Turn Game Players into Makers, Extend STEM Beyond the Classroom & More
Manage, Interact & Collaborate with Multiplatform Student Devices
NetSupport School has been delivering educators with a powerful combination of monitoring, real-time presentation, and collaboration tools for 27 years that are guaranteed to enhance any IT lesson while simultaneously reducing educational technology costs. NetSupport School makes it easy for instructors to teach with or embrace new technology and offers support for all platforms—including PCs, Chromebooks, iPads, and Android devices—making it the perfect scalable solution to address classroom management needs.
Funding & Recognition
Educator’s Legacy Scholarship
McDaniel College affirms its commitment to education by recognizing elementary and secondary school employees for their good work in preparing the next generation of leaders. McDaniel’s Educator’s Legacy Scholarship is available to the children of any K–12 school employee with four or more years of current and consecutive full-time employment with a school or district. This $100,000 scholarship will be awarded at an annual rate of $25,000 per year as long as the student is admitted and maintains continuous enrollment. Excellent teaching is McDaniel College’s priority and legacy. The college’s expert faculty mentors empower students to achieve their personal best, and many of McDaniel’s graduates go on to become top K–12 educators. Since 2010, four of McDaniel’s graduates have been named state Teachers of the Year, including the 2011 National Teacher of the Year, Michelle Shearer.
Happy Hands Contest
The Deb Group thinks that healthy school and happy students go hand in hand! That’s why Deb is giving schools the tools to make hand hygiene fun with Deb’s Happy Hands Contest. K–12 schools have the opportunity to educate students about the importance of hand washing, while also allowing them to express their artistic sides through the creation of an original design for a Deb dispenser. Schools can win too. The schools with the most popular designs will receive a $500 donation from Deb.
Deadline: December 5, 2016, for design submissions
Recharge Labs Challenge
Students can try their luck in REcharge Labs’ renewable energy design competitions. Each online challenge is hosted monthly and open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, year-round. Students from around the world form a team; design a wind turbine, windmill, or solar house; and upload their data to the corresponding Online Challenge portal. Each month REcharge Labs chooses a winner based on the device’s energy output, as well as design creativity, and awards the team a $50 cash prize.
Deadlines: Ongoing, monthly, for design submissions
Plus: To help educators bring renewable energy engineering to their classrooms, REcharge Labs is giving away 10 MacGyver Windmill Class Packs and 10 Solar Town Class Packs to deserving teachers. The winners will then use their class packs to help teams of students enter the MacGyver Windmill Challenge or the Solar House Challenge. To enter the giveaway, educators must fill out the application and list why it is important for students to enter REcharge Labs’ Online Challenge.
Deadline: September 16, 2016, for applications
Peace First Challenge
An initiative of Peace First, the Peace First Challenge calls for young people around the world to identify an injustice and develop a solution using a peacemaking lens. Participants in the challenge will help Peace First co-design the key elements to help launch this initiative to the wider public in the US and the rest of the world. The organization is looking for schools and clubs with groups of young people that would like to explore issues affecting their communities and want support to help them create projects to address those issues. Peace First is offering mini-grants (up to $250) to support young people with their projects; a mobile-friendly platform to connect with other young people who are part of this initial launch; a set of tools and resources to support young people on their journey to turn their ideas into projects; as well as training via email, phone, and face-to-face for young people and their mentors. Stories that emerge from the work of the young people will be shared both domestically and globally through Peace First’s partners and existing networks.
Deadlines: Limited number of places available to schools and clubs that want to be part of this initial launch. Once the maximum number of groups is reached, the signup will close. Schools and clubs will be confirmed by September 23, 2016; activities will begin mid-October 2016; activities will conclude by March 2017.
Toshiba America Grants
The Toshiba America Foundation offers $1,000 grants to K–5 teachers for projects that focus on improving science and mathematics education. The goal is to provide teachers with additional funding to support innovative ideas for hands-on classroom projects. Applications should be for project-based learning with measurable outcomes. The foundation strongly encourages projects planned and led by individual teachers or teams of teachers for their own classrooms. Interested applicants will find this grant opportunity on GetEdFunding, a free database sponsored by CDW•G of thousands of funding opportunities for educators.
Deadline: October 1, 2016, for applications
Digital Learning • Learning Support
Virtual Field Trip on Constitution Day
What was George Washington really thinking about during the Constitutional Convention? What were Alexander Hamilton’s parting sentiments to his wife, Eliza, before his fatal duel with Aaron Burr? What did Thomas Jefferson try to cover up in his original draft of the Declaration of Independence, and how did scientists at the Library of Congress uncover the truth? In honor of Constitution Day, Discovery Education will take students behind the scenes at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC. On September 16, 2016, at 1 p.m. (ET), participating classrooms will have the opportunity to meet the new Librarian of Congress, Dr. Carla Hayden, the first woman and first African American to hold this prestigious office. Students will also tour the largest library in the world and, through diaries, letters, and other primary sources written by George Washington, Alexander Hamilton, and others, explore the unique perspectives of America’s founders. Finally, participants will tour one of the library’s research labs not open to the public to see how scientists are uncovering new information from 200-year-old documents. This is not a live event, so classes can watch the two-part webcast as many times as they like, whenever they like, beginning September 16. Students will also be able to participate in a live Twitter chat with the Librarian of Congress during the event, using #DEConstitutionDay2016.
Lesson Modules for Philosophical Discussions
Children’s literature often raises deep philosophical issues that elementary school children love to think about. The Teaching Children Philosophy website has assembled all the materials teachers will need to have a philosophical discussion with children, except the books. Most of the modules were created by students in a Philosophy for Children course at Mount Holyoke College. For each story or book, teachers will find a summary of the plot, a discussion of the main philosophical issues raised by the books, and a series of questions that can be used to initiate a philosophical discussion of the story or book with children. The questions are suggestions to help teachers get an idea of how to approach the discussion of the story that they choose. In addition to an alphabetical listing, the book modules can be accessed through categories. The main categories are aesthetics, epistemology, ethics, existentialism, logic, metaphysics, multiculturalism, language, the mind, religion, and society. Each of these category pages also contains subcategories for more specific issues.
Activities Developing Data Analysis Skills
The US Census Bureau has unveiled its newly updated Statistics in Schools program for K–12 teachers and students. Using current and historical data, the Census Bureau provides teachers the tools to help students understand statistical concepts and improve their data analysis skills. The program offers free online activities and other resources in geography, history, math, and sociology. Among the activities are “The Progressives and the 1920 Census” for high school history classes; “An Analysis of the Millennial Generation” for high school sociology classes; “Two-Way Tables—Walking and Bicycling to Work” for middle school math classes; and “Changes in My State” for elementary school math classes. In addition to downloadable activities and games, the Statistics in Schools website presents videos, infographics, and data visualizations. The site also provides information to help explain Census Bureau data to students, along with searchable data access tools.
Magazine Addressing the Global Refugee Crisis
Today an estimated 30 million children have fled their homes because of brutal violence, extreme poverty, or both. The newest edition of UNICEF ACT magazine for youth, Children on the Move, provides a comprehensive and child-friendly look at this global refugee crisis. Two separate publications are available—one for grades 3–5 and another for grades 6–8. Along with the magazines, educators can access teacher’s guides, supplemental activities, and ideas for taking action. Children on the Move is a publication of TeachUNICEF, which provides educators with global learning resources and programs. Focusing on global citizenship and child rights, TeachUNICEF engages students in exploring humanitarian issues and inspires them to take action to improve their world.
Create Impact Beyond the Classroom
Ideally located in the nation’s capital, George Washington University’s Doctoral Program in Curriculum and Instruction (C&I) prepares education leaders to improve preK–16+ education in local, national, and international settings. The coursework encourages critical thought and creative work focusing on curriculum, instruction, and research, with additional courses and learning opportunities that link teaching and learning, policy, and evaluation to students’ substantial prior experiences. Students can meet national leaders in education and participate in internships that expand horizons. The program focuses on how curriculum and instruction can be constructed and applied to educational reform and diverse student populations. Students build research skills and study collaboratively, while staying grounded in the realities of schooling. Doctoral students become part of a community that links scholars with practicing professionals, policymakers, and educational organizations in Washington, DC, and beyond.
Webinar Providing a Method for Understanding Political Rhetoric
On September 27, 2016, at 7 p.m. (ET) / 4 p.m. (PT), the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) will host a complimentary webinar titled “Electioneering: How Elections throughout American History Have Been Shaped by Rhetoric, Values, and the Media.” In this webinar, participants will learn a new framework for interpreting political media through the lens of shared American values and the inherent tensions that exist between them. Participants will emerge equipped with a method for guiding students to understand political rhetoric from the election of 1800 to the modern day.
Webinar on Bringing Social Media into the Classroom
From 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. (ET) on October 5, 2016, the Amazing Resources for Educators community on edWeb.net will be hosting a webinar titled “Bring Social Media into the Classroom.” This free webinar, sponsored by Quill.com, will define social media and explore a variety of tools that will allow participants to communicate and reach out to other learners or experts from around the world. Participants will be able to ask questions during this live, interactive event, which will also be recorded and archived for members of the Amazing Resources for Educators community to access after the event. The webinar will benefit technology coaches, librarians, and educators at all levels.
STEM • STEAM • STREAM
eCYBERMISSION Kicks Off Its 15th Year
Registration is now open for eCYBERMISSION, a web-based STEM competition free to students in grades 6–9. eCYBERMISSION invites students to develop solutions to real-world challenges in their local communities and compete for state, regional, and national awards up to $9,000 in US Savings Bonds. eCYBERMISSION also offers a unique opportunity for student teams to participate in a Live CyberGuide Chat series starting on September 14. STEM volunteers will answer students’ questions and provide best practices for team projects.
Project-based Computer Science Curriculum
GameSalad’s PBL-based curriculum teaches core concepts of computer science through game development. Each unit, or module, covers one or more topics and features a specific game genre or mechanic, providing maximum flexibility to design a program of study that meets students’ needs. Each unit includes a detailed student guide and educator guide; video walkthrough; educator lesson plan and schedule; project checklist and evaluation rubric; assessment and answer key; example final game projects; and art and sound assets.
Interactive STEM Webcasts for Students
The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s fast-paced webcast series STEM in 30 engages middle school students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) topics ranging from World War I airplanes to rovers on Mars. The 30-minute shows combine animations, interviews with experts, and unique locations to convey to students that science extends beyond the walls of their school. The shows are interactive: students respond to polls and submit questions that are answered online or during the live broadcast. Educators are provided with additional content and follow-up activities to extend the experience beyond the live webcast. Each show meets Next Generation Science Standards. Students can participate in STEM in 30 live on the museum’s website or on NASA TV. They can also view archived programs on demand.
App with Programming Puzzles
Created by experienced teachers and programmers, CodeArt – Programming Puzzles by Pentaquistic Solutions is an introduction to programming for children (aged 7 and up). Designed for the iPad and iPhone, this free app features an innovative modeless paradigm, where the code is always running and no separate “Run” button is needed. Feedback is provided via a simple color-coded interface: green is good, red implies an error. Each of CodeArt’s four levels has 10 puzzles in increasing order of difficulty: Level 1—Basics: learn to code; Level 2—Functions: repeating patterns; Level 3—Turns: new commands; and Level 4—Mo’ Functions: turn turn turn. Two more levels will soon be available: Level 5: Multiple Functions: F2, and Level 6: Creations: make your own.
App for Improving Math Vocabulary
The Common Core State Standards stress the importance of having children use mathematics vocabulary in written and spoken explanations of their thinking. Math Vocabulary Cards help students deepen their conceptual understanding of key terms in mathematics. Each card features three sections: a math term, a representative example or model, and a concise definition. Each section can be hidden or revealed, providing multiple options for practice. Vocabulary cards can be selected individually or by category and switched seamlessly between English and Spanish. Card sets are available for kindergarten–grade 2 and grades 3–5. The app was developed by The Math Learning Center, a nonprofit organization in Oregon serving the education community throughout the nation. It is published by Clarity Innovations and is free to download for iOS, Windows, and Chrome, as well as in a web browser.
App Leading to a Secret Science Lab
The Secret Lab Kids app shows children aged 5–9 how fun science can be. Using this free app, students set out on an adventure to an unknown world—a world where Thomas Edison had a secret lab in which he invented a virtual version of himself and a nearly completed robot to guide and inspire future generations of young scientists. The secret lab, Edison’s virtual ego, and his prototype robot remained hidden until Angie, a 12-year-old prodigy, cracked the secret coded message that Edison left behind. The young genius and her science club move into the lab and the fun begins. Students can explore the lab, play games, learn about Thomas Edison and other inventors, meet the Secret Lab Kids, learn about inventions and discoveries, create holograms, and enjoy some videos. The app was developed by FatRedCouch and is free to download for iOS and Android devices, as well as Amazon’s Nook.
Writing Platform Giving Youth a Voice in the Election
Today’s teens may not yet be able to vote, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have something to say about the election. Letters to the Next President 2.0 (L2P 2.0) supports and amplifies that youth voice, giving students, aged 13–18, an opportunity to speak out on the issues that matter to them, as well as helping the next generation of citizens develop discourse and argumentation skills crucial to their participation in civic life. The initiative provides a wealth of resources and support for educators so they can integrate the program into their class projects or simply introduce youth to this unique publishing opportunity. Videos and webinars are posted to give educators creative catalysts for using L2P 2.0 in their lesson plans this fall. Educators create an account on the website and then invite their students to register and begin crafting letters in written or multimedia formats. The publishing website will stay open for student submissions through November 8, and all published letters will be available to the public through the presidential inauguration in January 2017. Culminating activities are in the planning stages. L2P 2.0 is jointly hosted by the National Writing Project (NWP) and KQED, together with a growing number of public media and educator innovator partners. Teachers and adult mentors interested in signing up and supporting students can register on the L2P 2.0 website. They can also follow the initiative on Facebook and Twitter, using the hashtag #2nextprez.
Dr. Seuss-Inspired Twitter Guide
“Dr. Seuss,” the writer and illustrator behind the children’s classics The Cat in the Hat and The Lorax, would have turned 112 on March 2, 2016. Hootsuite thinks that if Theodor Seuss Geisel (Dr. Seuss) were alive today, he would have been a social media master. So to honor his wit and wisdom, Hootsuite has created a Dr. Seuss Inspired Guide to Twitter. As the Lorax says, “My chum: It’s not about what it is; it’s about what it can become.”
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