Google Hangouts offer students "out of classroom" experiences without leaving the building, writes Andrew Marcinek, director of technology for Groton-Dunstable Regional School District in Groton, Mass. Marchinek shares six ways teachers can use Google Hangouts, including broadcasting and archiving live sessions, sharing screens and creating collaborative demonstrations, and making two-way digital conversations.
Students and teachers at a Florida elementary school are using the website Edmodo to connect and share content safely and securely. The free learning network is seen as similar to social media sites but is designed for educational use only, allowing teachers and students to share homework assignments, manage due dates and hold discussions. Teachers say they also can post podcasts, videos and other information, with one educator saying he used the site to post a "secret study guide" the night before a test.
A new math program -- Go Math! -- is helping some Pennsylvania elementary-school students learn how math connects to daily life. During a recent lesson at Clairton Elementary School, a chef showed students how math helps in measuring ingredients for a recipe. "This isn't just problem solving on a piece of paper," fifth-grade teacher Wendy Blotzer said, adding, "We are dealing with manipulatives in real-life situations."
A Massachusetts school is taking an innovative approach to computer-coding instruction by integrating the subject across the curriculum in everything from art to English to math and science. The approach comes at a time when education leaders and technology industry experts are pressing for a greater focus on computer coding in K-12 schools.
Officials with the American Institutes for Research are citing a server malfunction for online testing problems recently experienced in Minnesota -- where questions have taken as much as four minutes to load and some students have been logged out while taking the tests. While the company, which has a $61 million contract to deliver the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment online tests, tries to pin down the source of the problems, officials are mulling whether this year's scores will be valid and if the state should go back to paper and pencil tests in the future.