Youth, Education & Technology News : July 2008

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Recent July 2008
+ Best Buy Awards for Interactive te@ch Program
+ Model Projects: Maker Faire Inspires Learning and Creativity
+ Windward: Outsmart the Weather - Free Online Game
+ NECC highlights tech's 'transformative' power
+ "Increase Your Green" - Do Something 2008 School Competition

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July 22, 2008

Best Buy Awards for Interactive te@ch Program

"The Best Buy te@ch program rewards schools for successful interactive programs they have launched with available technology. Winning te@ch programs focus on kids using technology to learn a standards-based curriculum, rather than on teaching students to use technology or educators using technology that children aren't able to use hands-on.
Maximum Award: $5,000.
Eligibility: Accredited K-12 public, private, parochial, and nonprofit charter schools in the United States.
Deadline: October 12, 2008."

Referred by: Promising Practices in Afterschool
Posted by wrivenburgh on July 22, 2008 | Funding

Model Projects: Maker Faire Inspires Learning and Creativity

At an event called Maker Faire Education Day, "the first of its kind, two dozen inventors shared their ideas and creations -- from electronic gadgets to homemade instruments -- and discussed the scientific principles that make their work possible.

Dale Dougherty, founder of Maker Faire -- the larger, weekend-long public event on which the Maker Faire Education Day is based -- says traditional vocational-arts courses are disappearing from school curricula, but many professions still require hands-on skills. This event is one way to keep interest in manual efforts alive."

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 22, 2008 | Resources

Windward: Outsmart the Weather - Free Online Game

Windward: Outsmart the Weather is a fun, free online game in which players learn how to read weather maps and identify and predict weather patterns. It is one of the resources highlighted in the recently launched Technology Curriculum Database, developed by YouthLearn for the U.S. Department of Education-funded National Partnership for Quality Afterschool Learning at SEDL.

In this game, players must negotiate the wind and weather and determine what tools and resources to use as they sail a boat in a virtual round-the-world race. Created by Cable in the Classroom with project partners Discovery Education and The Weather Channel, and in cooperation with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Windward brings broadband technology and interactive digital content together in a way that enriches the teaching and learning of science concepts related to weather. Extensive teacher and parent sections offer ideas and link to numerous resources for using Windward in or out of school.

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 22, 2008 | Activities

NECC highlights tech's 'transformative' power

"Transformation and collaboration were the central ideas of the 2008 National Educational Computing Conference (NECC) in San Antonio, which kicked off June 29 with a call to fundamentally change education and continued with several other sessions that repeated this theme.

Hosted by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), NECC is the largest educational technology conference in North America. Now in its 29th year, the conference brought together more than 12,000 educators and school administrators from around the world to network, share successful ed-tech strategies, and learn from their colleagues.

And in keeping with the theme of this year's event--'Convene, Connect, and Transform'--ISTE President Trina J. Davis opened the conference by challenging attendees to really transform education through the use of technology, not just layer technology onto traditional instructional practices."

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 22, 2008 | News

"Increase Your Green" - Do Something 2008 School Competition

"Participants must make concrete efforts towards reducing the environmental impact of their school during the eight week competition. All initiatives must be youth designed and led. A representative from each group must submit an online report of the school or club's actions to save energy, reduce waste and raise awareness during the competition."

Open to middle and high schools, this competition begins October 13 and closes December 8. Winners receive cash awards and other prizes.

Register your club or school by October 13 in order to participate.

Referred by: eSchool News
Posted by wrivenburgh on July 22, 2008 | Funding

July 08, 2008

VERB: CDC Youth Campaign to Increase Physical Activity

Comprising online games and interactives, blogs, educational materials, and other activities, this multicultural social marketing campaign to increase physical activity among youth is called VERB: It's what you do. It is one of the resources highlighted in the recently launched Technology Curriculum Database, developed by YouthLearn for the U.S. Department of Education-funded National Partnership for Quality Afterschool Learning at SEDL.

The VERB curricular materials for educators and interactive multimedia content directed at youth combine to engage and motivate tweens (ages 9 to 13), encouraging healthy lifestyles and participation in physical activity. VERB was created by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 08, 2008 | Activities

July 07, 2008

YouthLearn Helps Launch New EDC Chicago Office

YouthLearn is excited to share the news that three of our team members are now located in the recently opened EDC Chicago office. YouthLearn's work remains national in scope with current projects for such funders as Adobe Systems Incorporated, the Verizon Foundation, and the National Science Foundation. Having staff based in Chicago will offer us the opportunity to pilot more work on the ground and connect with other local and national education, media and technology efforts in the city and midwest. Our new Chicago address is:

The YouthLearn Initiative
770 N. Halsted Street, Suite 205
Chicago, IL 60622

Feel free to look us up whenever you're in town!

Posted by tstreit on July 07, 2008 | YouthLearn Updates

Siemens High School Competition in Math, Science & Technology

The Siemens High School Competition in Math, Science & Technology gives students "an opportunity to achieve national recognition for science research projects that they complete in high school." Funded by the Siemens Foundation, U.S. high school students may enter to win a maximum award of $100,000.

Deadline: October 1, 2008

Referred by: Promising Practices
Posted by wrivenburgh on July 07, 2008 | Funding

Disney MinnieGrants for Youth-Led Service Projects

"Youth Service America and Disney have announced the launch of a second round of Disney MinnieGrants to engage children and youth, ages five to 14, as community volunteers.

Selected applicants will receive $500 each to support their youth-led service projects. Projects must take place October 15-November 15, 2008.

Grantees from the first round of Disney awards of 2008 are eligible to apply.

Visit the YSA Web site for complete program guidelines and to review past award recipients from all over the world." Deadline: August 30.

Referred by: Foundation Center
Posted by wrivenburgh on July 07, 2008 | Funding

National Summer Learning Day

The Center for Summer Learning at Johns Hopkins heralds National Summer Learning Day - this Thursday, July 10. "Summer Learning Day is a time for communities across the nation to celebrate the importance of high-quality summer learning opportunities in the lives of young people and their families.

In 2007, Summer Learning Day included 145 registered events in 34 states and a national policy forum in Washington, DC.

This year, we hope to have 300 events nationwide, including a major policy event in Washington, DC, where summer learning leaders from around the country will come to make the case for increased federal investment in summer learning programs."

A summer learning video contest - deadline on July 31 - is part of the celebration.

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 07, 2008 | News

Lost Ladybug Project

"Over the past twenty years several native ladybug species that were once very common have become extremely rare... During this same time several species of ladybugs from other places have greatly increased both their numbers and range. Besides being incredibly cool and charismatic, ladybugs are also essential predators... To be able to help the nine spotted ladybug and other ladybug species, scientists need to have detailed information on which species are still out there and how many individuals are around. Entomologists at Cornell can identify the different species but there are too few of us to sample in enough places to find the really rare ones. We need you to be our legs, hands and eyes. If you could look for ladybugs and send us pictures of them on Email we can start to gather the information we need. We are very interested in the rare species but any pictures will help us. This is the ultimate summer science project for kids and adults! You can learn, have fun and help save these important species."

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 07, 2008 | Activities

Technology Reshapes America's Classrooms

The "Lilla G. Frederick Pilot Middle School in Boston, offers a glimpse into the future.

It has no textbooks. Students receive laptops at the start of each day, returning them at the end. Teachers and students maintain blogs. Staff and parents chat on instant messaging software. Assignments are submitted through electronic 'drop boxes' on the school's Web site....

Classwork is done in Google Inc's free applications like Google Docs, or Apple's iMovie and specialized educational software like FASTT Math.

'Why would we ever buy a book when we can buy a computer? Textbooks are often obsolete before they are even printed,' said Debra Socia, principal of the school in Dorchester, a tough Boston district prone to crime and poor schools....

Unlike traditional schools, Frederick's students work at vastly different levels in the same classroom. Children with special needs rub shoulders with high performers. Computers track a range of aptitude levels, allowing teachers to tailor their teaching to their students' weakest areas, Socia said."

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 07, 2008 | News

July 01, 2008

Laptops Help Keep Migrant Workers' Kids in School

On NPR's All Things Considered," Larry Abramson tells a story of how the One Laptop Per Child program is affecting educational experiences for children in a Florida community.

"Immokalee, Fla., is the largest center for migrant farmworkers on the East Coast. Juan Medina, a former agricultural worker, worked the fields with his family, planting onions in west Texas and picking tomatoes in Homestead, Fla.

Medina now works for the Florida Department of Education, trying to help the children of migrant workers deal with the challenges of migrant life.

He is part of a town effort to help the children in school. His new tool is free laptops."

Posted by wrivenburgh on July 01, 2008 | News