Idaho Embracing “Flipped” Classrooms with Khan Academy

This fall, 47 schools in Idaho will be able to access resources and free courseware via Khan Academy, thanks in large part to grant money from the J.A. and Kathryn Albertson Foundation.

75 schools competed for the grant money and the winning 47 will use the funding to establish the infrastructure needed to support a model of teaching that blends traditional teaching methods with technology, according to a recent article by Education News. Before describing how schools are using Khan Academy’s massive library of educational videos to their …


Are Your Students Learning Ready?

This blog was originally published on Finding Common Ground at Education Week by Peter DeWitt on March 3rd, 2013 8:35 AM.

At this point, if you do not see the relevance in technology, you're holding your students back.

College and career ready is a very common theme these days. As with any catch-phrase, many educators are most likely sick of hearing it. The longer you stay in any profession the more at risk you are of hearing new phrases year after year, which may just have the same…


“Better equip graduates for the demands of a high-tech economy”

This blog originally appeared on the CodeHS Blog on February 14, 2013

In Obama’s State of the Union address last month, he said:

“Tonight, I’m announcing a new challenge to redesign America’s high schools so they better equip graduates for the demands of a high-tech economy. We’ll reward schools that develop new partnerships with colleges and employers, and create classes that focus on science, technology, engineering, and math—the skills today’s employers are looking for to fill jobs right now and in the future.”

He’s not saying so explicitly, but the specific solution to the problems Obama outlines is computer science education in high schools. Let’s take a look at these requirements one at a time.

What are the “demand of a high-tech economy”? The demands of a high-tech economy are creating students that are digitally literate. Computers are used for work, for study, and will become an increasing…


Dignity for All: Protecting Our Students from Bullying [VIDEO]

Peter DeWitt, author of Dignity for All: Safeguarding LGBT Students, is a nationally renowned advocate for student rights. As an elementary school principal, Peter is passionate about empowering teachers and administrators to protect vulnerable students, particularly the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community. Through a culture of acceptance and a firm stance against bullying, schools can make all students feel safe so they can maximize their full potential.

Teachers are the power in this, because they can do this in their classrooms, but they're not going to do it without administrator approval...

As Peter mentions in this video, the Dignity for All Students Act of 2010 is New York State’s law protecting students from bullying, and the Equal Access Act o…


Major Textbook Publishers Meeting Technology Trends

In the not so distant past, students dragged home backpacks that could easily match half their own body weight. Textbooks have traditionally been dense and comprehensive, expected to last several years or even decades due to the exorbitant costs of providing districts with comprehensive curriculum.

Enter the Kindle, Nook, iPad and free or inexpensive digital information. Textbook publishing has always been big business, and the “big three” publishers (Pearson, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and McGraw-Hill) have been scrambling to stay ahead of the digital curve. The accessibility of technology and availability of educational curriculum on the Internet has caused these publishers to rethin…


“Bring Your Own Device” Initiatives on the Rise

Katherine Haber from SmartBlog on Education recently asked readers and educators to express what the major trends will be in education for 2013; according to Education News, a majority reported that they felt that increasing technology use in classrooms will be a major focus. While a large portion of the teachers that responded said that they use technology fairly regularly during instruction, only a small percentage have “strong” connections between classroom learning and …


Professional Development: Whose Job Is It?

This blog was originally published on Finding Common Ground at Education Week by Peter DeWitt on February 14th, 2013 6:08 AM.

Professional Development is not defined by what someone else provides for us.

Twitter is creating a natural shift in professional thinking for connected educators and administrators. They are finding their own professional development (PD) through their Professional Learning Networks (PLN). There are other educators who don't use Twitter but th…

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