of upper-middle-class parents who redshirt their kids when it's time for kindergarten. The calculus goes like this: You look at your 4-year-old, especially if he's a boy, and consider that his summer or fall birthday (depending on the state and its birthday cutoff) means that he'll be younger than most of the other kids in his kindergarten class.


So you decide to send him a year later. Now he's at the older end of his class. And you presume that the added maturity will give him an edge from grade to grade. The school may well support your decision. If it's a private school, they probably have a later birthday cutoff anyway. And if it's a public school, a principal or kindergarten teacher may suggest that waiting another year before kindergarten is in your kid's interest despite the official policy.


Individually speaking, no harm done, perhaps, though the presumed benefit is an open question. But collectively, delaying kindergarten is a bad idea—especially for poor kids, for whom it often means one more year of no school. Kindergarten is free. In most states, preschool and pre-K are not. Sending kids to school early is a major initiative of the childhood education movement. Putting off kindergarten takes us in the opposite direction, toward less access to school for younger kids.


Fine, but choosing to keep your little Hudson out of kindergarten doesn't affect the low-income kindergartners out there, does it? Well, it might. A new study suggests that the effects of kindergarten redshirting are more serious and long-term than one might have thought.


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Koch Foundation Proposal to College: Teach Our Curriculum, Get Millions | Dave Levinthal | Truth-Out.org

Koch Foundation Proposal to College: Teach Our Curriculum, Get Millions | Dave Levinthal | Truth-Out.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

In 2007, when the Charles Koch Foundation considered giving millions of dollars to Florida State University’s economics department, the offer came with strings attached.


First, the curriculum it funded must align with the libertarian, deregulatory economic philosophy of Charles Koch, the billionaire industrialist and Republican political bankroller.


Second, the Charles Koch Foundation would at least partially control which faculty members Florida State University hired.


And third, Bruce Benson, a prominent libertarian economic theorist and Florida State University economics department chairman, must stay on another three years as department chairman — even though he told his wife he’d step down in 2009 after one three-year term.


The Charles Koch Foundation expressed a willingness to give Florida State an extra $105,000 to keep Benson — a self-described “libertarian anarchist” who asserts that every government function he’s studied “can be, has been, or is being produced better by the private sector” — in place.


“As we all know, there are no free lunches. Everything comes with costs,” Benson at the time wrote to economics department colleagues in an internal memorandum. “They want to expose students to what they believe are vital concepts about the benefits of the market and the dangers of government failure, and they want to support and mentor students who share their views. Therefore, they are trying to convince us to hire faculty who will provide that exposure and mentoring.”


Benson concluded, “If we are not willing to hire such faculty, they are not willing to fund us.”


Such details are contained in 16 pages of previously unpublished emails and memos obtained by the Center for Public Integrity.


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#SHIFTNorCal: Through the Eyes of the Interns | Jackie Casey & Gabriel Alcaraz | ZeroDivide.org

#SHIFTNorCal: Through the Eyes of the Interns | Jackie Casey & Gabriel Alcaraz | ZeroDivide.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

ZeroDivide recently hosted #SHIFTNorCal: “On the Road to Healthy Communication & Collaboration,” a technology capacity building convening in Sacramento. As a technical assistance provider for the The California Endowment’s Building Healthy Communities Program (BHC), ZeroDivide brought together community based organizations, nonprofit entrepreneurs, tech experts, community organizers, app developers, academics and thought leaders to share wisdom and strategies for affecting social change through technology integration.


It’s no secret that many nonprofits have extremely tight resources. They are doing direct, important work in the community, but they don’t have time, money, or mental energy to spend on things that won’t benefit them or their communities directly and instantaneously. That’s where ZeroDivide comes in; swooping in with strategy and recommendations based on 15 years of experience of helping community based organizations transform through technology. ZeroDivide sifts through all the “tech noise,” the vast world of apps and devices vying for everyone’s attention, and filters it for use by those on the ground, in the community.


Participants attended a variety of session styles including:  “Experience Talks,” TED Talks meets General Assemblies exchanges; “Skill Building Teamwork” sessions where participants practiced strategies and used tools like Pulse Pin, a community mapping application developed at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism; and “Triage Circles,” where subject matter experts helped attendees address critical “tech pains”.


We, as ZeroDivide’s favorite Program Interns, witnessed what happens when attendees get themselves into an open mindset, entrusting ZeroDivide with their precious mental energy.


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Morlan Gallery at Transylvania opens exhibit featuring Lexington street artists | Rich Copley | Kentucky.com

Morlan Gallery at Transylvania opens exhibit featuring Lexington street artists | Rich Copley | Kentucky.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The irony of the Morlan Gallery's new exhibit, Street Tested: Kentucky Graffiti Artists, is not lost on director Andrea Fisher.


"Street art ran right out the doors of the institutions and into the street and started putting art in places that were unexpected," Fisher says. "The whole idea of street art is de-anesthetizing and de-institutionalizing art.


"They're not using the typical venue or the typical hierarchy of materials — oil, sculpture, bronze, marble. They're using spray paint — the lowest of materials — in often decaying, hidden locations."


But the Morlan's exhibit, which opened last week and will be through Oct. 17, including Gallery Hop on Friday, is bringing that work right back into an institution that has seen its fair share of oils, bronze, marble, watercolors and the like.


Fisher thinks that's only appropriate, pointing to the statement by the exhibit's curator and one of its artists, well-known and widely seen Lexington street artist Dronex.


"There is something pure and uncut about working on the street — for no money, with the risk of arrest and subsequent consequences," Myke Dronez, CEO of Dronex, Inc., wrote. "Artwork on the street is not meant to be auctioned off to the highest bidder, nor is it meant to be a status symbol amongst a 'collection.' Art in the street lives and dies as we do — the whitewashed walls, peeling paper, and fading lines are all artifacts of a fleeting existence that echoes our inability to withstand the persistence of time."


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Read more here: http://www.kentucky.com/2014/09/13/3427186/morlan-gallery-at-transylvania.html?sp=%2F99%2F684%2F703%2F#storylink=cpy
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Common Core in Action: Using Digital Storytelling Tools in the ELA Classroom | Monica Burns | Edutopia.org

Common Core in Action: Using Digital Storytelling Tools in the ELA Classroom | Monica Burns | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

When students come to school each morning, they have tons of stories -- stories to share with their friends as they unpack or move through the hallways, stories to share with the class during morning meetings, or stories to share with a teacher about something that made them happy or sad. In the classroom, writing can happen in many different ways, whether it's free writing in a notebook to gather ideas or publishing stories to share with the whole school.


The Common Core State Standards expect that children across the grades can write for three specific purposes:


  1. Opinion pieces that persuade a reader and make an argument
  2. Informative writing that explains an idea and relays information
  3. Narrative stories of real or imagined events.


As students move from one grade level to another, the complexity of these tasks will change greatly. The persuasive writing that takes place in a second grade classroom will look very different than the work that a seventh grader produces. From kindergarten through 12th grade, students are expected to share their writing through technology.


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Untold Truths About the American Revolution | HowardZinn.org

Untold Truths About the American Revolution | HowardZinn.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

There are things that happen in the world that are bad, and you want to do something about them. You have a just cause. But our culture is so war prone that we immediately jump from, “This is a good cause” to “This deserves a war.”


You need to be very, very comfortable in making that jump.


The American Revolution—independence from England—was a just cause. Why should the colonists here be occupied by and oppressed by England? But therefore, did we have to go to the Revolutionary War?


How many people died in the Revolutionary War?


Nobody ever knows exactly how many people die in wars, but it’s likely that 25,000 to 50,000 people died in this one. So let’s take the lower figure—25,000 people died out of a population of three million. That would be equivalent today to two and a half million people dying to get England off our backs.


You might consider that worth it, or you might not.


Canada is independent of England, isn’t it? I think so. Not a bad society. Canadians have good health care. They have a lot of things we don’t have. They didn’t fight a bloody revolutionary war. Why do we assume that we had to fight a bloody revolutionary war to get rid of England?


In the year before those famous shots were fired, farmers in Western Massachusetts had driven the British government out without firing a single shot. They had assembled by the thousands and thousands around courthouses and colonial offices and they had just taken over and they said goodbye to the British officials. It was a nonviolent revolution that took place. But then came Lexington and Concord, and the revolution became violent, and it was run not by the farmers but by the Founding Fathers. The farmers were rather poor; the Founding Fathers were rather rich.


Who actually gained from that victory over England? It’s very important to ask about any policy, and especially about war: Who gained what? And it’s very important to notice differences among the various parts of the population. That’s one thing we’re not accustomed to in this country because we don’t think in class terms. We think, “Oh, we all have the same interests.” For instance, we think that we all had the same interests in independence from England. We did not have all the same interests.


Do you think the Indians cared about independence from England? No, in fact, the Indians were unhappy that we won independence from England, because England had set a line—in the Proclamation of 1763—that said you couldn’t go westward into Indian territory. They didn’t do it because they loved the Indians. They didn’t want trouble. When Britain was defeated in the Revolutionary War, that line was eliminated, and now the way was open for the colonists to move westward across the continent, which they did for the next 100 years, committing massacres and making sure that they destroyed Indian civilization.


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SuperAwesome promises ‘kid-safe’ mobile ads for children’s apps | Stuart Dredge | TheGuardian.com

SuperAwesome promises ‘kid-safe’ mobile ads for children’s apps | Stuart Dredge | TheGuardian.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

One of the big challenges for children’s app developers is the reluctance of many parents to pay upfront for apps, even if they distrust in-app purchases.


Could advertising be the answer? Ads as the funding source for children’s media is well established in the television and magazine industries, but apps have proved a tougher nut to crack for developers and brands alike.


It’s not hard to put ads in a children’s app, but ensuring that they’re appropriate for kids – no gambling, premium subscription and adult-rated games for example – has been a challenge.


British startup SuperAwesome is hoping to change that, releasing a new software development kit (SDK) for Android and iOS developers that it says will add child-safe ads to children’s apps with “a single line of code”.


The company is pitching the SDK as “Stripe for kids advertising”, referring to the famously easy-to-integrate mobile payment technology.


In this case, though, what developers are integrating are display and video ads, which SuperAwesome says are fully compliant with the US Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) legislation that’s become the chief standard by which children’s apps are judged around the world.


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3D Printing in the Classroom: An Insider's Perspective | Peter Suchmann | Inside3DP.com

3D Printing in the Classroom: An Insider's Perspective | Peter Suchmann | Inside3DP.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

I don’t have time to finish my curriculum and now you want me to learn WHAT? 3D Printing?


This is a common complaint that I have heard many times over my 30 years in the classroom. My own version went something like this: “You want me to become a better swimmer – but I just want to keep treading water so that I don’t drown”. Every teacher will understand and perhaps relate to this statement.


When one is dedicated to their students and to their profession, teaching is a very difficult job. It can be quite overwhelming learning new attendance systems, new grading systems, new presentation systems and new technologies. Adding to the stress of it all, there are also many changes teachers have to contend with such as new standards, new evaluation protocols and changing attitudes about teachers.


Over the years, I have seen many technologies come and go, change and improve. Early on I remember mimeograph machines, VHS tapes, laser disks, Net TV’s and then all the new computer and presentation systems that came and went over the years. All of this was necessary to my skillset and had to be learned on my own time.


Now that I am retired and working as a consultant and professional development provider, I find myself on the other side of the fence. I find myself saying to lots of teachers: “I know how difficult your job is, how little time you have, how stressed out you are, but here I am to make your job more enjoyable, more productive and more relevant to your students and their future career paths.”  Now, I am training teachers to accept, enjoy and master 3D digital design, scanning and printing as a useful and very promising teaching tool that they need to learn.


I am convinced that 3D printing is as important to current educational methods as the internet and the computer is and that the career paths it can promote are real and worth pursuing. I see the same old anguish on the teachers’ faces. Many are unsure how they will it as part of their curriculum and within their classroom. How will they find time to incorporate this new method of instruction? When will they learn the skills they need to become proficient at it so that they can teach their students with confidence and clarity?


I have always had an affinity for interdisciplinary projects, but I was always concerned about the shortage of planning time that enabled these kinds of experiences to occur naturally and comfortably. As a teacher of a Regents Science class, it was always a struggle to find new and exciting ideas that I could squeeze into the curriculum without sacrificing time for a required topic that had to be covered thoroughly for the all important exam at the end of the year.


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Cleverly made street art that interacts with their surrounding | Rakesh Blog | NetDost.com

Cleverly made street art that interacts with their surrounding | Rakesh Blog | NetDost.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Street art requires not just talent but an eye for opportunity, artists like banksy and oakoak are known for their clever street arts that makes use of the surrounding.


These artists uses the surrounding as a prop for their creation.


These street artists have to first find the right spot then think of a creation that would use the already existing opportunity given by the very spot.


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the history of civics and news literacy education | Peter Levine Blog

the history of civics and news literacy education | Peter Levine Blog | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

I’m in Chicago for Poynter’s News Literacy Summit, entitled “Because News Matters.”


Participants promote (to varying degrees) such outcomes as: following and understanding the news, taking informed action as citizens, understanding how the media work, critically interpreting news, understanding society and politics, valuing high-quality news, understanding media effects on individual behaviors and attitudes, being well informed about current events, civilly discussing controversial issues, valuing First Amendment freedoms, making news media, and making other forms of media.


Each of these objectives has been pursued for a long time. John Dewey, for example, was a great proponent of news media literacy. To get a rough sense of what has been taught over time, consider this graph of the percentage of American students who’ve had various courses on their transcripts:


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Schools struggle to balance student privacy and digital innovation | Jessica Meyers | The Boston Globe

Schools struggle to balance student privacy and digital innovation | Jessica Meyers | The Boston Globe | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Many of the nation’s schools lack restrictions on the unprecedented student data amassed by education technology companies, an omission that has worried parents and prompted legislative proposals from statehouses to Congress.


This data collection transforms how teachers interact with their students and gives researchers a new understanding of how youths learn. But some fear it comes at a cost, allowing firms to profit from sensitive information.


These tensions continue to build as the federal government encourages technology in schools, reinforcing an ongoing struggle between privacy assurances and digital innovation.


“Parents are right to ask, ‘Who holds the information to this website and what are they gathering about my kid?’ ” said Tracy Novick, a Worcester School Committee member who limits the online activities of her three school-age daughters at home.


Fewer than 7 percent of districts that contract with cloud-service providers restrict the sale or marketing of student information, according to a report by Fordham Law School’s Center on Law and Information Privacy, and 20 percent fail to create policies that govern online services at all.


Vendors have not been caught reselling student information, but experts warn it could happen without notice.


The Boston School Department writes privacy provisions into its contracts and prohibits the use of student data for any unrelated purpose. But rules vary among districts and don’t always address data culled through online tutoring assignments or research applications.


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After 2-Year-Old Emails Detailing Impropriety Surface, Los Angeles School Board Votes To Limit Retention To One Year | Tim Cushing | Techdirt.com

After 2-Year-Old Emails Detailing Impropriety Surface, Los Angeles School Board Votes To Limit Retention To One Year | Tim Cushing | Techdirt.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

In a set of strange coincidences not unlike those surrounding the IRS/Lois Lerner email disappearance, the Los Angeles Unified school board has decided it will only retain internal emails for one year going forward.


The Los Angeles Unified school board voted Tuesday to buy a Microsoft email archiving service programmed to automatically destroy staff emails after one year.


Why only one year? According to the Chief Information Officer of the school district, the one year limit is mandated by district policy -- which is handy, but likely not the real reason. (Keeping all those bytes is considered "too expensive.") After all, if this policy was already in force, why the vote on retention limits?

More likely, this decision was prompted by recent events -- namely the publication of emails morethan a year old.


The decision comes less than three weeks after KPCC published two-year-old internal emails that raised questions about whether Superintendent John Deasy's meetings and discussions with Apple and textbook publisher Pearson influenced the school district's historic $500 million technology contract.


A half-billion that ultimately went nowhere. Deasy allegedly cozied up to the companies before the district awarded them the tech contract, holding personal meetings with both a year before the plan went up for public bidding. The superintendent claimed he did nothing wrong ("discussed a pilot program that went nowhere") but nevertheless cancelled the program three day after KPCC's story went live.

What was implemented never worked properly, making this $500 million (which ultimately turned out to be $1.3 billion) project a complete washout.


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Redshirting: Holding Kids Back For An Edge | OnPoint Radio | WBUR.org

Redshirting: Holding Kids Back For An Edge | OnPoint Radio | WBUR.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

More parents are "red-shirting" their children in kindergarten—holding them back for a year, hoping they'll have an edge. Does it work? We look.


They call it “redshirting,” like college athletes kept on the bench until they’re bigger, stronger. Except it’s “academic redshirting” – for kindergarten kids. Five-year-olds held out of starting school – kindergarten - until they’re six.


Maybe it’s because they’re a little slow in maturing. Maybe their parents imagine they’ll be the big kingpin in the class, the star of the soccer team.


Research is decidedly mixed on whether it works. But it’s spreading. And it’s controversial. This hour, On Point: Redshirting kindergarteners, for a bigger, older start of school.


Click headline to listen to this OnPoint Radio discussion, read about the guests and access Tom Ashbrook's reading list--

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NASA taps SpaceX, Boeing to carry astronauts to space | Dara Kerr | CNET.com

NASA taps SpaceX, Boeing to carry astronauts to space | Dara Kerr | CNET.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

In a surprise move, NASA picked both Boeing and SpaceX to be the first private companies to shuttle astronauts to the International Space Station. The agency announced Tuesday that the aerospace companies were awarded contracts worth a combined total of $6.8 billion.


"We know going to space is hard," NASA's Commercial Crew Program manager Kathy Lueders said during a press conference at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Tuesday. "We are counting on them to deliver our most precious cargo."


Chicago-based Boeing and Hawthorne, Calif.-based SpaceX beat their other competitors for the NASA contract, which entails building space taxis that will take astronauts to and from low-Earth orbit. The new contract is essential since NASA shut down its Space Shuttle program in 2011.


The spacecraft to be used by NASA are Boeing's CST-100 and SpaceX's Dragon V2. Both spacecraft can carry a crew of seven astronauts and launch on a variety of rockets. Boeing will receive $4.2 billion and SpaceX will get $2.6 billion. NASA said the difference in the amount of the contracts is based on the companies' proposals.


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Digital mapping uncovers ‘super henge’ that dwarfed Stonehenge | Nature News Blog

Digital mapping uncovers ‘super henge’ that dwarfed Stonehenge | Nature News Blog | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Every summer solstice, tens of thousands of people throng to Stonehenge, creating a festival-like atmosphere at the 4,400-year-old stone monument. For the 2015 solstice, they will have a bit more room to spread out. A just-completed four-year project to map the vicinity of Stonehenge reveals a sprawling complex that includes 17 newly discovered monuments and signs of a 1.5-kilometre-around ‘super henge’.


The digital map — made from high-resolution radar and magnetic and laser scans that accumulated several terabytes of data — shatters the picture of Stonehenge as a desolate and exclusive site that was visited by few, says Vincent Gaffney, an archaeologist at the University of Birmingham, UK, who co-led the effort.


Take the cursus, a 3-kilometre-long, 100-metre-wide ditch north of Stonehenge that was thought to act as barrier. The team’s mapping uncovered gaps in the cursus leading to Stonehenge, as well as several large pits, one of which would have been perfectly aligned with the setting solstice Sun. New magnetic and radar surveys of the Durrington Walls (which had been excavated before) uncovered more than 60 now-buried holes in which stones would have sat, and a few stones still buried.


“They look as they may have been pushed over. That’s a big prehistoric monument which we never knew anything about,” says Gaffney, who calls the structure a ‘super henge.’ His team will discuss the work at the British Science Festival this week, and they plan to present it to the institutions that manage the site. “I’m sure it will guide future excavations,” Gaffney says.

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Primary school kids 'often download apps without parents' permission' | Luke Thompson | Cable.co.uk

Primary school kids 'often download apps without parents' permission' | Luke Thompson | Cable.co.uk | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Primary school children are often allowed to download mobile apps without first seeking permission from their parents, according to new research from Internet Matters.


The child safety organisation founded by BT, Sky, TalkTalk and Virgin Media discovered that 29 per cent of mums and dads didn't make their child get their consent before downloading apps to their smartphones or tablets.


Dads (34 per cent) were more likely than mums (25 per cent) to allow kids to purchase or download free or paid-for applications.


The issue is particularly significant given that primary school pupils say they're eager to make more use of apps, with three-quarters of those surveyed welcoming the opportunity to learn from applications and games.


Furthermore, the survey revealed a lack of comprehension from many parents about the suitability of downloads.


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India: Should inspire students to take up teaching: Smriti Irani | The Hindu

India: Should inspire students to take up teaching: Smriti Irani | The Hindu | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Union Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Irani tells Smriti Kak Ramachandran about her plans for the education sector, including the proposal to review the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and the Right to Education Act


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