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Cool Tool: Smithsonian Online Education Conferences

Teachers, looking for a way to expand the walls of your classroom? Students, looking for a way to connect with Smithsonian experts and other classrooms around the world?

With a wide range of topics, the 2013-14 Smithsonian Online Education Conference Series provides an online space for students to engage with Smithsonian experts–from historians, art educators, scientists, anthropologists and more—and make connections from textbooks to today’s world.

In each online conference in the series, you will join with students and teachers to interact with curators, researchers, and educators from various disciplines at the Smithsonian. Special sessions will be dedicated to teachers in a “virtual teachers’ lounge” to highlight Smithsonian learning resources related to conference topics and offer an opportunity to discuss them with fellow teachers. And be sure to check out the Resources page for other activities and learning opportunities, including the Smithsonian Quests™ program, for use before, during and after the conference sessions.

This looks like a very interesting series of webinars, and teachers can earn electronic “badges” for taking these as professional development opportunities.

A quick look at the listing seems to have a heavy social studies/history emphasis. There were a few astronomy ones as well.

Here is a list of all the current webinars that be accessed at any time.

300+ Mind Expanding Documentaries online for free

Lots of categories to choose from including education. Can any of these be assigned as part of a flipped classroom assignment? —TBH

From the article:

On this list of mind expanding documentaries you will find different viewpoints, controversial opinions and even contradictory ideas. Critical thinking is recommended. I’m not a big fan of conspiracy documentaries but I do like films that challenge consensus reality and provoke us to question the everyday ideas, opinions and practices we usually take for granted.

Click on title to go to link.

The 2012 Global Education Conference starts today


The 2012 Global Education Conference starts today and runs for five days, 24 hours a day. We invite you to join us for this free, collaborative, world-wide community initiative involving students, educators, and organizations at all levels. The conference is designed to significantly increase opportunities for building education-related connections around the globe while supporting cultural awareness and recognition of diversity.

Dr. Tony Wagner from Harvard kicks off the conference today at 10:00am US-Eastern Time, and we have an amazing set of keynote speakers and hundreds of educator-led concurrent sessions. You can see the full conference schedule in your own time zone at http://www.globaleducationconference.com/page/2012-sessions-and-schedule.

If you’ve attended GlobalEdCon before, or one of the other Web 2.0 Labs virtual worldwide conferences, you know we depend on an incredible volunteer team to help moderate all the sessions. We still need more volunteers (!), so if you can help us, more information is at http://www.globaleducationconference.com/group/2012-global-education-conference-volunteers.

Hippocampus Newsletter

Coming This Summer


The school year may be winding down, but HippoCampus is just warming up! We have a slew of new developments on the horizon for the vacation months:

  • Mobile App: We’re developing a new content player for your mobile device. Take the Hippo anywhere!
  • New Playlist Functionality: We’re making the playlists even better, with more flexibility, adaptability, and “shareability”! Add content from outside HippoCampus, attach notes and descriptions, and post to social networks and other websites. 

Head Start For Fall


Are you a student worried about that big AP class next fall? Are you a homeschooler or teacher interested in keeping your kids engaged over summer break? Use HippoCampus to stay ahead of the game by previewing material before walking into class. 10-20 minutes per day is all a student needs to view the videos for an entire AP course over the summer, giving them a handle on the material so they’re ready to go in-depth in the fall.  

Hippo How-To


Textbook correlations make it easy to supplement your course with material from HippoCampus. If your textbook is not already correlated, summer is a great time to add it in preparation for the new school year!

  1. After signing into your custom account, select your subject from the Browse Subjects area.
  2. Click the “Textbook Correlations” tab, then click “Edit” in the Textbooks header:
  3. This will open up the “Add a Correlation” window. Choose your subject and click “Add a Correlation.”
  4. Enter your textbook title, edition, publisher, ISBN, etc., and click “Save.”
  5. In the Textbook Mappings section, use the “Select a course” pull-down menu to specify the exact content you want to correlate with your textbook.
  6. Enter your textbook pages to the corresponding Topics, then click “Save.” 


Connected PD Update


Connected PD Tool Jam
On April 26th, Connected PD held an engaging community-sourced “Tool Jam” on the topic: “Using Connected PD Channels for Professional Development.” Claudia L’Amoreaux and Ruth Rominger facilitated. Participants contributed lots of great resource links, which you can find in the chat log. You’ll also find the list of links to resources included in the Tool Jam. Access the archived Collaborate session, a pdf of the slides, and a Word document with all the linksHERE.

First Friday Recap
The May Connected PD First Friday event explored the topic “Collaborating on New Models of Open Professional Development” with guests Karen Fasimpaur and Philipp Schmidt of P2PU. The chat log is archived in the NROC Network PD library. To participate in next month’s First Friday on June 1, 9 AM PDT, with Lee Rainie, Director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project, visit the Connected PD blog’s event page

In The News


Upcoming Events


We look forward to connecting with many of you at these upcoming conferences:

May 7

Selling Schools Out | Corporate Accountability | The Investigative Fund

I am kind of torn on this…On the one hand, business is business. On the other hand, I see kids being left behind with the current systems, and if there are alternatives that will catch them and make them succeed, then I am for that. I love the debate, and I love that we live in a time when technology can also create new experiments that we can do to improve education.—TBH

From the article: 

"I’ve never seen it like this in ten years," remarked Ron Packard, CEO of virtual education powerhouse K12 Inc., on a conference call in February. "It’s almost like someone flipped a switch overnight and so many states now are considering either allowing us to open private virtual schools" or lifting the cap on the number of students who can use vouchers to attend K12 Inc.’s schools. Listening to a K12 Inc. investor call, one could mistake it for a presidential campaign strategy session, as excited analysts read down a list of states and predict future victories.

May 4

The New Hive: The Next Glogster?

The New Hive makes it easy for you to express yourself online. Whether it’s a journal, collection of recipes, portfolio or flyer, it’s fun and easy to create and update all of your media and ideas in one ad-free space. Decide what you want to share to the community, the world and all your social media sites. What’s your vision to change the world?
May 3

5 Innovative Ways to Teach Your Skills Online

Invitation to a Unique, Open Access, Online Conference « Virtual School Meanderings

This free, open conference runs for 48 hours continuously March 27, 28 and 29th. The event begins in Australia (coordinated by University of Southern Queensland) for 8 hours, shifts to the UK (Leicester University) for 8 hours then hands off to North America (Athabasca University) for an 8 hour shift and then we do it all over again for 24 hours more!

This is conference junkies dream come true and the price is right! If you don’t get  enough ‘conference’ from the North American sessions, well you can begin 16 hours earlier  from Australia and the UK, and just keep right on conferencing for 48 hours straight!!  The sessions will be delivered via Blackboard Collaborate (the old Elluminate platform) and hosted by some well-known figures in the elearning world, including George Siemens, Grainne Canole, Gilly Salmon, myself, and others.

The theme of this year’s conference is Knowledge Futures, and we have tried to keep away from having keynotes be the usual ed tech evangelists. Rather we have selected disciplinary experts who will present, and our discussants will further elaborate, the ways in which knowledge, and thus teaching and learning, is changing across multiple disciplines.

Mar 9

iWork.com Public Beta comes to an end.

I hate it when there are things that I use that are killed…

Dear iWork.com user, 

Thanks for participating in the iWork.com public beta. 

Last year, we launched iCloud, a service that stores your music, photos, documents, and more and wirelessly pushes them to all your devices. Today, there are already over 40 million documents stored on iCloud by millions of iWork customers. Learn more about iCloud

With a new way to share iWork documents between your devices using iCloud, the iWork.compublic beta service will no longer be available. As of July 31, 2012, you will no longer be able to access your documents on the iWork.com site or view them on the web. 

We recommend that you sign in to iWork.com before July 31, 2012, and download all your documents to your computer. For detailed instructions on how to save a copy of your documents on your computer, read this support article at Apple.com

Sincerely, 
The iWork team

Mar 1

Thinkfinity

Dec 9

Classroom 2.0 LIVE Saturday December 10,2011

Date: Sat., December 10, 2011
Time: 9:00am PST/10:00am MST/11:00am CST/12:00pm EST
Location: http://tinyurl.com/cr20live (http://tinyurl.com/cr20live)

Saturday, December 10th, Kim Caise, Lorna Costantini and Peggy George will be hosting another Classroom 2.0 LIVE show. As an extension to the Classroom 2.0 Ning community, Classroom 2.0 “LIVE” shows are opportunities to gather with other educators in real-time events, complete with audio, chat and desktop sharing. A Google calendar of upcoming shows is available athttp://live.classroom20.com/calendar.html.

The topic will be ”Differentiating with Livescribe Smartpens” featuring co-presenters Aviva Dunsiger, Sue Glascoe and Zoe Branigan-Pipe. Strategies to create pencasts with studentsincluding ways to differentitate instruction using the Livescribe Smartpens will be shared with real world examples will be shared by the co-presenters.

"Dip your toes in" the conversations until you feel comfortable enough to "jump in with both feet"! More information and session details are at http://live.classroom20.com. If you’re new to the Classroom 2.0 LIVE! show you might want to spend a few minutes viewing the screencast on the homepage to learn how we use Blackboard Collaborate and navigate the site to find the archives of previous shows and resources. Each show begins at 12pm Eastern and may be accessed in Blackboard Collaborate directly using the following link: http://tinyurl.com/cr20live.

On the Classroom 2.0 LIVE! site you’ll find the recordings from our recent ”Can We Skip Lunch and Keep Writing?” featuring author and fifth grade teach teacherJulie Ramsay. Click on the Archives and Resources and recordings tab.

Dec 6

Free for Military Families: SOAR at Home - Student Online Achievement Resources

SOAR (Student Online Achievement Resources) is an online program for military families and classmates of military dependents in schools serving military installations.

Students take an assessment aligned to state standards, and SOAR directs them to individualized tutorials to improve skills where needed. Parents can monitor their children’s progress from anywhere, and are provided with resource materials.

Learn more and register for an account at www.soarathome.com.

SOAR Launches Making Sense Resources

SOAR has expanded its list of resources available to military families with the release of Making Sense. Developed by the University of Northern Iowa, Making Sense consists of engaging videos and resources targeting math and literacy skills. Thinking Aloud! Making Sense of Literacy and Problem Solved: Making Sense of Mathematicsare available to registered users on the SOAR website under the Educational Resources link; click on SOAR Learning Videos.

Thinking Aloud! Making Sense of Literacy helps students and parents make sense of challenging literacy concepts. Through engaging videos, the inquisitive Knowledge Seekers demonstrate how to examine the thinking that goes on inside their heads as they process or create text. By using Thinking Aloud! videos and supplementary resources, students develop the literacy strategies necessary to construct understanding and flexibly apply them to new situations.

Topics Include:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking
  • Listening
  • Viewing

Problem Solved: Making Sense of Mathematics helps students and parents make sense of challenging math concepts and procedures. The videos in the series build the viewer’s conceptual understanding of mathematics by working through interesting real-life situations. Supplementary resources give students the opportunity to check and extend their reasoning by solving problems similar to those in the videos.

Topics Include:

  • Numbers and Operations
  • Data Analysis and Probability
  • Algebra
  • Geometry
  • Measurement

For information on SOAR’s Making Sense video resources, contact:info@makingsenseonline.org

Flu Season and SOAR

Is your child not feeling well and home from school? Are you worried he or she may fall behind? Don’t forget that SOAR can provide your children with engaging online activities to supplement the work sent home from school. Students can search the Skill Resources from their home page to find activities on a specific math or reading topic they might be working on at school.

Parent Tutorials

There are both video and printable tutorials available to parents to assist as they navigate through SOAR. Login and click Educational Resources, Parent Tutorials.




    Student components include:

    • Assessments aligned with state standards to identify their strengths and weaknesses in reading and mathematics
    • Tutorial lessons to reinforce and review skills not mastered


    Partners

    The Military Impacted Schools Association (MISA) sponsors SOAR in partnership with the University of Northern Iowa, The Princeton Review, and Skills Tutor.  We have come together to provide resources to assist with the unique challenges for military children.  Our hope is that SOAR will help children improve in their academic endeavors, and ease the transition of moving from one military installation to another.  While we are working to assist the 550,000 children of our military personnel, we know that their classmates will also be the beneficiary of these resources.

    SOAR is an innovative program that makes it easy for parents to play an active role in their children’s education.

    SOAR is designed for military families, and is easily accessible worldwide.

    Students take an assessment aligned to state standards, and SOAR directs them to individualized tutorials to improve skills where needed. Parents can monitor their children’s progress from anywhere, and are provided with resource materials.

    Going the Distance: Online Education in the United States, 2011 | The Sloan Consortium®

    Get the full report here

    Key report findings include:

    • Over 6.1 million students were taking at least one online course during the fall 2010 term, an increase of 560,000 students over the previous year.
    • The 10% growth rate for online enrollments far exceeds the 2% growth in the overall higher education student population.
    • Thirty-one percent of higher education students now take at least one course online.
    • Reported year-to-year enrollment changes for fully online programs by discipline show most are growing.
    • Academic leaders believe that the level of student satisfaction is equivalent for online and face-to-face courses.
    • 65% of higher education institutions now say that online learning is a critical part of their long-term strategy.
    • There continues to be a consistent minority of academic leaders concerned that the quality of online instruction is not equal to courses delivered face-to-face.

    The Class Struggle: 5 Things Online Education has that Real Classrooms Don't

    Can you add to this list?