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Digital Media Creation Learning, Production & Distribution Centers are coming online around the World to fill the Need for Content
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Richmond Neighborhood Gets Free Wi-Fi in California | community broadband networks

Richmond Neighborhood Gets Free Wi-Fi in California | community broadband networks | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Residents in the Iron Triangle neighborhood of Richmond are now receiving free Wi-Fi as part of a new pilot program. The pilot, sponsored by Building Blocks for Kids (BBK), hopes to make Internet access widely available to the many local families who cannot afford it. New towers have been placed on local homes to extend access to approximately 400 houses.


BBK is a collaborative of 30 government agencies, nonprofit groups and community leaders. The pilot project is funded by a $500,000 grant from the California Emerging Technology Fund to address digital literacy in areas of Richmond where affordable Internet access is not readily available.


A recent Contra Cost Times article covered the story. According to the article, an Internet connection tower is mounted on local resident, Yolanda Lopez's roof:


The Internet tower installed on Lopez's house receives signals from Internet Archive, a nonprofit organization that has a 40-foot tower at 2512 Florida Ave. Lopez's transmitter sends free Internet signals for a radius of a few hundred yards, providing the web to dozens of neighbors, said Internet Archive engineer Ralf Muehlen.


The ongoing costs to provide the signal, now that the hardware is in place, is "negligible," Muehlen said.


By summer, BBK partners hope to outfit 20 houses in the Iron Triangle with signal towers, providing free high-speed Internet signals to more than 400 homes, said BBK Executive Director Jennifer Lyle. A second tower has already been installed at a home in Atchison Village, Lyle said.


The BBK press release notes that several public and private entities worked together to enhance the Wi-fi service:


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An Olympic ISS space expedition comes to an end | GizMag.com

An Olympic ISS space expedition comes to an end | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Crew members of Expedition 38 have safely returned to Earth, their Soyuz capsule setting down in Kazakhstan on Mar. 10 at 11:24 p.m. EDT. The astronauts and cosmonauts spent 116 days in space, carrying out a wide range of experiments and successfully executing multiple space walks.


Expedition 38 consisted of six astronauts and cosmonauts, officially coming to an end with Oleg Kotov, Mike Hopkins and Sergey Ryazanskiy undocking from the International Space Station (ISS) to begin the short journey home.


The remaining three crew members – Flight Engineer Mikhail Tyurin, Richard Mastracchio and now-Commander Koichi Wakata, will stay aboard the International Space Station forming the crew of Expedition 39.


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5 Tips for Classroom Management with Mobile Devices | Indiana Jen Blog

5 Tips for Classroom Management with Mobile Devices | Indiana Jen Blog | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

This is reblogged from the original post at Edudemic and is the premise of presentation I will be leading in November at Miami Device.


When adopting technology in the classroom, one of the key concerns for teachers and administrators is classroom management. I am often asked if there is a way to “lock down an iPad screen” or “ensure students cannot go to inappropriate websites” (e.g. Social Media). In other words, how do we keep students on task and ensure that they are not distracted by the novelty of gadgets or communicating with friends via texting or social media? Often, teachers will take up devices (such as mobile phones) to avoid the issue of students texting or checking Facebook on their phones (eliminating access to a powerful, pocket computer in the process).


Classroom management is a challenging skill which I consistently strive to improve on a regular basis. Often, people believe that managing a classroom that has employed technology requires a whole new approach and skill set. However, I have found that many traditional methods of classroom management readily translate to the technological rich schoolroom – with some slight modification.


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Suzanne Trask's curator insight, November 26, 2014 4:06 PM

Relevant to 21st Century learning

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15 Theses About the Digital Future | PewInternet.org

15 Theses About the Digital Future | PewInternet.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The world is moving rapidly towards ubiquitous connectivity that will further change how and where people associate, gather and share information, and consume media. A canvassing of 2,558 experts and technology builders about where we will stand by the year 2025 finds striking patterns in their predictions. The invited respondents were identified in previous research about the future of the Internet, from those identified by the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project, and solicited through major technology-oriented listservs. They registered their answers online between November 25, 2013 and January 13, 2014.


In their responses, these experts foresee an ambient information environment where accessing the Internet will be effortless and most people will tap into it so easily it will flow through their lives “like electricity.” They predict mobile, wearable, and embedded computing will be tied together in the Internet of Things, allowing people and their surroundings to tap into artificial intelligence-enhanced cloud-based information storage and sharing. As Dan Lynch, founder of Interop and former director of computing facilities at SRI International, wrote, “The most useful impact is the ability to connect people. From that, everything flows.”


To a notable extent, the experts agree on the technology change that lies ahead, even as they disagree about its ramifications. Most believe there will be:


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WI: Rural Schools: The Need to Study and Explore Innovations | Reedsburg Times-Press

WI: Rural Schools: The Need to Study and Explore Innovations | Reedsburg Times-Press | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Last fall, Assembly Speaker Robin Vos announced the creation of a bipartisan task force on rural schools. He appointed me as one of 12 members of that committee. Noting that about 44 percent of the state’s public school students go to school in a rural community, the Speaker charged the task force with exploring innovative solutions to address complex issues facing our rural schools.


Specifically, we are directed to study the following areas:


• Creating partnerships among school districts

• Exploring new avenues to share innovations, efficiencies and best practices

• Addressing future transportation needs

• Mapping out strategies for long-term financial stability

• Developing tactics for handling declining enrollment

• Maximizing opportunities to incorporate advanced technology


The task force traveled Nov. 6 to Mauston and Elroy in Juneau County to tour Mauston and Royall High Schools, and to take testimony at Royall Middle School. The focus of the testimony was on school-district challenges, secondary-education challenges for manufacturing and business, and high transportation costs.


It was extremely important for these rural school districts to be able to share their challenges, best practices and successes with the task force. It was clearly evident that those who testified are educational professionals who are utilizing every resource available to give students an education tailored to their needs and goals.


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College, federal financial aid increasingly benefits the rich | Hechinger Report

College, federal financial aid increasingly benefits the rich | Hechinger Report | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

It’s not just colleges and universities that are shifting their financial aid from lower-income to higher-income students.


Tuition tax credits and other tax breaks to offset the cost of higher education—nearly invisible federal government subsidies for families that send their kids to college—also disproportionally benefit more affluent Americans. So do tax-deductible savings plans and the the federal work-study program, which gives taxpayer dollars to students who take campus jobs to help pay for their expenses.


The tax credits alone cost the government a combined $34 billion a year, or $1 billion more than is spent on Pell Grants, the direct government grants for low-income students. And even though only one-fifth of American households earn more than $100,000 per year, that group got more than half of the deductions for tuition, fees and exemptions for dependent students, according to the Tax Policy Center. This despite research showing that 13 out of 14 students whose families received tax breaks on tuition would have gone to college anyway.


“We might be sympathetic to those upper-income folks who are struggling with what are, yes, extremely expensive private colleges,” said Julie Strawn, a former senior fellow at the Center for Law and Social Policy, which advocates for greater access to college for the poor. “But do the tax credits really need to go to the wealthiest fifth of American households, which is what’s happening now?”


A new coalition of advocacy organizations, supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is pushing for the tax credits to be streamlined and redirected to the poor. (The Gates Foundation is among the funders of The Hechinger Report and the Education Writers Association, which co-produced this story.) And a bill in the U.S. House sponsored by Democrat Danny Davis of Illinois and Republican Diane Black of Tennessee, co-chairs of the Tax Reform Working Group on Education, would gradually lower the income eligibility to $86,000 from the current $180,000.


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OR: How education reform drives gentrification | Al Jazeera America

OR: How education reform drives gentrification | Al Jazeera America | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Public school teachers in Portland, Ore., and their students are doing a victory lap. Nearly a year after unveiling a contract proposal that would have put the squeeze on the 2,900-member Portland Association of Teachers (PAT), the Portland School Board on March 3 approved a contract that acceded to virtually every demand from the teachers’ union.


The board was acting as a stalking horse for corporate attacks on unions and public education nationwide. It initially wanted to saddle teachers with higher health care costs, fewer retirement benefits, more students and a greater workload in a city where 40 percent of teachers already work more than 50 hours a week (PDF). The board also demanded expansive management rights (PDF) and allegedly wished to link teacher evaluation more closely to standardized testing. The PAT opposed the board, arguing that low-income and minority students would pay the heaviest price as their classes grew larger, more time was devoted to testing and resources for curriculum preparation and teacher development got slashed.


Only after 98 percent of the PAT voted to strike starting Feb. 20 — and students vowed to join the picket line — did the board blink. Alexia Garcia, an organizer with the Portland Student Union who graduated last year, says students held walkouts and rallies at many of the city’s high schools in support of teachers’ demands because “teachers’ working conditions are our learning conditions.”


The deal is a big victory for the teachers’ union in a state where business interests, led by the Portland Business Alliance, call the shots on education policy. The school board had brought out the big guns, authorizing payments of up to $360,000 to a consultant for contract negotiations and $800,000 to a law firm, despite already having a full-time lawyer on its payroll. But, emulating Chicago teachers who prevailed in an eight-day strike in 2012, the PAT went beyond contract numbers, winning community support by focusing on student needs and rallying to stop school closures in underserved communities.


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Mayor De Blasio Has It Right On Charter Schools | Education Opportunity Networks

It was Monday morning, and the folks at Morning Joe were already steamed. Joe Scarborough had his Very Serious scowl face on while Mika Brzezinski’s eyes were flashing with poised rage.


Their target: newly elected New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio who had arrived for the ritual grilling now so popular on broadcast television. And the topic: first, a softball lob about expanding pre-k education (“Who would be against that?”) with some polite back-and-forth about “how are we going to pay for it.”


But the real matter at hand was the subject of charter schools (starting around the 9:00 minute mark in a 28-minute segment). After a brief video clip of Governor Andrew Cuomo speaking at a rally of charter school fans in Albany, Brzezinski started the accusations toward de Blasio, “Are you against charter schools?” Doesn’t your position seem “personal?” And from Scarborough, “Doesn’t it look like your targeting Eva Moskowitz … What don’t you like about Eva Moskowitz?”


Eva Moskowitz, of course, is the operator of a celebrated chain of charter schools in New York City who has generated much controversy by earning nearly $500,000 in annual salary – way more than New York City Chancellor earns – to procure free space for her schools by co-locating in existing public schools and forcing out school children from their current classrooms.


De Blasio quickly brought some perspective to the discussion by relating some facts that clearly demonstrated his even-handedness – some would even say deference – to charter schools co-locating in existing public schools. As education historian Diane Ravitch verified in her Huffington Post column the same day, “The new mayor, having inherited 45 co-locations, decided to approve 36 of them.”


Regarding new charter school applications, “of 17 charter schools that applied, 14 were approved,” and the charter chain operated by Moskowitz, Success Academy, won five out of the eight new schools it wanted.


Does that sound anti-charter to you?


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How augmented reality builds bridge between games and children's books | TheGuardian.com

How augmented reality builds bridge between games and children's books | TheGuardian.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The non-fiction AR book iDinosaur (above) allows kids with access to a tablet to bring the title?s Jurassic subject matter to life in virtual form.


Augmented reality is building a bridge between video games and books, redefining both in the process.


Wonderbook thrust augmented books into the mainstream in 2012

The concept behind augmented reality books is simple: a physical book contains many elements that elude the human eye, only visible through the use of various apps, gadgets and other devices.


Sony's PlayStation 3 "game" Wonderbook, for example, came with a stocky hardback, a camera, a "Move" control wand and a series of disks.


Sitting in front of a TV with the book, the player could see themselves and their surroundings on screen. By waving the Move, interactive visuals and audio poured from the book and into living rooms across the world. Even JK Rowling was captivated, crafting the Harry Potter companion Book of Spells for Wonderbook with Sony.


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Five-Minute Film Festival: Learning and the Brain | Edutopia.org

Five-Minute Film Festival: Learning and the Brain | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Is there anything as mysterious and intriguing as the human brain? It's at the center of everything we do and everything we've created, and yet we're just beginning to understand how it works.


Brain Awareness Week is coming on March 10th - 16th -- a campaign to promote the value of brain research -- so I've gathered some fascinating videos to help us explore how we're wired.


I'm no scientist, but I do know that as the field of neuroscience advances and new discoveries are made, the implications for teaching and learning get more compelling.


So enjoy this little primer on brains and get your thinking caps on!


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My, look how much the WWW has grown! | The Star Online

A virtual birthday shoutout to the Internet, which turns 25 today.


Twenty-five years ago, the World Wide Web was just an idea in a technical paper from an obscure, young computer scientist at a European physics lab.


That idea from Tim Berners-Lee at the CERN lab in Switzerland, outlining a way to easily access files on linked computers, paved the way for a global phenomenon that has touched the lives of billions of people.


He presented the paper on March 12, 1989, which history has marked as the birthday of the Internet. But the idea was so bold, it almost didn’t happen.


“There was a tremendous amount of hubris in the project at the beginning,” said Marc Weber, creator and curator of the Internet history programme at the Computer History Museum in Silicon Valley. “Tim Berners-Lee proposed it out of the blue, unrequested.” At first, said Weber, the CERN colleagues “completely ignored the proposal.”


The US military began studying the idea of connected computer networks in the 1950s, and in 1969 launched Arpanet, the forerunner to the Internet. But the World Wide Web was just one of several ideas to connect the public.


Berners-Lee convinced CERN to adopt his system, demonstrating its usefulness by compiling a lab phone book into an online index. A key aspect of the design put forward by Berners-Lee was that it worked across various computer operating systems. And it offered the ability to click on links to access files hosted on computers located elsewhere.


The web was not a winner out of the gate. There were rival online services such as US-based CompuServe and France’s Minitel but they involved fees, while Berners-Lee’s system was free.


“It started as a real underdog; no one would have predicted the system would have succeeded,” Weber said.


The Gopher system owned by the University of Minnesota was beating the web in the early 1990s. Weber credited former US vice president Al Gore with helping the web topple Gopher by getting government agencies in Washington to use the system. The launch of the Whitehouse.gov website was seen as a huge stamp of approval for the web.


In 1993, the web system was released free into the public, while those behind Gopher started charging, according to Weber. “Most people don’t realise that both the web and the Internet had competitors,” Weber said.


“Had they lost the battles, we would still be going online, but it could certainly be different, a lot more top-down control like the walled garden at Facebook.”


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X-ray observations shed new light on dark matter | GizMag.com

X-ray observations shed new light on dark matter | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

New analyses of the x-ray and gamma-ray emissions from the center of the Milky Way galaxy, the Andromeda galaxy, and the Perseus galaxy cluster have detected significant signs of two possible dark matter particles. One is likely a 7.1 keV sterile neutrino, and the other appears to be a 35 GeV WIMP (Weakly Interacting Massive Particle).


Dark matter was suggested in 1932 by Jan Oort to explain the anomalous orbital velocity of stars in our galaxy, and independently by Fritz Zwicky in 1933 to explain the anomalous orbital velocity of galaxies in clusters of galaxies. The orbital velocities are too large to be explained by the mass that can be seen, suggesting that additional mass, or dark matter, must be present.


With a certainty admittedly short of absolute, astrophysicists know from observational data that there is about six times more dark matter than "ordinary" or bosonic matter. To a good approximation, dark matter only interacts with itself and ordinary matter through gravity. Finally, dark matter is able to form concentrated regions that guide the formation of galaxies, galactic clusters, and the large-scale filamentary structures found in the Universe. Unfortunately, this is not enough information to pin down the nature of dark matter.


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Visual Art as Critical Thinking | Edutopia.org

Visual Art as Critical Thinking | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

From the early age of kindergarten I was in musical theater. I eventually transitioned in music as a focus, and was a choir nerd in middle school and into college. In fact, my participation in Jazz Choir kept me in school, as I struggled with depression as a young adult. I kept singing into college, where I led the jazz and a cappella ensemble, and participated in a semiprofessional jazz ensemble the Seattle Jazz Singers.


Although my schedule no longer allows me to sing on a regular basis, karaoke continually calls my name. I'm sure many of you had have had a similar experience, where art remains a crucial part of your being. These stories alone say "Yes!" to arts education.


Well, I have another argument to advocate for arts education. Visual arts (as well as other arts) are an excellent discipline to build and utilize critical thinking skills. I don't think we often give credit to the deep conceptual and interpretational thinking that goes into the creation of a piece of art, and this is often because art is treated as something separate from the core content areas.


School does not need to be this way. In fact, I have recently seen two excellent ways that art can be used to wrestle with rigorous content from the core while allowing for creativity and expression.


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Teacher Development Research Review: Keys to Educator Success | Edutopia.org

Teacher Development Research Review: Keys to Educator Success | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Teaching quality has been defined as "instruction that enables a wide range of students to learn" (Darling-Hammond, 2012), and it is the strongest school-related factor that can improve student learning and achievement (Hanushek, 2011; Nye, Konstantopoulos, and Hedges, 2004; Rivkin, Hanushek, and Kain, 2005).


Knowing this, what is the best way to foster and provide ongoing support for good teaching practices? While every school is unique, research has identified several elements that can almost universally increase the chances for successful teacher development and create a powerful and positive school community. The following three sections detail the range of best practices found by researchers to be critical for ensuring educator growth and success:



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So-Called "Digital Natives" Not Media Savvy, New Study Shows | ReadWrite.com

So-Called "Digital Natives" Not Media Savvy, New Study Shows | ReadWrite.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

"In Google we trust." That may very well be the motto of today's young online users, a demographic group often dubbed the "digital natives" due their apparent tech-savvy. Having been born into a world where personal computers were not a revolution, but merely existed alongside air conditioning, microwaves and other appliances, there has been (a perhaps misguided) perception that the young are more digitally in-tune with the ways of the Web than others.


That may not be true, as it turns out. A new study coming out of Northwestern University, discovered that college students have a decided lack of Web savvy, especially when it comes to search engines and the ability to determine the credibility of search results. Apparently, the students favor search engine rankings above all other factors. The only thing that matters is that something is the top search result, not that it's legit.


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Five-Minute Film Festival: Teaching Kids about Global Poverty | Edutopia.org

Five-Minute Film Festival: Teaching Kids about Global Poverty | Edutopia.org | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

After the Thanksgiving week, which for many in America is symbolized by bounty, excess, and consumption of all stripes, I was struck by the value of seeing how people live in less wealthy parts of the world.


Living on One Dollar is a full-length documentary made by four college students who traveled to rural Guatemala to live on just a dollar a day. Upon their return, they created Living On One, a nonprofit to raise awareness and inspire action around global issues like hunger and poverty -- and started by publishing the Change Series of video shorts.


I found it so compelling I've dedicated this whole film fest to it. Each episode not only succinctly frames an issue faced by people in the developing world and makes it personal, but also offers resource links to learn more -- and even better -- to do something about it.


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Mosaic: The Publishing Of Science, And The Science Of Publishing | Techdirt.com

Mosaic: The Publishing Of Science, And The Science Of Publishing | Techdirt.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The UK-based Wellcome Trust is the second-largest non-governmental funder of medical research after the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. It was one of the main backers of the Human Genome Project, which pioneered the idea of open data by placing all its results in the public domain, and of open access. Recently, it began a new project exploring openness:


First there was open source software, given away for anybody to download, use and share without charge. Then there was open access publishing, the movement to make the results of scientific research freely available to read without paying journal subscription fees. Today, the Wellcome Trust is launching a fresh experiment in open information, this time in science journalism.

Mosaic, our new digital publication devoted to long-form features about the science of life, is not only free for anybody to read. Its content is also freely available for anybody else to republish or share through their own publications and platforms.


Of course, "freely available" can mean many things. Here's more about the license Mosaic will be published under:


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Does Your STEM Degree Have a Shelf Life? | National Journal

Does Your STEM Degree Have a Shelf Life? | National Journal | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

In the aftermath of the Great Recession, hundreds of thousands of Americans are pursuing degrees and certificates in science, technology, engineering, and math in the hopes of establishing stable careers in lucrative fields. But some academics and veteran STEM workers, particularly those in computer sciences, caution that a STEM degree does not guarantee a path to middle-class security. In fact, depending on one's chosen course of study and age, that STEM degree could have a shelf life.


"Ageism is definitely an open secret within the tech fields," says Ron Hira, an associate professor of science, technology, society, and public policy at the Rochester Institute of Technology. "Forty is where things start to change for tech [workers]; mechanical engineering, I'd say 45. Electronics engineering, I'd say closer to 35."


From 2007 to 2013, for example, the number of age-related federal workplace-discrimination charges increased from four to 99 cases against computer-systems companies. That's an increase of 2,375 percent. (For comparison, over the same time period, age-discrimination charges across the private sector increased by just 12 percent.)


Matt Heusser, a 37-year-old managing consultant at Excelon Development in Grand Rapids, Mich., describes a culture in IT that favors the young. Workers in their 20s and early 30s do not have obligations yet, which stop them from working an 80-hour week, he says. Younger workers also benefit from the perception that they have more recent training in cutting-edge technology. "It's not this evil cabal of people saying you can't get a job by the time you're 40, but it happens," he says. "So people tend to find a company that quit growing at the same time they did, or they get out of IT."


The federal stats bear out Heusser's experience, working in one of the Midwest's small yet innovative tech hubs. In 2012, 38 percent of the nation's software developers were under 35, according to an analysis of census estimates. That year, 30- to 34-year-olds made up the largest number of people to work in that occupation. The employment numbers in the field then peaked at age 31 and fell off significantly after age 36. The number of people working as computer-support specialists and Web developers also peaked among 30- to 34-year-olds, then dropped off, according to the census data.


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Socialization technique helps in academic achievement | WashPost.com

Socialization technique helps in academic achievement | WashPost.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A popular teaching technique to help elementary students develop emotional and social skills also leads to academic achievement, according to a study released Thursday.


In a randomized, controlled trial that examined the technique known as Responsive Classroom, researchers found that children in classrooms where the technique was fully used scored significantly higher in math and reading tests than students in classrooms where it wasn’t applied.


Sara Rimm-Kaufman, the study’s lead author and an associate professor of education at the University of Virginia, said the results are important during a period of increased emphasis on academic results.


At a time when teacher evaluations and school performance are increasingly judged by student test scores, many educators may feel that limited classroom time is better spent on academics and not “softer” social skills, Rimm-Kaufman said. The study shows that teaching social skills in the elementary years can translate into higher test scores, she said.


“Our research shows that time spent supporting children’s social and emotional abilities can be a very wise investment,” said Rimm-Kaufman, who was joined by researchers from Virginia, George Mason and Arizona State universities. “When teachers receive adequate levels of training and support, using practices that support students’ social and emotional growth actually boosts achievement.”


The practices that form the backbone of the technique are designed to create positive classroom relationships — between teachers and students and among students. They aim to teach young children to cooperate with each other and feel that they are part of a “community” that cares about them. Teachers set expectations for behavior and learning so that children will internalize those goals over time and learn how to regulate their own behavior. The practices are based on well-known child-development theories of Jean Piaget and others.


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Patrick s's curator insight, July 17, 2014 6:27 PM

The article is written about children, but the techniques apply for everyone!

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Kansas School Funding Ruling May Affect Classrooms Around The Country | HuffPost.com

Kansas School Funding Ruling May Affect Classrooms Around The Country | HuffPost.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

The Kansas Supreme Court on Friday ruled the state's funding of public schools to be unconstitutional, a declaration likely to have effects beyond the state's borders.


The decision ordered the immediate reversal of recent education cuts, but told a lower court to reconsider the potential $1 billion question of whether Kansas provides enough education funding to adequately prepare students for the future.


The 110-page opinion's immediate effect on schools isn't clear. Much depends on the actions of Gov. Sam Brownback (R), who after the ruling promised to work with the legislature to "fix this." Earlier, conservative state lawmakers had threatened to defy the court, arguing that school funding is the business of the legislature, not courts.


"There's work to be done by our legislature," Diane Debacker, the state education commissioner, told The Huffington Post.


The opinion sets no legal precedent outside Kansas. But it provides clear language on school funding that may influence courts in New York, Texas and Connecticut that are considering similar cases that argue states are not funding schools adequately and equitably.


"These rulings aren't binding across states, but they borrow -- this case makes its claim for adequacy on a 1989 Kentucky case," said Bruce Baker, a Rutgers University professor. "One could certainly expect that other courts could adopt this."


The decision, like other recent education law rulings elsewhere, includes factors beyond money -- such as school quality, academic standards, and student outcomes. That trend may prove significant as schools adopt the Common Core State Standards.


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Top 10 Competencies of a Gamified Learning Designer | Learnnovators

Top 10 Competencies of a Gamified Learning Designer | Learnnovators | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

It is exciting to be part of the learning revolution happening all around us, with new learning paradigms and technologies emerging almost on a daily basis. Thanks to the inherent quality of learning designers, we find it easy to adapt with most of these changes. However, some of the shifts may require us to move beyond the traditional definitions of ‘learning’. A few may also necessitate ‘unlearning’ and ‘relearning’ the conventional beliefs that we have been carrying with us all these years.


Gamified learning is one such major revolution that demands a shift in the mere thinking of ‘learning’. It requires us to unlearn and relearn the traditional notions of:


  • Learning style/preference (Fun, Social Interaction, Competition)
  • New (additional) dimensions to learning (Challenge, Engagement, Motivation)
  • New (additional) elements to learning (Rules, Challenges, Levels, Scores, Badges, Leaderboards)


Gartner predicts that this year, 80% of the current gamified applications by companies will fail to meet business objectives. The primary reason cited for this (failure) is ‘poor gamification design’. This calls for the need to focus on the skillsets required for designing good gamified learning experiences. In this article, we’ll take a quick look at the top 10 essential competencies that a learning designer is required to possess for designing effective gamified learning interventions.


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MN: Intergenerational Digital Literacy Training in Two Harbors | Blandin on Broadband

MN: Intergenerational Digital Literacy Training in Two Harbors | Blandin on Broadband | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

Thanks to Karl Samp and Kris Lee for the story and pictures from the front lines. Two Harbors is part of the Blandin Broadband Communities cohort…


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Computer science enrollments rocketed last year, up 22% | NetworkWorld.com

Computer science enrollments rocketed last year, up 22% | NetworkWorld.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A sneak peek at the annual Computing Research Association's (CRA) report on computer science enrollments at colleges shows that strong demand for technically-savvy workers is luring students in a big way.


The full 2013 Taulbee Report will be published in May, but the CRA revealed a few tidbits on Monday in its Computer Research News publication. Among the findings:


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Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer finds no evidence of phantom planet hiding in the solar system | GizMag.com

Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer finds no evidence of phantom planet hiding in the solar system | GizMag.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

A study of data captured by NASA's Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) satellite has disproved the existence of the hypothesized large celestial body, dubbed "Planet X." The planet or companion star was, some believed, responsible for the periodic mass extinctions that have taken place in Earth's past.


NASA's WISE satellite was designed to image the entire sky with infrared light, to aid the answering of fundamental questions on the origins of celestial bodies ranging from planets to galaxies.


Before being placed in hibernation and subsequently woken in 2013 to form the NEOWISE mission, the WISE mission operated from 2010 to early 2011. During this time it carried out two full surveys of the sky, imaging nearly 750 million stars and galaxies and creating a catalog that scientists could turn to in order to examine questions and theories such as that posed by the hypothetical Planet X.


Scientists and conspiracy theorists alike originally hypothesized the existence of a planet or small star in the outer solar system. This is due to the seemingly regular timing of mass extinctions that had taken place on Earth due to asteroid impact such as the one that wiped out the dinosaurs in the Cretaceous period.


The leading theory on Planet X was that a phantom planet or small star lying somewhere beyond Pluto would periodically re-enter the inner solar system, moving through bands of comets as it did so. The gravity of Planet X would then deflect these asteroids towards Earth, causing the mass extinctions found in geological surveys.


However, whilst WISE searched the entire sky and discovered hundreds of millions of stars and asteroids, the existence of Planet X was not supported by the extensive infrared survey. No object that exceeded the size of Saturn was discovered to a distance of 10,000 astronomical units (au), with one au being the equivalent of 93 million miles. WISE also detected no planet or star larger than Jupiter as far as 26,000 au. With earth being one au from the Sun and Pluto 40 au from its parent star, this data ostensibly disproves the existence of a hitherto undetected planet at the fringes of the solar system.


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US-CERT urges XP users to dump IE | NetworkWorld.com

US-CERT urges XP users to dump IE | NetworkWorld.com | Digital Media Literacy + Cyber Arts + Performance Centers Connected to Fiber Networks | Scoop.it

People who plan to run Windows XP after Microsoft pulls the patch plug should dump Internet Explorer (IE) and replace it with a different browser, the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT) said Monday.


US-CERT is part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and regularly issues security warnings and threat alerts.


"Users who choose to continue using Windows XP after the end of support may mitigate some risks by using a Web browser other than Internet Explorer," US-CERT said in a Monday bulletin. "The Windows XP versions of some alternative browsers will continue to receive support temporarily. Users should consult the support pages of their chosen alternative browser for more details."


US-CERT's advice was not new: Security companies and experts have said the same before.


Because Microsoft ties support for Internet Explorer (IE) to the underlying operating system's end date, people running Windows XP will also not receive patches for IE7 or IE8, although others, including customers running the same browsers on Windows Vista and Windows 7, will continue to receive fixes.


IE6, which debuted several months before XP in 2001, will be retired from all support next month.


With IE patches ending, security professionals have urged people sticking with XP to run a browser that will receive bug fixes, like Google's Chrome, Mozilla's Firefox and Opera Software's Opera.


That anything-but-IE advice stems from on the fact that Windows malware often enters a PC by exploiting a browser vulnerability. Exploits of unpatched bugs, described as "drive-by attacks," only require the user to browse to a malicious or compromised website, where attack code has been pre-planted.


Chrome will be patched until at least April 2015, Google pledged last October, leaving the door open to a later stop date.


However, Mozilla declined to specify a patch-until date when asked Monday.


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