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California State Parks Reaches Major Milestone in K-12 Digital Access

California State Parks is proud to announce it has connected more than 500,000 students to state parks via virtual field trips since 2004. The grassroots program known as Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS®) engages undeserved students by creating equitable digital access to state parks at no cost to schools, teachers or students.

PORT Release photo

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6 Ideas for Funding More STEM Programs in Education

Quality STEM education is necessary for molding the upcoming generation of scholars. This discipline influences virtually every industry. While jobs are abundant, they often go unfilled. 

Educators can combat this problem by teaching students the value of STEM. However, many of them encounter funding issues. Schools don't always have adequate budgets to support engineering and technology programs, especially when they require expensive tools.

School Funding

Educating students is difficult without monetary support. Schools are using creative ideas for funding STEM programs and paying teachers. If your institution needs new ideas on bringing in more money, read about the six ideas below. 

By Kayla Matthews 

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Why Computer Science Should Be a High School Graduation Requirement

Computing is an integral part of every aspect of our lives, from how we connect with each other to the way we do our jobs and get around. Computing is the number one source of all new wages in the U.S. economy and there are currently 500,000 open computing jobs across the country.

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Yet, according to a Code.org report, only 15 states require all high schools to offer computer science. Many parents, educators, and education institutions are calling for computer science to be a high school graduation requirement. As one commentator pointed out: Schools teach math to students regardless of whether they want to become mathematicians because it is foundational. The same is true of computer science. There are a number of benefits to taking computer science in high school.

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AI Curricula for K-12 Classrooms

Don’t assume it will be years before you need to worry about AI in the curriculum you teach. Artificial intelligence already has seeped into nearly every facet of our lives. It’s been permeating the fabric of our world, quite literally.

Wearable technology like smart yoga pants and running socks have taken fashion into the future with connected sensors that monitor body data and measure workout efficacy. We rely on smart surveillance, smart vehicles, and smartphones to get us through our days. Why wouldn’t we also use smart curricula?

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that artificial intelligence already plays a role in many classrooms. Schools have been redesigning how students learn by embedding the first phase of AI into the grades K-12 curriculum.

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Using Artificial Intelligence to Boost Student Retention Rates

Tertiary institutions struggle with low retention rates. Only 40% of students complete a 4-year degree within 6 years at the same institution where they started their studies.

Student retention is a matter of great importance to institutions. For institutions that depend on tuition, low retention rates have serious financial consequences. That is apart from the huge negative implications for students should they opt not to continue their studies. Universities and colleges are under increasing pressure to retain students. Many states support tertiary institutions financially based on the number of students that graduates, not the number that enrolls.

AI Pepper

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Classroom Projects for a Digital Age

Classroom learning today has left the age of flipping through textbooks to follow along with the teacher, at least not for every class lesson. Teachers today are taking advantage of the use of digital devices and media to expand learning opportunities beyond a pencil and paper assignment. And, assessment is no longer just a multiple choice test.

Digtal Age classroom

Consider changing your usual assessment to one of these projects:

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10 Resources for EdTech Grants

Regardless of your specific position in education, you may find it necessary at one point in your career to pursue funding for educational technology. While education technology is primarily funded at the state and federal level, there are multitudes of local grants you can apply for as well. You should carefully consider all possible funding sources when searching for money to pay for your newest classroom innovation.

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How Coding Should be Taught To Kids

Parents and educators across the country understand the importance of teaching kids how to code. Not only can it help them learn valuable skills that they can use into their technology-driver future, but it also helps them learn to approach problems differently. But determining the best method for teaching a child to code isn’t always obvious.

In most cases, people agree that a traditional textbook approach is insufficient for subjects like coding. While the idiosyncrasies of the language can be introduced that way, it is difficult to assimilate the information until it is in use fully. But sticking children in front of a blank screen and having them write line after line, though functional, isn’t very inspiring or even interesting.

Highland-Teaching-Coding2

If you want to capture the interest of young students while giving them access to a valuable skill set, then turning to games may be the ideal method.

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Robotics, The Next Big Thing in Higher Education?

Without a doubt, robotics is the next big thing in education. Like it or not, robots and robotics are the future. The sooner we accept robotics in schools and educate our children about robotics, the more prepared they will be for that future. At the moment, robotics is a reality at universities around the world, but imagine the possibilities if children entered those college programs already equipped with some robotic knowledge.

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In this article, we have listed some interesting stories from universities to prove that there is already quite an interest in robotics after high school.

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Why EdTech Companies Should Hire Educators

With the rise of new edtech companies, the competition to succeed in the industry grows each year. In 2016, the industry raised over 1 billion dollars. Staying ahead of the game and focusing on ways to outperform the competition is necessary for startups to stay alive. However, many companies are ignoring a valuable resource which they need for continued success. What is this untapped reservoir?

The answer you might not expect is teachers. Edtech companies often focus on technology development, testing, and integration. However, a significant number of them are doing so without the input of education professionals. What do traditional educators have to offer edtech companies? In short, a lot. Here are the most significant reasons edtech companies need to employ teachers.

Image result for teachers EdTech"

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