More than 75% of those who responded to a recent survey in SmartBrief on EdTech said they support President Barack Obama's goal of extending high-speed Internet to all schools within five years. However, 15% said there are other, more important educational needs that should be addressed, and 9% said the goal may not be attainable. Most respondents also said that expanding high-speed Internet would make it easier for students to use tablet computers in the classroom.
Bring-your-own-device programs help connect and engage students both in and out of the classroom, Meg Ormiston, a curriculum coach, author and speaker, writes in this blog post. Among other things, she writes about her support for programs that allow students, teachers and others to collaborate online, including Skype, Google Hangouts and Edmodo.
Homework assignments at Massachusetts' Ashland High School have been modernized, thanks to senior Ankit Kumar and junior Andrew Walter, who created the computer system called the Homework Beacon. Teachers at the school are starting to use a computerized system that allows them to upload assignments and other information, as well as move the due dates for various assignments and projects in real time. "The fact of the matter is student-teacher communication is stuck in the 20th century," Kumar told the Ashland school committee.
Woodville Elementary School is the oldest school in Leon County, Fla., and teachers use the history of their school, which opened in 1856, to help illustrate both the stability of the community, as well as the many changes that have occurred in the past century and a half. Starting next year, the school will shift to a magnet program focused on history and civics called "Leadership through History, Civics, and Service Learning."
The education system currently discourages the teaching of values and morals, despite the fact that students are growing up as much at school as they are at home, write Katherine Casey and Francesca Kaplan Grossman, both of the Harvard Graduate School of Education. In this commentary, they recommend that educators evaluate their school climate, include "community capstones" in graduation requirements and integrate values education as part of the Common Core State Standards.