UK's English-language MOOC viewed in 178 countries | Ontario, Canada, transitions to online exams | Plan would allow UK teachers to have more time in the classroom
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17 September 2014
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UK's English-language MOOC viewed in 178 countries
The British Council's first experiment with massive open online courses has been popular with about 100,000 students signing on for an online English-language course. The course, used in 178 countries, is most popular in Spain, Burma and Russia, and officials say this is the first foray into online learning for many students. BBC (11 Sep.)
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Ontario, Canada, transitions to online exams
Over the next several years, schools in Ontario, Canada, will transition to administering online exams, officials announced recently, although paper tests will be available during the changeover. Among the first exams to make the transition will be Grade 10 literacy tests. Officials expect the online tests to improve efficiency of assessment security. The Toronto Star (10 Sep.)
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Other News

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Professional Development
Global network launches training programme for teacher-coaches
Young students
Teach for All, a network that spans 34 countries, has established a two-year fellowship programme to train teacher-coaches worldwide to serve students with "learning differences." One educator in Nepal said he is hopeful the programme will help prevent such students from dropping out of school. Education Week (tiered subscription model) (10 Sep.)
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Leadership and Governance
Australia to monitor preschoolers' language learning
Australia's government has implemented a $8.9 million pilot programme that aims to teach Arabic, French, Indonesian, Japanese or Mandarin Chinese to preschoolers using foreign-language games on tablet devices. Forty preschools will be selected to participate in the one-year trial programme in early 2015. (Australia) (15 Sep.)
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Other News
Australian conference teaches digital storytelling
A conference held in Australia demonstrated digital media production -- and ways it can be applied in the classroom -- for teachers over the summer. The medium, a combination of still images and text, allows students to truly connect with the storytelling process, a presenter said. EducationHQ/Australian Teacher Magazine (09 Sep.)
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Interest Area Spotlight
Study: How language affects mastery of maths
English-speaking children have a harder time learning arithmetic and counting skills, compared with Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Turkish speakers, because of a greater variety of unique number names, according to a recent study. Researchers say Anglophone parents can use counting and board games to bring children up to speed with international peers before they enter kindergarten. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (15 Sep.)
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What ECIS is reading now
Curious about innovation in schools? You should read #EdJourney by Grant Lichtman. Grant travelled the US and interviewed over 600 teachers, administrators, students, parents and trustees. He uncovers the successes and failures of innovation ... and describes how others can succeed in their own school transformation.
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Editor's Note
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Check out the latest posts on SmartBlog on Education. Want to join our blogger community? View our submission guidelines to learn how. Engage. Innovate. Discuss.
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-- Rabindranath Tagore,
Indian writer
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Founded in 1965, ECIS is a global membership organisation that provides professional development opportunities and consultancy services to its members who are comprised of international schools, individuals and educational organisations.
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