The Burlington High School Help Desk in Massachusetts is one of the first and most successful student-run genius bars in the nation. Facilitator Jenn Scheffer gives her step-by-step guide for starting a student tech team in your school.
There are thousands of different ways to introduce programming to your class in fun and interactive ways for the upcoming Hour of Code (December 8-14). While most apps and tutorials do require internet connected computers or mobile devices, it does not mean that schools without this level of technology cannot get involved. In fact, coding with paper can be an even more engaging and meaningful way to introduce students to early programming concepts.
"After historic rains, Atacama, Chile is exploding with vibrant wildflowers. Here's a softer side to the disruptive weather phenomenon known as El Nino: an enormous blanket of colorful flowers has carpeted Chile's Atacama desert, the most arid in the world. The cyclical warming of the central Pacific may be causing droughts and floods in various parts of the world, but in the vast desert of northern Chile it has also caused a vibrant explosion of thousands of species of flowers with an intensity not seen in decades."
The world is increasingly going hi-tech. Many people in our high consumption society want the latest and the greatest; last year’s much anticipated laptops and cell phones are miles behind the newest models that are coming out. So what happens with the old models? Even thrift stores are politely not accepting them as donations. Even some workable machines that were highly valuable 10 years ago are now functionally trash in our society. We can’t put it to the curb to end up in the landfill because of the lead, mercury, and other hazardous materials that can leak into the environment. This type of trash is what we call e-waste. The geography of e-waste is an ‘out of sight out of mind’ problem that we rarely think about but need to due to the ecological impacts of our collective consumption.
Laser scanning has helped England do everything from discovering new things about Stonehenge to planning better flood infrastructure. Now, the country has made the entirety of its massive trove of scans available for free—in part because of requests from everyone from researchers to Minecraft players.
Ian Fairhurst's insight:
Gotta love free stuff...... especially when give you new opportunities to create..... #minecraft is the best
Google Forms has so many applications for education. For students to fill out to submit data to the teacher, for the teacher to record data on observations about students, for students and teachers to monitor their progress on a task they are tracking, for self and peer evaluation and so much more. Google Forms is the magic ingredient to help your classroom go paperless. Almost anything you were collecting on paper can now be collected through a Google Form.
Makerspaces, wearable technologies and adaptive learning technologies are three of the six technologies that will have a profound impact on higher education within the next five years, according to the NMC Horizon Report: 2015 Higher Education...
The Better Internet for Kids (BIK) guide to online services aims to provide key information about some of the most popular apps, social networking sites and other platforms which are commonly being used by children and young people (and adults) today.
Choosing the right STEM tools for your students can be intimidating. Here’s a short guide to the factors you should consider, from grade level and subject area to cost.
Ian Fairhurst's insight:
Exposing students to STEM experiences can be an extremely engaging and effective way to foster the skills they will need in a global, competitive workplace. But don’t save these activities for science or math class. You can incorporate STEM learning tools in all core content areas to encourage critical thinking, collaboration and creativity while reinforcing valuable skills.
Code.org increases diversity in computer science by reaching students of all backgrounds where they are — at their skill-level, in their schools, and in ways that inspire them to keep learning.
Ian Fairhurst's insight:
"Old maps get a lot of love, and with good reason—with their sea monsters and sheer craftsmanship, they can transport us through both space and time. But although they lack fold-mark furrows, there’s something to be said for new maps, too. Leafing through Mind the Map, a stunning new book from Gestalten, it’s hard not to think we’re living in the middle of a map renaissance, a time when cartographers and illustrators have good design on their minds and satellite data at their fingertips. This partnership between math and art allows for representations that are not only technically accurate, but also have a sense of a place."
Tags: mapping, visualization, cartography, unit 1 Geoprinciples.
"By moving the slider, the user can compare 1990 false-color Landsat views (left) with recent true-color imagery (right). Humans are increasingly transforming Earth’s surface—through direct activities such as farming, mining, and building, and indirectly by altering its climate."
Vestergaard-Frandsen's landmark CARBON FOR WATER initiative provides more than 1 million free Lifestraw family water filters to communities in western Kenya, a region with limited access to clean water. Locals no longer need to burn firewood for purification, resulting in carbon emissions savings. Learn about the company's commitment to Kenya and how it will provide clean water equipment and training for the years to come. Available here: http://bit.ly/12Pyabv
In this age of abundance of information, shifting classroom pedagogy isn't nearly enough to make learning in school more relevant and authentic for the learner. Self-directed learning (andragogy), and self-determined learning (heutagogy) are the ideals necessary in making students "future ready" to live and learn in a web connected world.
While original research applied these concepts to mature learners, it has become apparent that even young children have an abundant capacity for recognizing and directing their own learning. Anyone who has observed toddlers learning how to walk and talk understand the motivation and skill development that quickly develops during these processes.
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