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January 30, 2013
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Head of the Class 
 
  • Why home Internet access is a must for today's students
    Internet access has become a necessity for K-12 students, offers Helen Brunner, director of the Media Democracy Fund. In this commentary, she writes that gaps in Internet access at home particularly affect minority students. "Without access to the Internet, students can't take advantage of the numerous innovative tools that have democratized learning, such as high-quality teaching, learning, and research materials that are available for free online," Brunner writes. Education Week (premium article access compliments of EdWeek.org) (1/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story

"You've got to read this book."Jeff Anderson. The Author's Apprentice helps you improve your middle level students' writing fluency, stamina, and motivation by letting them do what professional writers do. You'll see how to build "writerly" routines through authentic projects like National Novel Writing Month. Preview the entire book!
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eLearning 
  • Learning to "think backwards" when integrating technology
    Educators need to stay focused on learning while integrating technology in the classroom, teacher and consultant Kristen Swanson writes in this blog post. Swanson suggests beginning the process by learning to "think backwards." First, identify goals based on learning outcomes -- not technology tools -- and establish the way those goals will be measured, then consider which technology tools will help achieve those goals. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Education (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
 
  • How one teacher uses iPads with her students with autism
    Technology, such as hand-held devices, help students with autism concentrate on their lessons and allow them to learn at their own pace, said special-education teacher Karina Barley in Australia. The article offers a list of iPad applications Barley uses in language arts and math with her students who have autism. "As students achieve more success, their confidence grows, and as their confidence grows, they are much more willing to attempt new challenges," said Barley, who runs Project Autism Australia. eSchool News (free registration) (1/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Other News
Systems Management 
  • Tenn. could limit enrollment in virtual schools
    Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam is seeking to cap enrollment at online schools, after students who enrolled in a popular virtual school posted disappointing test results. Among other things, the proposed bill limits new virtual schools to enrolling 1,500 students. Once students have demonstrated a certain level of achievement on state exams, the virtual schools could increase enrollment to 5,000 students. Chattanooga Times Free Press (Tenn.) (1/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Managing Budgets 
  • IBM technology helps districts improve building efficiency
    Three of the largest school districts in the country are using IBM technology to help reduce costs. IBM smarter-building technology, including IBM TRIRIGA and IBM Maximo software, is intended to help districts find more efficient ways to use their school facilities. In the Pacific Northwest, Portland Public Schools is using the technology for its modernization projects, while in Florida, Palm Beach County schools expect to save $4.5 million this year after using the technology to identify and lease unused space. ExecutiveBiz.com (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Schools and Social Media 
  • Tweets that changed one educator's week
    In this blog post, Lisa Noble, a teacher in Ontario, Canada, describes how her week was affected by Twitter. First, she and hundreds of others were able to subscribe to a Twitter feed of a reporter covering an important labor issue, giving them access to timely updates. Next, Noble writes how her students are benefiting from the tweets of a Canadian astronaut, who is providing updates of his mission and experiences at the international space station. Lastly, Noble writes that a tweet of her own provided needed help from her professional network. Powerful Learning Practice/Voices from the Learning Revolution blog (1/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
 
  • Other News
Last Byte 
  • Google, Twitter highlight government requests on "Data Privacy Day"
    Google and Twitter used the occasion of "Data Privacy Day" to point out that the government is making broad requests for users' private information. Twitter's notice claims that government agencies made 1,858 information requests since January 2012, along with 48 removal requests and 6,646 copyright notices. Nearly three-quarters of smartphone users are more concerned about privacy now than they were a year ago, according to a TRUSTe survey. Advertising Age (tiered subscription model) (1/28), Adweek (1/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
SmartQuote 
Good judgment comes from experience, and often experience comes from bad judgment."
--Rita Mae Brown,
American writer

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