Weekly News Roundup: 7.17.15

By Cari Jackson 07.16.2015 blog

This week in Education News: Tech&Learning explains the importance of digital portfolios; eSchoolNews reports on how companies are using games to teach SEL; Edudemic outlines a guide to digital citizenship; EdWeek sees a trend in Middle School career prep programs; and Monica Burns shares how to use infographics in the Social Studies classroom.

Digital Portfolios Help Students Impress Future Employers

Tech&Learning offers insights on how guiding your students through the process of developing a digital portfolio can not only be a great learning tool, but also a means of securing employment. Shelly Terrell explains how curation tools like Educlipper , Pinterest and Livebinders can help students quickly create and constantly update a portfolio. This blog includes a link to examples of portfolios that you can use as a helpful conversation starter.

Games Create Opportunities for Social-Emotional Learning

Games, whether real life or digital, offer a perfect opportunity to teach resilience, self-awareness, delaying gratification, social awareness, cooperation, decision-making and more. eSchoolNews reports that one new company, called If You Can (based on the Rudyard Kipling poem “If”), hopes to bring a game-based approach to learning these social and emotional skills. As students venture on a quest, they are tested in their ability to manage stress, anxiety, anger and frustration — and it’s a game that any child can handle independently and privately, which is empowering in itself.

Edudemic Outlines Teacher’s Guide to Digital Citizenship

Young people are beginning to realize the impact that their digital footprint can have on their safety and future prospects. While parents and educators lack the ability to completely control how students use technology, it’s essential that we teach students about digital citizenship. From acting with respect online to understanding how to find reliable information, Edudemic has outlined some key topics — as well as resources — teachers need to empower students to use the internet responsibly and safely.

Middle Schools Increasingly Seek Career Prep Opportunities for Students

When students wait until high school to start thinking seriously for their future, they may have already missed their opportunity for signing up for more rigorous classes. EdWeek reports that in response, middle schools are beginning to create year-round programs woven into the curriculum, particularly for at-risk youth. Research shows that waiting until high school for intervention is too late. United Way’s Middle Grade Success Challenge hopes to use mentorship programs and efforts to engage students in thinking about their future at the middle school level to cut drop out rates by half. What is your school doing to prep students for careers?

Using Infographics to Demonstrate Understanding of Social Studies Concepts

Our resident EdTech Blogger and Apple Distinguished Educator Monica Burns explains how students can use visual representations to express the meaning of data and facts in the social studies classroom. With the help of apps like PicCollage and Pages, and websites like Piktochart and Canva, students can create infographics to tell a story and demonstrate their understanding of complex concepts.

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