Educational technology needs to grow like a weed

Want to scale education reform? Plant a tech seed and help it flourish.

Why do so many well-conceived education reform designs fail in implementation? For the same reason that old-school top-down software development fails in today’s rapidly evolving Internet-based marketplaces.

In both cases there is an implicit false assumption that the designers can accurately predict what users will need in perpetuity and develop a static one-size-fits-all product.

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Is technology producing a decline in critical thinking and analysis?

This report summarises research undertaken by Patricia M Greenfield, University of California, Los Angeles, USA. Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of the Children’s Digital Media Center, Los Angeles.
A more extended article on this topic, written by Professor Greenfield, appears in the 2 January 2009 edition of Science.

She writes: Technology has changed familiar patterns of learning. As technology has played a bigger role in our lives, our visual skills have improved while our skills in critical thinking and analysis have declined.
This article reports on these and other findings of Professor Patricia M Greenfield, a psychologist who has analysed more than 50 studies on learning and technology, including multitasking and the use of computers, the internet and video games.

The article concludes:
Schools should ensure that students have the opportunity to access and work with a broad range of media, balancing new media with traditional forms of reading. Parents should encourage their children to read and should read to
their young children. No single medium can develop the variety of skills needed by today’s learners. A balanced media diet will facilitate both the visual intelligence skills obtained through new media, and the deep processing skills best learnt through traditional media.

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Ed-tech officials: Video will make schools more ‘efficient’

Most school and college decision makers agree that video technology can help boost learning

More than half of education technology officials in K-12 schools and higher-education institutions said they would buy video technology in the next year to make their schools “more effective and efficient” and better prepare students for the workforce, according to a new survey from technology giant Cisco Systems.

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Master Chef Reveals Secret Recipes

Master Chef reveals the secret recipes for many
of America’s favorite dishes.  Now you can impress
your family & friends with these unique recipes.
Be the first to have the recipes that everyone
loves but nobody knows how to make including:
* KFC Original Recipe Chicken
* Boston Market Meatloaf
* Jack Daniel’s BBQ Sauce
* Olive Garden Lasagna
* Junior’s NY Cheesecake (As seen on TV)
* And over 200 more famous secret recipes!
Discover the ingredient combinations and spices
that make these foods taste so good.
Get instant access to these secret recipes right now – go to:  http://bit.ly/defFeY

Master Chef Reveals Secret Recipes—–
Master Chef reveals the secret recipes for manyof America’s favorite dishes.  Now you can impressyour family & friends with these unique recipes.
Be the first to have the recipes that everyoneloves but nobody knows how to make including:
* KFC Original Recipe Chicken* Boston Market Meatloaf* Jack Daniel’s BBQ Sauce* Olive Garden Lasagna* Junior’s NY Cheesecake (As seen on TV)* And over 200 more famous secret recipes!
Discover the ingredient combinations and spicesthat make these foods taste so good.
Get instant access to these secret recipes right now – go to:  http://bit.ly/defFeY

Children respond to call of the wild

A child’s contact with nature will influence health in adulthood as well as having many other long-term gains, writes Ainslie MacGibbon.

Australians relish their reputation as lovers of the great outdoors – all beach and bush – with an intimate relationship with the natural environment.

But as parents’ working lives become busier, cities become more crowded and technology takes more of a grip on our lives, many people – particularly children – are spending more and more time indoors.

=> http://bit.ly/ceBw74

No place for iPad in education revolution

STATE education departments are unlikely to roll out iPads as part of the federal government’s digital education revolution program because of the device’s technical shortcomings.

While the government’s $2 billion plan for secondary schools has boosted the number of PCs, laptops and thin clients at schools, the iPad looks like remaining on the outer.

http://bit.ly/cFJP9F

Educational videos help students learn about U.S. presidents

Disney’s curriculum on U.S. presidents features an interactive whiteboard application.
Readers with young children no doubt are familiar with Disney as a multimedia launching pad for the careers of teen superstars such as Miley Cyrus and Selena Gomez, while others might associate the company with its slew of animated features over the years. Now, Disney is hoping that educators will think of it as a provider of educational technology as well.

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Free online curriculum expanding to middle grades

SAS Curriculum Pathways used by more than 8,000 high schools, and soon will reach students as young as sixth grade

SAS Curriculum Pathways offers inquiry-based activities in English, math, science, social studies, and Spanish.
An online instructional resource for students in grades 8-12 that has been available to schools free of charge since December 2008 soon will include content for sixth and seventh graders as well.

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How the Whale got His Throat – free audio download

This is one of the wonderful Just So Stories by Rudyard Kipling. It explains why a huge mammal – the whale – can only eat the smallest things. The story is full of Kipling’s love of words and sounds, and it’s read with gusto by Richard.

Listen or download here