Youth, Education & Technology News : October 2007

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Recent October 2007
+ New Study Provides More Evidence of Parents' Role in Academic Success
+ Halloween Crafts and Activities
+ General Mills Foundation Invites Applications for Healthy Kids Grant Program
+ Month of the Young Adolescent
+ Technology Help the Old-Fashioned Way

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October 24, 2007

New Study Provides More Evidence of Parents' Role in Academic Success

"Apparently it doesn’t much matter whether low-income, urban students attend a public or private high school, reports Greg Toppo in USA Today. In actuality, the biggest factors determining a student’s academic success are whether their parents take part in their education, earn enough money to offer enriching experiences and have high aspirations for their kids, according to a new study released by the Center on Education Policy. The findings, which examined 12 years of data from more than 1,000 young people, found that while SAT scores of students in private schools are higher than those of their public-school peers, their overall performance in math, reading, science and history was no better."

Referred by: PEN Weekly NewsBlast
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 24, 2007 | News

Halloween Crafts and Activities

Just in time for Halloween and all the creative energy kids bring to this holiday, check out EnchantedLearning's Halloween K-3 Theme page. "These crafts projects are for preschool, kindergarten and elementary school children. The crafts use materials found around the house, like egg cartons, cardboard, paper, boxes, string, crayons, paint, glue, etc."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 24, 2007 | Activities

General Mills Foundation Invites Applications for Healthy Kids Grant Program

"The General Mills Foundation, in partnership with the American Dietetic Association Foundation and the President's Council on Physical Fitness, is accepting applications for the Champions for Healthy Kids grant program. This national program will award fifty grants of $10,000 each to community-based groups across the United States that develop creative ways to help youth adopt a balanced diet and physically active lifestyle. Applicant organizations must be nonprofit... Local organizations that work with youth are encouraged to apply because their programs are more likely to be sustainable. These may include park districts, health departments, government agencies, Native American tribes, municipal organizations, churches, schools, YMCA’s, Boys & Girls clubs, and so on." Deadline: January 15, 2008

Referred by: Foundation Center
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 24, 2007 | Funding

October 23, 2007

Month of the Young Adolescent

"The National Middle School Association is leading the celebration, once again, of the Month of the Young Adolescent. At their MOYA website, you'll find ideas about ways to celebrate, sample proclamations, and our favorite — the online publication Expressions from the Middle —- which features student artwork with middle grades themes. If you're looking for colorful MS illustrations for those otherwise boring PowerPoints, this is a great resource! There's also a link to send submissions for next year's MOYA student art competition."

Referred by: MiddleWeb
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 23, 2007 | Resources

Technology Help the Old-Fashioned Way

Common Craft "makes simple 'papercraft' tutorials designed to teach users about digital concepts.' Turns out that a papercraft tutorial is a video presentation in which a knowledgable person simply explains a digital tool or concept, using a whiteboard (the dumb kind) and a marker! If you're a visual learner, or just like the idea of 'simply,' explore some of the tutorials at the Common Craft website. The most recent is Social Bookmarking (on the homepage)." They also offer video tutorials on Wikis and RSS.

Referred by: MiddleWeb
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 23, 2007 | Resources

Five Reasons Why Evaluation Can Help Out-of-School Programs

"Child Trends released two new briefs in its series on practical evaluation methods for out-of-school time programs: 1) Why Conduct a Program Evaluation? Five Reasons Why Evaluation Can Help an Out-of-School Time Program... This brief defines program evaluation; addresses common concerns program managers and practitioners have regarding evaluation; and outlines five major reasons why conducting a program evaluation can benefit an out-of-school time program. 2) Five Steps for Selecting an Evaluator: A Guide for Out-of-School Time Practitioners... This brief describes different types of evaluations and outlines five steps for selecting an evaluator that can benefit a program in the long run. It also provides some tips on the cost of evaluations."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 23, 2007 | Resources

Video Postcards to PBS

Via the popular Arthur and Buster characters, PBS invites kids to produce and send in original video clips. "Hey! Buster and Arthur here. Would you like to see yourself on TV or the Web? Well, here's your chance to send us YOUR video postcard. Arthur and I want to learn about your world. What's it like to be you?... We want one-minute videos that you film and edit. Your movie can be about anything you'd like to share! Maybe it's your family, your friends, your hobby, your pet, or your neighborhood. Maybe it's a one-minute mystery or comedy, or an animation. Whatever it is, we'll choose some of your postcards to appear on the Arthur TV show! Others will be shown on this Web site."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 23, 2007 | Activities

October 09, 2007

Survey: Parents talk to their kids about the web

"The vast majority of American parents talk to their children about how to be safe and ethical online, according to a new survey--a finding that runs counter to the popular image of parents who are clueless about their children's internet activity. But the poll also reveals that far fewer parents talk to their kids about how to be savvy consumers of internet information, such as how to determine the credibility of online information and how to tell if a web site is biased....
Researchers for the San Francisco-based nonprofit Common Sense Media and the Washington, D.C.-based education foundation Cable in the Classroom found that 85 percent of parents and legal guardians of children who go online said they have talked to their child in the past year about how to behave on the internet."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | Research

Junk-Free Schools Video Contest

"The Center for Science in the Public Interest is hosting the first-ever Junk-Free Schools Video Contest. The contest invites young filmmakers to make a video under three-minutes making the case for getting junk-food out of schools. It is part of a nationwide campaign to bring healthier foods to schools. Maximum Award: $100 gift certificate for iTunes and the video will be showcased on the school foods Web site. Eligibility: youth filmmakers. Deadline: November 1, 2007."

Referred by: PEN Weekly NewsBlast
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | Activities

Preparing Staff to Work with Immigrant Youth

"The National Youth Development Information Center has a publication and training module to help staff work effectively with immigrant youth. It includes a PowerPoint presentation that is an effective tool to use with leaders, champions and board members to encourage an understanding of the importance and organizational implications of serving immigrant youth."

Referred by: Connect for Kids
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | Resources

Lights On Afterschool! - October 18

""Lights On Afterschool is celebrated nationwide to call attention to the importance of afterschool programs for America's children, families and communities... Lights On Afterschool was launched in October 2000 with celebrations in more than 1,200 communities nationwide. The event grew in 2001 to more than 3,600 events, and more than 7,500 in 2006. This October, 1 million Americans will celebrate Lights On Afterschool!

Lights On Afterschool is a project of the Afterschool Alliance, a nonprofit organization dedicated to ensuring that all children have access to quality, affordable afterschool programs."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | News

Under-Equipped and Unprepared: America's Emerging Workforce and the Soft Skills Gap

"Too many young people lack the 'soft skills' -- teamwork, conflict resolution, communication and leadership -- needed for success in the workplace, according to this America's Promise Alliance brief. What's more, youth have few opportunities at school, home and through real-world activities to learn and practice these skills. The brief suggests some steps for improvement."

Referred by: Connect for Kids
Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | Research

Listening to Youth: The Experience of Young People in Northern Uganda

"The summary report is based on findings from a May 2007 assessment to northern Uganda in which the Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children interviewed young people about the impact of war on their lives and prospects for the future, and their recommendations to local, national and international actors. Findings from this study, supported by UNICEF, also contributed to the 10-year Strategic Review of the 'Machel Study' on the Impact of Armed Conflict on Children."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | Resources

TASC Announces New Paper on High School After-School Programs

"The After-School Corporation (TASC) is pleased to announce the release of 'Meeting the High School Challenge: Making After-School Work for Older Students.' This paper, prepared by TASC, provides a description and lessons learned from one of the nation’s largest, longest-running efforts to offer teens high quality, structured after-school programs, filling more than 40,000 seats over nine years in New York City public high school after-school programs. Older students who participate in after-school programs significantly improve their chances for success, yet serving them effectively is one of the greatest challenges for the after-school field. The paper describes promising programmatic models; examines the situations in which they work best; and warns of possible pitfalls."

Posted by wrivenburgh on October 09, 2007 | Resources