" In 2012, the department began the development of a statewide STEM education plan. The tools and resources below have been developed to ensure schools can successfully implement a STEM education plan at the local level."
"For some, the Common Core State Standards seemed to come from nowhere, and appeared to be a sneaky attack on states' rights to control local education. But for those involved in writing the standards, it was nothing short of an exhaustive and collaborative years-long effort aimed at raising the achievement levels of students across the country. "
"This week I’d like you to meet top-notch STEM program developer Dr. Susan Pruet. I was fortunate enough to work with Susan as she developed and directed two remarkably successful NSF-funded school reform efforts involving STEM education: the Maysville/Mobile Math Initiative and, more recently, the middle grades program Engaging Youth through Engineering.
Susan – best described as a high-energy dynamo – has a talent and a well-designed process for establishing successful STEM reform initiatives. And she is masterful at joining hands with teachers, administrators, and community & business leaders to make it happen.
In this guest blog post, Susan passes along some of her wisdom on how to design and implement a successful, sustainable STEM program. Here are 7 tips Susan thinks you should know up front."
"Until the release of the Common Core State Standards, many educators didn’t realize that writing skills need to develop incrementally, with the work that students do at one grade level standing on the shoulders of prior learning. It would be hard to
achieve this high level of craft and knowledge if students weren’t moving steadily along a spiralling curriculum, practicing and extending skills in each type of writing each year. After all, in math, teachers agree on content and ensure that students move up
the grade levels with the essential skills that teachers agreed upon. That same focus on writing as content, as a set of skills, will move grade levels of students forward, rather than individuals who happened to get this teacher or that. Writing will needto be given its due, starting in kindergarten and continuing throughout the grades."—LUCY CALKINS
"Jon Negroni isn't done with his Pixar theories. As it turns out, Andy, the boy Woody and Buzz Lightyear belong to in the "Toy Story" movies, has a surprising family history.
Remember last summer, when Pixar superfan Negroni wrote up his incredibly comprehensive report linking all of the studio's movies into one giant, linear universe? It was an ambitious undertaking that resulted in something obsessively researched and remarkably well-reasoned. In short, it blew our minds. And now, he's reemerged with a new theory, this one revealing the secret identity of Andy's mom, pointing to the many clues served up in "Toy Story 2.""
"Every Pixar movie is connected. I explain how, and possibly why.
Several months ago, I watched a fun-filled video on Cracked.com that introduced the idea (at least to me) that all of the Pixar movies actually exist within the same universe. Since then, I’ve obsessed over this concept, working to complete what I call “The Pixar Theory,” a working narrative that ties all of the Pixar movies into one cohesive timeline with a main theme."
"When students write a paper, it goes without saying that they must cite the sources that they use in creating it. For generations, students have created note cards to document and organize these resources and/or submitted a bibliography page with their finished work. In the modern classroom, student research and creation has taken on a new look. Before, when students created a poster, and then separately handed in a bibliography page to the teacher, justice was done and fair credit was given for the ideas used."
"At the end of a project-based learning (PBL) experience, students typically share what they have learned or discovered with an audience. Depending on the project, students might publish their work online, make presentations at a public event, or pitch their ideas to a panel of judges.
For veteran PBL teacher Don Wettrick, "nothing is better than a project that gets community buy-in." Connecting students with an authentic audience is key, he says, to driving engagement and helping students relate what they are learning to the real world. "My top two goals are to help students find great opportunities [for real-world problem solving], and then cheerlead them to a great audience." "
"My Middle School is using blogger (part of Google) as a platform for our students’ blogfolios. The blogfolio (term coined by Andrea Hernandez) is part blog and part digital portfolio. Students not only showcase their best work, but document their learning journey. A blogfolio shows student work at a particular moment in time (due to its chronological nature) with a reflective component to show evidence of growth and learning over time."
"Silvana Meneghini and I work as Academic Technology Coordinators at Graded, the American School of São Paulo. ” A flashlight in the fog of technology integration“, initially the title of a conference workshop proposal, quickly developed into the desire of creating a framework to guide and coach teachers based on Ruben Puentedura’s SAMR model. The framework does not place emphasis on technology devices (or technology integration) in itself, but on the process of upward movement from substitution to redefinition of tasks and learning activities."
"I am continuing to document using Google Glass at Schools.
What are some ways we can use Google Glass in schools to document learning, reflections, practices and just life at schools?"
"My colleague, Silvana Meneghini, and I have been working on developing a Professional Development framework for embedding technology use and modern learning litercies based on Ruben Puentedura‘s SAMR model."
"Whenever I take a new teacher to observe a veteran teacher, I’m surprised at what they notice. We could have observed the most impressive lesson ever, but without fail the new teachers notice the little things in the classroom: the way the chairs are set up, the routine the teacher has established for collecting work, the posters on the wall. They inherently know that seemingly small details can make or break teachers."
"Is it personality? Are some people born with it? Can it be learned? I am talking about REFLECTION. At the beginning of the week, I had the opportunity to be part of a workshop during our pre-service ( we just returned from our summer break here in the Southern Hemisphere) with our ES Principal, MS Principal and HS Assistant Principal. The topic was student reflection. The following ESSENTIAL QUESTIONS emerged out of the planning for this workshop:
How does student reflection impact student learning?
How can we embed reflection into assessment practices so that it is not seen as an add-on?
How can we make the reflection visible and sustainable?"
"The one guaranteed constant in educational technology is change, and the pace of that change is definitely accelerating. So as we approach the new year, T.H.E. Journal pauses to survey the ed tech trends on the horizon. As in previous years, we have assembled a distinguished panel of five experts, including several from our advisory board. We asked them to consider 10 topics related to instructional technology and predict whether each topic will be HOT ⇧, LUKEWARM ⇔, or LOSING STEAM ⇓ in 2014. We compiled their responses to come up with an overall trend line. There was unanimous agreement on some topics and less consensus on others, but taken together, their responses paint a compelling picture of what to expect from ed tech in 2014."
"The Common Core has embedded within it some Big Ideas that shift the role of teachers to curriculum designers and managers of an inquiry process. How can project-based learning (PBL) help with this shift? "
"Back in the early 90’s, my grandmother taught me how to bake biscotti in a traditional way. She was a baker by trade and taught me about the precision of measuring ingredients to get a perfect dough consistency, how to lay out the initial loaf, cut on the diagonal and re-bake until the cookies reached their optimum crunch.
Over the years, I’ve experimented with the basic recipe, adding additional ingredients, replacing others, trying different thicknesses of the cookie, dipping the cookies in chocolate, etc. My ultimate goal is to get to the cookie, even though my path to get there changes every year."