Parents Weigh In On Paying for Mobile Access in Schools

Would parents pay for mobile phones if schools allowed them to be used as learning tools? Most would, according to the recent Speak Up 2010 report — 67 percent of parents, to be exact. We took this data a step further and asked MindShift readers if parents would pay for data plans, specifically to be … Continue reading Parents Weigh In On Paying for Mobile Access in Schools →

Should Schools Subsidize Mobile Phones for Kids?

If Project K-Nect is proof that at-risk kids benefit from access to smart phones (many of them, the founder Shawn Gross says, have gone on to take Advanced Placement math classes), what happens to those who don’t have smart phones? A reader asks: My question for the group discussion is that because many of my … Continue reading Should Schools Subsidize Mobile Phones for Kids? →

How Do We Address the Needs of Kids Without Mobile Access?

Flickr:Shlala The $64,000 question in education: Does access to mobile technology actually help close the achievement gap? Bill Ferriter, a sixth-grade teacher in North Carolina, has been thinking about this issue, and writing about it on his blog, The Tempered Radical. In this recent post, he addresses a question from one of his readers, who … Continue reading How Do We Address the Needs of Kids Without Mobile Access? →

Technology: Not a Silver Bullet, But Makes Learning Relevant

“I don’t believe that cyberlearning is the silver bullet to take over schools and make us better,” says Kenneth Eastwood, Superintendent of Middletown City School District in Ohio. “It is to make us more efficient and relevant to the process related to the learners of today, and once, I think, that everybody agrees upon that … Continue reading Technology: Not a Silver Bullet, But Makes Learning Relevant →

Music for the Masses: Apps and Sites for Learning to Play Tunes

Flickr:NZGabriel By Audrey Watters In his remarks at TEDxNYED a couple of weeks ago, education activitist Will Richardson shared an anecdote about coming home one day to the sound of “Don’t Stop Believin'” on the piano. It was his daughter, a novice pianist, who’d placed Will’s laptop next to her and taught herself the song … Continue reading Music for the Masses: Apps and Sites for Learning to Play Tunes →

Screen Time For Kids: Is it Learning or a Brain Drain?

When it comes to video games and apps, what’s a parent to do? On one hand, we’re bombarded with messages about the perils of letting kids play with computer games and gadgets. On the other, we’re seduced by games and apps marketed to us as “educational.” It’s a tricky line to navigate. The spectrum of … Continue reading Screen Time For Kids: Is it Learning or a Brain Drain? →

Where Does Informal Learning Fit In?

With so much rich information for learners available and accessible on the Internet — everything from how to play the guitar to applications of the Pythagorean Theorem — how can the formal education system leverage all this within schools? There are tremendous obstacles in the way. A shortage of high-quality K-12 STEM teachers, dwindling interest … Continue reading Where Does Informal Learning Fit In? →

Tech and Learning: At Odds in School, in Sync Everywhere Else

The culture of current public school model can’t be more different than the culture of technology, says Allan Collins, co-author of Rethinking Education in the Age of Technology. In most public schools, every student learns the same things at the same time. The teacher is the content expert and controls what students learn. Testing is … Continue reading Tech and Learning: At Odds in School, in Sync Everywhere Else →

How Technology Wires the Learning Brain

Kids between the ages of 8 and 18 spend 11.5 hours a day using technology — whether that’s computers, television, mobile phones, or video games – and usually more than one at a time. That’s a big chunk of their 15 or 16 waking hours. But does that spell doom for the next generation? Not … Continue reading How Technology Wires the Learning Brain →

Creating is Learning

On Sunday, Feb. 13, PBS will air “Digital Media – New Learners Of The 21st Century,” a look at how technology is being integrated into the learning process. One huge shift in the new learning process: Going from the current focus on learning content to “learning tools and the skills to be creator of remaking … Continue reading Creating is Learning →

Algebra, Meet the iPad: A Year-Long Study Explores Learning With the Tablet

Whether or not the iPad is the Holy Grail in education has yet to be determined. But when one of the biggest textbook publishers in the world invests in a pilot program specifically for the Apple tablet, it’s a good indication that, at the very least, it’s on the short list. Since last fall, 400 … Continue reading Algebra, Meet the iPad: A Year-Long Study Explores Learning With the Tablet →

Learning Algebra with the iPad

“Is this the device or is this the first device? It’s hard to say. But what we can certainly say firmly is that it’s the best thing to have come along so far. The reason we did this test is to learn as a content provider, how do we take a really well-designed, high-functioning mobile … Continue reading Learning Algebra with the iPad →

Out With Computer Labs, in With Mobile

Imagine if at your workplace, you had to sign up to use a computer during an allotted time in a computer lab. Sounds bizarre when you think of it in those terms, but that’s the system that some say we’ve set up for most of our middle school and high school students who don’t have … Continue reading Out With Computer Labs, in With Mobile →

Using “Gee-Whiz” in Learning

A Q&A with Mike Looney, Vice President of Vertical Markets at Wolfram|Alpha. Q. For those who don’t know about the company, tell us about Wolfram Alpha and the products that are used in the education space. Wolfram|Alpha is a “computational knowledge engine” which we sometimes refer to as an “answer” or “fact” engine. You pose … Continue reading Using “Gee-Whiz” in Learning →