Youth, Education & Technology News : May 2008

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+ Youth Media Fellowship – Presentation of Learning
+ Schools of the 21st Century Conference
+ Democracy at Risk: The Need for a New Federal Policy in Education
+ The FunWorks - Digital Library for STEM Career Exploration
+ Guiding Principles for Afterschool Programs Serving Preteens

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May 20, 2008

Youth Media Fellowship – Presentation of Learning

From September 2007 through May 2008, eight youth media educators from across New York City have come together for bi-monthly, three-hour seminar sessions on Friday mornings. Together, this community of peers has formed the inaugural cohort of the Youth Media Fellowship – itself a pilot program of the Youth Media Learning Network. On May 16, 2008, the Fellows presented their work to colleagues from the fields of youth media, youth development, and formal education at a “Presentation of Learning” event in New York, hosted by the Open Society Institute.

The Youth Media Learning Network is a joint project of Education Development Center ( and the Educational Video Center ( For more information contact Timothy Dorsey at 212.807.4214 or

Follow the link below to explore the Youth Media Fellows' work.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 20, 2008 | YouthLearn Updates

Schools of the 21st Century Conference

"Superintendents, principals, teachers and program directors, from community schools, Schools of the 21st Century (21C) and family resource centers, will gather at a Yale University-sponsored national conference on July 14-16, 2008, to learn from experts - including researchers, foundation executives, and state agency leaders - in the field of child development and education and family support. Sessions on early care and education and school-age care will focus on such topics as financing, evaluation strategies, research, music, brain development and more."

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 20, 2008 | Resources

Democracy at Risk: The Need for a New Federal Policy in Education

"The Forum for Education and Democracy has chosen the 25th anniversary of the publication of "A Nation at Risk", the last clarion call for federal attention to educational policy, to call for a new federal role in supporting our schools." This is their new report: "Democracy at Risk: The Need for a New Federal Policy in Education."

"As practitioners, researchers, and policy analysts who have long been involved in developing successful schools, we are gravely concerned about the inability of the current federal role to support the breadth, depth, and quality of education our children need for a 21st century life — one in which they will need to solve problems we cannot yet fully envision, using knowledge and technologies that have not yet been invented."

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 20, 2008 | News

The FunWorks - Digital Library for STEM Career Exploration

The FunWorks is a dynamic digital library designed by and for youth that supports career exploration in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) fields. It is one of the resources highlighted in the newly launched Technology Curriculum Database, developed by YouthLearn for the U.S. Department of Education-funded National Partnership for Quality Afterschool Learning at SEDL.

Created in an engaging multimedia format, the FunWorks website consolidates information, activities, interactive games, and other resources tied to an array of career choices including Music, Technology, Art/Design, Medicine/Law, Sports, and Exploration. This resource gives young people the opportunity to pursue their interests and make meaningful connections to careers. A project of EDC, the FunWorks was funded by the National Science Foundation.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 20, 2008 | Resources

Guiding Principles for Afterschool Programs Serving Preteens

"Successfully navigating early adolescence depends largely on access to safe and engaging activities and supportive relationships with adults. Public/Private Ventures offers this research and guidance on what works to create quality after-school programs and spark positive outcomes for young teens."

Commissioned by the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health, P/PV developed this publication, Putting It All Together: Guiding Principles for Quality After-School Programs Serving Preteens, along with a companion Resource Guide that includes tools and links to research.

Referred by: Connect for Kids
Posted by wrivenburgh on May 20, 2008 | Research

Total Recut Video Contest

"Create a short video remix that explains what Remix Culture means to you. Using video footage from any source, including Public Domain and Creative Commons licensed work, we want you to produce a creative, educational and entertaining video remix that communicates a clear message to a wide audience. The video is to be no shorter than 30 seconds and no longer then 3 minutes in duration.

This contest is being run to promote awareness of remix culture in an educational capacity by encouraging the fair use of a wide variety of content and also to create a new pool of work that explains what remix culture is to the general public. For more information on fair use, check out these guidelines from the Center for Social Media."

People of all ages may enter and compete for the prizes. Deadline for submission: June 2, 2008.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 20, 2008 | Activities

May 07, 2008

My Pop Studio - Curriculum and Online Activities/Media

My Pop Studio is a creative play experience and online interactive space for girls, designed to build media literacy and critical thinking skills. A robust curriculum guides educators in facilitating activities that promote candid discussion and reflection. The site enables users to learn about the inner workings of the media industry including music production, television, magazine publishing, and multimedia – to deconstruct the process and discover the techniques media makers use to subtly influence their audiences. In each area, youth experiment with different media-making roles while analyzing the impact media has on their self-image and daily lives.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 07, 2008 | Resources

News-2-You - Online Learning/Interactives

News-2-You, a subscription-based service, provides a weekly online newspaper composed of text and pictures, as well as interactive Web-based games, software-supported activities, and other curricular materials. Designed especially for beginning readers and learners with special needs, this suite of resources gives individuals who are typically overlooked by news organizations access to information about current events. The currency and relevance of the newspaper topics, which are further supported by online games and hands-on activities, draw young people in and accelerate their learning.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 07, 2008 | Resources

OWIKIT - Robotics Kit and Curriculum

Created by RobotiKits Direct Company, OWIKITs provide accessible materials and instruction for those interested in robotic technology, giving users the tools to put together and operate a wide array of robots. The projects are both whimsical and engaging. Young people can work collaboratively to construct hopping frogs, probing moonwalkers, and remote-control beetles. Written by teachers, the curriculum features modules tailored for learners ages 9 and up that introduce concepts such as electricity, gear mechanics, and propulsion. The kits, which often employ microcomputers, are designed for a range of skill and experience levels, from an easy-to-assemble solar-powered race car in the junior science series to touch-sensitive robots in the advanced series.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 07, 2008 | Resources

May 06, 2008

Young Digital Creators Educator's Kit - Packaged Curriculum

The Young Digital Creators (YDC) Educator's Kit and CD-ROM presents a user-friendly curriculum that creates opportunities for young people to reflect on global development issues, and to share ideas and artwork with peers around the world, at the same time as they develop technical skills. This detailed lesson plan and supporting material, written for educators working in schools, youth clubs, community centers, and training institutes, promotes multicultural understanding, creative thinking, and problem solving.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 06, 2008 | Resources

Learning in Hand - Collection of Lesson Plans for Handhelds

This collection of nearly 50 lesson plans for different age groups offers a rich variety of ways to use electronic handheld devices in learning across the curriculum. Educator Tony Vincent has created the Learning in Hand Web site to share resources with teachers who are interested in using handheld devices, such as Pocket PCs, Palm Handhelds and iPods, in innovative ways to enhance learning: putting technology directly in the hands of young people. The lesson plans are straightforward, easy to follow, and standards-based. Educators will find links to free downloadable software on the site that can open doors to a range of possibilities. The site also provides links to additional support for educators, from basic tech support to assistance with implementation.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 06, 2008 | Resources

New Technology Curriculum Database Created by YouthLearn

We're pleased to announce the launch of a website for educators seeking technology curriculum for their programs: Afterschool Curriculum Choice: Technology Resources is a project of the YouthLearn Initiative and the U.S. Department of Education-funded National Partnership for Quality Afterschool Learning at SEDL.

This collection of resources is designed to help practitioners locate and make informed choices about high-quality technology resources to enrich their programs. We chose these curricular materials because they represent the wide variety of resources, from activity guides to online games to software packages, that can support compelling learning experiences in informal settings.

You can browse through all the resources by title, grade level or subject area. On the search page, you can find curricula that match your specific needs by selecting key words, design features, technology type or subject area.

Note that several resources contained in two other curriculum databases, Afterschool Curriculum Choice Literacy Resources and Consumers' Guide to Afterschool Science Resources, also integrate technology in meaningful ways. If you Browse by Title, a list of additional resources selected from these databases is appended to provide even more choices for you and your program.

Posted by wrivenburgh on May 06, 2008 | Resources