A lot of schools across the globe, especially in developing nations, don’t have computers with access to the internet. Project Empathy aims to address that issue by having classrooms with internet access participate in sharing knowledge with classrooms that don’t. Schools or classes willing to help can buy one of its kits, which are small devices equipped with a 64 GB microSD card, a Raspberry Pi, USB drives and other components. They then have to load the kit with content from the web, like Wikipedia articles or pages from NASA’s websites, that their recipients can tap into for their studies. The program was created by a startup called Outernet, which aims to provide developing nations free, one-way access to web pages via geostationary and Low Earth Orbit satellites. READ MORE: Project Empathy shares knowledge with unconnected schools | Engadget
In less than two decades, Bob Brown has donated more than 5 million books to Africa. Through his International BookSmart Foundation, Brown, an 86-year-old civil rights activist, friend of Martin Luther King Jr., advisor to the Mandela family and former White House Cabinet member, hopes to contribute many, many more to the continent.
That’s why his wish this holiday season is to keep giving back — and it came true in aH big way with the help of UPS’s Wish Delivered Campaign. Together, Brown and UPS will ship more than 180 tons of additional books to schools across Africa over the next three years. READ MORE: This Man’s Wish To Donate Millions Of Books To Africa Just Came True | HuffPost
Coding has replaced history and geography in Australia’s new digital technologies curriculum which was endorsed by education ministers on Friday. As The Australian reports, it ensures that 21st century computer coding will be taught in primary schools from Year 5, and programming will be taught from Year 7. READ MORE: Coding to be taught in Australian schools from primary age | Mashable
Only 29% of all employees across the most influential U.S. technology companies—Google, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon, and Intel—are women. But that includes salespeople, service workers, and communications professionals. Companies that break out gender ratio by role report an an even more drastic disparity. At Twitter, 10% of technical workers are women. At Facebook, it’s 16%.
Computer science programs across the country report a similar dearth of women. As of 2012, the last year for which the National Science Foundation has published data, only about 18% of degrees in the field were obtained by women, the lowest percentage of any STEM discipline. But there is one corner of this pale, male landscape that has less of a gender imbalance than others: coding schools. READ MORE: Where Are The Women In Tech? Coding Bootcamps | Fast Company | Business + Innovation.
Children’s books about being raised by same-sex parents, including one about a pair of “gay” penguins bringing up a chick, are to be banned in Venice’s schools, as a new mayor stamps a more conservative mark on the World Heritage city. READ MORE: Gay parenting books to be banned from Venice schools | Telegraph.
Nicole Barr, a 12-year-old in Essex, London, just scored a 162 on her Mensa IQ test — that’s two points higher than Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking scored. READ MORE: A 12-year-old girl got a higher IQ score than Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking | Mashable
IPads, maker spaces, 3-D printers, and coding skills top the tech wish lists for 1,259 school librarians across the country, according to School Library Journal’s (SLJ) 2015 Technology Survey. Educators are hungry to bring their students even more—whether that’s robotics classes or Arduino kits.
“New computers, tablets, video equipment, all digital tools, instruction on usage, [and] enough bandwidth” count among the must-haves for Andrea Oshima, a school librarian at Aviara Oaks Elementary School in Carlsbad, CA. Currently, 64 percent of school librarians consider themselves tech leaders in their schools—and 28 percent feel that their tech skills afford them increased job security. READ MORE: School Librarians Want More Tech—and Bandwidth | SLJ 2015 Tech Survey | School Library Journal.
In four small schools scattered across San Francisco, a data experiment is under way. That is where AltSchool is testing how technology can help teachers maximize their students’ learning. Founded two years ago by Max Ventilla, a data expert and former head of personalization at Google, AltSchool runs schools filled with data-gathering technology.
Information is captured from the moment each student arrives at school and checks in on an attendance app. For part of the day, students work independently, using iPads and Chromebooks, on “playlists” of activities that teachers have selected to match their personal goals. Data about each student’s progress is captured for teachers’ later review. Classrooms are recorded, and teachers can flag important moments by pressing a button, as you might TiVo your favorite television show.
The idea is that all the data from this network of schools will be woven into a smart centralized operating system that teachers will be able to use to design effective and personalized instruction. There is even a recommendation engine built in. READ MORE: Educating Data | MIT Technology Review.
Wrong on so many levels. North Carolina (and South Carolina if you are aware of today’s news) seem to be having troubles with kindness lately…(my opinion and not passing judgement on every citizen of these states in the USA).
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — After a third-grader tearfully recounted how another boy had called him “gay” during gym class, teacher Omar Currie chose to raise the issue during story time by reading his students a fable about a prince who falls in love with another prince, ending with a happily-ever-after royal wedding.
That decision in April ignited a public outcry from some parents in the rural hamlet of Efland, North Carolina, resulting in Currie’s resignation this week from a job he loved. The assistant principal who loaned Currie her copy of “King & King” has also resigned, and outraged parents are pressuring administrators at the Orange County Schools to ban the book. READ MORE: North Carolina’s Omar Currie Resigns After Reading Students A Gay Fable | Huffington Post
As part of National Library Week, the American Library Association just released its annual State of America’s Libraries Report analyzing the shifting role libraries play in today’s society. The full report is interesting in and of itself, but it also includes one of the most fascinating book lists of the year — the most frequently challenged books of the year.
In 2014, the ALA received 311 requests to ban books from schools and libraries. [Here] are the top 10 books that caused the most controversy over the past year, including the reasons they were challenged, as well as each book’s publisher description. READ: The 10 Most Controversial Books of the Year | BookBub Blog