From Science 2.0:
From Science Education:
This recent article by Allen and Crowley (2014) includes four case studies of part-time staff members responsible for giving exhibit tours to school groups at a natural history museum. The staff members redesigned their tours to be more student-focused using an iterative design process that included reflective practice. The researchers present this as a new paradigm for professional development within the museum. Findings have implications for addressing the challenge of effective professional development for informal educators, particularly in content areas that may be scientifically challenging or socially controversial.
From Kansas City Star:
Students in West Virginia and surrounding states will get a hands-on experience with science and technology thanks to the “Power Your Future” project, a new mobile exhibit that is geared toward middle and junior high school students. It will feature 11 different stations and game-based software to help students learn about the exploration, extraction and use of natural gas. The project will also include an outreach initiative in which participating middle schools will produce digital stories exploring energy issues in their communities.
From Digital Journal:
Opening on June 14, the Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion, a three-story expansion of The Franklin Institute will become home to the Your Brain exhibit, as well as a traveling exhibition gallery, a state-of-the-art conference center, and a new education center. Your Brain will feature over 70 interactive experiences and will be the largest permanent exhibit in the country dedicated to the most complex and misunderstood vital organ in our bodies. The highly-advanced Education Center is aimed to increase The Franklin Institute’s educational landscape regionally, nationally, and internationally by allowing the Institute to develop and grow its distance learning capabilities, providing virtual and interactive STEM learning experiences to students and teachers around the world.
From Chicago Sun-Times:
Chicago Public Schools is collecting ideas and proposals for more than 40 of the school buildings that were shut down in last year’s massive school closing. Members of the public and community groups can submit proposals for the old school sites on the website, which has a full list of available school sites. According to CPS, the website also includes financial and physical information about each property. CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett said that the website will help school officials involve the community and make the process transparent: “Each neighborhood has their own vision for these buildings, and we look forward to hearing their proposals of how we can find a new use that boosts economic activity and cultural vibrancy for the community.”
From Education Week:
Last month, the Illinois State Board of Education adopted rules to allow unlimited attempts to pass a basic skills exam for educators, which includes reading, writing, and math tests. In January 2010, the Board overturned previous rules that allowed unlimited attempts, instead only allowing five tries to pass each portion of the exam. After deciding to limit test attempts to five, the Board of Education changed their mind and decided to return to allowing unlimited testing. The rule has to be reviewed by a legislative committee and should go into effect in April or May if there are no objections.
This blog post looks at how assessment focused on a partnership between students and educators may be more effective than traditional top-down approaches by teachers who decide where students are on a continuum of learning. The author, Bob Lenz, is the founder of Envision Schools in San Francisco, where students are engaged in directly assessing their own progress. Lenz argues that students who assess themselves are learning and improving their cognitive skills while assessment is happening and that when students assess their own work by identifying strengths and weaknesses, the likelihood that they will do better next time is greater.
From Education Week:
On March 22, at the annual conference of Computer Using Educators, Khan Academy announced new resources, including thousands of free, interactive online math exercises for grades K-12, each of which has been pegged to the new standards and organized into “missions” meant to cover an entire grade level of content. As almost all states move to implement the new standards, thousands of educators are searching for relevant instructional resources, which has spurred competition among traditional educational publishers, other for-profit vendors and Open Education Resource providers, such as non-profits, universities, and government agencies.