CRUNCH THAT: At ISTE, edublogger Audrey Watters stirred up the conversation when she and four other commentators spoke on a panel entitled “Is It Time to Give Up on Computers in Schools?" She shares her argument on her blog, contending “We need to get the ideologies that are hardwired into computers out of the classroom.” Do you agree? We’ll publish the most thoughtful comments next week.
GENIUS HOUR: By setting aside an hour daily to pursue “passion projects” in the classroom, award-winning educator and founder of Choose2Learn, Angela Maiers believes educators can help students become active, curious citizens. In collaboration with Microsoft, Maiers is offering a free e-book to help teachers implement a “Genius Hour.” Download the first four chapters of “Liberating Genius in the Classroom” now, and stay tuned for the full book at the end of the month!
BRINGING BOOKS TO THE RIGHT PLACE: International nonprofits Camfed and Worldreader will partner to provide eBooks to female students in sub-Saharan Africa. Camfed helps girls and women access education in some of the poorest communities in sub-Saharan Africa; Worldreader uses mobile tech, including eReaders, to supply books to disadvantaged parts of the world. Through the partnership, Camfed alumni will bring 50 eReaders, each programmed with 100 books, to each of 25 schools.
At Forbes, Jordan Shapiro posits that edtech’s most significant impact comes from thoughtful, small implementations with community buy-in like the Camfed-Worldreader partnership, rather than the apps and tools often discussed and featured in US classrooms.
LEGISLATIVE CODE: For young coders, look to the Northwest. The Washington state budget, signed June 29, allocates over $8.9 million to computer science education, including $2 million in grants, to be matched with private funding, for training high school teachers in CS; $6 million to expand the CS department at the University of Washington; and $124,000 in grants supporting AP CS courses in Washington high schools over the next two years. More from Code.org.